Breaking News. Harley-Davidson Sells Back MV Agusta To The Castiglioni Family

MV Agusta is 100% Italian again! During the last 6 months the rumor was that Harley-Davidson could not find any buyer and that the Italian luxury motorcycle maker was the only possible buyer of its own company. Today it is confirmed.

And now the new rumor is that Harley-Davidson sold back MV Agusta to its original owner, fthe Castiglioni family, for a low price, . Harley-Davidson being a public company, we should know the terms very soon and how much Harley may have lost on its original $109 million investment. I publish below the 2 official press releases, first from MV Agusta (much longer), then from Harley-Davidson.

1- The Official Press Release From MV Agusta

Varese, August 6th 2010 – Claudio and Giovanni Castiglioni, through their family holding company have repurchased from Harley Davidson 100% of the shares of MV Agusta Motor S.p.A. which owns historic brands MV Agusta and Cagiva. Harley-Davidson announced in October 2009 its intention to sell MV Agusta to concentrate on its core business and brand.

In connection with the repurchase transaction Lazard and Co. have acted as the financial advisor along with counsel Alessandro Varrenti (CBA) and Giuseppe Galeano whom provided legal and tax assistance in conjunction with family counsellors Giuseppe Carteni (Leadlaw), Andrea Lanata and Sergio Caramella.

Along with Giovanni Castiglioni, the company will be headed by Mr. Massimo Bordi, a well known Italian manager. A 62-year-old engineer, Bordi took Ducati to success during the years when that company was owned by the Castiglionis and continued to manage it successfully under the ownership of Texas Pacific Group. Since 2003 Massimo Bordi has been the CEO of Same Deutz Fahr, contributing largely to the success of the company. Massimo Bordi commented that “MV Agusta has full capacity to once again become a major player in the high luxury brand motor bikes, this brand is one of the most recognized worldwide. We will implement a number of reorganization and managerial actions in the near future. Both the current and new models under development have a very strong character, great innovative features and a very unique design, I have no doubts about their future success.”

Claudio Castiglioni, the historic intimate soul of MV Agusta will continue as chairman, and will concentrate on the development of the new products. Upon signing the agreement with Harley-Davidson, Claudio Castiglioni stated “MV Agusta is the crown jewel of Italian motorcycles, I am thrilled to have completed this transaction. I have already won once together with Massimo Bordi, we made the most beautiful bikes in the world and we will continue with this tradition”.

2- The Official Press Release From Harley-Davidson.

MILWAUKEE, Aug. 6, 2010 Harley-Davidson, Inc. (NYSE: HOG) has concluded the sale of its subsidiary, MV Agusta, to Claudio Castiglioni and his wholly owned holding company, MV Agusta Motor Holding, S.r.l., effective today. Castiglioni is the former owner of the Italian motorcycle maker and has served as MV Agusta’s chairman since 2008, when Harley-Davidson acquired the company.

In October 2009, Harley-Davidson announced its intention to sell MV Agusta as part of a new corporate strategy to focus resources on the Harley-Davidson brand. Since then, Harley-Davidson has held discussions with various potential MV Agusta buyers. “MV Agusta is a proud brand and we wish Mr. Castiglioni and the company’s employees well,” said Harley-Davidson President and Chief Executive Officer Keith Wandell. “Our decision to divest MV Agusta reflects our strategy to focus our efforts and our investment on the Harley-Davidson brand, as we believe this provides an optimal path to long-term growth.”

Zipper's

31 Responses to “Breaking News. Harley-Davidson Sells Back MV Agusta To The Castiglioni Family”


  1. 1 American-V magazine Aug 6th, 2010 at 4:05 pm

    I’m really struggling to see the long term plans of Harley-Davidson right now: it will be fascinating to know how much they’ve thrown away in the buying and selling of MV Agusta.

    On top of the money that it cost to close Buell when there were offers on the table – first to buy the rights to the 1125R motor and then the Buell brand to produce the 1125R models – beggars belief.

    I’d love to believe that they know what they’re doing – or at least more than we do – with access to all the information to hand, but the last time I took someone’s word on that basis was being told by our national government that Iraq could launch weapons of mass destruction on the west within 20 minutes: I’m a little more cynical now.

