Volkswagen will pay its 100,000 workers in Germany a bonus of EUR6,200 ($8,500) each, which is EUR1,000 less than 2012 and EUR1,300 less than 2011. The lower bonus comes as the carmaker’s namesake brand posted lower sales and profit in Europe, caused by the still slumping demand for vehicles in the region.
The brand posted a 3.9-percent drop in sales in western Europe in 2013 to 811,800. Volkswagen distributes 10 percent of operating profit at the brand to workers as bonuses. "The tougher market situation has a direct impact on the size of the bonus," VW works council chief Bernd Osterloh said in a statement.
VW, which is the largest carmaking group in Europe, is softening its forecast for 2014 due to the continued uncertainty in European vehicle markets.
The carmaker posted a record operating profit for 2013 on higher luxury-car sales and falling costs of a manufacturing revamp. VW is bound to release a brand-by-brand breakdown of results and executive compensation details on March 13. The carmaker has 12 brands. [source: Reuters]