FRANCE: Renault posts full year losses but is cash positive
- Group revenues down 10.8% year on year to EUR33.7bn
- World market share (PC + LCV) up by 0.1 point with an improvement in the second half
- Group operating margin -EUR396m but +EUR224m in the second half
- Operating loss EUR955m (-EUR9m in second half)
- Net loss EUR3.07bn (-EUR356m in second half), half of which was
attributable to contribution from associated companies (-EUR11.6bn)
- Free cash flow positive EUR2.09bn, leading to a EUR2.02bn decrease in net financial debt
for automobile for a total EUR5.9bn
Renault said on Thursday it had met its priority objective for 2009 of positive free cash flow after reported revenues down 10.8% year on year to EUR33.7bn though up 25% in the last quarter. Group operating margin was negative EUR396m, operating loss was EUR955m and the net loss was EUR3.07bn, half of which was attributable to the contribution from associated companies.
Free cash flow was positive EUR2.09bn, leading to a EUR2.0bn decrease in net financial debt
for automobile, for a total EUR5.9bn.
Chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn said: “We took the first actions to withstand the crisis as early as July 2008. Renault proved its resilience in 2009, as demonstrated by our significantly positive free cash flow. Economic conditions will remain difficult in 2010 with a 10% fall in the European market.
"We are continuing our work on building the Renault of the post-crisis period with the pursuit of the sales offensive in Europe, the mass market of zero-emission vehicles in 2011, the extension of the entry-car range, the strengthening of our presence in emerging countries, and the acceleration and broadening of synergies with Nissan.”
The Group said it met the positive cash flow goal by optimising revenues, reducing costs (including investments) and strict control over working capital requirements.
The launch of six new products in 2009 saw the group slightly increase its world market share by 0.1 point to 3.7%, in a market that shrank 4.5% (PC + LCV). The increase was more pronounced in the second half, with a 0.2-point rise. Market share grew in 11 of the group’s top 15 markets, which account for 85% of its sales.
The company’s 2010 objective is again to generate positive free cash flow and thus continue to reduce debt.
It plans six new product launches in 2010 and will continue with the cost reduction policy and a ratio of net CAPEX and R&D expenses kept at less than 10% of revenues.