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Yamaha Thinks Cost-Cutting and Closures

Last year, Japanese manufacturer Yamaha experienced a 28.1 percent drop in revenues. According to officials at Yamaha, the economic slump brought a decrease in sales of motorcycles and marine products both in the home market and overseas in 2009. All these made the Japanese manufacturer consider cost-cutting and reorganization.

Yamaha will eliminate 200 positions in the United States and Europe this year in addition to 800 layoffs by the end of October announced earlier this month. Yamaha will also shut two plants overseas this year and five in Japan by 2012.

Although the company is considered the second largest motorcycle manufacturer in the world, Yamaha suffered a net loss of $2.4 billion dollars.

“The company is expanding the scope of three structural reforms, reorganizing the manufacturing layout, the workforce and reducing costs beyond the level envisioned in the previous announcement,” Yamaha said referring to the cost-cutting moves.

Through these moves it is hoped the company will return to profit, with sales likely rising 8.4 percent to $13.9 billion, returning Yamaha to an operating profit. The company expects global motorcycle sales will rise 12 percent to 6.55 million units and sales in Asia excluding Japan will increase 14 percent to 5.69 million units.

The motorcycle market in other parts of the world are another matter with sales in North America alone expected to fall 39 percent to 56,000 units. “Demand in Europe and the United States is not expected to recover for some time,” noted the Yamaha officials. “Thus, sales conditions surrounding the Yamaha Motor Group are expected to remain harsh.”

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