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Old 05-12-2003, 07:10   #1 (permalink)
Mr. Embargo
 
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Mazda annual operating profit rises 77.4%

Source: just-auto.com editorial team

Mazda Motor on Monday that its annual operating profit jumped 77.4% thanks to hefty cost cuts and healthy European sales, and forecast its highest income in a decade for this business year, Reuters reported.

Reporting audited results after announcing preliminary figures last month, Mazda said group operating profit for the year ended March 31 came to 50.66 billion yen ($US432.7 million) while sales grew 12.9% to 2.36 trillion yen, Reuters said.

For 2003/04, Mazda, one-third owned by Ford, forecast operating profit to grow by another 28.3% to a record 65 billion yen, powered by new models like the Mazda 6/Atenza sedan, the news agency added.

Mazda, in the midst of a five-year turnaround plan, is counting on models like the award-winning 6 and 2/Demio subcompact to boost global sales and put the company on a firm recovery track and is also expected to benefit this year from stronger sales in Europe and a weaker yen against the euro, Reuters said.

But the news agency noted that the company is faring worse in the United States, where sales of the 6 have been sluggish. Some analysts noted that the new launches have caused a sharp drop in sales of older models, leading to a surge in inventories and posing a risk to its bottom line.
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