Johnson Controls has reported upbeat results for its fiscal first quarter (to December 31) with automotive profitability up 26%, despite a downturn in automotive revenues blamed on exchange rates.

The company reported an 8% increase in profit for the first quarter from last year on higher revenues, particularly at its building efficiency segment. The company results beat analysts' estimates.

However, the company said that Automotive Experience revenues in the fiscal first quarter of 2015 were US$5.3 billion, down 3% compared to the 2014 quarter, reflecting the impact of the strengthening dollar versus the euro. Excluding the impact of foreign exchange, revenues increased 2%, Johnson Controls said.

The company said that revenues in China, which are primarily related to seating and generated through non-consolidated joint ventures, increased 15% to US$2.1 billion.

Automotive Experience segment income was US$249 million, versus the US$197 million reported in the first quarter of 2014, an increase of 26%, with improvements in both the company's seating and interiors businesses. Automotive Experience profitability "benefited from higher Chinese joint venture income and the higher volumes," Johnson Controls said.