Kawasaki to part ways with its motorcycle business

Kawasaki Heavy Industries, manufacturer of heavy equipment, engines, aerospace, ships, trains and defense products, is separating its motorcycle division from the rest of the company. The move comes as the division experiences slow sales due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Previously, the Kawasaki Heavy Industries head office in Kobe, Japan housed both the main operations and the motorcycle division. In an announcement on Monday, November 2, KHI said it would be splitting up its motorcycle and rolling stock divisions, which manufacture trains, and are also experiencing declining sales. Kawasaki calls this a major reorganization and restructuring.

Kawasaki Headquarters. Credit: Wikipedia.org

The company’s 124-year-old motorcycle division expects a loss of 5 billion yen (US $ 47.7 million) for the current fiscal year. KHI, along with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and IHI, are considered the Big Three Japanese Industrial Manufacturers in Japan. The restructuring is being carried out in part with the aim of speeding up decision-making processes within the division, as well as rebuilding and improving the finances of the division.

KHI has seen its stock price steadily decline in 2020, but, according to NHK World-Japan, Kawasaki President Yasuhiko Hashimoto has said he hopes the motorcycle division will continue to develop the strong Kawasaki brand.

The restructuring measures come amid a global pandemic that has had a volatile effect on global markets and economies, choking consumer spending. Kawasaki also announced plans to integrate its shipbuilding division into its factory division and increase cooperation with other companies with the aim of complying with environmental regulations.

Sources: nhk.or.jp, tellerreport.com