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How the skies tell Head if business will be sunny or gloomy

By CNN wire staff
updated 12:07 PM EDT, Thu July 18, 2013
  • Head reported a 13.1% decline in sportswear sales in the first quarter of 2013
  • The summer has Grandslam success with British tennis player Andy Murray using a Head racquet to win Wimbledon
  • Head CEO Eliasch believes the economic program in Japan will resuscitate the country's stalled economy

(CNN) -- While the eyes of the corporate world remain fixed on the financial markets, the boss of sportswear giant Head just needs to look skywards to forecast if business will be sunny or gloomy.

A quick glance out of the office window gives chief executive Johan Eliasch insight into the about the Netherlands-based company's sales prospects.

Eliasch tells CNN that the weather has more ability to cast a shadow over business than financial markets.

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Speaking with CNN's Max Foster, he said: "If we have a particularly bad season, weather wise, it doesn't matter how good the economy is, and vice versa."

After Europe's long winter, Head reported a 13.1% decline in sportswear sales in the first quarter of 2013 compared to the previous year. The cool weather hit the racquet sports market hard, according to a Head statement released in May.

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Currency fluctuations and economic policies by governments and central banks are also taking a toll on the company.

Eliasch says Head is "suffering" from a depreciation in the yen, following Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and the Bank of Japan's implementation of a $117 billion stimulus package to boost growth.

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However, Eliasch believes the economic program in Japan will resuscitate the country's stalled economy and says it's probably a "good investment."

He added: "Over the last 15, 20 years we've seen the stagnation [in Japan] so I guess that's worthwhile to suffer these currency losses [with] Japan returning to its former glory."

When asked about Europe, Eliasch said he believed the embattled continent needed to take "painful" steps to "reinvent" itself.

But while results disappoint off the court, the summer months have brought Grandslam success on-court with British tennis player Andy Murray using a Head racquet to win Wimbledon and end Britain's 77-year wait for a men's singles champion. Beaten finalist and world number one, Novak Djokovic, also competed with Head equipment.

And the chief executive believes this is down to the company's "exciting technology" in Graphene -- a lightweight and ultra-strong material.

Eliasch says: "We were always very popular with the pros in every sport that we've been [in]."

CNN's Oliver Joy contributed to this report.

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