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Continental 1Q sales are up 14%

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Continental Corp. reported net income of 657 million euros on sales of 9.6 billion euros for its first quarter ended March 31, 2015. That compares to income of 588 million euros on sales of 8.4 billion euros in the year-ago period.

Based on the exchange rate on March 31, Continental had income of $711 million on sales of $10.3 billion. The company’s income to sales ratio was 6.8%.

First-quarter sales were up 14% and income was up 12% year over year.

The adjusted EBIT climbed by 10.4%, year over year, to more than 1 billion euros. At 11.4%, the adjusted EBIT margin was therefore at the same level as the first three months of 2014.

Continental continued to generate strong cash flow as in the previous fiscal year.

“Free cash flow before acquisitions increased significantly, year-on-year, from 81 million euros to 318 million euros, or by 237 million euros. We are very confident that we can generate free cash flow before acquisitions of at least 1.5 billion euros for the year as a whole,” says Chief Financial Officer Wolfgang Schäfer.

The company is increasing its sales forecast for the current fiscal year from about 38.5 billion euros to more than 39 billion euros.

“The first quarter showed that we are growing faster than the markets. Positive effects of foreign exchange are adding to this. We expect this positive development to continue. Furthermore, we anticipate a tailwind of around 150 million euros for the year as a whole due to the ongoing stable price trend for rubber and the lower price of crude oil. We therefore expect to comfortably achieve an adjusted EBIT margin of more than 10.5% in the current year,” says Continental CEO Dr. Elmar Degenhart.

In 2014, the Continental Corp. generated sales of approximately 34.5 billion euros with its five divisions: Chassis & Safety, Interior, Powertrain, Tires, and ContiTech. Continental currently employs approximately 200,000 people in 53 countries.

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