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Posts Tagged ‘Sergio Marchionne’

Fiat Chrysler Earnings More Than Double During 2Q, Despite U.S. Slowdown

But debt remains worry for analysts, investors.

by on Jul.27, 2017

A slowdown in Jeep sales has been worsened by ongoing shifts in production capacity.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles saw its second-quarter net earnings more than double, to $1.35 billion, with foreign demand and improvements by the Maserati brand offsetting weakened sales in North America.

FCA delivered earnings of $0.81 per share, well ahead of the $0.53 consensus forecast by 28 analysts tracked by MarketWatch. The maker’s profit margins reached a record 6.7% for the quarter, up a full percentage point, and margins climbed to 8.4% in North America, despite the slowdown in demand that has particularly weakened the Jeep brand.

More Then Just Numbers!

“It was a strong quarter,” Chief Financial Officer Richard Palmer said in a conference call with analysts and investors. “With the progress we’ve made in the first half of the year, we are confirming our full-year guidance.”

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Detroit’s Big Three Struggle to Adapt to Rapidly Changing Global Auto Market

Management shake-up at Ford not likely to be the last big announcement from the Motor City this year.

by on May.22, 2017

Ford CEO Fields won't be the last Detroit exec trying to figure out how to address changes coming.

The unexpected ouster of Ford Motor Co. CEO Mark Fields comes as one of the biggest shake-ups Detroit’s Big Three have experienced since they emerged from the Great Recession – and it highlights the challenges they face trying to adapt to a global transformation in what automakers build and how they market those products.

The appointment of Jim Hackett to replace Fields is, however, just the latest in a series of big announcements from Detroit that last week saw Ford announce plans to cut 1,400 salaried workers in North America and Europe, while General Motors said it would stop selling cars in the huge Indian market and sell off operations in South Africa.

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“As the (Detroit) Big Three look out at the landscape, they see dramatic changes coming in the concept of mobility,” says Joe Phillippi, a veteran Wall Street auto analyst and now the lead at AutoTrends Consulting. “They are desperately trying to figure out the future business model and how they will fit in.”

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Is FCA Ready to Sell Off Jeep and Ram?

Marchionne's casual comment raises questions about carmaker’s future.

by on Apr.27, 2017

The most powerful SUV on the market, the 707 hp Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk.

It was the sort of casual comment that many of those listening in on the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles earnings conference call just might have missed, but a single word from FCA Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne could signal some massive changes to come.

For several years, the CEO has made no effort to hide his interest in finding a partner for the smallest of the Detroit-based automakers. During a call with analysts and reporters to discuss FCA’s strong first-quarter earnings Marchionne was asked if his strategy might even include the idea of selling off the company’s crown jewels, the Jeep and Ram brands.

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The Big Picture!

“Yes,” Marchionne said, before moving on to other topics. And, curiously, those on the call let the subject drop without a single follow-up query.

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FCA, VW, Patching up Differences, Could See Joint Opportunities

Volkswagen CEO opens door to “conversation.”

by on Mar.15, 2017

VW CEO Matthias Mueller has been struggling to dig the maker out of its diesel scandal.

Volkswagen CEO Matthias Mueller, apparently picking up on recent comments by his counterpart at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, opened the door to “a conversation” on Tuesday, something some observers suggest could lead to merger talks between the two companies.

Mueller’s comment, which was made during a news conference called to discuss VW earnings, came barely a week after CEO Sergio Marchionne said a merger between FCA and some other manufacturer “will happen” in the coming years.

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Talk of mergers, acquisitions and alliances in the global auto industry has escalated in the wake of General Motors’ decision to sell its long-troubled German-based Opel/Vauxhall unit to France’s PSA, the parent of the Peugeot and Citroen brands.

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Fiat Chrysler Subpoenaed By Feds Over Diesel Emissions Allegations

VW spends nearly $3b on diesel buyback.

by on Mar.01, 2017

A Ram 1500 EcoDiesel.

The investigation of allegations Fiat Chrysler Automobiles cheated on diesel emissions is moving into high gear, the maker revealing he has received subpoenas from a variety of federal authorities.

The smallest of the Detroit automakers in January announced it was coming under investigation for allegedly rigging its diesel engines to pass tough U.S. emissions standards. FCA Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne rejected those charges during a news conference at the North American International Auto Show.

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The FCA investigation ramps up just as Volkswagen begins to wrap up its own diesel emissions scandal. Court documents released this week revealed that the German maker has so far spend $2.9 billion to buy back vehicles sold in the U.S. using a rigged, 2.0-liter turbodiesel. VW set aside $10 billion for buybacks as part of a settlement with the government announced last July.

