[YesAuto Industry] On May 21, in Munich, Germany, the parts company Webasto held a press conference. “Overall, 2018 is nothing special, but for Webasto it is a critical year for strategic decision-making.” Dr. Ingman, Chairman of the Webasto Group, said.
Why sum it up like this? From the financial report data, Webasto Group's sales in 2018 reached 3.4 billion euros. After achieving sales growth for four consecutive years, it was the first time that it was slightly lower than the previous year. Among them, sales of traditional sunroofs, panoramic sunroofs, and convertible roofs were 2.8 billion euros (82%), heating and cooling solutions were nearly 600 million euros (17%), and new businesses were nearly 20 million euros (1%). The business mainly comes from the charging solution business.
From a regional perspective, Asia contributed 42% of the group's sales in 2018, Europe contributed 41%, and the United States accounted for 17%. Sales in Asia surpassed Europe for the first time, mainly due to the continued growth of China's business: bucking the trend, it increased by 6% to more than 1.2 billion euros.
Looking back on 2018, Webasto’s primary goal is to enhance its technological leadership and obtain long-term strategic development. For example, R&D investment of 271 million euros, an increase of 16.5% over 2017, is mainly used for the development of power batteries, charging piles, and electric heaters, enhancing the capabilities of electronic components, and developing advanced engineering capabilities of various business units. In the long-term future direction, the Webasto Group has increased its investment in infrastructure and factory buildings, totaling 248 million euros, which is 40% higher than in 2017, mainly for the construction and expansion of core business and new business production facilities in various regions .
Entering 2019, Webasto has formed three major global business units. Including the roof system and components division: development and production of automotive sunroofs and convertible roofs; new energy and components division: development and production of power battery packs, charging solutions, and fuel and electric heating systems. As it serves a common target group: passenger car and commercial vehicle manufacturers, these two business units work closely together; customized retrofitting is the third business unit, and the target group is end consumers, dealers and special vehicle manufacturers , Provide corresponding solutions and services based on Webasto's product range.
The new organizational structure is mainly driven by two major factors: On the one hand, the customer group strengthens its focus on customers, and the customer group is responsible for all product businesses on a global scale. On the other hand, strengthen the focus on core business and new business products. Regarding the future prospects, “we are confident to enter the future of mobility through innovation, and the goal is to double sales by 2025.” Dr. Engelman said when summing up the plan.