ITALY: Ducati profit up 12% in first quarter
Motorcycle maker Ducati has announced record registrations, revenues, EBITDA and net income for the first quarter ended March 31, 2002.
First quarter 2002 revenues were E106.3 million, up 5.7% over the same period in 2001.
Revenues from Ducati motorcycles for the period increased 4.4% to E89.3 million and represented 84.0% of revenues. Motorcycle-related products, including spare parts, technical accessories and apparel, rose 14.6% to E16.8 million over the comparable period in the previous year. Unit sales were down 3.5% worldwide.
Gross margin was 42.8% of revenues versus 39.2% in the period, mainly reflecting production efficiencies and a positive product mix. Sales costs represented 20.0% of sales versus 18.1% in the period last year, mainly due to costs related to tailored promotional activities.
EBITDA was a record E20.1 million, or 18.9% of revenues, versus 18.0% in the period of the previous year. R&D costs for the Moto GP were E1.3 million, equivalent to 1.2% of sales.
Net income improved by 12.0%, posting a record high for the first quarter of E5.5 million versus E4.9 million in the period in 2001. The resulting net income margin for the period was 5.2% of sales up versus the 4.9% in 2001, mainly thanks to operational gains out-weighing GP and higher commercial costs.
Ducati worldwide registrations increased 19% in the three month period driven by strong results in Japan (+32%) in the US (+30%), in the importer network (+30%) and in Italy (+23%).
Ducati's net debt at March 31, 2002 was E132.0 million, increasing versus the E107.6 million at the same date a year earlier, and E112.9 million at December 31, 2001. The company's net debt to total capitalisation ratio was 45.2% at March 31, 2002 versus 42.0% at the same date a year earlier and 42.2% at December 31, 2001. The increase versus year-end 2001 was mainly due to the roll out in Italy of a new commercial credit policy, which is changing from factoring to insurance.
Ducati's annual shareholder meeting on May 7 approved a plan to buy back up to 3.8% of its outstanding share capital which will be used to satisfy stock option plans and give management flexibility to support the company's stock price.