Daimler Sales Up, Profits Down

February 06, 2019 at 1:34 PM

Daimler AG hiked its revenue and unit sales in 2018 by 2% each to €167.4 billion ($190.5 billion) and 3.4 million passenger vehicles and commercial trucks, respectively.

But the company’s net profit slid 28% to €7.6 billion ($8.6 billion) from €10.6 billion in 2017, when a one-time U.S. tax windfall boosted results by €1 billion. Earnings before interest and taxes last year shrank 22% to €11.1 billion ($12.6 billion).

CEO Dieters Zetsche blames last year’s sagging results on headwinds that included global trade issues, the European Union’s new emission test protocol and continuing legal and regulatory skirmishes over diesels.

A 9,300-unit gain in 2018 resulted in a record-high 2.38 million vehicle deliveries for the company’s Mercedes-Benz brand. Sales jumped 10% to a record 517,300 vehicles for Daimler Trucks. Sales of commercial vans rose 5% to a record 421,400 units, the fifth record high in as many years.

Daimler predicts modest or no growth in unit sales and revenue this year. The company expects “slight” growth in EBIT.