The global decline in automobile production accelerated in the fourth quarter of 2008.
0utput is expected to drop by over 20% worldwide, nearly 30% in Western Europe, and 38% in France.
Valeo anticipates no improvement in production levels compared with the fourth quarter of 2008. On this account, Valeo will let go around 5,000 employees worldwide, including around 1,600 in France and 1,800 in other European countries. At the end of November, Valeo employed 54,000 people in 27 countries, including 15,400 in France. At the same time, Valeo are continuing and reinforcing their cost-reduction plans and rigourous cash management.
The sharp drop in global automobile production is expected to cost Valeo a sales drop of about 25% in the fourth quarter, and a negative operating margin for the same period. Valeo say they have sufficient financial resources and no significant debts due before January 2011, and in the short run they forecast an operating margin for 2008 of around 2.6%.
Valeo Group includes 121 production plants and 61 R&D centres.