Harley Davidson-Strategic analysis Essay

Harley Davidson-Strategic analysis Essay.

A. Brief History 1. Harley-Davidson 2. The Motorcycle Industry B. Harley-Davidson 1. Mission Statement 2. Vision Statement D. Problem Statement 1. What is the Future of Harley-Davidson? II. EXTERNAL ASSESSMENT A. Nature of the Industry 1. Economic 2. Social 3. Technological 4. Future of the Industry B. Competitive Analysis 1. Industry Attractiveness and Barriers 2. Key Success Factors 3. Competitor Analysis III. INTERNAL ASSESSMENT A. Individual Analysis of Harley-Davidson 1. Nature of the Firm 2. Management 3. Financial Position 4. Financial Ratio Analysis IV. STRATEGIC CHOICE A. SWOT Analysis B. Strategy for the Future.


REFERENCE SECTION I. INTRODUCTION A. Brief History Harley-Davidson Harley-Davidson is an American motorcycle manufacturer founded in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in 1903 when Bill Harley and Arthur Walter Davidson developed a one-cylinder motorcycle. In 1905 they made and sold11 motorcycles; in 1908 they sold 154, and a company was born in a little wooden barn that was built by Davidson’s father. Harley-Davidson, Inc. produces and sells heavyweight motorcycles, as well as motorcycle parts and accessories. It operates in two segments, Motorcycles and Related Products, and Financial Services.

The Motorcycles and Related Products segment deals in the design, manufacture, and sale of heavyweight touring, custom, and performance motorcycles mostly in North America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia, and Latin America. It also produces a line of motorcycle parts and accessories, including replacement parts and decorative accessories. It also offers general merchandise, such as apparel and related services. The Financial Services segment provides wholesale and retail financing, and insurance and insurance-related programs to the company’s dealers and retail customers in the United States and Canada.

It engages in financing and servicing wholesale inventory receivables and retail consumer loans for motorcycles. The Financial Services segment also provides motorcycle insurance and casualty insurance, as well as sells extended service contracts, gap coverage, and debt protection products to motorcycle owners. Harley-Davidson sells its products through independent dealers and distributors. [1] During the Great Depression, Harley-Davidson’s sales fell from 21,000 in 1929 to 3,703 in 1933. Despite those gloomy numbers, Harley-Davidson introduced a new lineup for 1934.

In order to survive the remainder of the Depression, the company manufactured industrial power plants based on their motorcycle engines. They also designed and built a three-wheeler delivery vehicle called the Servi-Car, which remained in production until 1973. [2] One of only two American cycle manufacturers to survive the Great Depression, Harley-Davidson produced large numbers of motorcycles for the US Army in World War II. They started civilian production after the war, producing a series of large motorcycles that were successful both on racetracks and for private buyers.

In 1952, following their application to the US Tariff Commission for a 40% tax on imported motorcycles, Harley-Davidson was charged with restrictive practices. [3] Hollywood also damaged Harley’s image with many outlaw biker gang films produced from the 1950s through the 1970s. “Harley-Davidson” for a long time was synonymous with the Hells Angels and other outlaw motorcyclists. In 1969, American Machinery and Foundry (AMF) bought the company, streamlined production, and slashed the workforce. This strategy resulted in a labor strike and a lower quality of bikes.

The bikes were expensive and inferior in performance, handling, and quality to Japanese motorcycles. Sales declined and the company almost went bankrupt. [4] The Harley-Davidson name was mocked as “Hardly Driveable. ” In 1981, AMF sold the company to a group of investors led by Vaughn Beals and Willie G. Davidson for $80 million. [5] Inventory was strictly controlled and the new owners also claimed that Japanese manufacturers were importing motorcycles into the US in such volume that they threatened to harm domestic producers.

