Herr Winterkorn is not backing off from the ambitious Strategie 2018. In eight years, Volkswagen wants to be the king of the hill, in all disciplines from making the most cars on earth to making the most money, from having the most satisfied customers to having the most brilliant ideas. Haughty hubris, you say? Winterkorn disagrees with you. “We are well-positioned to achieve the goals laid down in our Strategy 2018”, said Winterkorn as he presented the nine month interim report of Volkswagen today.
First things first: Winterkorn confirms our previous report of €4b ($5.57b) after tax profit. Operating profit in the first nine months was €4.8b ($6.6b), and that didn’t include the €1.3b ($1.79b) they made in China and that are captured using the equity method. Interestingly, VW now inherited a hedge fund from Porsche: “In addition, the financial result includes positive effects of €863 million from the measurement of the put/call rights relating to Porsche Zwischenholding GmbH at the reporting date,” says a release by Volkswagen.
Otherwise, everything up a bit: Vehicles deliveries rose by 12.9 percent to 5.4 million (January – September 2009: 4.8 million). Volkswagen’s global market share inched up to 11.6 percent from 11.5 percent in the same period of the prior year. Sales of “almost all Volkswagen Group brands” are up also. We won’t bore you with the details. Since all brands reported are up, we looked for the missing ones. Bugatti and Lamborghini are AWOL. We can only assume.
Anyway, Winterkorn says that “the Volkswagen Group continues to have its sights firmly set on capturing pole position in the automotive industry.” Oh, well. Jack Baruth will have to explain to you that the polesitter is not necessarily the winner.
Or is Winterkorn backing off a bit? They are “well positioned.” They have their “sights firmly set” on the pole position. Anybody can say that.