VW's first-quarter profits veer off course

30th April 2004, Comments 0 comments

30 April 2004 , WOLFSBURG - Volkswagen, Europe's largest carmarker, saw operating profits fall in the first three months of the year by 45.6 percent over the first quarter last year, the company said Friday. Volkswagen said the weakness of key markets and more difficult exchange rate conditions had pegged profits to EUR 329 million. Spending on new products remained high because of a large number of new model launches, it said. Net income fell by 87 percent to EUR 26 million but sales volume rose 6 percent

30 April 2004

WOLFSBURG - Volkswagen, Europe's largest carmarker, saw operating profits fall in the first three months of the year by 45.6 percent over the first quarter last year, the company said Friday.

Volkswagen said the weakness of key markets and more difficult exchange rate conditions had pegged profits to EUR 329 million.

Spending on new products remained high because of a large number of new model launches, it said.

Net income fell by 87 percent to EUR 26 million but sales volume rose 6 percent to EUR 21.9 billion from EUR 20.7 billion.

The Volkswagen management blamed "unsatisfactory market conditions" and unfavourable exchange rates for depressing the results.

Income and expenses were also negatively affected by the simultaneous launch of a large number of group vehicles such as the Audi A6, the SEAT Altea, the Caddy and the Skoda Octavia, it said.

Volkswagen's goal for the year is to increase worldwide vehicle deliveries while sticking to its target of beating last year's operating profit, the company said.

This was despite "a background of increasing price pressure, weakness in the economic cycle, a general gloom with regard to economic prospects - especially in Germany - and still unfavourable exchange rates", a management statement said.

DPA

Subject: German news

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