PSA posts 38% sales gain on Opel/Vauxhall addition
PARIS -- PSA Group's global vehicle deliveries increased 38 percent in the first half largely because of last year's acquisition of Opel/Vauxhall, the French automaker said on Thursday.
Sales rose to 2.18 million vehicles from 1.58 million a year earlier, PSA said.
Excluding Opel and its Vauxhall sister brand, which PSA bought from General Motors, sales rose a more modest 1.9 percent, with European growth partially offsetting the start of a Middle East sales slump as the maker of Peugeots and Citroens withdraws from Iran under threat of U.S. sanctions.
Middle East deliveries by the French brands fell 26 percent, the group said, reflecting the deconsolidation of Iran sales that started in May 1. Iran had accounted for more than 12 percent of group sales last year.
Under a succession of CEOs, PSA has sought for years to expand beyond Europe. But the Iran withdrawal and Opel deal have increased dependence on its home region, which claimed 77 percent global deliveries, up from 66 percent a year earlier.
"We're not global enough, but at the same time we're less exposed to the tariff barriers that can spring up here and there," PSA Europe chief Maxime Picat said on Thursday.
In the current climate of mounting trade tensions, he told reporters on a call that a high domestic sales concentration was "almost becoming a strength."
PSA sees no reason to modify its full-year outlook for a "stable" European market, Picat added.
The group is due to publish first-half financial results on July 24.