    Good luck to MV Agusta – they’ve got a nice little bonus, and I hope they make the most of their regime change: I can’t help feeling they might be the lucky ones.

    Wonder if Harley fancies buying a magazine, pumping millions into it and then selling it back to me for the price of a pint?

  2. 2 fuji Aug 6th, 2010 at 4:29 pm

    Many in the past have expressed dismay over the shuttering of Buell because Buell was on the verge of a break thru and the Motor Company needed a sport bike for coming generations.

    Buell could not and never would have come close to what MV Agusta and the Cagiva group offers. And now they are gone.

    Baffling

  3. 3 Woody Aug 6th, 2010 at 5:02 pm

    I hope folks will remember this when they are posting the normal mantra of how the Chief mofos in charge deserve the millions they make, and the labor force that actually builds the bikes needs to make big concessions or lose their jobs…………………..

  4. 4 Brent Aug 6th, 2010 at 7:14 pm

    From a shareholder point of view, short term Keith Wandell is right.

  5. 5 Fredp Aug 6th, 2010 at 9:23 pm

    Thank God for the Italians! It would have been tough to see Harleys and Mv’s made in India!!

  6. 6 highrpm Aug 7th, 2010 at 12:02 am

    since when is a v-twin-powered sportbike sacrilegious to the h-d brand?

    if h-d is king of the cruisers, why can they not be king of the sportbikes? if ford can sell supercharged production mustangs, why can h-d not sell supercharged v-twins in a sportbike and displace the hayabusa as king of the hill?

    i am glad h-d was respectful of the mv augusta brand image not to adulterate it with a v-twin, but i think a BIG sportbike should be in h-d’s product offerings. heck, roger goldhammer already did a concept, his 2008 AMD World Championship bike – Sturgis SD.

  7. 7 morriscustom Aug 7th, 2010 at 6:39 am

    I keep tellin you guys,Im no rocket scientist but that CEO is an Idiot

  8. 8 morriscustom Aug 7th, 2010 at 6:42 am

    He needs to go back to workin on Air-conditioners,thats what he is obviously good at!?!!?!!!?

  9. 9 Grayhawk Aug 7th, 2010 at 8:40 am

    I wonder if all the CEO’s amongst us where tasked in an economic tsunami to cut to the bottom line; to real-in a company that like a lot of companies could not sell their main bread and butter product line units, not because of a lack of customers but a lack of customers that for many could not get the financing because it had been shut down to a drip, fully acknowledging many should not be financiable for their own protection and another major group of potential buyers that had the ability but not the discretionary will due to their own future concerns.

    A recession that also saw major custom motorcycle businesses fall by the wayside or slow to a skeleton crew crawl. How many more suppy businesses as well clipped their own wings to ride it out to survive.

    How many among you would not cut your losses in areas that were not profitable or were future developing projects, all were eating money and contributing to the burden of the core businesses ability to whether the storm. The core business when all said and done is what has and will enable the company to survive.

    Not a knock on Buell or MV but not unlike Joe American household if you had to choose between your many transporters in the garage and their upkeep or your main daily transportation that got you and the family to and from work, etc. that feed your family which would you sell off along with cutting back to staples across the board and reducing everyones allowance.

    Once your head is above water again and your feet can reach the bottom without treading water you can explore same or similar again and direct your path in multi supporting venues. Bad times, big decisions not always pleasing to alls palets, Those that don’t will be left by the wayside big or small all to same end result.

  10. 10 Fredp Aug 7th, 2010 at 12:57 pm

    Well said, Grayhawk!

  11. 11 martin Aug 7th, 2010 at 1:05 pm

    Grayhawk,you said it perfect!

  12. 12 m switzer Aug 7th, 2010 at 3:33 pm

    As a stockholder-since they went public, a Harley rider for 30 years and a union member for over 30 years I am pissed at the stupidity of Harley’s CEO buying and now selling this white elephant. Haven’t the bosses read Harleys history? The small Italian buit bikes didn’t work in the 50s and 60 what made them think they would at this lousy economic time? The money lost on this fiasco will be enormous but don’t worry the Motor Company will insist that the lowest workers make up the loss or the next owners manual will be written in spanish. The stockholders meeting is in March I think a little road trip is in order waste of time I know but ..

  13. 13 fuji Aug 7th, 2010 at 9:46 pm

    The Castiglioni family that I remember when in Italy were the best Meat packers / Sausage makers to be Known.

