© batman2000 Business | April 19, 2016

Hella continues strong sales growth

Automotive lighting and electronics supplier, Hella, has increased group-wide revenue for the first nine months of the current 2015/2016 fiscal year by 10.3% over the same period in the previous year to EUR 4.654 billion (EUR 4.218 billion).
The most important driver of group-wide growth continued to be the strong market position in the Automotive segment.

"Innovative products are the key to a successful differentiation," says Dr. Rolf Breidenbach, Chairman of the Management Board. "As a leader in innovation, we are favorably positioned with our product categories. Our strong technology portfolio is helping us to successfully acquire new orders and grow faster than the market as a whole."

During the nine-month period, EBIT adjusted for one-time effects grew to EUR 345 million (previous year: EUR 318 million). This resulted in an increase of around 9% and an adjusted EBIT margin of 7.4%, which was slightly below the previous year (7.5%).

The growth trend in the Automotive segment was supported by a solid demand in Europe and America as well as a growing demand in China in the third quarter. External revenue for the segment increased by about EUR 3.5 billion or around 11% over the nine-month period. When compared to global growth in new car registrations and the sales of light vehicles, Hella was able to exceed overall market growth for the first nine months.

On the earnings side, Hell's Automotive segment had an EBIT of EUR 232 million with a margin of 6.6 % for the initial nine months of the current fiscal year. This represents a decrease of EUR 23 million compared to the previous year, which primarily resulted from the extraordinary expenses due to the supplier failure. Without these costs, the EBIT margin would have been 7.9% and thus at the same level as the previous year (8.0%).

Aftermarket segment remains on track for continued growth

In the first nine months the Aftermarket segment was able to continue offsetting the weak demand of the same period in the previous year. This is primarily owing to recovery on the European aftermarket as well as growth in the wholesale business in Northern Europe. External segment revenue expanded by 7.1% to EUR 875 million. Operating income thus increased by EUR 6 million to EUR 56 million. Relative to revenue, the margin improved to 6.4% compared to 6.1% in the previous year.
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