Former MG Rover European marketing chief Paul Stroud has joined Harley-Davidson as UK managing director. He takes over from Mike Kennedy, who is moving to the company’s US division.
Stroud, who was promoted from UK commercial director to European sales and marketing director at MG Rover at the end of last year, will oversee all Harley-Davidson’s operations in the UK. Allan Brownridge, the company’s marketing manager, will report directly to Stroud.
Stroud will be looking to build on seven consecutive years of sales increases at the brand, as well as expanding its Buell motorcycle marque in the UK and Ireland.
He says/ “The UK market is an ultra-competitive one for motorcycles, but Harley-Davidson is more than just a motorcycle. The brand has a tremendous following and I want to bring the Harley-Davidson experience to an even wider market.”
Harley-Davidson is also launching a range of toys and a children’s clothing line to boost the brand’s popularity with young consumers (MW last week). The company, which already sells branded products in the US, has signed a licensing deal with The Beanstalk Group UK to launch a series of children’s products in Europe next year.
Harley-Davidson, which has worldwide sales of more than $5bn (&£2.8bn), posted encouraging figures last month, with a 16 per cent increase in third-quarter profit as demand for the group’s motorcycles exceeded analysts’ expectations.