Hella KGaA Hueck & Co., a Tier One supplier of automotive lighting and electronic components, reported a 7 percent increase in sales to $5.7 billion during the company’s 2007-08 fiscal year.
Operating profit, measured by earnings before interest and tax (EBIT), grew from $66.8 million during the year-ago period to $209 million, according to company officials, who add preliminary fiscal-year results showed a 4 percent return on sales. Including one-time charges and financing, Hella’s EBIT increased to $336.8 million.
“With the end of fiscal year 2007-08, Hella is practically debt-free,” says Jürgen Behrend, chairman and president of Hella. “This is a significant sign for our customers about our financial well-being and ability to carry through with our projects.”
In its official credit opinion, the Moody’s credit rating agency indicated that Hella is fiscally sound. Moody’s gave Hella a credit rating of “Investment Grade, Baa3, stable” and cited the supplier as having sufficient financial liquidity.
“Our positive results for the past fiscal year are remarkable given the slowdown in many parts of the global automotive industry,” notes Martin Fischer, president of Hella’s U.S. Corporate Center with responsibility for the automotive supplier’s lighting, electronics and aftermarket business units in the United States. “Hella was able to increase sales and profits while investing heavily in new technologies and development projects.”
Hella’s new technologies and product developments include the first full-LED (light-emitting diode) headlamps launched in North America on a high-volume vehicle, company officials state.
A further key focal point is energy management. Hella has been active in this field for some years now with innovative products, generating sales of approximately $363 million.
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