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Taiwan's Assembled-bike Exports Drop 2.5% YoY in H1, 2014

Jul 30, 2014 | By Quincy Liang

The Taiwan Bicycle Exporters' Association (TBEA) recently said that weaker demand from the European Union (EU), the U.S. and China sapped Taiwan's assembled-bicycle exports in the first half (H1) of the year by 7.87% year-on-year (YoY), to about 1.74 million units, with the export value also plunging 2.51% YoY, to US$759 million.

Taiwan is a major hub of high-end bicycles and parts production and export.Taiwan is a major hub of high-end bicycles and parts production and export.

However, the association stressed, the average selling prices (ASP) of Taiwan-made assembled bicycles continued to climb, from US$412.7 in the same period of 2013 to US$436.7, a 5.8% YoY increase, to which the  TEBA attributes upgraded product design and innovation capabilities of Taiwanese makers.

The exports of Taiwan-made bicycle parts in H1 increased 8.97% YoY to US$477 million.

The EU continued to be the most important market for bike exports from Taiwan in H1, by absorbing 53.9% or about 930,000 units of the total, versus 18.9% or about 320,000 units exported to North America.

In H1, Taiwan's bike exports to the EU and North America declined 7% and 3% YoY, respectively, with that to China also down modestly. The TBEA said that the island's bicycle industry shows the snowball effect whereby the big get bigger and vice versa.

A major assembled-bike exporter in Taiwan says that smog in big cities in China is impacting cycling activities, to sap sales of mainly sports and recreational bicycles, a trend exacerbated by the governmental drive against luxury consumption to also depress sales of  high-end bikes.

However, exports of higher-end bicycles by Merida Industry Co., Ltd., another major bike vendor in Taiwan, were unaffected in H1. The company's exports to North America saw an over-26% growth during the period, to the EU more than 25%, and to China more than 8%. Driven by 10%-plus increase in export ASP, Merida's group revenue rose 12.67% YoY in H1.

Merida's Taiwanese factory focuses on production of higher-end bikes for exports, with exports of 469,000 units in H1, a 5.1% YoY growth, leading to a 20.9% YoY revenue growth for the factory to NT$6.94 billion (US$231.4 million).

Industry sources say Merida's export growth is due to its successful refocus on high-end bike products.

Taiwan's Assembled-bike and Parts Exports

2013 H1
2014 H1
YoY
Assembled-bike Export Volume
1.89 million
1.74 million
-7.87%
Assembled-bike Export Value
US$778 million
US$759 million
-2.51%
Assembled-bike Export ASP
US$412.72
US$436.74
+5.82%
Bike-parts Export Value
US$438 million
US$477 million
+8.97%
Source: TBEA

Caption: Taiwan is a major hub of high-end bicycles and parts production and export.


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