General Motors is poised to post hefty profits over the next several years, GM executives said as they outlined their future plans during the company’s annual Global Business Conference at the company’s Milford Proving Ground
“We expect double-digit earnings per share growth for the next number of years,” GM Chief Financial Officer Chuck Stevens said during his afternoon presentation.
“Let me repeat that,” he added for emphasis.
Stevens told investors GM is targeting earnings per share as much as 22% higher than the $4.50 a share analysts forecast for 2015. He also laid out ambitious targets for cash flow and margins.
The value of GM stock increased by 2.2% to $30.67, which is still below the $33 a share price set for the automaker’s 2010 initial public offering after it emerged bankruptcy.
GM said its pre-tax global margins target is 9% to 10% by “early next decade,” Stevens said.
(GM wants profitability to redefine personal mobility. For more, Click Here.)
GM expects revenue of $155 billion this year as well as global margins of 6.8% and a 24% return on invested capital and the company has also steadily lowered its break-even point so it is confident in its ability to weather one of the industry’s cyclical downturns, which have wreaked havoc on GM in the past because of the company’s high fixed costs, Stevens said.
GM North America margins reached 10.5% in the second quarter thanks to a sharp increase in the average transaction price for GM vehicles, noted Alan Batey, president of GM North America.
“We are a very different company than we were a while ago,” said GM Chief Executive Officer Mary Barra. “We have the right plan.”
Further improvements will come from steady growth in China and profits from the company’s troubled European operations, which have failed to produce a profit in 16 years. The European operations will earn money in 2016, GM Europe president Karl-Thomas Neumann told the conference, which attracted 180 investment managers and analysts.
(Click Here for details about the white-hot September auto sales.)
Matt Tsien, president of GM China, said that the Chinese market, which was the engine for growth of the global auto industry over the last decade is beginning to mature. But the Chinese market, for all of its difficulties, is still expected to grow by another 5 million units or by 3% to 5% per year by the end of the decade to nearly 30 million units. Growth has stopped in large cities such as Beijing and Shanghai.
But sales continue to grow in other smaller cities across China, noted Tsien. GM, which is the only manufacturer to compete in all segments of the Chinese market, is poised to take advantage of the growth in the China’s car market, added Tsien, who added GM’s factories are still almost fully utilized despite the recent slowdown in the growth of sales.
Stevens said company will save about $5.5 billion in the next three years in efficiencies in manufacturing, administration and purchasing, which will pay for investments in technology and brand development.
The savings through 2018 will “more than offset” the technology and brand investments, Stevens said.
(Analysts continue revising 2015 sales expectations higher. For more, Click Here.)
Some $2 billion of the savings will be on materials GM uses for its vehicles, said Mark Reuss, the company’s global product chief. Global auto sales industrywide will grow by more than 50% to 130 million vehicles by 2030, from about 85 million now.