    Some years back the Castigloni’s tried to do an international exchange for cheese but they wanted more for their product than it was worth, because they had so much debt hanging over their head.

    By luck they were told that there was another company in Wisconsin that may be interested in their sausage and was willing to buy their debt and their meat.

    As it turned out, the Wisconsin company knew very little about packing meat and were looking for someone to buy the company back, as it turned out the interest of the Castiglioni’s was revived for they knew more about packing da meat/sausage than anyone….and pack it, they did!

  14. 14 American-V magazine Aug 8th, 2010 at 9:00 am

    I hear what you’re saying, Greyhawk, but can’t help thinking that when you’re looking at those transporters and their running costs, the sensible money would be on selling the ones you definitely won’t be using again, especially if there are offers on the table for one of them, rather than spending a small fortune on getting rid of it so completely that no-one else can have it either.

    And any that haven’t attracted any sellers, keep hold of until market is more buoyant and the people who might be in the market to buy can raise the capital. It’s like buying a Hummer, deciding you can’t afford the fuel bill and so selling it for the price of a Dodge Neon because no-one’s in the market for a Hummer unless it’s a rock bottom price – except maybe the original dealer who supplied it. Surely it’s better to keep driving it, maybe a little more carefully to keep the fuel costs to a minimum, and then sell it when the market in Hummers picks up again? The amount you’ll spend on fuel will pale into insignificance compared to the difference in resale value at the top and bottom of the market – especially as you’ll be adding value to the Hummer throughout your ownership by tastefully tricking it up here and there, giving it a good valet and servicing it, and giving more chance to see what a great job you’ve made of it

    Or is that too simplistic an analogy?

  15. 15 Grayhawk Aug 8th, 2010 at 11:42 am

    There could be merit in what you say Amer -V, if Harley were operating out of a garage and they could squeeze by without losing the house and the garage as an end result;

    Off topic but coming, “Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac will rear their ugly heads again” are we ready to take another hit?

    Reality might dictate that if you are a coorporate giant comparitively with all the layers, overheads and burdens, state and federal taxing on inventories/ corporate ownings values/costs, then add on the insurance premium yearly costs to cover all values, etc., etc. and you had just went in the red big to have a couple notes floated at loan shark interest rates to stabilze your financial wing that also brought you to the brink, I for one do not think they had any other choices but to nip everything they could in structure and size, cut resources and core production quantities to near hopeful sellable quantities to a level to keep from devaluing your product and eliminate non core entities completely.

    Noboby wins long term if you become a discount house due to over production look at the car business a discount becomes the norm then you look for another discount, “HD doesn’t win on the front end and you Joe Customer don’t on the back end if you ever try to trade or resell”.

    Maintaining a bike in your garage for discussion sakes to keep it from deteriorating is costly enough, maintaining a non profitable wing of a business and all that goes with it if it is still under your umbrella structured the same layer wise is cost prohibitive in my mind and you cut your loses.

    Take a off topic example for instance say your a large engineering and construction company and you are used to designing/constructing 300 million to 2 billion dollar facilities and you have a new wing of your business that is in development that does same for say $1 million to $3 million dollar facilites if you had the parent company overview costs added on to its cost of doing business, say a % adder, and that you were using all your parent company mega project procedures, etc. and could not /had not set it, the small developing wing up as small standalone business with related to size expensesand burdens and developed simplified, say small projects procedures, but still quality procedures it might be cost prohibitive;

    HD based on this good or bad example would not be the first or by its lonesome in trying in good times to expand its base and market arena’s but try to manage it based on the mega corporate norm, a losing proposition at best, in my mind they made the right decision at this place in time on that subject.

  16. 16 Grayhawk Aug 8th, 2010 at 12:03 pm

    Sorry to be wordy but did not address your Buell first point in your context, Buell imo although a great twisty it never was more than for a niche market, non-profitable under the mega company format, utilizing all your parent company drive train componentsand most other componet makeup so to sell it to another entity to continue, other than back to Eric for a racing only complimentary premise how would that perceived new company that say night have bought Buell continuing in same format if you, HD, were not willing to be the suppier to said new company, once sold, to provide componets, warranties, or sell your Buell/Sportster related rights, etc.. Purely speculative on my part to their thought process, but as such I would not for one.

