Credit China. That’s the message from two major automakers as they report earnings from opposite ends of the globe. For Daimler AG, a worldwide resurgence in luxury car demand – especially in the fast-growing Chinese market helped it come in with an all-time quarterly record that was up 30% year-over-year.
The numbers weren’t nearly as good for Nissan, but that was no surprise considering the devastating hit the Japanese industry, overall, has taken since the devastating earthquake and tsunami that killed more than 20,000 on March 11 and left the industry in a shambles. If anything, the 10% decline in net income was less than many had anticipated, while revenues – also driven by China – were up markedly.
“Our rapid recovery from the natural disasters in March once again shows the power of Nissan in responding effectively and decisively to crisis,” said Nissan President and CEO, Carlos Ghosn. “Nissan’s performance in the first quarter, despite strong headwinds such as foreign exchange and rising raw material costs, demonstrates our potential to deliver the goals of our recently announced Nissan Power 88 mid-term plan.”