Surfwear company Billabong CEO Launa Inman has "backed up her confidence in the turnaround potential of the troubled fashion company with cold hard cash," according to Eli Greenblat of the SYDNEY MORNING HERALD. Inman has bought her first parcel of shares since her appointment as CEO earlier this year. It was revealed Inman had purchased 59,000 shares in Billabong on Friday for the total price of A$49,610 ($50,840). The average price paid for her stock was A$0.84. According to her directors' interest statement, it was the first time she had bought shares in the company since her appointment in May (SMH, 10/23). In Sydney, Andrew Fraser reported fellow Billabong board member Sally Pitkin purchased 70,000 shares. But the largest purchase was from company Founder Gordon Merchant. He spent A$754,000 on an extra 900,000 shares ahead of a meeting where he will "come under pressure from the Australian Shareholders Association to step down from the board" of the company he founded nearly 40 years ago (THE AUSTRALIAN, 10/24).
Austrian winter sports manufacturer Fischer Sports "generates 80-85% of its revenue in foreign markets," according to Josef Lehner of OÖNACHRICHTEN ZEITUNG. Surprisingly, Russia has become Fischer's "most-important market with 300,000 cross-country skies sold last year." In addition, "a majority of the 1 million hockey sticks produced at Fischer's Ukrain-based plant in Mukacheve" goes to Russia. Fischer Sports CFO Günter Kitzmüller said, "In general, the east markets become more interesting. They need, however, intensive work." Fischer "employs a staff of 75 people who secure the company's sales success in Russia." Currently, the focus is on Nordic skiing, but the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi "could provide a boost for alpine skiing." In the meantime, Fischer expects a strong upcoming winter season after last year's weak winter led to modest preorder turnout this year. Kitzmüller said, "But the previous year was the most-successful in history." After a deep plunge in '07-08, Fischer's revenue steeply increased, from €130M to €159M during the '10-11 fiscal year and €185M in '11-12 (OÖNACHRICHTEN ZEITUNG, 10/23).
Bundesliga club FSV Mainz 05 "released its financial numbers of the '11-12 season at a meeting that was attended by 527 members on Monday," according to Reinhard Rehberg of the RHEIN ZEITUNG. The club "generated a record revenue" of €68.3M ($88.5M) during last season. In comparison to the '10-11 season, Mainz was able to increase its revenue by €26M ($33.7M). The club also generated a profit of €7.5M ($9.7M) before taxes. A profit that "even economically stronger Bundesliga clubs can only rarely present." The foundations of the club's financial numbers are "increased attendance numbers and improved marketing opportunities in the new Coface Arena, as well as GM Christian Heidel's skillful transfer and finance policies." Between July 1, 2011 and June 30, "Mainz generated €12.1M ($15.7M) from player transfers." Heidel said, "Economic soundness will continue to be the highest precept at Mainz 05. Last season, despite a drastic personnel change, we were able to remain in the Bundesliga in a commanding fashion. We were able to do so without taking economic risks" (RHEIN ZEITUNG, 10/23).