Fleet Management

Navistar Returns to Profitability, Expects Strong 2018

December 19, 2017

By Evan Lockridge

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Navistar International Corp. reported on Tuesday that it returned to profitability as it wrapped up its 2017 fiscal year and final quarter.

The truck and engine manufacturer reported fourth quarter 2017 net income of $135 million, or $1.36 per share, compared to a fourth quarter 2016 net loss of $34 million, or 42 cents per share. The latest per share performance exceeded a consensus estimate from analysts.

The Illinois-based company also announced it had net income of $30 million, or 32 cents per share, for fiscal year 2017, versus a net loss of $97 million, or $1.19 per share, for fiscal year 2016.

Revenue in the fourth quarter increased 26% to $2.6 billion, compared to a year earlier. The revenue increase was largely driven by a 31% increase in the company's Class 6-8 truck and bus volumes in the United States and Canada. Revenue for fiscal year 2017 was up 6% to $8.6 billion, compared to $8.1 billion in fiscal year 2016.

"Our 2017 was a breakthrough year, as we returned to profitability and grew our market share 1.5 points," said Troy A. Clarke, chairman, president and CEO. "These results were driven by stronger sales, our steady investment in the industry's newest product lineup, early results from our strategic alliance with Volkswagen Truck & Bus and our ongoing focus on cost."

The company’s truck segment recorded a fourth quarter profit of $112 million compared with a year-ago fourth quarter loss of $61 million. The year-over-year change was primarily due to the impact of higher volume in the company's core markets and a decrease in used truck losses.

For the 2017 fiscal year, the truck segment recorded a loss of $6 million, compared with a fiscal year 2016 loss of $189 million.

The improvement was primarily driven by the impact of higher volumes in the company's core markets of the U.S. and Canada as well as Mexico and a decrease in used truck losses, partially offset by market pressures and charges related to older engine product litigation, according to Navistar.

The parts segment recorded a profit of $157 million, down slightly from year-ago fourth quarter, primarily due by the gradual runoff of the Blue Diamond Parts business, partially offset by double digit revenue growth from its Fleetrite and the remanufactured parts businesses.

For the 2017 fiscal year, the parts segment recorded its second-largest profit ever at $616 million, compared to a fiscal year 2016 profit of $640 million. The 4% decrease was primarily driven by margin declines in Blue Diamond Parts, partially offset by a slight year-over-year increase in North America Core market volumes.

The global operations segment recorded a fourth quarter profit of $1 million, compared to a year-ago fourth quarter loss of $2 million. The year-over-year change was driven by higher volumes due to improvements in the Brazilian economy, offset by restructuring charges.

For the 2017 fiscal year, the global operations segment recorded a loss of $7 million compared to a year-ago fiscal year loss of $21 million. The Global Operations segment results improvement was primarily due to lower manufacturing and general overhead expenses as a result of the company's cost reduction efforts and a one-time benefit of $9 million recognized as an adjustment to pre-existing warranties, partially offset by restructuring charges.

The financial services segment recorded a fourth quarter profit of $26 million, compared with fourth quarter 2016 profit of $23 million. The year-over-year change was primarily driven by higher receivable balances and a lower provision for losses in the company's Mexico portfolio.

For the 2017 fiscal year, the financial services segment recorded a profit of $77 million, compared to a year-ago fiscal year profit of $100 million. The decrease is primarily driven by the paydown of certain intercompany loan receivables and lower interest margin resulting from an increase in the company's average borrowing rate.

Navistar also provided the following 2018 fiscal year guidance:

  • Retail deliveries of Class 6-8 trucks and buses in the United States and Canada are forecast to be in the range of 345,000 to 375,000 units.
  • Revenues are expected to be between $9 billion and $9.5 billion
  • Adjusted EBITDA is expected to be between $675 million and $725 million
  • Year-end manufacturing cash is expected to be about $1 billion

"We think 2018 is shaping up to be one of the strongest industry years this decade, and we're positioned to make it a breakout year for Navistar," Clarke said.

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