After an investigation by the US International Trade Commission, in 1983 President Reagan imposed a 45% tariff on imported bikes and bikes over 700 cc engine capacity. The new management deliberately exploited the past appeal of their big machines, building motorcycles that purposely adopted the look and feel of their earlier models. Quality increased, technical improvements were made, and buyers returned. Harley-Davidson once again became the sales leader in the heavyweight (over 750 cc) market. During its period of peak demand, the company expanded the number of dealerships throughout the country.

At the same time, its current dealers typically had waiting lists that extended up to a year for some of the most popular models. In August 2009, Harley-Davidson announced plans to enter the market in India. The company established a subsidiary near Delhi, and began the process of seeking dealers. [6] The Motorcycle Industry Motorcycles are one of the most affordable forms of transportation and one of the most common types of motor vehicle. There are approximately 200 million motorcycles (including mopeds and motor scooters) in use worldwide, compared with 590 million cars.

Most motorcycles are concentrated in the United States and Japan. The first internal combustion, gasoline fueled motorcycle was the Petroleum Reitwagen. It was designed and built by the German inventors Gottlieb Daimler and Wilhelm Maybach in 1885. [7] The inventors called their invention the Reitwagen (“riding car”). It was designed as a test vehicle for their new engine, rather than a true model vehicle. The first production motorcycle was the 1894 Hildebrand & Wolfmuller model and the first to be called a motorcycle (German: Motorrad).

[8] In the early part of motorcycle history, many bicycle producers adapted their designs to accommodate the new internal combustion engine. As the engines became more powerful and designs outgrew the bicycle origins, the number of motorcycle producers increased. Up until World War I, the largest motorcycle manufacturer in the world was Indian, producing over 20,000 bikes per year. By 1920, Harley-Davidson became the world’s largest, with motorcycles being sold by dealers in 67 countries. [9] After World War II, the BSA Group became the largest producer of motorcycles in the world, producing up to 75,000 bikes per year in the 1950s.

The German company NSU held the position of largest manufacturer from 1955 until the 1970s. Today, the motorcycle industry is mainly dominated by Japanese companies such as Honda, Kawasaki, Suzuki, and Yamaha, but Harley-Davidson is the major player in the large motorcycle segment. Harley-Davidson Mission Statement Harley-Davidson’s Mission Statement is: “We fulfill dreams through the experience of motorcycling, by providing to motorcyclists and to the general public an expanding line of motorcycles and branded products and services in select market segments. ”

The components of a mission statement should address attention to customers, products and services the company provides, technology, concerns for survival, growth and profitability, philosophy, self-concepts, public image, and concerns for employees . The customer component is addressed in Harley- Davidson’s mission statement and is identified as motorcyclists and the general public. The products and services component is identified in their motorcycles and the Harley-Davidson brand products. The mission statement has the target market as riders, and those who may want to become a rider.

The Philosophy component of Harley-Davidson’s mission statement is fulfilling dreams though the experience of riding a Harley. Harley Davidson’s mission statement does not address concern for survival, growth and profitability, technology, public image or the concern for employees. Harley-Davidson Vision Statement: Harley-Davidson’s Vision Statement is: “Harley-Davidson is an action-oriented, international company, a leader in its commitment to continuously improve its mutually beneficial relationships with stakeholders (customers, suppliers, employees, shareholders, Government, and society).

Harley-Davidson believes the key to success is to balance stakeholders’ interests through the empowerment of all employees to focus on value-added activities. ” Customers are addressed in the vision statement as stakeholders. Stakeholders include customers, suppliers, employees, shareholders, government, and society. The concern for survival is outlined in the vision statement as their commitment to continuously improve its mutually beneficial relationship with stakeholders. The self-concept of the vision statement is expressed in the empowerment of all employees.

