Kawasaki Heavy Industries released a statement this week that may have a few Kawasaki Motorcycle fans a little nervous, but we don’t think they have anything to worry about.
The huge conglomerate that is KHI builds ships, trains, planes, helicopters, hydraulics and robotics along with gas turbines and jet engines that run on hydrogen, amongst many other things.
Thus while Kawasaki is a massive global force in the motorcycle world, in the grand scheme of things, the motorcycle business is not their core asset, not even close.
This month in market and planning updates Kawasaki have indicated that they plan to ‘spin-off’ their motorcycle and engine business around October next year, 2021.
Now what does this actually mean… Well in essence, the motorcycle side of the business will be separated from KHI and placed into a new company structure that endeavours to give them more flexibility as a separated entity. So this could actually be a good thing for Kawasaki Motorcycles in the long term.
An increased focus on their off-road and side-by-side development has been indicated in other strategic documents we have seen along with mentions of more autonomy in the management of the powersports side of the business after the split away from KHI.
Excerpt from Kawasaki statement
The Power Sports Business which comprises a part of the Motorcycle & Engine Business, includes motorcycles and off-road four wheelers, and is Kawasaki’s only mass-production consumer-facing business. Spinning off this business will speed up decision making, and by offering products and services in sync with customers – including new lifestyle offerings – Power Sports will further enhance its role as the flagship Group business building the strong Kawasaki brand.
In the short term, we will continue working to improve our financial situation. However, when taking a broad view of the industry as a whole, it faces significant issues such as an aging customer base and compliance with environmental regulations. Kawasaki is strengthening intraindustry cooperation – such as through joint development of electric drive and advanced safety technologies as well as greater commonality of functional parts – in order to catalyze growth in the Power Sports Business and achieve market revitalization.
The Motorcycle & Engine Business is also instigating innovative projects to capture new business opportunities. Its initiatives include extending corporate resources to mass-production businesses in cooperation with the Precision Machinery & Robot Business, collaborating in the agricultural machinery and turf care markets in hydraulic systems and general-purpose engines, and promoting the development of near-future mobility such as by incorporating robotics and remote technologies.