Takanobu Ito, president of Honda Motor Co., forecasts that the company will achieve record earnings in at least five years, driven by sales of Civic compacts and Accord sedans in North America. Ito also forecasts that the company’s operating income in the year ending March 2013 will track back to levels before the September 2008 failure of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. Six months before Lehman’s bankruptcy filing in 2008, Honda posted record annual profits.
"It will be the year of the complete rebound," said Ito, adding that he expects sales to climb above 4 million units for the first time in 2013. Ito said Honda’s recovery will be led by sales in North America as the company prepares to roll out a fully revamped Accord in the fall.
Ito's forecasts are well above analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg, reflecting the renewed confidence by Japanese carmakers as they recover from the disaster-ridden 2011, with natural tragedies hitting Japan and Thailand. According to estimates compiled by Bloomberg, Honda's operating income will probably double to 586.6 billion yen ($7.6 billion) next fiscal year after dropping 52%.
Honda posted earnings of 953.1 billion yen, 851.9 billion yen and 868.9 billion yen, for fiscal years ended March 2006, 2007 and 2008 respectively. Toyota Motor Corp. said this week that its 2011 sales will be 100,000 units higher than it forecasted in December 2011. [source: Autonews]