Faurecia consolidated sales stood at €5,140.4 million in the first quarter of 2015, up 5.5% at constant exchange rates and scope. Reported sales were up 13.8%. Over the quarter, exchange rate variations added 8.3% on the business activity.
Sales growth is broken down as follows:
- Product sales (parts and components delivered to automakers) totaled €3,956.7 million during the first quarter of 2015, up 5.3% like-for-like and up 13.5% on a reported basis. Exchange rate variations added 8.1% on the business activity or € 283.6m;
- Monolith sales were up 12.3% like-for-like at €922.3 million and up 22.8% on a reported basis;
- Development, tooling and prototype sales contracted by 11.2% like-for-like, or -6.7% on a reported basis, in the first quarter of 2015 to €261.3 million, after very strong sales growth in the fourth quarter of 2014 (+20.2%).
PRODUCT SALES PER REGION
(All variations like-for-like; for reported figures see Appendix.)
- In Europe (including Russia), product sales increased 6.2% to €2,174.7 million, against €2,047.2 million during the first quarter of 2014. European (excluding Russian) light vehicle production increased 4% (Faurecia estimate) while the momentum is accelerating. This good performance comes mainly from strong sales to Renault-Nissan (+19%), Ford (+10%) and PSA (+7%). For 2015, Faurecia now expects light vehicle production to grow in Europe (excluding Russia) by +3/5% (versus +2/4% in the previous forecast) and its sales to outperform by at least 100bp.
- In North America, product sales reached €1,051.4 million, up 4.0%, while production grew close to 2% (Faurecia estimate). The positive sales momentum will continue throughout 2015. Light vehicle production is expected to grow by 3% (unchanged forecast) in 2015.
- In Asia, Faurecia continued to demonstrate solid product sales growth of 7.5% to €563.9 million, mainly led by an 8.2% growth in China, which represents over 80% of the business in the region. Faurecia outperformed the market in Asia and performed in line with the production in China, with light vehicle production growth estimated by Faurecia at +2% and +8% respectively. In China, some international joint-ventures have reduced their stocks in the first quarter of 2015, whereas Chinese automakers have outperformed the market mainly by taking advantage of better positioned small SUVs. Automotive Seating sales were penalized by lower content. For 2015, in China, Faurecia anticipates light vehicle production to grow by 7% (unchanged forecast) and its sales by around 10%.
- In South America, product sales declined 10.3% to €124.0 million, while Faurecia estimates that production was down 17%. The economic environment is not improving therefore Faurecia believes light vehicle production will continue to contract in 2015 after a 16% decline in 2014. Faurecia is expecting light vehicle production to contract by around 7% in 2015.
- In the rest of the world (mainly South Africa), product sales increased 24.8% to €42.7 million.
PRODUCT SALES BY BUSINESS GROUP
(All variations like-for-like; for reported figures see Appendix.)
Product sales reached €1,386.1 million, up 6.8%. European and North American sales were up respectively 8% and 12%. Automotive Seating will continue to perform above group in 2015 thanks to the full effect of new programs, mainly for Nissan (+31% in Q1-2015), Renault (+30% in Q1-2015) and Chrysler (+62% in Q1-2015).
Emissions Control Technologies
Product sales reached €965.2 million, up 1.9%. Sales to Cummins rose 6.7% with Commercial Vehicle sales now reaching 8.5% of total sales, versus 8.2% in the first quarter of 2014.
Product sales totaled €1,130.2 million, up 5.6%. European product sales rose 6%, mainly driven by Ford (+14%) and Daimler (+15%). In Asia, Interior Systems outperformed the market with a growth rate of 39%.
Product sales reached €475.2 million, up 7.5%. Front End Modules grew 1.5%, weighing on the overall rate of growth.
First quarter 2015 highlights:
Broad strategic agreement with Dongfeng: On March 27, 2015, Faurecia and Dongfeng signed a broad partnership agreement through the creation of a joint-venture. This joint-venture will serve Dongfeng and its automotive partners for passenger and commercial vehicles and, when fully deployed, will cover all of Faurecia’s businesses. The objective of the two partners is that annual sales for this joint venture will reach around €2 billion in the medium term. For more details please refer to the press release issued March 31, 2015 available on our website at www.faurecia.com.
Refinancing well advanced: In March 2015, Faurecia issued at very competitive conditions a €700 million, seven-year bond bearing a coupon of 3.125%. Faurecia also confirmed that it will redeem on April 17, 2015 its €250 million 8.75% bond due 2019. Therefore, Faurecia confirms a reduction of its total financial expenses by €50 million in 2015 and by an additional € 50 million in 2016.
The Board of Directors of Faurecia met in Auburn Hills (Michigan, USA) on April 14, 2015 and approved the agenda of the Group’s annual shareholder’s meeting to be held on Wednesday May 27, 2015 at 10:00 am (Paris time) at Pavillon Gabriel (Paris), the renewal of three directors and the practical details for the dividend payment of 35 euro cents (to be paid either in cash or in shares, according to the option chosen by each shareholder).
OUTLOOK FOR 2015
Faurecia confirms its targets for fiscal 2015:
· Total sales up around 5.0% (at constant exchange rates and scope);
· Operating margin better than 4.0% (3.6% in 2014);
· Net cash flow above € 100m.
A conference call for analysts, investors and media with Michel Favre, Chief Financial Officer, will take place today at 6:15 pm (Paris time). It can also be followed online at: http://www.faurecia.com/en/finance
Dial-in numbers: France: +33 1 76 77 22 26 / UK: +44 203 427 1909 / USA: +1 646 254 33 67
Confirmation code: No Code
For more details, a financial presentation is available for download on Faurecia’s website at www.faurecia.com.
 Monoliths: precious metals and ceramics used in emissions control systems.
Faurecia is one of the world's largest automotive equipment suppliers in four activities: Automotive Seating, Emissions Control Technologies, Interior Systems and Automotive Exteriors. In 2014, the Group posted total sales of €18.8 billion. At December 31, 2014, Faurecia employed 100,000 people in 34 countries at 330 sites and 30 R&D centers. Faurecia is listed on the NYSE Euronext Paris stock exchange and trades in the U.S. over-the-counter (OTC) market. For more information, visit: www.faurecia.com
Executive Vice-President, Finance
Michel Favre graduated from HEC business school in 1982 began his career as bank auditor and consultant. He worked with Valeo during 13 years before joining Altadis Group in July 2001, where[...]