The following components are not mentioned specifically in Harley-Davidson’s vision statement: products and services, market, and technology, and philosophy. Harley-Davidson does express their desire to bring quality products to the market it serves. The mission and vision statements have the core philosophy to remain number one. B. Problem Statement What is the Future of Harley-Davidson? Harley-Davidson Inc. designs, manufactures and markets heavyweight motorcycles (engine displacement of 851 cc and above), parts, accessories, collectibles and riding apparel. Harley-Davidson Inc.

also provides through Harley-Davidson Financial Services, named Eaglemark Financial Services, financing services programs to dealers and retail customers. The company’s objectives are: keeping and increasing demand, continuing the level of high quality products, makes, and be a high performance company financially. Harley-Davidson Inc. will try to achieve these goals by paying “vigorous attention to the fundamentals: product development, innovative marketing, and state-of-the-art manufacturing strategies” (Jeffrey L. Bleustein, Harley-Davidson Inc. CEO). The company has a current market share of 57.

8% of the super heavyweight motorcycle segment in the U. S. Their main competitors in the heavyweight motorcycle segments are the powerful Japanese makers Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki and Suzuki. Germany’s BMW is also a major threat in this market segment. While the Japanese makers cover all the motorcycle segments, BMW and Harley-Davidson compete exclusively in the heavyweight segment. The challenge for Harley-Davidson is to formulate a business strategy for the future taking into account the current market and how they will compete in the upcoming environment. II.

EXTERNAL ASSESSMENT A. Nature of the Industry 1. Economic Demand for motorcycles in developed countries such as the United States, Germany, France, Spain, and Great Britain grew significantly after World War II because veterans who enjoyed riding motorcycles during the war bought their own when they returned to civilian life. In 2003, there were more than 950,000 motorcycles sold in the United States. The industry was expected to grow by approximately 5 percent every year until 2012, with light motorcycles, mopeds, and scooters accounting for most of the expected growth.

Increasing personal income in markets like China, India, and Southeast Asia was the primary force that would drive industry growth. Demand and growth for the heavyweight motorcycle segment was higher than for smaller motorcycles in the United States during the 1990s. However, analysts projected that demand for larger motorcycles would decline as the population aged and became less able to travel on two-wheelers. In 2002, demand for heavyweight motorcycles in the United States grew by 17 percent compared to an industry-wide growth rate of 10 percent.

Economic success in the motorcycle industry depends on performance, styling, breadth of product line, image and reputation, quality of after-the-sale service, and price. Most motorcycle manufacturers have good reputations for performance and styling, with the biggest difference between brands taking place in price, variety of models, and quality of dealer service. Most cyclists will not buy a specific brand if the company’s dealers do not have trained mechanics or if it has a reputation for bad workmanship or poor parts availability.

There is also a large price difference in the industry with similar models of Japanese motorcycles typically carrying retail prices far below that of U. S. or European made motorcycles. However, U. S. and European manufacturers have had success in attracting price-conscience buyers in Europe even though Japanese producers offer high-performance motorcycles at prices below those of Harley-Davidson and BMW. Consumers typically evaluate brands by talking to other customers, reading product reviews, looking at company Web sites, reading and paying attention to a manufacturer’s performance in competitive events.

Therefore, economic success in the industry seems to depend on performance, reputation, a strong dealer network, and regional loyalty to the brand. 2. Social The Hollywood scripts depicting the young, wild motorcycle rider became less and less a reality in the late 1990’s, according to Motorcycle Industry Council statistics. Even in the 1990s, riders became more mainstream. The typical heavyweight segment motorcyclist in 2009 was male, 42 years old, married, and had a college degree. A motorcycle industry’s census showed that there were more riders, more households, more women and more young buyers.

Since 2003, the number of motorcycles owned and used in America grew 19 percent to approximately 10. 4 million. That is a 58 percent increase from1998 (6. 6 million). The average income of the motorcyclist in 2009 had more than tripled since 1980 ($17,500). In 2009, motorcycle owner household income averaged $59,290 while the U. S. average was $50,233. Riders are also much older. The typical rider was interested in the outdoors. In surveys about their other interests besides motorcycling, fishing and hunting topped the list. [10] 3. Technological Technology plays a major role in the motorcycle industry.

