Even with the bleak economic outlook for 2012, especially in Europe, Robert Bosch (the largest car parts supplier in the world) remains confident it will grow worldwide this year. Bosch Chairman Franz Fehrenbach released a statement last Tuesday that stated that the industry will stagnate or enter a recession depending on how rigorously and quickly the reforms in the euro zone are carried out.
Bosch posted record sales in its automotive division of over 30 billion euros, an 8% increase from 28.1 billion euros in 2010. Bosch, which has a consumer goods and industrial technology division, predicts that overall group revenues will increase in 2012.
Fehrenbach said that the Bosch Group anticipates an increase in revenue of between 3% and 5%. Bosch Group said that sales in 2011 increased by 8.8% to 51.4 billion euros. However, pre-tax sales results increased by only 5%, failing to meet the company's target of 7% to 8% after increasing material and investments costs were taken out.
Fehrenback said that revenue growth will be driven by China, India and the Americas in 2011. It also predicts that the global economy will increase by about 2.5% year-on-year after a 3% growth last year.
Bosch had its first annual loss in decades in 2009 as new-car sales plunged due to the world credit crisis. However, the company has since made a comeback due to the growth in North America and Asia. Bosch is set to release full-year earnings on April 26, which is when Fehrenbach will offer a more detailed earnings outlook for 2012.
Last Tuesday, Bosch revealed plans to purchase U.S.-based SPX Corp.'s diagnostic and service tools division for 883 million euros ($1.15 billion) in a move to increase its presence in the sector, particularly in North America and Asia. If approved, this deal would be the largest ever for Bosch's automotive aftermarket division.