THE IRIZAR GROUP GROWS BY 20% DURING THE FIRST HALF OF 2010
This growth is almost completely in Irizar´s production facilities and reinforces the group as one of the most important coach manufacturing references on a worldwide level.
ORMAIZTEGI – July 16, 2010
Despite the uncertainty that exists in the bus and coach sector, with a decrease in registrations that continues in all of the countries where Irizar is present, the group views the future with relative optimism thanks to the positive evolution witnessed during the first half of this year.
Although the Spanish market continues to be slightly weaker than in 2009, in which sales have dropped by 37%, IRIZAR´s evolution has been very positive due to “the commitment towards establishing closer relationships with clients and providing a better service, and the strong efforts in expanding and developing the product range,” as pointed out by the company. This has led IRIZAR to have more than 40% of the market share in Spain, and the same sources conclude that “these results provide us a high degree of satisfaction and give us the strength to continue working more, if possible, with our sights set on the future.”
In Europe, where the market has once again experienced reductions of approximately 15%, IRIZAR has maintained its volume of activity by improving market shares, especially in southern European countries, compared to the previous year.
The production facilities abroad are positively contributing towards the company´s growth. IRIZAR BRASIL is the project that is recovering from the crisis the fastest, and it has returned to previous levels of activity. Forecasts indicate a new increase in short term activity, which along
with the strong growth in the South American markets and positive growth expectations for this geographic area, result in IRIZAR continuing to consider a positive evolution. The Irizar Pb, launched in 2009 in that country, has contributed very positively to this progression.
Mexico, which is another important market where Irizar continues to be a leader with a market share above 40%, has been hit harder by the crisis. At this time, there are good growth forecasts, the country is once again moving ahead firmly, and the currency has recovered.
IRIZAR´s activity has increased by 50% compared to the second half of 2009, and it is expected to continue growing in the short term.
The Irizar i5 was launched into the market last year. This coach is aimed at medium distances, and it completes and reinforces the company´s offering in this country.
The situation in Morocco is somewhat different since it has hardly been affected by the crisis.
The currency and tourism remain strong. Irizar continues to be the leader with a 100% share in the luxury tourism market, and it has also started to manufacture city coaches. The first units are already circulating through various of the country´s cities, which will allow Irizar to position itself correctly in this market.
On another hand, the first prototypes of the city bus have been manufactured and shipped to Australia, where there is a strong sales potential for this bus model. Additionally, an initial prototype is being worked on for South Africa, which is expected to be delivered during the second half of this year.
This past February 19, a new production plant was inaugurated in the city of Viralimalai, located in southern India, while two units of the new iT09 high range model were launched, which complete the existing products in this country with the aim of leading this market segment. The forecast for 2010 includes the production of more than 1,200 coach units destined to carry out services for schools and factories, as well as intercity routes, which entails a growth of more than 15% compared to 2009.
Irizar has closed the first half of the year with sales of more than 2,000 units, which represents a 21% increase compared to the previous year, and a turnover of 200 million, which is 20% more than last year. 300 units correspond to the domestic market and 1,700 are destined to the remaining markets.
IRIZAR sources also give strong importance to the commitment towards product innovation during these two years of crisis, for which more than €20 million have been destined and it´s worth mentioning the development of a proprietary comprehensive coach technology, the launch of the Irizar i4 LE (low entry), the production of the first urban buses at the Morocco
plant, the technological leap throughout the entire product range, and lastly, the development of a new coach model that will see the light of day at the end of this year. Additionally, strengthening the brand is considered to be a key aspect for the group´s future success.
Despite the crisis, IRIZAR has continued its commitment with society and the environment.
Lastly, in line with the diversification policy decided by the group two years ago, it has acquired the majority of the JEMA SA company located in Lasarte (Gipuzkoa), which has a 56 year history and is a leader in the power electronics industry.
This is without a doubt another firm step in the growth and consolidation of the Irizar Group, which has been carrying out its activity in the coach industry since 1889 and continues to display a strong commitment towards guaranteeing its future. A project with a strong international focus based on the more than 3,000 people that comprise it, with production plants in 7 countries in 4 continents, and a commercial presence in more than 90 countries throughout the 5 continents.