Audi Group: record deliveries and profit, extra jobs
The Audi Group continues to perform successfully in the current fiscal year: In the first four months the company delivered around 421,900 automobiles of the Audi brand. This represented a 17 percent rise in sales, year on year. The first-quarter operating profit of € 1,115 million also serves as a good springboard to a financially successful 2011 fiscal year.
In the best first quarter in the history of the Company, the Audi Group increased revenue by 27.3 percent to € 10,514 (2010: 8,260) million. Thanks to an improved model mix, along with ongoing process and cost optimization measures, the Company more than doubled its operating profit to € 1,115 (2010: 478) million. The operating return on sales of 10.6 percent moreover follows on seamlessly from the high level achieved in the third and fourth quarters of 2010.
At the auto company’s Annual General Meeting in Neckarsulm, Rupert Stadler, Chairman of the Board of Management of AUDI AG, reflected on the brand’s impressive performance in 2010: “In the first year after the economic crisis we put in an impressively dynamic performance”. Meanwhile, Audi was able to display its premium credentials to better effect than in virtually any other year, and moved systematically into new segments and niches.
Furthermore, this dynamic growth is continuing in the current fiscal year. From January through April, the Group delivered around 421,900 cars of the Audi brand. There was particularly high demand for the flagship A8 model, the A7 Sportback and the A1. In his speech to the stockholders of AUDI AG, Stadler confirmed the goal for the year: “We are targeting new record deliveries of 1.2 million automobiles for 2011”. In order to achieve these ambitious targets, the Company aims to delight its customers with a host of new products and innovations over the next few months.
New models for 2011
Along with the sporty A6 business sedan and the A6 Avant, 2011 will also see the Audi Q5 hybrid quattro go on sale. The brand with the four rings already took the wraps off its Audi Q3 compact lifestyle SUV at the Auto Shanghai motor show in mid-April. The response from journalists, dealers and potential customers has been highly promising. The Company is looking to build 100,000 of this model in its first full year in production. The Audi Q3 will be made at the Martorell plant, in Spain. In a second step Audi is then also planning to build the Q3 in China.
From January through April, Audi already sold 87,788 cars in China, an increase of 23.5 percent on the previous year. This total makes China Audi’s most important sales market. The brand with the four rings is also powering on in Germany: With deliveries of 78,487 cars in the first four months of 2011, the Company increased its sales by 14.3 percent compared with the corresponding period of the previous year. In all regions, Audi is thus clearly on track to reach its target for the year of 1.2 million cars delivered.
Increasing deliveries, revenue and operating profit
Axel Strotbek, Board Member for Finance and Organization, also aims to take revenue and operating profit beyond the previous year’s figures. Nevertheless, the Finance Director is mindful of the risks. Many countries – particularly in Europe – are still struggling to keep their economic recovery on track: “And there is increasing volatility in the exchange rates and commodity prices that matter most to us, making it more difficult to plan for the future”. However, the Group has created an effective safety net to ensure that the key financial indicators continue to reflect its successful track record. The Company continues to target high margins: “The operating return on sales for 2011 as a whole should repeat the previous year’s high figure of 9.4 percent,” said Strotbek.
Attractive employer – at least 2,200 new jobs this year
The Company’s motivated employees are a key factor in achieving these ambitious growth targets. That is why AUDI AG also lets its workforce share financially in the positive performance. In recognition of the hugely successful past fiscal year, every employee is receiving € 6,513 on average – the highest profit share in Audi’s history.
This year, the Company is in addition hiring 1,200 experts mainly in the specialist areas of electric mobility and lightweight design. 700 young people will also commence training. On top of that, Audi will be giving permanent jobs to at least 300 temporary workers. Audi remains very popular among academic graduates. As the renowned employer ranking study by the consultants Trendence reveals, Audi has emerged as the most attractive employer among economics and engineering graduates for the second time in a row. Among students of both disciplines the brand with the four rings is now also rated top by the very best students of their subject, the high potentials.
Dialogues magazine: the Audi Technology Magazine
Coinciding with the Annual General Meeting, Audi boss Stadler also unveiled a new publication in the Dialogues series: the Audi Technology Magazine. Following in the footsteps of issues on the topics of environment and sustainability, this 208-page magazine helps the reader discover more about the people behind Audi technology. The editorial content includes a report straight from Technical Development and sheds light on an array of new topics such as Audi connect and the Audi Urban Future Initiative. The Company offers the magazine through a free subscription service. Interested parties can order future issues at email@example.com. Information and videos on the Audi Technology Magazine are also available at www.dialoge.audi.de.
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