|May 20, 2010
Source: Audi of America
· Audi achieves a new sales record of 360,760 deliveries in the January to April period
· Chairman Stadler: For the second quarter we expect to see further growth, not least thanks to the new-generation A8 and, later in the year, from our entrylevel A1 model.
· First-quarter operating profit up more than 30 percent to 478 million
· Board member Finance Strotbek: We anticipate that our operating profit will increase by more than the rate of rise in revenue in 2010.
Ingolstadt, Audi has made a successful start to the 2010 fiscal year. The Ingolstadt-based carmaker sold 360,760 units in the first four months of the year a new record for the Company. We are making very good progress, and we will keep our foot on the accelerator, said Rupert Stadler, Chairman of the Board of Management at AUDI AG, at the Companys Annual General Meeting.
The Audi brand achieved double-digit growth rates in all its sales regions across the world in the first four months of the year. Unit sales were 23.7 percent up on the comparative period last year. And we will keep our foot on the accelerator. For the second quarter we expect to see further growth, not least thanks to the new-generation A8 which has recently gone on sale. In the second half of the year our entry-level A1 model will deliver additional momentum, Stadler comments.
The Companys global unit sales growth is also reflected in its financial performance indicators for the first quarter. In the first three months of the year Audi generated revenue of 8,260 million
(2009: 6,700 million), up 23.3 percent on last year. Operating profit rose more than 30 percent
to 478 million (2009: 363 million), registering an increase well ahead of the rate of rise in revenue.
This very good result impressively demonstrates the success of our efforts to optimize costs on a sustained basis at all our locations, emphasizes Axel Strotbek, Board member for Finance and Organization at AUDI AG.
The operating return on sales of 5.8 percent (2009: 5.4 percent) also once again underlines the Companys outstanding position within the automotive sector.
Outlook for 2010: Operating profit to rise by more than rate of rise in revenue
In 2010 Audi is looking to return to its growth path which has been interrupted by the global economic crisis in recent years. We intend to get back to deliveries of over a million cars to customers again this year, and we are aiming to beat our 2009 performance in terms of both revenue and operating profit, says Strotbek. As markets generally continue to develop positively, we are currently forecasting that we will increase our operating profit by more than the rate of rise in sales revenues, he adds.
With qualitative growth, Audi is continuing to pursue its goal of becoming the most successful premium brand. As part of its Strategy 2020, the Group is aiming to achieve a sustained return on investment of over 18 percent and a return on sales before tax of over eight percent.
Audi will continue to pursue its model initiative at a rapid pace. In 2010 alone, the company will be launching 12 new products onto the market. They range from the new sporty urban small car, the A1, to the luxury A8 model, which has enjoyed a very successful market launch. Another highlight of this year will be the world premiere of the Audi A7, marking Audis entry into the luxury-class coupe segment. Other new offerings from Audi will include the new RS 5 and the Q5 hybrid, a full-hybrid model scheduled to be launched at the end of the year.
High level of special bonus payment to employees
Audi is again investing massively in the training and development of its workforce in 2010. The Company will be recruiting 350 new young managers and expert staff in this year alone. Furthermore, 770 new apprentices will be starting work at the Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm plants.
Audi is this year once again enabling its employees to share in the Companys success. At an average of 2,300 per employee, Audis 2010 performance-related bonus payments are the highest in the automotive industry. The company will also be paying a special bonus of 1,200 per employee this year. This one-off bonus payment is in recognition of the extraordinary performance contributed by the Companys employees in the crisis year 2009.
Audi remains focused on its corporate goal of being the most attractive employer in the automotive industry. The latest employer rankings from the two influential consultants trendence and Universum Communications indicate that Audi this year achieved this goal for the first time among college graduates, coming out on top in a survey of more than 21,000 students. This marked Audis emergence as the most attractive employer among economics and engineering graduates.