Unit sales and revenues rose slightly, while EBIT from continuing operations grew by 18 pct to €2.07 billion (PY €1.75 bn). Return on sales grew 6.4 pct (PY 5.6 pct). Daimler Trucks expects unit sales and profit growth in 2015. Dr Wolfgang Bernhard, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG for Trucks and Buses says despite partly weaker markets, Daimler improved its results significantly, and plans to stay on this successful course in 2015.Dr. Wolfgang Bernhard, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG responsible for Trucks and Buses, at the traditional annual press conference of the division in Stuttgart. BharatBenz sales up in 2014.
Daimler Trucks looks to sell 700,000 units in 2020, and aims at 8 pct return on sales over the cycle in the medium term. For 2015, NAFTA region is expected to witness about 10 pct increase for the overall truck market (medium and heavy-duty segments = Class 6 to 8). New products like Western Star 5700 XE and successful offerings like Freightliner Cascadia Evolution should contribute significantly to secure market leadership in NAFTA region. Daimler is the only manufacturer to offer fully integrated powertrain from a single source here, and has been accepted well. Freightliner Cascadia Evolution is the best-selling truck in North America. Every fourth new truck is equipped with an integrated powertrain.
Alongwith sales increase, revenues grew by 3 pct to €32.4 billion (PY €31.5 bn). EBIT grew by 18 pct to €2.07 billion (PY €1.75 bn). Daimler Trucks business developed positively in Asia at 3 pct growth in deliveries to 167,000 vehicles. Japan and India reported higher unit sales numbers. 14 pct sales growth in Japan stood at 43,900 units (PY 38,300 units). In India, BharatBenz trucks sales was up 59 pct to 10,300 vehicles (PY 6,500 units) encouraged through product portfolio expansion by five more models and dealer network growth to about 80 showrooms. BharatBenz sales growth through January – November 2014 was reported at 61 pct at 9,700 vehicle (PY 6,000 units). BharatBenz is in third place for heavy-duty trucks in India, with a market share of 5 pct in the Indian market. Fuso trucks produced in Chennai are being exported to an increasing number of countries. By 2014 end, more than 1,000 Fuso trucks were sold outside India.
Europe is expected to remain at the 2014 level. Japan could report slight market drop. Brazil remains weak. About 10 pct decrease is expected compared with 2014. Daimler Trucks sales is expected to be positive in Asia, though growth foreseen in Japan is slack. In Indonesia, an important market for Fuso in Asia, unit sales is expected to recover. BharatBenz India sales network is expected to grow from 80 to 100 dealers, leading to significant sales increase. Increased offering of Fuso trucks made in India will culminate in exports to Latin America and the Near and Middle East.
Western Europe and Latin America markets remain challenging. Owing to customer acceptance of fuel-saving products, and a flexible production network, Daimler Trucks expects to maintain its position in the Western European market. Lack of economic growth and unfavourable financing conditions continue to constrict market demand and Daimler Truck sales in Brazil.
Daimler will consistently focus on its strengths to offer global customers trucks that are optimally tailored to their requirements. Turning to its platform strategy, Daimler looks to utilise its potential even further in coming years, so, customers and the company benefit.
Daimler Trucks brand diversity, presence and current sales alludes to a good starting position for use of platforms. Daimler Trucks is able to quickly enter new markets. Use of a modular system can foster economies of scale and efficient production. Daimler Trucks has introduced a platform for heavy-duty engines in North America, Europe and Japan. An automated powershift transmissionis used in Mercedes-Benz trucks and as DT12 in Daimler trucks in Freightliner and Western Star brands in North America.
Cautious optimism towards FY 2015 stems from 45 pct YoY growth in Q4 2014 to about 173,000 units, to create a solid basis for desired sales growth for the year. Political and economic uncertainties effect investment propensity with Ukraine crisis, conflicts in Middle East, and weakness of large economies in Latin America, led by Brazil and Argentina playing a role.
In 2014, unit sales grew at 2 pct at about 496,000 units to virtually meet the target of 500,000 trucks for 2015 a year ahead of time. The highest since 2006. Global business opportunities allowed Daimler to offset sales on weaker markets like Brazil and Europe with strong performance, in North America and Japan, and others.