ERJ staff report (LMH)
Hanover, Germany – First-quarter sales at Continental Corp. fell by 3.4% from Q1 2012, totalling €8 billion, in a market the company described as “difficult”. Despite this, Continental CEO Elmar Degenhart confirmed the company’s full year guidance of a 5% rise in sales to €34 billion and an adjusted EBIT margin of over 10%.
“We’re confident that global production of passenger cars will continue to stabilise. We also expect the tire replacement market in Europe to pick up following the unusually long period of cold weather,” Degenhart said.
In the first three months, Continental’s operating result (EBIT) fell by 5% year-on-year to €747 million. The German firm attributed this to “persistently high research and development expenses, which climbed to 8.7% of sales in the automotive group”. Operating margin was 9.3%, down slightly on 9.5% in Q1 2012.
In Q1, Continental’s automotive group generated sales of €4.9 billion, down from €6.1 billion in 2012. Earnings (EBIT) were €303 million, down from €305 million in Q1 2012.
In the rubber group, first-quarter sales were €3.1 billion, down from €3.3 billion in 2012. Earnings were €473 million, down from €500 million in the previous year.
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News release from Continental