Volvo Cars returned to profit in 2013, so confidently declared its chief executive Hakan Samuelsson. "Our target was to break even... but I can declare already today that... we are back in the black, which is extremely positive," Samuelsson told Reuters in an interview on the sidelines of the 2014 Detroit auto show. Volvo officials remarked that Samuelsson was referring to the carmakers’ operating profit.
Volvo, which would disclose its financial results for 2013 in March 2014, logged an operating loss of SEK577 million ($88.71 million) in the first half of 2013.
Samuelsson said the turnaround was a result of Volvo's restructuring of its dealership network in China, boosting the carmaker’s volume in the country by 46 percent to 61,146 vehicles, as well as to an overhaul of its cost structure around the world.
Thanks to its aggressive cost cuts, Volvo made money despite logging only modest gains in global sales volume in 2013, Samuelsson said. Volvo posted a 1.4-percent jump in sales in 2013 to 427,840 vehicles.
"This year our focus will be growth," Samuelsson said. He remarked if 2013 was “sort of a year of consolidation,” 2014 will be a year of growth."
Samuelsson remarked that a key component of the carmaker’s 2014 growth strategy is the United States market, where it has been struggling. In 2013, Volvo's sales in the US dropped 10.1 percent to 61,233 vehicles, according to research firm Autodata. [source: Reuters]