At 16.6 percent, the return on investment for the Automotive Division was down slightly on the previous year (17.7 percent), primarily as a result of the increase in invested capital, but was still significantly above its minimum required rate of return of 9 percent. The return on equity in the Financial Services Division declined slightly to 13.1 percent (14.0 percent). "We aim to safeguard the quality of our earnings for the long term. In this context, we will take care to further increase profitability in all regions and to establish ourselves on new growth markets," said Pötsch.
Net liquidity in the Automotive Division remained sound at EUR 10.6 billion at the end of December 2012 (year-end 2011: EUR 17.0 billion). This gives the Group the necessary financial stability and flexibility to systematically implement its Strategy 2018. Reasons for the decline include the contribution in full of Porsche's automotive business, the acquisition of Ducati and the increased stake in MAN SE. The ratio of capital expenditure to sales revenue rose slightly (0.4 percentage points) to 5.9 percent. In addition to its production facilities, Volkswagen invested primarily in the expansion and ecological focus of its model range, and in the modularization of its vehicle concepts.
Brands and business fields
Despite the tough environment, the Volkswagen Group outperformed the market in 2012, growing in almost all key regions. Deliveries climbed 12.2 percent to 9.3 million vehicles. This saw the Group's global share of the passenger car market rise to 12.8 percent
The Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand delivered 5.7 million vehicles to customers, an increase of 12.7 percent compared with the previous year. The brand's operating profit amounted to EUR 3.6 billion (EUR 3.8 billion), down 4.1 percent year-on-year. This was due in part to upfront expenditures for the Modular Transverse Toolkit and startup costs for the new Golf.
2012 was another record year for the Audi brand, which delivered 1.5 million (1.3 million) vehicles. Operating profit rose slightly by 0.6 percent to EUR 5.4 billion (EUR 5.3 billion) and the brand's operating return on sales was 11.0 percent (12.1 percent).
KODA's sales increased by 6.8 percent to 939,000 (879,000) vehicles. At EUR 712 million (EUR 743 million), operating profit was down slightly on the prior-year figure due to market factors.
Deliveries by the SEAT brand declined by 8.3 percent in 2012 to 321,000 (350,000) cars. The operating loss was cut by EUR 69 million to EUR 156 million.
Bentley delivered 8,510 (7,003) vehicles, 21.5 percent more than in 2011. Its operating profit climbed to EUR 100 million (EUR 8 million).
Sports car manufacturer Porsche sold 60,000 vehicles and generated an operating profit of EUR 946 million in the five months of its full consolidation in the Volkswagen Group (from August 1, 2012).
Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles delivered 550,000 (529,000) units, an increase of 4.1 percent. Operating profit declined by 6.1 percent to EUR 421 million (EUR 449 million).
Scania recorded a 15.9 percent decline in deliveries to 67,000 (80,000) trucks and buses. Its operating profit declined from EUR 1.4 billion to EUR 930 million. MAN delivered 134,000 trucks and buses and reported an operating profit of EUR 808 million.
Volkswagen Financial Services generated an operating profit of EUR 1.4 billion (EUR 1.2 billion) in 2012. The division signed 3.8 million new finance, leasing and service/insurance contracts around the world, 21.0 percent more than in the previous year.
Volkswagen is starting 2013 from a position of strength, despite tougher competition and difficult economic conditions. Excluding MAN and Scania, 1.4 million vehicles were delivered worldwide in the first two months of the year. At 8.3 percent, the Group grew more strongly than the market. "Volkswagen has everything it needs to continue its successful trajectory of recent years even under different circumstances," said Winterkorn, adding: "We want to lead the Volkswagen Group to the top of the automotive industry by 2018 -- profitably, sustainably and permanently." In 2013, the Volkswagen Group's brands will launch a large number of fascinating new models and so help further expand its strong position on the global markets.
Winterkorn was guardedly confident that the Group will outperform the market as a whole and deliveries to customers will increase. However, Volkswagen is not completely immune to the intense competition and the impact this has on business. The modular toolkit system, which is being continuously expanded, will have an increasingly positive effect on the Group's cost structure. The Volkswagen Group's 2013 sales revenue is expected to exceed the prior-year figure.
Given the ongoing uncertainty in the economic environment, the goal for operating profit is to match the prior-year level in 2013. Positive effects from its attractive model range and strong market position will be curbed by increasingly stiff competition in a challenging market environment. Disciplined cost and investment management and the continuous optimization of Volkswagen's processes remain an integral part of the Strategy 2018.
Further information on the Annual Media Conference and Investor Conference can be accessed at www.volkswagen-media-services.com and www.volkswagenag.com/ir.
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Volkswagen Group Communications
Head of Group Investor Relations/Spokesperson for Finance
Phone: +49 (0) 53 61 / 9-4 98 40
Fax: +49 (0) 53 61 / 9-3 04 11
E-mail: Email Contact
Spokesperson for Finance
Phone: +49 (0) 53 61 / 9-7 11 21
Fax: +49 (0) 53 61 / 9-7 94 44
E-mail: Email Contact
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