you are here: HomeNewsBusiness

Auto supplier Bosch sees global car production down 20% in 2020

To cut costs, Bosch has pushed out timeframes for making investments, reduced working hours for half of its staff in Germany and imposed salary reductions.

April 29, 2020 / 04:55 PM IST

German auto supplier and technology company Robert Bosch on Wednesday said it expected automotive production to fall by at least 20 percent this year, as the coronavirus pandemic slams the brakes on factory production lines and saps demand.

"We are bracing ourselves for a global recession that will also have a considerable impact on our own performance in 2020," Bosch Chief Financial Officer Stefan Asenkerschbaumer said in a statement.

"Given the many imponderables, we feel unable to make a reasonable forecast for the Bosch Group for the year as a whole. It will take a supreme effort to achieve at least a balanced result."

To cut costs, Bosch has pushed out timeframes for making investments, reduced working hours for half of its staff in Germany and imposed salary reductions. Managers and executives are taking a 20 percent pay cut in April and May.

"Even if production has been ramped up again in China, and European industry is preparing for a ramp-up of its own, we have to steel ourselves for a severe global recession over 2020 as a whole," the company said.

Close

COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

View more
How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

View more
Show

In January, before the coronacrisis had become a global pandemic, Bosch warned that global car production may have already reached its peak and released preliminary full-year earnings which showed weaker demand in Asia.

Bosch sales remained almost flat at 77.7 billion euros ($84.26 bln) last year, but earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) fell 38 percent to 3.3 billion euros, down from 5.4 billion euros a year earlier, with the EBIT margin dropping to 4.2 percent from 7 percent in 2018, it said.

In the medium term, Bosch plans to return to a roughly 7 percent margin from operations.

The EBIT margin in its mobility services division, which includes automotive parts, fell to 1.9 percent last year as the Stuttgart-based supplier was forced to invest in the shift from combustion-engined to electric cars and to restructure its business.

Research and development expenditure amounted to 6.1 billion euros, or 7.8 percent of sales, Bosch said.

Group sales have continued to show weakness, dropping by 7.3 percent in the first quarter with the Mobility services segment showing a 7.7 percent decline.

Separately, Bosch said it will be capable of producing half a million facemasks a day after using its special purpose machinery unit to build a production line for facemasks.

Follow our full coverage of the coronavirus pandemic here.
Reuters
first published: Apr 29, 2020 04:52 pm

stay updated

Get Daily News on your Browser
Sections