Strong global market demand for e-bikes and bicycles continued in the first quarter of this year. Taiwan's largest producer Giant Manufacturing Company Ltd. reports record sales and net profit for the first sales quarter of 2021. Also, Merida Industry Co., Ltd. benefits from high demand for e-bikes.
For Giant quarterly sales increased by double-digits compared to the first three months of 2020, while net profit even grew by triple-digits. Giant now generates 30% of its revenue with e-bikes.
Results were boosted by COVID-19
The company’s first quarter sales in 2021 were up 54.8% to TW$ 20.62 billion (€610.20 million) and net profit increase 170% to TW$ 1.7 billion (€50.31 million). According to Giant Group, the results were boosted by the strong global demand which was partly driven by COVID-19. As a result, both OEM and private label sales grew compared to last year.
With their private label brand Cadex, Giant, Liv, Momentum, Giant-Europe and Giant-North America expanded their revenue by 70% in local currency. The Chinese market delivered an almost exceptional result with a sales increase of 90%.
E-bikes are currently the company’s fastest-growing segment. “Europe is still the key sales driver in this category while e-bike sales in US also reported growth. In the first quarter e-bike sales including OEM business, accounts for 30% of Giant Group total sales,” the company write in a statement.
High-priced e-bikes in demand
When it comes to detailed business figures, Merida Bikes always tends to be a bit cautious. Looking at the 2021 first quarter results, the company released some sales figures, but without disclosing either unit sales, operating profit or earnings. In the first quarter of 2021 Merida Bikes generated a total revenue of TW$ 8.02 billion (€236.71 million) a year-on-year increase of 52.56%. For both Merida and Giant Group the increase in revenue can be attributed to a big demand for high-priced e-bikes, the volume of which can hardly be met.
For Merida, it is surprising to see that they reported a year-on-year sales increase of ‘only’ 15.1% to TW$ 2.41 billion (€71.13 million) in April. This growth is relatively low compared to January (plus 27%), February (plus 60%) and March (plus 68%). We can only speculate whether this is related to the current supply chain problems or another reason.
For the first four months of the year, Merida’s sales of TW$ 10.43 billion (€307.89 million) is still 41.9% ahead of the January-April 2020 turn-over.