BMW’s Profit Problem

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BMW’s announcement last week that it was to leave F1 after 2009 was sad news indeed and many were told that it was their new approach to “sustainable” systems and “green” initiatives that was driving the decision.

We all nodded, of course, because that’s what everyone is supposed to be doing these days but in reality we all knew it was something more. Something major that would find Dr. Mario Theissen sidelined with an F1 team and no check book to operate it.

So what could that thing be? A lack of sustainable initiatives? OF course not…it’s money. Norbert Reithofer, CEO, told the Wall Street Journal:

“Despite some tentative positive signals, a lasting and wide-ranging recovery is not yet in sight,”

It appears that BMW’s EBIT, earnings before interest and tax, fell an astounding 60%. An earmark on a companies health and viability. This, I humbly suggest, more than any other reason is why we are seeing BMW’s quick exit from F1.

“By contrast, Daimler AG’s core Mercedes-Benz division posted a €340 million loss before interest and tax for the second quarter, compared with a €1.21 billion profit in the year-earlier period”.

Could Merc be re-thinking their investment? What about Toyota?

But it also reported a 77.82 billion yen net loss ($816 million) for its fiscal first quarter ended in June and remained skittish about auto markets outside Japan, demonstrating the challenges Toyota still faces from the strong Japanese yen and soft global economy.

Toyota’s quarterly loss was better than a mean analyst estimate of a 210.4 billion yen net loss compiled by Thomson Reuters. It also marks a significant improvement from the net loss of 765.8 billion yen in the previous quarter ended March. In the year-earlier first quarter, Toyota reported a profit of 353.66 billion yen.

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