The BMW Group income increased 3.2% during the third quarter as its unit sales jumped more than 10% despite the challenging and volatile business conditions, prevailing across Europe.
“Reported figures for both the third quarter and the nine-month period have developed positively despite the higher level of expenditure on new technologies and a challenging market environment in Europe. We have recorded best-ever worldwide sales volume figures to date and remain within our targeted margin range for the Automotive segment,” said Norbert Reithofer, chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG.
Based on its strong performance in the first nine months of the year, the BMW Group also reaffirmed its outlook for the current year, Reithofer said.
“After a good third quarter, we are well on course to achieve our targets for the full year. We continue to target sales volume growth in the current year in the single-digit percentage range and hence a new sales volume record. Due to high levels of expenditure for new technologies and models as well as investment in the production network, the Group profit before tax for 2013 should be on a similar level with the previous year,” he said.
Reithofer said despite the additional costs he referenced, the Automotive segment continues to forecast an EBIT margin of between 8% and 10% for the current year. This margin range is also seen as a sustainable EBIT margin for the time beyond 2013. However, depending on political and economic developments, actual margins could end up being above or below the targeted range.
Revenues in the three months from July to September were down slightly from the previous year and totaling 18.75 million euros, compared 18.82 million euros during the same period a year ago.
Earnings before interest and taxes was almost on par with last year’s at 1.93 million euros compared with 2,002 million in 2012, according to the company’s third quarter financial report.
The 3.7% decline was due to high levels of expenditure on new technologies, increased personnel costs and growing competition. Net increased by 3.2% to 1.33 million euros.
Group revenues for the nine-month period totaled 55.8 million euros, compared with 56.3 million euros in the third quarter a year ago. EBIT in this period amounted to € 6,035 million euros, compared to 6,403 million euros in the first nine months of 2012. Net income increased by 3% to 4.03 million euros.
BMW reported third-quarter revenues of the Automotive segment were unchanged at 17.2 million euros. The high level of expenditure on new technologies, increased production and market launch costs as well as the impact of weak car markets in some parts of Europe, reduced the EBIT by 6%, resulting in an EBIT margin of 9%.
But sales of BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce brand cars during the third quarter rose by 10.7% to a new record of 481,657 units. The equivalent figure for the nine-month period rose by 7.5% to a new high of 1,436,178 units.
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The BMW brand retained pole position in the premium segment worldwide during the nine-month period. Worldwide sales increased by 11.7 percent to 405,350 units (2012: 362,898 units) in the third quarter and by 9% to 1,209,598 units for the nine-month period.
The BMW X1 and the 1, 3, 5, 6 and 7 Series each retained market leadership in their relevant segment, BMW said.
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Also sales in Asia increased by 24.5% to 149,834 units in the third quarter and by 17.7% to 422,777 units in the first three quarters of 2013. Nine-month sales of BMW and Mini brand cars rose to 285,630 units by 20.2% in China and to 46,564 units 10.8% in Japan.
Despite some signs of stabilization on European car markets, economic conditions in many markets are likely to remain volatile and challenging in the coming months. Overall, the world’s car markets are set to grow by 4.1% in the current year.
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