  17. 17 Grayhawk Aug 8th, 2010 at 12:49 pm

    Last time if you read between the lines at the end of my first comment what says if your Harley you don’t at some point based on your present decisions as I speculated to Buell above that with all the commonality of Buell and Sportster parts rights that any time in a profitable HD future based on these decisions they bring back a Buell type Sportster Sportbike flying the Harley banner, “Harley Twister”, made in the Sportster plant in the core business model lines that kicks ass. Possibly Eric with the continuing racer R&D development may just play a part. Die-hards you may have hope.

    JUST HAVING FUN TODAY TOO MUCH TIME ON MY HANDS TODAY ITS TOO HOT FOR THIS OLD GUY TO RIDE TILL AFTERDARK, DID’NT MEAN TO CLOG THE BLOG, HA.

  18. 18 American-V magazine Aug 8th, 2010 at 2:26 pm

    Do we have a figure on how much Harley-Davidson paid to close Buell? And how much Buell was losing per month.

    And is there any official confirmation that part of the Buell closure cost was to retain exclusive rights to the 1125R engine, and if so how much?

    And how long before the cost of the MV deal is public domain? Purchase, debt relief, development and sale?

    Until all those numbers are known – and there’s no shortage of numbers being bandied about – we’re just speculating.

    Sadly, I think it’s highly unlikely that Harley would be able to get far enough out of their own mindset to create that ‘Twister’, which is a shame because they need something like that to bring in a new audience, otherwise we’re all going to grow old together. Look at the XR1200(X): a good bike in its own way, very engaging, and a lot of fun – and shows the potential still left in the 4-cam motor – but it’s not on the same page as even a tube frame Buell.

    The XR1200’s a good example of a niche too, and all credit to Harley for attempting to break it out of that niche with the XR1200 Trophy series in key markets around the world. Pity they didn’t think of doing something similar with the XB9R ten years ago, to put that in front of sport bike audiences and broaden that core market, but that’s water under the bridge now.

    Anyone got those numbers? Unspun, ideally.

  19. 19 Grayhawk Aug 8th, 2010 at 4:24 pm

    All publicly traded companies to my knowledge in the US have to submit 10Q reports to the SEC, of which one might be able to summarize the totals your asking based on accumalitive sequence of reports/reporting over time and once finalized.

    http://biz.yahoo.com/e/100805/hog10-q.html

    Not an insider thus As stated above my comments are just speculative and just typing out loud but it was something I for one would have considered and assured as part of a business plan.

    Did not mean to imply it would be a Sportster/Buell on a Sportster frame mearly implied it would not be a stretch to one day produce another model, a true sport bike, i.e. the Harley branded descendent to the Buell if you will within the core business at the same assembly plant where you could take advantage of commonalities and shared engineering where possible and produce a perceiveably more economic production of a sport bike if you will with the full understanding it would be a completely different design team, etc. not unlike the V-rod. if that makes since.

    I don’t know if I would count them out or cut them short, what was the predecessor to the street v-rod that raced at Daytona/other venues, ” The VR-1000 road racer, which was for years for sure out of their normal mindset and raced for years in front of sport bike audiences?

    http://www.motorcycle.com/manufacturer/harley-davidson/track-test-harley-davidson-vr1000-13024.html

    I am sure like most companies they table all kinds of scenarios over time.

  20. 20 Chief Waldo Aug 8th, 2010 at 4:29 pm

    Bottom line. HD should never have purchased MV in the first place. It was a true “WTF?” deal. No doubt, the HD board rewarded top management for the purchase, and will now reward them for “cutting losses”. The whole board and top management should be fired.

  21. 21 Grayhawk Aug 8th, 2010 at 10:11 pm

    What Joe Public can see unless you work there is quarterly reporting SEC reports, but one might get if you really want that detail, as implied in previous comments a good sense by the 10Q quarterly and 10K yearly reports, for sure more than 99% of us need or would want to know. But hey search till your heart desires:

    http://finance.yahoo.com/q/sec?s=hog

    Excerpts from;
    SEC Filings 10Q Summary Report Aug 5, 2010 – 10Q Latest Quarterly

    Discontinued Operations : The Company’s efforts to sell MV are progressing and the Company expects to complete its divestiture of MV during 2010. During the second quarter of 2010, the Company incurred a $68.1 million loss from discontinued operations, net of taxes, which was comprised of operating losses and a fair value adjustment of $61.5 million, net of taxes.

