Grupo Antolin, one of the largest manufacturers of vehicle interiors in the world, achieved sales of EUR1.291m (US$1.497m) in the first quarter of 2018, compared to EUR1.333m in the same period the year before. Without the effect of currency fluctuations, sales increased 2.4%.

EBITDA reached EUR84m in the first quarter. In this period, the company launched numerous significant new projects as a result of the important contracts signed with car manufacturers in recent years. Grupo Antolin launched 32 new projects, 68% more than in the same period of 2017.

The results have been achieved against a backdrop of decreasing global automobile production, increasing raw materials costs and pricing pressure from carmakers.

Grupo Antolin is expanding its industrial operations with new plants in the US (Shelby and Alabama) and China as well as the expansion of facilities in other key markets. The company is carrying out the largest investment plan in its history to strengthen its industrial positioning by investing approximately EUR360m in 2018.

Commitment to China
As part of the investment plan and to take advantage of the full potential of the world's largest car market, Grupo Antolin has started production at a new factory located in Chengdu, which supplies door panels to Geely-Volvo.

This plant has been built in partnership with the local partner CAIP, one of the main Chinese manufacturers of vehicle components.

In the first quarter of 2018, Grupo Antolin has also reached an agreement with Donghuan to establish a joint venture in order to expand its window regulators business in the Chinese market.

This joint venture is the first industrial implementation in China of Grupo Antolin´s window regulators business. The products will be produced in the facilities of Donghuan, which is one of the largest window regulators manufacturers in the country. The new company already has three projects in progress at the moment, one of which is a plastic window regulator, an innovative product developed by Grupo Antolin.

Grupo Antolin has 13 production plants and 13 Just in Time centres in China.

Sales by Business Unit and Territories
In the first quarter, the overheads business unit reached sales of EUR501m; Doors achieved EUR440m and cockpits and consoles attained EUR259m. Sales for the lighting business unit amounted to EUR91m.

By territory, sales in Europe reached EUR679m; in the NAFTA region, EUR451m; Asia-Pacific, EUR132m; and Mercosur, EUR23m.