South Korea’s fourth largest automaker Ssangyong Motors Co. closed the final quarter ended December last year in the red on sluggish sales in overseas markets and increased costs due to stronger competition.
Ssangyong Motors said in a regulatory filing on Tuesday that its operating loss during the October to December period last year amounted to 25.7 billion won ($23.5 million) on sales of 902.2 billion won, down 9.8 percent from a year ago. Net loss reached 30.2 billion won over the same period.
For full 2017, the bottom line swung to a loss of 65.3 billion won, while revenue retreated 3.7 percent to 3.5 trillion won from a year ago. Net loss totaled 65.8 billion won.
Shares of Ssangyong Motors Wednesday ended 0.7 percent down at 5,650 won from the previous session.
The company attributed its losses to sluggish overseas sales last year. Domestic sales rose 3 percent on year on popularity of its sport utility vehicle model Tivoli and G4 Rexton lineups, but overseas sales plummeted 29.2 percent, dragging down the total sales by 7.8 percent from a year ago. Higher depreciation expenses, increased operating costs and stronger won also lowered profitability.
“Losses widened due to aggressive marketing activities and the currency headwind, but new Rexton Sports model would help improve profitability,” said an official at Ssangyong Motors.
Meanwhile, Ssangyong Motors decided to introduce a two-shift cycle with no overnight work on an agreement with employee representatives starting from April 2 to improve the quality of lives of workers and boost productivity with reduced working hours.
By Kim Jung-hwan and Lee Ha-yeon
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business Newspaper & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]