Visteon near break-even in Q1 despite pandemic hit

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Cockpit electronics supplier Visteon Corp. said Thursday it was able to post a near break-even first quarter with the COVID-19 pandemic looming for much of the period.

First-quarter earnings before interest, taxes and other adjustments dropped nearly 20 percent to $33 million. The company posted a net loss of $35 million compared with a $14 million gain for the same quarter last year.

Revenue fell 13 percent to $643 million.

“The decrease of $94 million is primarily due to the impacts of COVID-19,” Visteon said in its Thursday statement.

“Despite the challenging market environment due to COVID-19, Visteon sales outperformed the market, driven by launches of our core products,” Visteon CEO Sachin Lawande said in the statement. “The proactive cost-reduction actions we implemented, combined with our strong balance sheet and a significant cash position, will enable us to weather the crisis and emerge as a strong, more competitive company.”

Visteon launched 13 products in the first quarter and is expecting future launches to stay on track in 2020.

The company said it generated about $800 million in new business compared with $1.4 billion during the 2019 first quarter.

“I would say that $800 million of new business wins under the circumstances is a pretty decent performance.” Lawande said during a conference call with analysts.

The first-quarter results exceeded analysts expectations, and Visteon shares gained a fraction of a point to $59.37 during a down afternoon on Wall Street.

The company said Europe accounted for 37 percent of sales, the Americas 28 percent, China domestic 8 percent, China export 10 percent and other Asia-Pacific 17 percent.

The company said it has $825 million of available cash and no material debt maturities until 2024.

“In anticipation of further decline of production volume in the second quarter, we have proactively taken several measures to reduce the use of cash,” Lawande said during the call.

The company, based near Detroit, ranks No. 72 on the Automotive News list of the top 100 global suppliers with parts sales to automakers of $2.98 billion in its 2018 fiscal year.

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Saurabh Shukla

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