FRANKFURT, Germany (March 6, 2014) — Continental A.G. management expects to report improved operating income in the first quarter on 3- to 4-percent higher sales, CEO Elmar Degenhart told a gathering of business media today in Frankfurt.
The company's “solid start” so far in 2014 leaves management “confident as regards the outlook for fiscal 2014,” Mr. Degenhart said, noting that Conti expects global demand for consumer and commercial vehicles to rise about 2 percent this year.
Conti's goal for 2014 is 5-percent sales growth, he said. The company sees “substantial negative” currency exchange rate effects, he added, which could impact sales in the first quarter by up to 4 percentage points, but which should not hurt the firm's profit margin for the year.
“We expect to comfortably achieve an adjusted EBIT (earnings before interest and taxes) margin of more than 10 percent,” he said.