Motorcycle construction involves the engineering, manufacturing, and assembly of complex components and systems. Technological improvements result in performance and cost benefits. New battery technology (lithium ion polymer batteries)[11], rust inhibitors, better air intakes and mufflers and advance brake systems all are examples of technical breakthroughs in the motorcycle industry. Taking advantage of a large R&D budget, most major manufacturers have implemented new technology to enhance both the riding experience and the durability of their machines.

New fuel injection systems save gas. Electronic steering dampers, hydraulic manual transmissions, and engine idle stop systems add to the ease of riding. [12] For firms to succeed in the business, a large R&D budget is needed in order to stay competitive and attract new customers and keep repeat buyers. 4. Future of the Industry The global market for motorcycles, scooters and mopeds is forecast to reach 75 million units by the year 2015, driven by growing urbanization, rising population and government policies.

Fuel efficiency, pricing and style are other factors that will lead to growth worldwide. Measured in volume, Asia will be the most attractive market. [13] Developing nations in Asia and Latin America use motorcycles as a basic mode of transportation. Motorcycles are more popular with male customers, but mopeds and small scooters are accepted by females. In developed countries like the US, Canada, Japan, Germany and Italy, motorcycles are still mostly considered a premium purchase. Developing markets such as China, India and South East Asia view motorcycles as essential modes of transportation.

Economic growth and rapid urbanization will also lead to increased sales. Emission levels, design, and engine power are some of the other critical growth motivators. In many countries, people are now riding motorcycles because of savings in gas, oil, and insurance which should lead to greater demand. Future threats to the industry are Hybrid (Gas/Electric), Hydrogen and fully Electric vehicles. These types of vehicles are getting great fuel mileage and some get even better mileage than many motorcycles. Environmental issues are also a concern.

Electric engines offer advantages that could never be offered by an Internal Combustion engine such as no noise generated and virtually no pollution. Regulatory and government policy will also play an important role in determining the future direction of the industry. The motorcycle industry is subject to laws and regulations in all countries where motorcycles operate. The European Parliament and the European Council include motorcycles in their agreement to reduce exhaust gas levels. The agreement required motorcycles and scooters to reduce pollutants by 60 percent for all new cycles produced after April 2003.

Another 60 percent reduction is required for motorcycles produced after January 2006. Motorcycles that produce excessive noise are also going to face new regulations in most European countries. In the United States, motorcycle producers are subject to certification by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for compliance with emission and noise standards. Motorcycle producers in the United States are also required to meet the product safety standards of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). B. Competitive Analysis 1.

Industry Attractiveness and Barriers Entry barriers are very high is the heavyweight segment because this segment needs a lot of capital investment and the industry is currently in the maturity stage. Because of this, there are only six major competitors. |2009 Data Heavy and Super Heavyweight Segment [14] [15] | | |Company |Market Share |Units Sold |Motorcycle Revenues | | | | |(Billion $’s) | |H-D |23% |223,023 |3. 17 | |Honda |20% |204,000 |1. 68 | |Suzuki |16% |163,865 |1. 35 | |Yamaha |16% |161,640 |1. 25 | |Kawasaki |12% |123,146 |0. 95 | |BMW |9% |87,306 |1.

20 | Barriers to entry in the motorcycle market include the high cost of technology, mass production and high purchase price in the heavyweight segment (low prices in the lightweight segment). Also, the overall industry has several different segments. The heavyweight and super-heavyweight motorcycles segment is characterized by state-of-the-art manufacturing and customized bikes. In this segment, brand loyalty and a strong image is a barrier for manufacturers trying to gain market share. The industry is also characterized by high prices and high margins.

