Peugeot Citroen stresses significance of global markets

Vidya Ram London | Updated on February 09, 2011 Published on February 09, 2011

Peugeot Citroen is on target to generate half of its sales outside Europe by 2015, the firm said on Wednesday, as it announced much-anticipated plans to expand into India.

“Our globalisation plans are on track,” said the Chairman, Mr Philippe Varin, as the firm announced a rise in revenues for the year 2010 of 15.8 per cent and a profit of €1.1 billion — ahead of expectations. The closely watched recurring operating income at its automotive division rose from €621 million in the year, from a loss of €1.2 billion the year before. “The success of our automotive performance plan has delivered results significantly ahead of our target and allows us to increase our 2010-2012 objective by €400 million to €3.7 billion,” said Mr Varin.

During the year, sales volumes outside Europe rose to 39 per cent, from 32 per cent the year before. Sales in China soared by 38 per cent during the year, while Latin America grew by 27 per cent and Russia by 37 per cent.

Like its rivals, Europe's second largest car-maker has pledged to reduce its dependence on European markets, where growth remains patchy. While its share of that market rose slightly to 14.2 from 13.8 per cent in 2009, sales fell by 0.9 per cent as countries including Germany, Spain, and France cut back or entirely eliminated the car scrappage incentive programmes that they had put in place during the crisis.

The troubles in the European market were highlighted by the balance of its automotive recurring operating income — 525 million euros of which were made in the first half of the year.

Mr Varin attributed the difference to the weakness of the European market in the second half of the year (down nearly 9 per cent on the year before), and competitive pricing environment.

The strong performance of the China joint venture with Dongfeng Motor Automobile meant that this would pay its first dividend based on 2010 earnings, Mr Varin said, adding that he hoped it would be the case in 2012 as well. The new Peugeot 508 will be launched in China at the same time it is launched in Europe, as the firm ramps up production in that area with a new plant. Approval for its second Chinese joint venture with Changan Automobile Group is expected shortly.

The firm said it expected automotive recurring income in 2011 to be ahead of 2010 and to make significant progress with its globalisation project.

Published on February 09, 2011

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