    SEC Filings 10K Detailed Report File excerpts –10K end of Year Filing

    Discontinued Operations: As noted above, the financial results of MV have been presented as discontinued operations for all periods presented. During 2009, the Company wrote down the carrying value of MV’s assets resulting in a non-cash charge of $115.4 million, or $73.4 million net of related tax benefits. This write-down included a reduction in the carrying value of goodwill, intangible assets and fixed assets associated with MV and reduced MV’s net assets to their fair value, less estimated selling costs.

    2009 2008 (Decrease) Increase % Change
    Revenue: in millions
    H-D motorcycles $3,174,810 $4,244,587 $(1,069,777) (25.2)%
    Buell motorcycles 46,514 123,085 (76,571) (62.2)%

    The following table includes the estimated impact of the significant factors affecting the comparability of gross profit from 2008 to 2009 (in millions):

    Buell exit costs in millions (neg)

    Net Revenue – (29)m Cost of Goods Sold 16m Gross Profit – (45) m

    Buell exit costs consist of sales incentives to independent dealers and inventory write-downs. The sales incentives lowered revenue while the inventory write-downs increased cost of sales.

  22. 22 American-V magazine Aug 9th, 2010 at 7:41 am

    Wonderfully complicated accountant-speak: lots of words but doesn’t really give anything away, hence the desire for unspun numbers: submitted accounts hide all sorts of things in the phrasing, just as tax returns inevitably do. Just as government reports do, hence my earlier comments.

    I’ve pored over those accounts in the past and they give a sanitized version of the position for public consumption, so lets dangle a line or two and see if anything bites. I keep hearing figures of $1m a month being lost by Buell, but some people say it was actually making a profit: real or paper? I don’t know. And I hear costs of closure in excess of $100m (sometimes massively in excess) … but what those costs actually mean by the time they’ve been filtered through the audit is anyone’s guess. I hear a significant cost, in tens of millions, being paid or due to Rotax for the exclusive rights to the Helicon engine: nice leaving present for Erik, or a sign of a resurrection, or something else? A helicon Harley? Don’t know.

    What I do know is that if I was losing one dollar a month, it would be relatively simple to consider paying a hundred dollars to give me peace of mind. If it were ten dollars and I needed to pay a thousand dollars, I’d think harder. If it was a hundred dollars and the cost was ten thousand, I’d think about whether the hundred dollars a month – while I was still earning elsewhere – was sustainable, because there are a hell of a lot of months to turn it round before that hundred dollars a month got close to the ten thousand dollars I’d need to find to buy that peace of mind. If it were $1m and $100m … sorry, but by the time 100 months had passed, we’ll be approaching 2020 and the world will be a very different place. Certainly Wandell will have retired.

    If I’d already made the investment in a whole new product line – whose development will have contributed significantly to the -$1m a month – and was making progress in establishing it, I’d be extraordinarily circumspect.

    Sadly the 1125 was launched too early, under pressure, and got a number of things wrong – not least trusting the press to be your beta testers and providing a constructive feedback rather than telling the world of the teething troubles while ignoring the strengths. Twelve months later the motor was unrecognisable, the platform was maturing and with marketing spend there was the potential to establish it as a major niche product: it could have been America’s Ducati. We had an 1125CR delivered on the day the news broke: if was everything it should be … except American, which pissed off a few Buelligans. Didn’t like the first 1125R much: too brutal a powerband, not as forgiving as we’d come to expect from Buell and would bite you if you took liberties because it was too twitchy: the later motor had all of that ironed out which made it more predictable and consequently quicker, and that last 1125CR was a diamond.

    As such the 1125 has got a lot more going for it than the V-Rod, which has failed to deliver on its promises as the VR1000 did before it. Brave attempt, but the market isn’t ready for it, or else doesn’t want it, or else doesn’t want to buy something like that from Harley-Davidson.

