Ford Motor Co. (F) has posted a 27% rise in sales to 78,700 units in its Asia Pacific and Africa region, including Australia, China, India, Thailand and South Africa. This was attributable to impressive sales of the newly launched Ford Fiesta in South East Asia and Ford Figo in India.
In China, sales went up 26% to 50,970 units. Meanwhile, sales in India jumped 146% to 8,380 units, led by strong demand for Ford Figo.
In Thailand, Ford’s sales more than tripled to 2,049 units, driven by the launch of all-new Ford Fiesta. In fact, the sales marked the automaker’s best monthly performance in the country since December 2007.
Ford anticipates 70% of its sales growth to come from its Asia-Pacific and Africa region in the next 10 years, mostly from China and India. Industry sales in the region are expected to rise from 16 million units in 2009 to 35 million units by 2018.
Ford has been pursuing a major expansion plan in the emerging countries, including Argentina, Brazil, China, India and Thailand. Through the expansion plan, the automaker aims to tap the growing market potential in the countries, especially those in Asia.
Since last year, Ford has invested $510 million in China and $500 million in India as part of its expansion plan. Recently, Ford and Japan’s Mazda Motor announced their plan to invest $350 million in their Auto Alliance joint venture plant in Rayong, Thailand. This comes on top of a $450 million investment for a new plant at the same location made in June this year.
In the second quarter of the year, Ford posted a profit of $2.7 billion or 68 cents per share (before special items that include sales of Volvo cars among other things), overshadowing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 40 cents per share. The profit improved $3.34 billion from a loss of $638 million or 21 cents per share (before similar adjustments) in the second quarter of 2009.
Sales in the quarter appreciated 17% to $31.3 billion, higher than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $29.5 billion. Excluding sales of Volvo cars in 2009, sales surged 31%. This company’s strong results were attributable to better performance by its Automotive operations around the world, driven by strength of new products.