Giant Manufacturing Co (巨大機械), one of Taiwan’s leading bicycle makers, reported on Friday a slight improvement in its earnings for the first half of this year amid weakness in the global economy.
In the first six months of this year, Giant posted NT$1.43 billion (US$47.67 million) in net profit, up 0.6 percent from a year earlier, while its earnings per share during the same period stood at NT$3.82, compared with NT$3.8 recorded a year ago.
Giant’s consolidated sales for the six months totaled NT$26.13 billion, up 14.4 percent from a year earlier, while the bike maker registered NT$2.02 billion in pretax profit, up 0.9 percent year-on-year.
In the second quarter alone, the bike maker posted NT$2.04 in earnings per share, up from NT$1.78 recorded in the first quarter.
Giant said it sold 3.61 million bikes in the first half of this year, up 32 percent from a year earlier, adding while its electric bike production lines failed to meet expectations in sales, other facilities enjoyed growth in sales.
In terms of regional sales, the company said its European operations were affected by slowing demand due to the lingering debt problems in the eurozone, while a weakening euro also imposed an impact on its sales in the region.
Last year, Europe served as the largest buyer of Giant’s products, accounting for 27 percent of the company’s total sales, ahead of China with 26 percent, the US with 23 percent, Japan with 10 percent and Taiwan with 4 percent.
Giant said its operations in China and the US scored the highest sales in the six-month period. China, the world’s second-largest economy, boasts a rising consumer base, which has paved the path for growing demand for bicycles for leisure purposes.
Giant has facilities in several Chinese cities, such as Chengdu and Kunshan. The company said its new plant in Kunshan, which started operations in the third quarter of last year, broke even in May and became profitable in June and last month due to expansion in production capacity.