First half of 2019: 3 questions for CEO Bram Schot
As expected, the 2019 fiscal year is proving to be challenging for the Audi Group. Audi CEO Bram Schot reviews the first half and provides an outlook for the full year.
Mr. Schot, how would evaluate the first half of 2019?
Bram Schot: The start to the 2019 fiscal year was, as expected, very demanding. In terms of deliveries, the consequences of the transition to WLTP, the generation changeover of numerous models and the overall demanding economic environment all continue to pose a challenge. At the same time, we provided high upfront financing for future mobility solutions and continued our model initiative. The new SUV models are particularly popular among our customers and the locally built Audi A4 L and Audi Q5 L models are in demand in China.
What are the prospects for the second half of the year?
Bram Schot: The outlook for 2019 as whole remains largely stable. We can confirm our earnings forecast despite strong headwinds and expect an operating return on sales of between 7.0 and 8.5 percent. We are optimistic about deliveries in the second half: The majority of all engine/transmission versions have now been re-homologated and we continue to work very intensively on transitioning to the second stage of the WLTP test cycle. Our starting point is clearly better than in the previous year. After all, we have learned from experience and optimized many things.
And what are the long-term plans?
Bram Schot: We have a clear vision: unleash the beauty of sustainable mobility. This is being put into action with our new strategy “Consistently Audi”, which is also sustainably increasing our corporate value. The Audi Transformation Plan forms the financial basis for strategic restructuring. We implemented measures with an effect of more than one billion euros in the first half of the year. This allows us to ensure our Company’s long-term competitiveness. Because we intend to play a significant role in shaping new mobility.
Further financial highlights in the first half of 2019
Net cash flow
Research and development ratio
Ratio of capex
Anticipated development in the key performance indicators of the Audi Group
The forecasts for the key performance indicators for 2019 as a whole, which are explained in detail in the 2018 Annual Report on pages 137 f., fundamentally remain valid – assuming the successful implementation of the next phase of the Audi Transformation Plan. The impact of the deconsolidation of multi-brand sales companies has already been factored in.
|Actual 2018||Basis for the forecast||Forecast 2019|
|Deliveries of cars of the Audi brand to customers||1,812,485||1,812,485||moderately above the previous year’s level|
|Revenue in EUR million||59,248||53,617||slight increase|
|Operating profit/operating return on sales in percent||6.0||6.6||between 7.0 and 8.5 percent and therefore not yet within our strategic target corridor of 9 to 11 percent|
|Return on investment (ROI) in percent||10.0||10.4||between 11 and 14 percent and therefore above our minimum rate of return of 9 percent|
|Net cash flow in EUR million||2,141||2,080||between EUR 2.5 and 3.0 billion|
|Research and development ratio in percent||7.1||7.8||
Adjustment of the forecast:
moderately above the strategic target corridor of 6.5 to 7.0 percent (due to intensified development activities)
|Ratio of capex in percent||5.9||6.5||
Adjustment of the forecast:
slightly below the strategic target corridor of 5.5 to 6.0 percent (with intensified investment discipline)
 Calculation of the adjusted figures: The figures reported in the 2018 Consolidated Financial Statements have been adjusted for the respective effects of the multi-brand sales companies (Volkswagen Group Italia S.p.A., Verona (Italy), Audi Volkswagen Korea Ltd., Seoul (South Korea), Audi Volkswagen Middle East FZE, Dubai (United Arab Emirates), and Audi Volkswagen Taiwan Co., Ltd., Taipei).
 The forecast for 2019 is based on the adjusted figures.
 This includes delivered Audi models built locally by the associated company FAW-Volkswagen Automotive Company, Ltd., Changchun (China).
Download Interim Financial Report 2019
07/26/2019 | Interim Financial Report 2019
46 pages, EN
After a challenging first half of the year: Audi Group confirms earnings forecast for 2019
- Audi Group after six months of year: revenue of €28.8 billion; operating profit of €2.3 billion; operating return on sales of 8.0 percent
- Ongoing high level of net cash flow of €2.3 billion due to spending discipline
- CEO Bram Schot: “Our new strategy “Consistently Audi” is sustainably increasing our corporate value.”
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