"Because Be One requires ever more targeted marketing in a market different from that with which Batavus is familiar, Accell Group has decided to switch to licensing to a new founded company Be One Bikes BV," said a statment from Accell.
"Their years of experience mean that the current management of Be One are best able to further develop Be One's position in its niche market."
Accell is the second-largest bicycle group in Europe. It owns and markets the bicycle brands Batavus, Hercules, Koga-Miyata, Kronan, Lapierre, Loekie, Mercier, Sparta, Staiger and Winora.
The company recently announced that its earnings per share in the first half of 2003 had increased by 39 percent.
Turnover rose by 4 percent from EUR 159 million to EUR 165 million. According to Accell this was "a result of sustained consumer demand for high quality bicycles with strong brand names combined with the good weather."
Net profit rose by 41 percent to EUR 5.0 million.
René Takens, chairman of the board of Accell Group, said:
"The results we have achieved over the last half-year give us a lot of confidence for the future. In view of the current state of the economy, we cannot be anything other than pleased with our performance. The ability to adapt to changing market conditions is thereby one of our most important strengths.
"Not only profits have once again risen considerably, but our balance sheet ratios have also undergone further improvement, which means we are now in a strong position to initiate further growth. We do not expect the market conditions in the second half of 2003 to be significantly different, and we are therefore forecasting a significant growth of the earnings per share for the year as a whole.”
He said that consumer spending was under pressure throughout Western Europe but that "demand for quality bicycles continued [and] Accell Group was able to benefit from this, particularly in the Netherlands and France."
However, the German bicycle market remained "under pressure."