The economies of scale (cost advantage gained by expansion) are relatively low in this segment, which is another reason that there are only six major players. There are some new small-scale manufacturers that are making custom made motorcycles, but the amount of their production is not at all a threat for Harley-Davidson and the other five companies. 2. Key Success Factors Key Success Factor Analysis (Scale: 1-5, 1=Worst & 5=Best) [16] | |Customer Loyalty |Financial Position |Market |Global Expansion |Advertising |Total | | |(25%) |(20%) |Share |(10%) |(15%) | | | | | |(30%) | | |(100%) | |H-D | | | | | | | | |4 |2 |5 |3 |4 |3.

80 | |Honda | | | | | | | | |3 |4 |4 |4 |3 |3. 15 | |Suzuki | | | | | | | | |2 |3 |3 |3 |3 |2. 30 | |Yamaha | | | | | | | | |2 |3 |3 |3 |4 |2. 30 | |Kawasaki | | | | | | | | |2 |2 |2 |2 |3 |1. 70 | |BMW | | | | | | | | |1 |4 |1 |2 |2 |1. 55 | Motorcycle riding is changing with the times. There are millions of more riders and also many more women and younger riders. A major shift is toward riding to get around, not just riding to have fun. Motorcycling for Americans has, in the past, been for recreation and the pure joy of riding.

But among the reasons given for motorcycling, transportation climbed to second place in a 2008 survey. [17]  Global demand for all segments of the industry is estimated to grow six percent in 2011 (fuel prices and car restrictions will make motorcycles more attractive as a means of transportation). Company success will depend on developing markets that take advantage of rising incomes and introducing higher quality machines with new technology. Harley-Davidson is the current market share leader. Yamaha recently reported that its recent-quarter U.

S. motorcycle retail sales fell 30 percent, which is consistent with the industry as a whole. Those numbers, however, include all motorcycle segments, scooters and off-road to name two, so it is not a direct comparison with Harley-Davidson, which is in the heavyweight and super heavyweight segment. Along with the general rise in heavyweight motorcycle interest over the past five years, demand for the newest type of bikes has increased. Of all motorcycles in use in 2009, 46 percent were purchased new, an increase of 7 percent from 2003.

[18] The average age of motorcyclists is also dropping as new styles and designs attract younger customers. Therefore key success factors for companies looking to prosper in the future are customer loyalty, current financial position, market share, money spent on advertising and ability to globally expand. 3. Competitor Analysis Harley-Davidson Inc. enjoys a current market share of 48. 3% of the heavyweight and super heavyweight motorcycle segment in the U. S. and 23% worldwide. The existing competitors are the powerful Japanese makers Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki and Suzuki. Germany’s BMW also competes in this market.

While the Japanese makers cover all the motorcycle segments, BMW and Harley-Davidson along with some minor European makers, such as Italy’s Ducati and Guzzi and Britain’s Norton, compete exclusively in the heavyweight segment. The strategic group positioning chart shows that Harley-Davidson and Honda are best poised for future success in the industry and, therefore, in the leader’s group. They both have high market share with very good depth of service. Depth of service is a combination of effective management, price competitiveness, product quality, and customer service.

The remaining companies making up the second group are not far behind the two leaders, so strong competition will likely continue into the near future. Natural substitutes of heavy and super heavyweight motorcycles are medium and lightweight motorcycles, mopeds, scooters and cars, trucks, SUV’s, and public transportation. There are some advantages motorcycles have over cars that have to be considered a macroeconomic advantage. Motorcycles are cheaper to buy and maintain, consume less gas and are easier to maneuver in heavy traffic.

On the other hand, riders can only carry one passenger and less luggage, and motorcycles are very weather sensitive. That is why motorcycles are susceptible to decreasing demand during recession periods. Government regulations (such as the mandatory use of helmets) also can reduce the demand. Both suppliers and distributors have low impact on competition in this market because of the small number of suppliers and the brand loyalty of distributors and dealers. Five Forces Internal Rivalry Harley-Davidson has five major competitors in the heavyweight motorcycle segment (Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki, Suzuki and Germany’s BMW).

