Motorcycle Types Cruiser India's Hero MotoCorp Eyes Ducati

India’s Hero MotoCorp Eyes Ducati

2012 Sale of Ducati

In February, Investindustrial, the Milan-based private-equity owner of Ducati Motor Holding SpA, was reportedly looking to sell the Italian motorcycle company or offer an Initial Public Offering (IPO).

Reports quickly flooded the motorcycle industry, saying companies such as Volkswagen, BMW or the Indian motorcycle group Mahindra were looking to purchase Ducati.

And this week, one more name was added to the list – Hero MotoCorp, India’s largest motorcycle manufacturer.

On Monday, the respected financial news source Bloomberg reported that Hero MotoCorp is talking with bankers for a “potential acquisition” of Ducati.

Part of the reason for the potential acquisition of Ducati? Hero MotoCorp is seeking technology to enhance its current line of bikes, such as the best-selling (and cheap) Splendor in India, a country where 9.95 million motorcycles were sold in 2011.

Speaking to Bloomberg, Managing Director of IHS Automotive in India Deepesh Rathore says “It is an excellent fit. Ducati is a big brand and has a lot of technology, while Hero is looking to be a serious global player. Hero might get it cheap. Thanks to the European slowdown, Ducati’s numbers haven’t been great.”

Following a 26-year-partnership, Honda separated from Hero MotoCorp earlier this year. During the Honda years, Hero MotoCorp’s motorcycles were basic, lacking the high-performance and technology used on Ducati motorcycles such as the 1199 Panigale superbike.

Following the Honda/Hero MotoCorp Split, the Indian company also began a partnership with Erik Buell Racing, and will sponsor two teams in the AMA Superbike Championship. Buell will help design future Hero MotoCorp motorcycles.

Ducati Background

In December of 2008, Ducati became a privately-owned company after it was delisted from the Milan stock exchange after a buyout by Investindustrial; Ducati was public from 1996 through 2008.

This news arrives after Ducati reported that 2011 sales were up 43-percent over 2010, with much attribution going to the Multistrada and Diavel.

In 2012, Ducati says it will refocus its efforts in the sportbike category with the first customer deliveries of the brand’s newest flagship Superbike, the Ducati 1199 Panigale and the 848EVO Corse Special Edition.

Ducati North America also recently announced the launch of a new retail identity initiative aimed at enhancing the Ducati customer experience.

Ron Lieback
Ron Lieback
One of the few moto journalists based on the East Coast, Ron Lieback joined the motorcycle industry as a freelancer in 2007, and is currently Online Editor at Ultimate Motorcycling. He is also the author of "365 to Vision: Modern Writer's Guide (How to Produce More Quality Writing in Less Time).

Harley-Davidson Gift of Riding H-D Riding Academy Contest

There is no better gift in the world than turning a non-rider into a motorcyclist. Of course, it takes more than best wishes to...

2021 Suzuki 650 V-Twins: New Colors Sneak Peek First Look

It’s always interesting to check into Europe’s latest to see what might appear on dealer showroom floors in the United States. We look at...

2021 Honda Rebel 500 ABS SE First Look (5 Fast Facts)

After an upgrade last year, Honda has more plans for the now-midsize Rebel. There is now a 2021 Honda Rebel 500 ABS—an accessorized version...

Sena SRL2 Review: Bluetooth Communications for Select Shoei Helmets

The Shoei Neotec II is a sweet upgrade from the original Neotec, and it incorporates many improvements. Nic de Sena reviewed the Shoei Neotec...

2021 Ducati Diavel 1260 Lamborghini First Look (12 Fast Facts)

It is virtually impossible to go wrong when combining two iconic brands, such as Ducati and Lamborghini. With the two marques owned by the...

Classic Superbikes by Frank Melling Book Review: Motorcycle History

Frank Melling is an old-school moto journalist and former factory racer. He lives with his wife Carol on a beautiful farm in northwest England....