Swedish-based Husqvarna Group reported net third quarter 2013 sales of SEK 6,349 million (approx. US$999 million). Third quarter sales were up from 3Q 2012's net sales of SEK 5,841 million. Adjusted for the impact of exchange rates, net sales were up 12%.
Operating income in 3Q 2013 were SEK 206 million, from SEK 197 million in 3Q 2012.
"The good sales momentum from the end of the second quarter held up well over the third quarter," said Kai Waern, Husqvarna president and CEO. "Demand in both Europe and North America was supported by favorable weather conditions and a delayed garden season. Group sales for Europe & Asia/Pacific increased 8%, Americas 20%, and Construction 6%, adjusted for changes in exchange rates."
Waern said that group operating income for the third quarter was about at the same level as in 3Q 2012. Positive trends in Europe and the Asia/Pacific region and was offset by a decline in the Americas. He said most of the strong sales growth in North America came from low margin consumer products sold through retail channels. "In addition, operating income was impacted by inefficiencies in the supply chain, caused by inability to benefit from scale," Waern said.
"Although we see positive signs in our work towards our strategic goals, there is a need to further accelerate and broaden the scope for ongoing programs to reduce product cost and business complexity," Waern explained. "From a top-line perspective, we will focus resources on our core premium brands Husqvarna and Gardena and product leadership areas like professional handheld, robotic mowers and watering. Additionally, we will review how to further differentiate the dealer and retail business models which we see as a key measure to drive margin recovery, especially in the U.S."
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