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Aston Martin returns to profit in 2017


LONDON: Aston Martin reported its first half-yearly profit in almost a decade on Friday as sales of the new DB11 model put the luxury British carmaker on the road to recovery.

The 104-year-old firm posted a record pre-tax profit of 21.1 million pounds in the first six months of the year, its first since 2008, compared with a £82.3 million loss last year.

Aston, famed for making the sports car driven by fictional secret agent James Bond, has benefited from surging sales with volumes rising 67 per cent to 2,439 vehicles, spurred on by the new DB11 model.

“It’s the big uptick in volume... plus we’re getting much higher specifications on these cars,” Chief Financial Officer Mark Wilson said.

The carmaker expects full-year volumes to rise by around a third to roughly 5,000 cars and Wilson said it is “increasingly possible” that the firm will post a full-year pre-tax profit this year, which would be its first since 2010.

Demand was at a low last year as the firm was still selling its range of older models ahead of the release of several new cars designed to boost volumes and its appeal.

The automaker, owned mainly by Kuwaiti and Italian investors, is implementing a turnaround plan which could propel it towards a stock market flotation by the end of the decade.

Following media speculation earlier this year, Chief Executive Andy Palmer said a number of options were open to shareholders but declined to provide a timeframe for any decision.

“They could sell to other private equity, they could sell to other luxury groups, they could sell to other OEMs (carmakers).They have a whole raft of possibilities, of which one is an IPO,” he said. — Reuters

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