Scania profits higher than expected

Bus and truck maker Scania has reported profits of 2.1 billion kronor for the first quarter, up from 1.7 billion in the same period last year.

Analysts had on average predicted profits of 1.8 billion kronor, according to a survey by Reuters. Turnover rose to 17.2 billion kronor from 13.9 billion, against an expected turnover of 15.6 billion.

Orders, measured in the number of vehicles, rose by 23 percent to 19,015. Deliveries rose by 16 percent to 15,377. Strong demand in Europe is at the root of the healthy order-book, said CEO Leif Östling. Some customers had brought forward orders because of new European environmental regulations coming into force in the autumn.

“This could lead to a lower rate of orders in Europe in the second half of 2006, which would then have an effect on deliveries towards the end of the year and the beginning of 2007,” Östling wrote in the report.

TT/The Local


Volkswagen gets shares to take over Scania

Volkswagen, Europe's biggest carmaker, was set to take full control of Swedish truck manufacturer Scania on Tuesday after a small but crucial shareholder agreed to sell its shares.

Volkswagen gets shares to take over Scania
Swedish pension fund Alecta previously held out for a higher share price but agreed to sell its 2.04-percent stake in Scania, paving the way for Volkswagen to acquire full control the company.
On April 30, the German car giant said it lacked less than two percent more shares to reach its 90 percent goal, and thereby force the sale of the remaining shares.
"After new discussions with Volkswagen we have concluded that there will be no increase in their offer," Alecta said in a statement, referring to Volkswagen's refusal to pay more than 200 kronor ($30.5) per share.
In February, Volkswagen offered €6.7 billion ($9.3 billion) to acquire the nearly 40 percent of Scania it did not already own and to strengthen its position against its German competitors Daimler and the Swedish truck maker Volvo.
Scania's board of directors recommended shareholders not to part with shares at the price offered.
The offer expired on April 25th. However, confident that shareholders could be won over, Volkswagen extended its offer to May 16.
The German auto giant already owns truck and bus-maker MAN and bought into Scania in 2000.
It had previously said that it could make annual savings of €650 million through economies of scale by taking full control of the Swedish company.
The takeover is just the latest to hit Sweden's beleaguered vehicle manufacturing sector which has seen Chinese takeovers of the once iconic car brands Saab and Volvo.
Volvo Trucks announced more than 4,000 job cuts over the last six months and a voluntary redundancy scheme aimed to cut costs and increase profitability.