Aston Martin makes £119m loss as coronavirus squashes demand
Aston Martin fell to a £118.9m pre-tax loss in the first quarter as the coronavirus pandemic squashed demand at the luxury carmaker, driving revenue down.
In its first results since Canadian billionaire Lawrence Stroll became executive chairman of the iconic firm, the company said its new DBX model was on track for summer delivery despite the crisis.
Shares in the firm fell 6.5 per cent this morning.
Aston Martin’s revenue fell 60 per cent year-on-year, from £196m in the same period last year to £78.6m today.
The firm sold nearly half the number of cars it did last year, with 578 sales rather than 1,057.
Adjusted earnings swung from £28.3m to a £46.9m loss for the period, largely due to the decline in sales.
Net debt increased from £701.7m to £956.1m.
Due to the ongoing uncertainty over the virus, Aston Martin said it was withdrawing its previous guidance for the year.
Why it’s interesting
Earlier in the quarter a consortium backed by Stroll led a £536m for the luxury carmaker, which has struggled since listing in October 2018.
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The raise, which gave Stroll 25 per cent of the company, was part of a strategy to “reset” the company over the coming financial year.
Group chief executive Andy Palmer said the plans were still going ahead despite the coronavirus crisis, which has forced the firm to shutter the majority of its plants and showrooms.
However, last week Aston Martin successfully reopened its plant at St Athan, meaning the new DBX model will be delivered in the summer as planned, with production due to resume in the coming weeks.
Operations at Gaydon are also set to recommence “later” in the quarter.
The firm also said it had reopened 15 per cent of its dealerships around the world, including all 18 of its showrooms in China.
What Aston Martin said
Stroll said: “While in the short-term, as anticipated, we will have some difficulties due to the onset of COVID-19, having been in the business for a few weeks now I am even more enthusiastic and confident in the multi-year plan that we have set out to bring new and exciting products to market to drive demand and build the Aston Martin brand.
“My immediate priority is to rebalance supply and demand, reducing dealer stock. Although nearly all our dealers are compromised and our factories were closed, we are focused on achieving results and delivering our plan”.
More to follow.