Saturday, October 20, 2012

Thoughts on Intermot 2012 and EICMA 2012

A few thoughts going into EICMA from Intermot sales.

*Germany and Italy are the only markets that are still important in terms of market share. France is still steady but sales are dead everywhere else. Countries like Russia are rising quickly even in scooters.

*European Associations tend to measure a comeback and growth based on companies exhibiting. No real statistics or measures of distributors that closed or changed hands similar to US press.

*Press in Europe seems more concerned about advertising than actual news. They are going down the path of the US mags which I expect some industry trades to go digital only in 2013.

*Some top names in Taiwan are no longer selling in Germany or selling any relevant numbers since they switched importers like SYM and TGB. The only top ranked company in every single market across the board is Kymco. They are the undisputed 5th major now. PGO has basically zero sales in Europe compared to how well they do in the USA. Not much has changed on this front but smaller brands have left like HerChe and CPI.

*Derbi wasn't even showcased at Intermot. The factory in Barcelona Spain is a parts warehouse these days apparently. First time I notice Piaggio Group just left the brand completely out see video.

*US magazines covered the latest China shows and some are going to Canton but as impressive as the numbers are in Asia none of these brands have established themselves in countries that requre serious floorplanning, warranty state mandated compliance, real brand name recognition, or liability coverage.

*Most Chinese export growth now lies in developing countries where there is limited consumer protection laws, weak or non existent lemon laws, cash based purchases by dealers and consumers, and assembly plant requirements by local authorities.

*The biggest Chinese import group in Europe dissolved and not a peep from the US or European magazines.

*The biggest issues are still related to banks and financing behind the scenes with fewer national banks to turn to in each country. In turn the used scooter market is more important than ever.

*The Chinese vision has changed to the same strategy as the US flooding the market with multiple importers. Znen Motor who has 15 importers in the US is doing the same in Europe with multiple models being sold to several companies at the same time. So a distributor in Germany, Belgium, Italy all exhibiting the same private label models each expressing how theirs has better quality control when its identical to the others. It makes you wonder if any of these guys have a clue as to how there is no long term growth in this.

*Everyone in Europe is focused on Green bikes, scooters, and motorcycles. Only a few will survive. There is no consumer demand for 50 brands of ebikes or escooters. See article on this flawed investor driven scam. Once the German green credits run out these companies will fold.

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