    If Harley had hit the motherload with the VR and recouped investment early, rather than sat on the VRSCA for too long before diversifying into the B, the Night Rod Special and the first American-feeling VR, the Muscle, thereby squandering the massive momentum of its launch, we might see something new and brave coming out of Milwaukee in a sportbike vein, but I don’t share your optimism: they’ve been bitten too many times. If they wanted to think outside the box, they could always nip to Viola and see if they can bury the hatchet with S&S, and license the X-Wedge motor in a modern but familar frame: it would save them the engine development time and give them a new air-cooled OHV, American-made motor with a familiar upgrade path: that should put the cat among the pigeons

    In terms of MV, they have sorted out its balance sheet, they have overseen the development of new models and a new engine, and by all accounts have got almost everything in place to set MV onto a viable path but don’t seem to want to stick around to reap the benefits: again most of the expensive work has been done. I hear this morning that having paid $109m for the company, they sold it for a token fee: one Euro. Either the exchange rate has gone silly, or that’s an excellent deal for the Castigionis. I’m glad that Harley can afford to give that sort of money away.

    They do need to focus on what they are good at, and they are doing so with their core product – with the XR an interesting attempt to build a bridge into the brand for an ageing sport bike riding community who want to rest their necks and wrists as they get older – but even when the economy stabilises as it surely will, the suggestion that the world will be more accepting of a Harley-branded sportier bike ignores the lessons of history. A helicon-engined Harley-Davidson will struggle against as much apathy from within the Harley faithful as beyond as the Harley-badged Aermacchi two-strokes did in the seventies. And when you consider the uphill battle they’ve got in pushing the XR1200 – and had with the XR1000 before – it would be a braver CEO than Wandell to commend a diversification into Sportsbikes to the board. But then I’ve also heard that Wandell’s first response to the news that Harley had a sportbike arm was along the lines of ‘Why? It’s not core business. Close it’ of course that could be BS: we live in an age when anyone can say almost anything, and the amount of BS is exponential.

    What they need is a means of bringing new blood into the market. A sub-brand that is attractive to a younger audience as well as more experienced sportier riders: a lightweight, fun, quick and exciting motorcycle capable of capturing their imagination, and then put it in front of them at every opportunity.

    Ah!

  23. 23 Grayhawk Aug 9th, 2010 at 9:37 am

    American -V Magazine

    I’ll try to keep this short as I for one have been far too long winded on this, surely you an individual purportedly representing, as highlighted by the American V magazine hot button link, possibly implying/stating/suggesting that HD is sanitizing their lawfully required financial reports to the SEC for public consumption flavoring? Not a lawyer but I hope I mis-interpretated your comment as could that possibly be suggesting fraud by a company to a government entity , to its stock holders and investors surely I am mis-reading ones point again?

    You request on this blog for unspun numbers and reply as counter with numbers some above, your words, as/are hearsay numbers surely not the basis of a contradiction of an SEC filing, if so where are you hearing all these figures, is that bar stool chatter like my general ad-libbed comments or are they actually sources to the magazine? Can you quote them or link to them or is it confidential sourcing or possibly just opinions.

    Do you really think or do you have knowledge that Erik was possibly left with a financial liability by HD or what does, ” a leaving present for Erik”, mean?

    As far as what you would do or what I would do we both have stated our thought process, who knows, who cares.

    As far as suggesting what the world would or would not accept in the future, I for one, as stated said it would not be a stretch to one day produce another model, a true sport bike, i.e. the Harley branded descendent to the Buell. Again who knows I do not.

    Focusing on the core business we do agree I think.

  24. 24 Grayhawk Aug 9th, 2010 at 1:48 pm

    Just to be clear my last comment is not to inflame nor slam a guy whose comments above could be construed as defaming to another business, just my way of presenting an out if you will, if the context of the point he was making was/or to be of different interpretation, thus the reason it was stated as a question from me.

  25. 25 American-V magazine Aug 9th, 2010 at 3:31 pm

    Grayhawk, Rest assured, I do not feel slammed or inflamed.

    There is absolutely no attempt to suggest any impropriety in the publication of the accounts, and certainly not that Erik was left with any financial liability: the supposition was that if Harley did indeed buy the exclusive rights to the 1125 engine – and I’d be fascinated to get clarification of that, but don’t expect it – it would be unlikely to be purely so that Erik could take it racing. I do not know what Harley-Davidson’s justification was, and made that quite clear, as well as that I couldn’t qualify that the claims by others that exclusive rights were even purchased, or the figures quoted were accurate. I do believe, however, that Rotax would have been happy to be able to offer the Helicon motor to a broader customer base and wouldn’t have surrendered that opportunity lightly. All of those figures and statements are in the public domain, from business journals that are held to be informed: all I’m trying to do is pick a route through the exponential on-line BS to try and get a clearer picture of Harley’s strategy.

