Porsche CEO downplays IPO, expects record sales

October 19, 2018 07:54 CET

FRANKFURT — Porsche does not need a stock market listing to fund growth, CEO Oliver Blume said, adding he is confident the maker of the iconic 911 sports car can repeat last year’s record sales in 2018.

Earlier this week, Automotive News Europe reported comments from Porsche Chief Financial Officer Lutz Meschke where he said the automaker could be worth a fortune if listed with Volkswagen Group’s ultraluxury brands.

“We would likely be viewed as a luxury goods manufacturer and the multiples are completely different compared with a normal premium brand,” Meschke told reporters at Porsche’s development center last Friday. “A valuation of 60 billion to 70 billion euros certainly doesn’t sound like a stretch.”

In a statement from Porsche on Monday, the company clarified that Meschke was explaining the positive effects that such a market float might have during the current transformation of the industry. The company said it was “not currently pursuing” any full or partial listing.

Record pace

Porsche sold 196,562 vehicles during the first nine months of the year, with Europe showing a 9 percent increase and China, the world’s largest car market, growing by 4 percent.

“In the light of these good numbers we expect that we can reach last year’s record again,” Blume said in e-mailed comments on Thursday.

The Volkswagen Group subsidiary delivered 246,375 vehicles in 2017.

Blume reiterated there are no plans to list Porsche on the stock market. To free up resources for new investments in electric cars for example, Porsche is opting for partnerships and leaner production and development processes.

“We develop many things digitally. The Panamera Sport Turismo was launched without building physical prototype vehicles,” Blume said.

Porsche is also pooling resources with its sister brand Audi to develop a premium electric car platform. The cooperation is still going strong, despite the stepping down of Audi’s technical development chief Peter Mertens for health reasons last month.

“We are working with Audi more intensively than ever, the resignation of Mr. Mertens has not changed this,” Blume said.

Porsche can cut its development costs by 30 percent by pooling resources with Audi on vehicle architectures, modules and components, he said.

“A good example of such synergies is our cooperation in the area of battery cells for our electric cars. Both of us, Porsche and Audi, source them from LG Chem, which has built up a plant for this in Poland.”

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