Volvo Group, the Swedish parent company to truck makers Volvo, Mack, and others, reported higher profits for the final quarter of last year and for all of 2017, as the year also saw record-high sales.
Volvo reported full-year 2017 net income soared to 21 billion kronor ($2.67 billion), from 13.2 billion kronor the year before, as sales jumped by 11% to 334 billion kronor, according to AFP.
Operating income also hit a record high, totaling 30.3 billion kronor, as the company’s Volvo Trucks, construction equipment, Volvo Penta and financial services segments all recorded their highest operating income ever.
“The North American truck market is picking up. Both Volvo and Mack have benefited from the increased demand. However, both are currently in the transition to new truck generations, which will affect production output and market shares in the short term,” said Martin Lundstedt, president and CEO.
He said new truck ranges introduced last year “have been well received by customers and dealers and order intake is good, which should translate into higher market shares when production of the new products is fully ramped up.”
For the fourth quarter, the Volvo Group reported sales totaled 91.7 billion kronor, up from nearly 82.6 billion a year earlier, as net income moved higher to 4.9 billion kronor from 4.8 billion kronor.
Lundstedt said overall, most truck markets are at high levels or experiencing upward trends.
“In Europe, good freight environment, low fuel prices and low interest rates provide support to customer profitability and their demand for our trucks. Our performance in Europe is strong, with Volvo Trucks’ market share on a historically high level of 16.8% for the full year and with Renault Trucks regaining market share, ending the year on 8.6%,” he said.
In North America, truck deliveries were up 28%. Volvo Trucks’ market share came in lower at 8.3% for the full year while Mack’s market share amounted to 7.3%. Volvo said. A big order intake increase of 84% in North America was driven by both Volvo and Mack, reflecting high activity in both construction and highway segments.
According to the company, in North America the demand for construction trucks continues to be good, while highway trucks have seen the biggest increase in demand. Volvo revised higher its total market forecast for retail sales on the continent to 280,000 heavy-duty trucks in 2018.