Honda and Yamaha have larger financial and marketing resources. A strategic alliance between Suzuki and Kawasaki in product development, design, engineering and manufacturing has made both companies stronger in the global motorcycle industry. Honda is the main competitor in the U. S. and does take market share from Harley-Davidson. Entry Barrier Entry barrier is high. Substitute Products Harley-Davidson motorcycles are a luxury product in the heavyweight and super heavyweight segment. There are few substitutes for this segment that can adversely affect the market.

Passenger cars, sports bikes and scooters are the main substitutes. Power of Suppliers Steel, electronic and electrical equipment and shipping of the final product are what the segment needs most from suppliers. Harley-Davidson has a wide span of suppliers so that if one increases prices they can switch to another supplier. Power of Customers Customers in the heavyweight and super heavyweight segment are individuals. No one customer can seriously affect any of the companies’ financial position. The number of dealers world-wide affects the number of customers and sales.

Harley-Davidson has less world-wide dealers than its competitors. Harley-Davidson is currently the market share leader with Honda not far behind; therefore, they are the company’s major competitor. Harley-Davidson is not in all the markets that Honda is in, some of which include engine marine, All Terrain Vehicles (ATV), and automobiles. Also Honda and Yamaha have larger financial and marketing resources, and the strategic alliance between Suzuki and Kawasaki will continue to make both stronger in the global motorcycle industry.

BMW is not concentrating on their heavyweight motorcycle segment and seems not to pose a realistic future threat to any of the others. Harley-Davidson motorcycles are a luxury product with smaller bikes, scooters and Hybrid cars as the main substitutes. The number of dealers world-wide affects the number of customers and sales, and Harley-Davidson currently has less world-wide dealers than its competitors. To combat these facts, the strategy of Harley-Davidson is to continue to push demand for their high quality products.

Money for research and development to improve the Harley-Davidson design is being directed towards making Harley-Davidson among the best motorcycles in the world. They believe that the company has survived past threats because of the passion people feel for its product. III. INTERNAL ASSESSMENT A. Individual Analysis of Harley-Davidson 1. Nature of the Firm Harley-Davidson Inc. is the parent company for many independent dealers. Harley-Davidson Inc. operates in two business segments, the Motorcycles and Related Products segment and the Financial Services segment.

The Motorcycles segment designs, manufactures and sells primarily heavyweight (engine displacement of 651+cc) touring, custom and performance motorcycles, as well as motorcycle parts, accessories, general merchandise and related services. Harley-Davidson Financial Services is a separate entity under the Harley-Davidson name. The Financial Services segment provides wholesale and retail financing and insurance and insurance-related programs to Harley-Davidson Motor Company dealers and their retail customers. It conducts business principally in the United States and Canada.

The two divisions together, make up Harley-Davidson Inc. Harley-Davidson is the only major U. S. maker of motorcycles and the nation’s #1 seller of heavyweight motorcycles. Harley-Davidson offers 24 models of touring and custom motorcycles and has held the largest share of the U. S. heavyweight motorcycle market since 1986. Besides motorcycles, Harley-Davidson sells a licensed line of clothing and accessories with the company name. Also, gaining popularity are the Harley-Davidson Restaurants, located in various cities including New York City and Las Vegas.

These successful restaurants provide customers with food, souvenir merchandise and a chance to see rare biker memorabilia. These are some of the reasons the Harley-Davidson logo is one of the most recognizable brand symbols in America and the world. Demand for Harley-Davidson motorcycles has always been high. Other motorcycle manufacturers compete with Harley-Davidson in the heavyweight segment but none have been able to match Harley-Davidson in terms of customer loyalty. The company’s dedication to its customers has created a loyalty that is envied by all its competitors. It is difficult to clearly define an average Harley-Davidson buyer.

