• Germany's news in English

VW profits crash

AFP · 22 Apr 2009, 15:05

Published: 22 Apr 2009 15:05 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The German firm said net profit slumped 74 percent year-on-year to €243 million ($314 million) in the first three months of the year while revenues fell 11.2 percent to €24 billion.

Without a €600-million gain from the sale of a Brazilian unit VW would have made an operating loss instead of a profit, and excluding the firm's Swedish trucks and buses unit Scania, sales fell an even sharper 17.2 percent.

Even including the Brazilian windfall, operating income was less than a quarter of what it was a year ago, falling to €312 million from €1.3 billion in the first three months of 2008.

Pre-tax profit was also a fraction of what it was a year earlier, falling to just €52 million from €1.4 billion.

The number of vehicles sold dropped by 15.7 percent to €1.35 million while production slumped by almost a quarter - 24.1 percent - to €1.25 million. Deliveries to customers fell 10.7 percent to 1.4 million vehicles.

Looking ahead, VW said it did not expect business to improve any time soon and that unit sales, revenues and profits - the latter hit by higher costs for refinancing its debts - would be lower for 2009 than in previous years.

"The high volatility of market developments does not permit any reliable forecasts to be made ... Based on the extremely weak business in the first three months of 2009, we continue to expect that our earnings will not reach the level of previous years," VW said.

Other car firms must be having an even tougher time, though. VW said it performed better than the overall global passenger car market - which shrank 20.7 percent in the first quarter.

VW said that deliveries were higher than the same time period last year in the key emerging markets of China, Brazil and Russia - as well as in Germany, where sales have been boosted by a government car scrapping scheme.

Story continues below…

It said that it is well positioned to win further market share in the future in "key regions of the world," helped by numerous upcoming new car launches that will extend its product portfolio and cover new market segments.

The company said its nine-brand range comprises more than 130 vehicles that emit less than 140 grams of carbon dioxide per kilometre and that its new small Polo model had impressed trade press and customers at its recent premiere.

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Creepy clown scare spreads to Germany
Two of the clowns were apparently equipped with chainsaws. Photo: Pedro Pardo / AFP file picture

Police said Friday five incidents involving so-called scary clowns had occurred in two north German town, including one assailant who hit a man with a baseball bat, amid fears that Halloween could spark a rash of similar attacks.

Student fined for spying on women via their webcams
Photo: DPA

Student from Munich fined €1,000 for spying on 32 different computers, using their webcams to take photographs, or record their keyboard history.

This is how much startup geeks earn in Germany
Photo: DPA

A comprehensive new survey of 143 startup founders shows how much you are likely to be earning at a German startup, from entry level all the way up to sitting on the board.

Man dies after beating for peeing near Freiburg church
The Johannes Church in Freiburg. Photo Jörgens Mi/Wikipedia

A middle-aged man from southern Germany has died after being attacked by a group of men who took umbrage with the fact he was urinating in the vicinity of a church.

The Local List
Seven German celebrities with uncanny doppelgängers
Former Berlin mayor Klaus Wowereit and actor Alec Baldwin. Photo: DPA; Gage Skidmore, Wikimedia Commons

Check out these seven look-a-likes of well known German figures - we admit that some are more tenuous than others...

Israel seeks to buy three new German submarines: report
A Dolphin class submarine. Photo: DPA

Israel is seeking to buy three more advanced submarines from Germany at a combined price of €1.2 billion, an Israeli newspaper reported Friday.

Here’s where people live the longest in Germany
Photo: DPA

Germans down south seem to know the secret to a long life.

More Germans identify as LGBT than in rest of Europe
Photo: DPA

The percentage of the German population which identifies as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender is higher than anywhere else in Europe, according to a new study.

'Reichsbürger' pair attack police in Saxony-Anhalt
File photo: DPA.

A "Reichsbürger" and his wife attacked police officers on Thursday, just a day after another Reichsbürger fatally shot an officer in Bavaria.

Five things not to miss at the Frankfurt Book Fair
Photo: DPA

From consulting a book doctor to immersing yourself in an author's world with the help of virtual reality, here are five things not to miss at this week's Frankfurt Book Fair, the world's largest publishing event.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd