Daimler AG Profit Declines; Revenue Up 3% in full-year 2019 results

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  • Group unit sales of 3.34 million vehicles (2018: 3.35 million)
  • Revenue up 3% to €172.7 billion (2018: €167.4 billion)
  • Group EBIT of €4.3 billion (2018: €11.1 billion)
  • Adjusted Group EBIT of €10.3 billion
  • Net profit of €2.7 billion (2018: €7.6 billion)
  • Free cash flow industrial business of €1.4 billion (2018: €2.9 billion)
  • Net liquidity of the industrial business of €11.0 billion (2018: €16.3 billion)
  • Net liquidity including IFRS 16 effects of €13,1 billion at the beginning of 2019
  • The dividend proposed €0.90 per share (2018: €3.25)
  • Outlook given on Capital Market Day confirmed

Daimler AG Profit Declines; Revenue Up 3% in full-year 2019 results - Brand Spur
Jahrespressekonferenz Daimler AG Stuttgart 2020
Annual Press Conference Daimler AG Stuttgart 2020

Stuttgart (Germany) – Daimler AG (ticker symbol: DAI) today reported its preliminary results for the fiscal year 2019 ended December 31, 2019. The Group’s total unit sales of 3.34 million passenger cars and commercial vehicles were in the magnitude of the previous year (2018: 3.35 million). Revenue was €172.7 billion (2018: €167.4 billion), an increase of 3%. The Daimler Group posted full-year EBIT of €4.3 billion (2018: €11.1 billion), reflecting material adjustments including expenses from legal proceedings and related measures, restructuring measures and M&A transactions. Adjusted EBIT, reflecting the underlying business, was €10.3 billion.

Ola Källenius, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Mercedes-Benz AG: “While our results in 2019 reflect ongoing strong customer demand for our attractive products, we cannot be satisfied with our bottom line. Above all, material adjustments affected our financial results last year. The future of the Daimler Group lies in CO2-neutral mobility as well as inconsistent digitization, leveraging its full potential in our products and our processes. To achieve that, we have substantially ramped up our investments into new technologies. We are determined to materialize our technological leadership and at the same time to significantly improve profitability. To this end, measures to cut costs and to increase cash flows are necessary. In 2019, we defined them and we have started executing. We will take the necessary actions to enhance our financial strength as the basis for our future strategy.”

In 2019, net profit weakened to €2.7 billion (2018: €7.6 billion). Net profit attributable to the shareholders of Daimler AG amounted to €2.4 billion (2018: €7.2 billion), leading to a decline in earnings per share to €2.22 (2018: €6.78). At the Annual General Meeting on April 1, 2020, the Board of Management and the Supervisory Board will propose a dividend of €0.90 per share (2018: €3.25). The total payout will, therefore, amount to €1.0 billion (2018: €3.5 billion).

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Investments, free cash flow, and liquidity

At the Group, investments in property, plant, and equipment decreased to €7.1 billion (2018: €7.5 billion). Research and development expenses increased to €9.7 billion (2018: €9.1 billion). The free cash flow of the industrial business was €1.4 billion (2018: €2.9 billion). The sharp decrease resulted from a substantial cash outflow in connection with legal proceedings relating to diesel vehicles. Also, a continued high level of expenses for new products and technologies had a negative effect. The net liquidity of the industrial business stabilized at €11.0 billion (2018: €16.3 billion), taking into account lessee accounting in accordance with IFRS 16 and the dividend payment for the fiscal year 2018. The inclusion of lessee accounting in accordance with IFRS16 reduced the net liquidity of the industrial business from the end of 2018 to the beginning of 2019 by €3.2 billion.

Divisional results

Mercedes-Benz Cars sold 2,385,400 vehicles in the fiscal year 2019, and thus slightly topped the record level of the prior year (2018: 2,382,800). Mercedes-Benz Cars’ revenue increased to €93.9 billion (2018: €93.1 billion) and its EBIT fell by 53% to €3,359 million (2018: €7,216 million). Return on sales was 3.6% (2018: 7.8%). A negative impact resulted from a new assessment of expenses for ongoing governmental and legal proceedings and measures relating to Mercedes-Benz diesel vehicles as well as expenses for a recall of Takata airbags. Growth in unit sales and revenue, as well as better pricing, were offset by continued high investment in new technologies and products. Adjusted EBIT was €5,841 million and adjusted return on sales was 6.2%.

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Daimler Trucks showed a decrease in unit sales of 6% to 488,500 vehicles in the fiscal year (2018: 517,300). Revenue increased by 5% to €40.2 billion (2018: €38.3 billion). EBIT fell by 11% to €2,463 million (2018: €2,753 million) and return on sales was 6.1% (2018: 7.2%). With continued strong business in the NAFTA region, declines in volume, particularly in Europe and Asia, had a negative impact on earnings. Negative effects were also due to higher upfront expenditures for new technologies and costs related to capacity adjustments.

Mercedes-Benz Vans unit sales increased in the fiscal year 2019 by 4% to 438,400 (2018: 421,400) vehicles. Revenue was 9% higher at €14.8 billion (2018: €13.6 billion). EBIT decreased to minus €3,085 million (2018: plus €312 million) while the return on sales fell to minus 20.8% (2018: plus 2.3%). While the higher unit sales and a more favorable model mix had a positive impact on earnings, the division’s EBIT was crucially affected by a reassessment of expenses for ongoing governmental and legal proceedings and measures relating to Mercedes-Benz diesel vehicles as well as expenses for a recall of Takata airbags. Furthermore, expenses for the review and prioritization of the product portfolio reduced EBIT. In 2019, measures were initiated to significantly improve the situation. Adjusted EBIT was €284 million and adjusted return on sales was 1.9%.

Daimler Buses’ sales grew by 6% to 32,600 units in the fiscal year 2019 (2018: 30,900). Revenue increased by 5% to €4.7 billion (2018: €4.5 billion). EBIT amounted to €283 million (2018: €265 million), an increase of 7%. Return on sales was 6.0% (2018: 5.9%). The positive development was driven by the increase in unit sales in Brazil, among other things, as well as favorable exchange rate effects. In Europe, the battery-electric Mercedes-Benz eCitaro city bus is in series production at the plant in Mannheim and is being delivered to customers.

Read Also:  Strong presence of the new Actros: Mercedes-Benz Trucks introduces the special Edition 1 model

At Daimler Mobility, new business increased by 3% to €74.4 billion in the fiscal year 2019 (2018: €71.9 billion). Revenue was 9% higher at €28.6 billion (2018: €26.3 billion). The division’s EBIT amounted to €2,140 million (2018: €1,384 million), an increase of 55% compared to the prior year. At 15.3%, return on equity was above the figure of 11.1% in the prior year. A positive effect resulted from the merger of the mobility services of Daimler and BMW Group. Furthermore, the higher volume of new business contributed to the EBIT increase. A higher equity ratio caused by tighter regulatory requirements had a negative impact. EBIT was also reduced by expenses relating to the realignment of the YOUR NOW group. Adjusted EBIT was €1,827 million and adjusted return on equity was 13.1%.

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The workforce

At the end of the fiscal year, the Daimler Group employed 298,655 people worldwide (2018: 298,683), 173,813 people worked in Germany (2018: 174,663), 25,788 in the United States (2018: 26,310), and the consolidated subsidiaries in China employed 4,439 people (2018: 4,424).

Sustainable business strategy

Daimler faces the challenges posed by the transformation of the automotive industry with a sustainable business strategy. Demand for individual mobility and the worldwide transport of goods and people will continue to grow and will continue to form the basis for the core business as a vehicle manufacturer. The premium market for passenger cars will continue to grow sustainably and faster than the volume market in the future. At the same time, Daimler is consistently committed to CO2-neutral mobility. In order to achieve the CO2 targets and to finance the important future fields of electric mobility and connectivity, enormous technical and financial efforts are required. The resulting costs require comprehensive measures to increase efficiency, streamline the company and increase the free cash flow.

Those measures include the significant reduction of material and administrative costs and the reduction of personnel costs by more than €1.4 billion by the end of 2022. The aim is to cut jobs worldwide in a socially responsible manner, including the reduction of management positions.

Daimler will continue its product and electrical offensive in the current year: To this end, Mercedes-Benz Cars is launching among others the new S-Class with the latest version of the MBUX multimedia system. The EQA will be the first fully electric SUV compact model to be launched this autumn. Mercedes-Benz Vans is expanding its product portfolio to include the all-electric EQV van. In addition, the model range will also include numerous variants with a plug-in hybrid drivetrain and 48-volt technology. Overall, Mercedes-Benz plans to quadruple the share of plug-in hybrids and fully electric vehicles in total sales in 2020. This is linked to a further increase in the company’s own battery production: Batteries for electric vehicles will be manufactured in nine plants at seven locations on three continents.

Outlook

Daimler expects Group unit sales in the fiscal year 2020 slightly below the prior-year level. Mercedes-Benz Cars, Mercedes-Benz Vans, and Daimler Trucks assume a slight decrease in unit sales compared to the previous year. Daimler Buses sees slightly higher sales numbers. At Daimler Mobility, new business should weaken slightly, while the contract volume should remain at the prior-year level.

Read Also:  Mercedes-Benz sells more than 150,000 cars in February

Group revenue in the fiscal year 2020 is expected to be stable at the level of 2019.  At Mercedes-Benz Cars & Vans, revenue should be around the prior-year level. Daimler Trucks & Buses expects a significant revenue decrease. The Daimler Mobility division forecasts revenue at the prior-year level. Daimler assumes that Group EBIT in 2020 will be significantly above the level of 2019, which was negatively impacted by various material adjustments. The divisions have the following expectations for their returns in 2020:

– Mercedes-Benz Cars & Vans: adjusted return on sales of 4% to 5%,

– Daimler Trucks & Buses: adjusted return on sales of 5%,

– Daimler Mobility: adjusted return on equity of 12%.

Significant efficiency measures already initiated in all business areas, such as personnel and material cost savings, portfolio and model adjustments and the further implementation of platform strategies, as well as more stringent capital allocation, should have an initial positive impact on earnings as early as the 2020 fiscal year. These measures will take full effect in subsequent years. Restructuring measures and the initiated job cuts, on the other hand, will have a negative impact on earnings in 2020. Daimler will continue to review all non-core activities in order to focus the financial resources on the businesses with the highest economic potential.

High upfront investments for new products and technologies will continue to have a negative impact on the free cash flow of the industrial business, even though upfront investments should have peaked in 2019. Given these conditions, Daimler assumes that the free cash flow of the industrial business should be significantly higher than in the previous year. Items not yet included are possible expenses related to governmental and legal proceedings. Against the background of even more targeted capital allocation and prioritization of projects, investments in property, plant, and equipment and for research and development in 2020 should remain in the magnitude of the 2019 volume.

Harald Wilhelm, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG responsible for Finance & Controlling and Daimler Mobility: “The focus in the coming years will be on the significant improvement of our margins as well as the cash flow. Our goal is to ensure solid net liquidity to protect the necessary investments and at the same time, to pay attractive dividends. We will ensure disciplined capital allocation in all areas.”

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Latest News

Asia Pacific Rayon Raises US$300m from National and International Affiliated Banks to Expand Production Capacity

  • Continued capital expenditure aims to boost production and support the recovery of Indonesian economy
  • Loan agreements aligned with Indonesian Government's strategy to drive investment growth in 2021
  • APR is a member of the RGE group of companies


JAKARTA, INDONESIA - Media OutReach - 12 April 2021 - Asia Pacific Rayon (APR), the largest integrated rayon fiber producer in Indonesia, today announced that it has secured a syndicated loan facility of Rp 4.5 trillion (US$300 million) with national and international affiliated banks. The funding will be used to support continued capital investment in the company's production facilities at Pangkalan Kerinci, Riau Province, Sumatra.

APR is vertically integrated through its supply chain, from renewable fiber plantations to high-value textile development. It commenced operations in 2019 and was formally inaugurated by President Jokowi Widodo in February 2020. APR plans to increase its production capacity over the coming year to capture the strong growth potential of viscose staple fiber (VSF), strengthening its market position in Indonesia and in export markets across the region. APR is a member of the RGE group of companies. Founded by Sukanto Tanoto, RGE manages a group of resource-based manufacturing companies with global operations.

The syndicated loan participating banks are PT Bank Rakyat Indonesia (Persero) Tbk, PT Bank Central Asia Tbk, PT Bank Pan Indonesia Tbk, PT Bank Pembangunan Daerah Jawa Barat, PT Bank Woori Saudara Indonesia 1906 Tbk and PT Bank KEB Hana Indonesia

The joint mandated lead arrangers and bookrunners for the syndicated loan are PT Bank Rakyat Indonesia (Persero) Tbk, PT Bank Central Asia Tbk, and PT BANK Pan Indonesia Tbk.

Basrie Kamba, Director, Asia Pacific Rayon, said: "This funding will be used to support continued investment in our operations in Kerinci. Rayon fiber, or viscose, is a textile raw material derived from sustainably managed plantations. As rayon is both renewable and biodegradable, it supports the trend towards sustainable fashion in Indonesia and in other markets around the world."

APR's planned expansion is aligned with the Indonesian Government's strategy to increase investment and boost employment to support the recovery of the country's economy and address the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Following the passing into law of the Omnibus Bill in October last year to streamline investment and stimulate job creation, President Widodo said last month that investment would be the key factor in achieving 5% economic growth in 2021.

"This loan facility and our continued investment in our operations are evidence of the growth potential of the viscose rayon sector in Indonesia and around the world. We are committed to supporting the Indonesian Government's efforts to improve the investment climate in export-oriented manufacturing industries, and its efforts to create upstream jobs in plantations and the processing of raw materials, and downstream opportunities in textile factories and related businesses," said Basrie.

Hari Setiawan, Executive Vice President of PT Bank Rakyat Indonesia (Persero) Tbk said : "As Representative of JMLAB and all lenders, I hope this collaboration will be useful to support the growth and development of PT Asia Pacific Rayon in increasing production and operations and also supporting the recovery of Indonesia's export growth."

"Support from BCA and other Banks reflect our confidence in APR, and as our contribution to promote a sustainable and environment friendly industry. We hope this cooperation will tighten our relationship as well," said Susiana Santoso, Executive Vice President of PT Bank Central Asia Tbk.


About Asia Pacific Rayon

Asia Pacific Rayon is the first fully integrated viscose rayon producer in Asia. Located in Pangkalan Kerinci, Riau, the company uses the latest production technology to produce high-quality rayon to meet textile needs. APR is committed to becoming a leading viscose rayon producer with the principles of sustainability, transparency and operational efficiency, serves the interests of the community and the country, and provides value to customers. APR is part of the RGE (Royal Golden Eagle) group of resource-based manufacturing companies. Sustainability is fundamental to APR. The APR Sustainability Policy, updated in September 2020, include additional commitments on pulp sourcing and clean manufacturing.


About RGE

RGE Pte Ltd manages a group of resource-based manufacturing companies with global operations. Our work ranges from the upstream, comprising sustainable resource development and harvesting, to downstream, where our companies create diverse value-added products for the global market. Our commitment to sustainable development underpins our operations, as we strive towards what is good for the community, good for the country, good for climate, good for customer, and good for company. RGE was founded in 1973. The assets held by RGE companies today exceed US$20 billion. With more than 60,000 employees, we have operations in Indonesia, China, Brazil, Spain and Canada and continue to expand to engage newer markets and communities. www.rgei.com

Daimler AG Profit Declines; Revenue Up 3% in full-year 2019 results - Brand Spur
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