This report examines the Harley-Davidson phenomenon. From near bankruptcy to double-digit growth every year, Harley-Davidson has something working for them. That something is called “strategic planning and development. ” With the growing global economy, companies are looking for ways to improve their market share. Many excellent firms have learned how to beat their competitors through the implementation of new management, marketing, and/or manufacturing techniques. Harley-Davidson is one of those excellent companies whom has challenged traditional ideas.
This report will identify those strategies that have worked and brought the company and its shareholders success each year. Today, Harley-Davidson Inc. , an employer of 8,100 workers, consists of Harley-Davidson Motor Company based in Milwaukee and Eagelmark Financial Services Inc. based in Chicago, Illinois. These are strategic business units are they are managed separately based on the fundamental differences in their operations, products and services. In addition, there are nearly 1,500 dealerships worldwide.
Harley’s commitment toward continuous improvement is exemplified in the supplemental financial statements, Appendix section. Harley’s strategic objective is to continue to provide, safe, high technology heavyweight bikes and keep customer satisfaction at high levels. This quality vision more than doubled Harley-Davidson’s market share and increased its brand loyalty. Harley-Davidson’s products include: motorcycles, parts & accessories along with financing services. Three main geographic markets comprise the bulk of motorcycle sales: North America, Asia and Europe.
Harley-Davidson’s customers are comprised of both male and female with the female segment the fastest growing market at 5% yearly. Expansion into the European and especially Asian markets will be forthcoming. These new market opportunities will require new designs that are lighter, easier to use, comfortable and stylish. Motorcycles are no longer thought of just a mode of transportation. The Harley-Davidson motorcycle welcomes you into a family, a culture of the free and willing sprit. Future threats to prepare for include the increase in European trade tariffs on well-known brands such as named, Harley-Davidson.
Production plant expansion should shorten the wait time for manufacturing new bikes. This has been a weakness of Harley-Davidson for years. It adds to the mystique, but the risk of losing customers is also present. The latest financial reports found in the Appendix section confirm Harley-Davidson’s successful strategies. Year 2001 sales at $3,363. 4 (mil), a growth of 15. 7% from previous period. Year 2001 net income at $437. 7 (mil), a growth of 25. 9%. Harley-Davidson has successfully captured 60% of the motorcycle market.
The future at Harley-Davidson is expected to do very well and increase market share even more where penetration into the Asian and European market is expected. The 100-year anniversary is scheduled for August 2003 in Milwaukee, WI where approximately half a million people are anticipated to participate in the celebration. The American icon is very much alive and desired among people around the world. The Harley-Davidson tradition knows no boundaries but is a culture of its own. With that kind of brand recognition and strategic management, this company is expected to enjoy success another 100 years.