After Mercedes, BMW has now also generated a record profit. The Munich-based automotive group achieved a profit before tax of 23.5 billion euros in the past fiscal year, 46 percent more than in the previous year.

Henning Peitsmeier

Business correspondent in Munich.

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Not only the favorable market situation due to high demand and scarce supply was helpful, but also a positive effect from the full inclusion of the Chinese joint venture BMW Brilliance Automotive in the consolidated balance sheet. The cash inflow from this full consolidation contributed 5 billion euros, BMW announced on Thursday. Profit after tax amounted to 18.6 billion euros, almost 50 percent higher than in the previous year – a record in the history of the company, which was founded in 1916.

The Quandt family and the other shareholders can now also rejoice. The dividend will be increased from EUR 5.80 to EUR 8.50 per ordinary share. After the Annual General Meeting on 11 May, the major shareholder's coffers will once again receive significantly more than EUR 1 billion. The heirs of the industrialist Herbert Quandt, his children Stefan Quandt and Susanne Klatten, together hold a good 47 percent of the share capital.

Mercedes is ahead

In comparison with the arch-rival from Stuttgart, however, the Munich-based company is lagging behind: Mercedes achieved an operating profit before interest and taxes of more than 20 billion euros, and the margin in the car business was 14.6 percent. BMW achieved an operating profit of 14 billion euros and a comparable margin of 8.6 percent. On the stock exchange, the share price of the Dax group fell by 4 percent after presentation of the business figures. In early trading, the BMW share had reached a price of 103.70 euros, a high since the end of 2015, but then slipped to around 97 euros. The results from the car business had missed the market expectations, judged dealers.

In the past fiscal year, the Group delivered 2.4 million cars of its BMW, Mini and Rolls-Royce brands, a decrease of 5 percent. Like many companies in the industry, BMW suffered from supply bottlenecks for semiconductors and other parts, and the lockdown in China led to lower sales figures. On the other hand, BMW benefited from higher sales prices for new cars and a weak euro. Sales increased by 28 percent to 142.6 billion euros.

As the Group also announced, CFO Nicolas Peter will retire after the Annual General Meeting. The 60-year-old Peter will be succeeded by Walter Mertl, 11 years his junior, who has been with the company since 1998 and has been Head of Group Controlling in recent years.