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BMW Cautiously Optimistic about 2013.


By Henny Hemmes
Senior European Editor

MUNICH, Germany, March 19, 2013. After the record year 2012, car maker BMW is ‘cautiously optimistic’ about the year 2013. According to Dr. Norbert Reithofer, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG, the company does not expect a further improvement of profit before tax, as the costs for development of new models, expansion of the capacity and further investing in EfficientDymanics technology, will have flattened out higher profits from improved sales.

Last year, BMW AG posted revenues of euros 76.8 billion, up 11.7 per cent, with profit before tax of 7.82 billion euros ( a plus of 5.9 per cent), and a net profit of 5.12 billion euros (+4.4 percent).

Last year, the company spent 3.9 billion euros on Research and Development and in total de volume of investment amounted to 5.2 billion euros, which is more than ever before.

Group sales (including Mini, Rolls-Royce) have increased by 10.6 percent to a record number of 1,845,186 units. This indicates that BMW is well on its way reaching its goal of a yearly sale of 2 million units by 2016.

Dr Reithofer: “We aim to achieve a new sales record at Group level this year. Group profit before tax should be similar to last year.” In the Q&A, question and answer session after the presentation, Ian Robertson, Board member for Sales and Marketing, said this may be “high in single/low in double digits”. In other words around 10 percent.

Dr. Reithofer said to be well aware that the global economical climate is uncertain and volatile: “Our business performance is exposed to many risks by high public debt levels, the continuing recession in the EU, China’s flattening growth, the uneven development in the automobile markets and the political instability in numerous regions around the world.”

Furthermore considerable investments are necessary to develop new models and technologies and to expand production capacity. In the next 2 years, BMW AG is expected to bring 25 new models to the market, of which 11 in 2013.

In the meantime Project- i for sustainable mobility is nearly ready for the market start. The electric mega city vehicle i3 will celebrate its world premiere at the IAA auto show in Frankfurt in September and will hit word wide markets a little later. To see what is happing with respect to sales of the i3, BMW will monitor the sales itself and appoint a number of dealers as i-agents. They will have a separate showroom space for the i-brand models.

Customers are buying through the dealer or the internet directly from BMW, and not from the dealers.

The BMW i3 will be available with a range extender, resulting in a range of 80-85 miles. According to Ulrich Kranz, Board Member responsible for the i-brand, is the range extender (a small two-cylinder engine) meant for peace of mind of the customer.