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Kuwait-backed Aston Martin sees losses triple on recall, sales slump
October 17, 2015, 3:01 pm
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British luxury carmaker Aston Martin, which has Investment Dar of Kuwait as a 24 percent shareholder, saw its losses almost triple in 2014, the fourth consecutive year it has failed to post a profit, following a recall of thousands of its cars and declining sales in China.

The brand, famous for making the DB5 sports car driven by fictional secret agent James Bond, posted a loss of 71.8 million pounds ($110.9 million) last year, compared with a loss of 25.4 million in 2013.

Chief Executive Andy Palmer told Reuters earlier this week the firm would not return to profitability until at least 2017 as it pumps money into an expansion that includes plans to build its first crossover sport-utility vehicle. Sales of the brand's elite range of luxury sports cars fell from 4,200 in 2013 to 3,661 in 2014, Palmer said. It had to recall most of its cars built between late 2007 and the start of last year due to the use of a counterfeit plastic material.

The carmaker saw revenues fall 10 percent in the period which it blamed on a drop in sales, especially in China, according to a filing posted on Britain's Companies House financial register. It said earlier this week it could axe nearly 15 percent of its workforce as it tries to turn around the loss-making business.

Following Palmer's appointment late last year, Aston raised 200 million pounds from the its major shareholders, mainly Kuwaiti and Italian private equity firms, with plans to build around 15,000 cars by the turn of the decade.

Aston, which is 5 percent owner by Germany's Daimler , is examining where to locate a new plant for its DBX crossover models, with a decision expected by the end of the year.

Source: Arabian Business

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