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Automakers Look for Options, Weigh Costs Under Trump

Carmakers, car buyers, car workers might all feel the impact.

by on Jan.27, 2017

Pres. Donald Trump signing an Executive Order. He plans to enact a 20% Mexican tariff.

The increasingly contentious battle between the Trump Administration and Mexico could lead to some significant collateral damage, notably including both carmakers and car buyers.

With the Mexican government rejecting a White House demand to pay for a border wall, President Donald Trump now wants to not only negotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement but impose a 20% tariff on good imported from south of the border. After making extensive use of NAFTA to set up a network of manufacturing operations in Mexico, automakers could be among the hardest hit.

Beyond the Headlines!

But there is, for now, widespread disagreement about how to respond to the Trump plan. Japanese automakers Nissan and Toyota say they are looking for ways to increase U.S. production. Ford’s CEO, after meeting with the new president this week, is rejecting the idea of building any new U.S. factories. Meanwhile, Fiat Chrysler’s chief executive says it may be time to rethink the possibility of a merger with domestic giant General Motors.

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Fiat Chrysler Earnings Near $2b for 2016

Company says it will boost profit-sharing for hourly workers by 25%.

by on Jan.26, 2017

Despite weak sales of the now-cancelled Chrysler 200, FCA earnings surged for 2016.

Detroit’s smallest automaker closed the books on 2016 on a high note, delivering full-year earnings of $1.92 billion, after only marginally squeezing into the black the year before.

The turnaround should be good news to both Fiat Chrysler Automobiles investors and workers. The Euro-American automaker said it will nearly halve its net debt in the coming year. It also announced it would boost profit-sharing for U.S. hourly workers by 25%.

By the Numbers!

Net profits for all of 2016 jumped to 1.81 billion euros, or $1.92 billion, for FCA, which is officially registered in Amsterdam but operates one of its primary headquarters in the Detroit suburb of Auburn Hills. That compares with a meager 93 million Euro profit for all of 2015.

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Trump to Meet with Detroit CEOs on Tuesday

Plenty of room for deal-making.

by on Jan.24, 2017

Will Trump use the carrot, the stick, or both, during his meeting with Detroit's Big 3 CEOs.

With an assortment of global leaders set to visit the White House in the coming weeks, President Donald Trump will first take time to meet with the CEOs of the Detroit Three automakers in the Oval Office this morning, and it’s expected there will be plenty on the agenda.

Trump has put a lot of emphasis on the auto industry since launching his campaign in 2015, notably taking shots at the largest of the two domestic makers for importing cars from Mexico. He has threatened to enact a “big border tax,” according to a tweet fired at General Motors earlier this month, scuttled the Trans-Pacific trade pact and advised both Mexico and Canada of his plan to renegotiate the NAFTA deal.

Breaking News!

While industry officials worry about the impact of new trade barriers, they’re also hoping to get a sympathetic ear from the new president on a variety of their own concerns, including corporate taxes and government regulations like the tough Corporate Average Fuel Economy, or CAFE, mandate the EPA reaffirmed in the final hours of the Obama Administration.

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Fiat Chrysler Loses Fuel Tank Fire Appeal

Automaker contends fuel tanks are not defective.

by on Nov.23, 2016

FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne testified that he believes the rear-mounted fuel tanks on Jeeps are safe.

Fiat Chrysler lost its bid to overturn a $40 million verdict granted to the parents of a 4-year-old boy killed in the fiery crash of a 1999 Jeep Grand Cherokee.

A Georgia appellate court found in favor of the plaintiffs, rejecting FCA’s argument that certain evidence was wrongly allowed and the award resulted from prejudice based on that evidence.

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The Court of Appeals of Georgia concluded that a lower court judge did not err by allowing the parents of Remington Walden to present evidence of instances of other fires to support their claims. (more…)

Ferrari Looking to Hybrids to Help Boost Demand

And it isn’t alone: many performance brands studying electrification options.

by on Nov.11, 2016

The LaFerrari showed that hybrid power can meet highest levels of performance Ferraristas expect.

While many folks still think of battery power as a way to create fuel-efficient, albeit boring, automobiles, Ferrari is looking at electrification as a way to boost both performance and sales.

Speaking to industry analysts following release of the company’s earnings this week, CEO Sergio Marchionne said Ferrari would like to be selling as many as 10,000 vehicles annually in the near-future. But to do that, it would probably add some sort of hybrid technology to every vehicle in the brand’s line-up by 2019.

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Ferrari has already used a Formula One-derived hybrid system for the flagship LaFerrari. And it’s not alone in looking at its battery options. Porsche has the high-performance Mission E under development, Aston Martin developing a battery-electric version of its Rapide. And there’s also the Tesla Model S with its Ludicrous mode. Even Mercedes-Benz is looking at a variety of battery-based options for its AMG line.

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