    And there was certainly no attempt to defame any business, least of all Harley-Davidson, or Erik Buell, and I struggle to put that interpretation onto anything I written, but it’s worth my making that clarification.

    The accounts as published will be management accounts: they will be audited and lots of figures will be allocated against different profit centres and nominal codes according to how the chart of accounts is set up: all above board, just impossible to trawl through to get to the niffy-gritty without a degree in accountancy and a full understanding of the company structure. They will not tell you how many pencils were purchased but they will tell you what the expenses of various offices were and that is enough. All of the information will be published in the full internal chart of accounts, which will be available to government agencies on demand, and the internal accounts department on a day-to-day basis, but its unnecessary for the overwhelming majority of people, who are not trained accountants and who would be able to easily misinterpret what they are reading. As such there will be elements of extraordinary costs related to, but not a hard cash entry covering the net or the gross cost of Buell’s closure or indeed the net or gross profit / losses made by Buell – I daresay the cost of the purchase of exclusive rights to the Helicon, if such were purchased, could be subject to confidentiality agreements, and available only to the company, government agencies and shareholders with major stakes – but it’s worth repeating that that does not make it inaccurate, or suggest any attempt to mislead anyone.

    If anything, this thread goes some way towards demonstrating that the figures that have been trotted out without official sanction since Buell’s closure, and will undoubtedly come out with reference to the MV deal, cannot be taken at face value despite being held up as somehow representative of the true picture. This isn’t because they are being hidden but because they are not a simple figure on a cheque but a complex multi-faceted equation. I’m disappointed that there seems to be a perception that I actually believe them, rather than used one hypothetical set of data to pose a question. Closer to home, the world is happily citing $109m for the purchase of MV, and one source is saying it was sold for one Euro: even if accurate, that will represent a massive simplification of a very complicated transaction.

    Rather than risk any further misinterpretation, I’m considering this to be an end to this thread too.

  26. 26 Todd8080 Aug 10th, 2010 at 6:25 pm
  27. 27 Grayhawk Aug 10th, 2010 at 10:35 pm

    All of ya may be right:

    American V was on the money when he wrote in my mind to the point, the devil is in the detail if you will, if Harley had already written down MV’s value and will write down/off a bit more in their third quarter report and Claudio waived his rights to earn outs from the original deal and all the additional agreements referenced but not detailed out in the 8k full filing just posted.

    Then one might also surmise there is more involved in the transaction than just the token exchange of a euro or two which basically means you have to exchange something to consummate the deal/transfer of holdings; the token if you will.

    Short version just maybe the deal is more about the previous and forthcoming write down’s, MV already being classified by HD as discontinued operations in the audited consolidated financials, (noting excerpt) and the agreed upon waiving of any personal agreed upon earn outs by Claudio as well as all the additional details, too long to list here as referenced in the summary report and the full detailed 8k SEC full filing.

    The Devil and the Detail;

    http://yahoo.brand.edgar-online.com/displayfilinginfo.aspx?FilingID=7402549-9498-82573&type=sect&dcn=0001193125-10-183610

  28. 28 Unkl Ian Aug 11th, 2010 at 8:00 pm

    How long before AMF buys Harley again ?

  1. 1 Tweets that mention Breaking News. Harley-Davidson Sells Back MV Agusta To The Catiglioni Family at Cyril Huze Blog – Custom Motorcycle News -- Topsy.com Pingback on Aug 6th, 2010 at 4:07 pm
  2. 2 Breaking News. Harley-Davidson Sells Back MV Agusta To The Castiglioni Family « What's Hot with Bobber and Chopper Motorcycles Pingback on Aug 6th, 2010 at 5:04 pm
  3. 3 Harley-Davidson Sold Back MV Agusta To Its Previous Owners For 3 Euros. at Cyril Huze Blog – Custom Motorcycle News Pingback on Aug 15th, 2010 at 10:31 am
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