The demographics range from a blue-collar worker to a high power executive and are located all over the world. While their competitors base their advertising on product technology and features, Harley-Davidson promotes a unique appearance, individualism, and the feeling and pride of riding and owning a legend. Harley-Davidson does face challenges in the future. There are concerns related to the world economy because U. S. federal and trade deficits together with record levels of consumer debt represents a continuing threat for any company selling high cost leisure products. Competition may not be a primary concern.

Harley has demonstrated its ability to hold its own against its rivals (including the big Japanese producers Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki, and Suzuki), even though H-D’s share of the heavyweight market fell in the last five year average. Harley’s potential to compete in other segments of the motorcycle industry is limited and their popularity is associated with the baby-boom generation. As this generation gets older, Harley must find a way to appeal to younger generations. 2. Management Harley-Davidson was reincorporated in 1981 after it was purchased by 13 of its managers through a leveraged buyout.

The management team’s main focus at the time was to preserve jobs, but they quickly realized that the company would need to be rebuilt from the ground up to survive. The company’s market share in the United States had fallen to 3 percent, mostly because its products were unreliable and had poor performance compared to the less expensive Japanese motorcycles. Also, its network of dealers ran dirty, run-down shops that many people did not feel comfortable going to. The management team realized that a strong allegiance to the Harley brand by many of their customers was the company’s only real strength.

However, when management began to meet with customers, they found that long time Harley riders felt cheated by the company and were angry about the lack of attention to product quality and customer service under the old ownership. Previous customers did not trust the company. The distrust subsided when Harley owners saw suggestions they made being implemented by the company. Harley-Davidson’s turnaround strategy included improving product quality, cutting back on advertising in favor of promotions at motorcycle rallies, and improving its dealer network to appeal to new customers.

After hearing complaints about dealers, Harley-Davidson called for the dealers to build clean, attractive stores to showcase their improved motorcycles and display apparel and other merchandise that cyclists would buy. In 2003, Harley-Davidson introduced 1,200 new clothing items and licensed its name to more than 100 manufacturers making everything from Harley-Davidson Edition Ford F-150 pickups to Harley Barbie dolls. Harley emerged as an independent, privately owned company but had enormous debt. The buyout came at a time of severe recession and soaring interest rates. Also, the company was a highly leveraged business.

Sales of heavyweight motorcycles fell worldwide during 1981 and 1982. By 1982, Harley-Davidson’s sales were down by more than a third from 1979. During 1981 and 1982, Harley-Davidson lost a total of $60 million. Management dismissed 30 percent of office staff, and there were similar cutbacks among hourly workers. While battling to stay solvent, the new management team also devoted themselves to rebuilding production methods and working practices in order to cut costs and improve quality. A key feature of H-D’s turnaround during the 1980s was a new relationship between management and employees.

Following the buyout, the new management team changed management–employee relationships, employee responsibilities, and organizational structure. The result was an increase in employee commitment and job satisfaction. Harley now has a no lay-off policy, 12 weeks of paid maternity leave, and unlimited sick days. They also use a team-based structure that improves employee motivation and innovation. The Harley-Davidson Operating System is a philosophy and methodology for continuous improvement involving team-based efforts to identify wasted steps, cut costs, and improve quality. [19] On the other hand, Harley’s employees are not diversified.

The board of directors is mostly male and their leadership council is made up entirely of company vice-presidents. 3. Financial Position Harley-Davidson’s financial strengths are varied. Sales have dropped 2. 11% in the last 5 years (the segment average is +9. 49%) and earnings per share have also declined by 36. 79%. Growth for Harley-Davidson, Inc. [20] | |1 Year |3 Years |5 Years | |Sales % |-19. 7 |-8. 22 |-2. 11 | |EPS % |-89. 64 |-57. 47 |-36. 79 | |Dividend % |-68. 99 |-20. 96 |-0. 25 | This indicates that that even though Harley-Davidson has previously been an attractive company to invest in, they need to increase sales to remain.

Harley Davidson-Strategic analysis Essay

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