Volkswagen revenue jumps on growth in Europe, North America

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BERLIN, May 4 (Reuters) – Volkswagen posted a 21.5% gain in first-quarter revenue on Thursday, boosted by higher prices and strong growth in Europe and North America, but operating profit declined from last year when the period benefited from commodity hedging.

Revenue for the quarter was 76 billion euros ($84.22 billion). Operating profit fell to 5.7 billion euros from 8 billion euros last year, but still beat expectations of five analysts polled by Refinitiv SmartEstimate of 5.48 billion euros.

Excluding the valuation effect from commodity hedging, operating profit rose by 35% to 7.1 billion euros, yielding a margin of 9.3%.

Cariad, the carmaker’s beleaguered software unit, made a loss of 400 million euros.

Porsche, which reported earnings on Wednesday, yielded the same return on sales as last year at 18.2%, even as revenues and profits jumped, which it attributed in part to higher costs.

Volkswagen attributed the rise in group revenue largely to strong growth in Europe and North America, and said its order book in western Europe totalled 1.8 million vehicles, including 260,000 battery-electric cars.

Total deliveries in the first quarter were up 7.5% from the previous year, and in March deliveries were 23.9% higher than the same month last year – in line with BMW , which also reported higher deliveries that month.

Still, Volkswagen’s deliveries in China were down 14.5% throughout the quarter. “The company is confident that the deliveries in this region can recover throughout the year on the broadened model offering and China-specific technology,” the statement said.

It confirmed its outlook for 2023 and said it will present a strategy update at a capital markets day on June 21.

($1 = 0.9024 euros)

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