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  • Continental AG's Management Discusses Q1 2013 Results - Earnings Call Transcript  [View article]
    Saw that Schaeffler might be planning on an IPO next year - could be good for both Conti and Schaeffler. Anybody out there heard anything more than just rumors ?
    May 7, 2013. 04:47 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Continental AG's Management Discusses Q1 2013 Results - Earnings Call Transcript  [View article]
    Continental is definately one to watch as I feel confident that the only way is up. Following Schaeffler, ( still there largest shareholder with 49.9% ), sale of around 10 % of their shares last year, both companies seem to be on the rise, with debt reduction being at the fore. I see that Schaeffler are considering an IPO for next year which would significantly reduce their debt. They are currently working together on around 30 different projects, but most exciting is the collaboration between Schaeffler, Conti, Ford, RWTH Aachen and the University of Applied Sciences, Regensburg called the Multimotor Electric Vehicle with Highest Room and Energy Efficiency and known as MEHREN to develop two new driveable vehicles by 2015.

    Onwards and upwards for Continental I say.
    May 4, 2013. 04:39 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Ford A Buy After The Recent Dip?  [View article]
    I agree DNA, but I was talking overall. It's a well known fact that profits from the US and the BRIC countries will more than make up for any deficits within the EU. My point is that the companies I have mentioned are still maintaining a steady base within the EU and maintaining confidence here. This is the key to not just survival but profitability once the EU gets back on it's feet and I have no doubt that it will.
    Apr 11, 2013. 05:05 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Ford A Buy After The Recent Dip?  [View article]
    Indeed Ford may drive on without the EU and self-amputation is an excellent way to describe the way Ford is haphazardly closing some of it's European factories. Unfortunately however, there is no contingency for a Ford EU comeback and as there is already light at the end of a very long tunnel, it will become increasingly difficult for them to gain confidence here. I mentioned Continental and Schaeffler in my previous comment but let's not also forget BMW and Mercedes who are also doing well. These are the sort of companies that will come out of recession smelling of roses globally because confidence in them will remain in tact.
    Apr 9, 2013. 10:51 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Ford A Buy After The Recent Dip?  [View article]
    Ford may be back on track elsewhere but certainly not here in Europe where all they do is moan about how tough times are for them. Then you look at companies like Continental AG, profits remaining steady and Schaeffler, up 4%, both have been able to pay excellent bonuses to their employees. Ok, both have been investing wisely in the BRIC countries plus Hungary and Romania with Russia looking particularly interesting, but they are also managing to maintain a positive presence within other EU countries. I know that Schaeffler is still a privately owned company, so no shares available - I for one would buy like a shot if they ever did go public, but Continental is a great time to buy as they have just seen a slight dip. I personally would not buy Ford, mainly because I feel that they need Europe as well as the US.
    Apr 9, 2013. 06:12 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Will Ford's Debt Make It An Attractive Auto Sector Investment?  [View article]
    Ford has now learnt that it cannot get complacent. The consumer has so many options and there are so many deals out there that profits are sure to take a knock. Reducing debt of course is important, but with the current low interest rates, wisely used debt is very productive. There are many examples of this but I will take the German Schaeffler Company as they have just announced their Q3 results with a 1% drop - not a big deal compared to other industries. However they continue investing in R&D and expansion plans, specifically in Hungary and India. Their revenue increased 4.2 percent to around €8.4 billion during the first 9 months. Ford is in good hands but they need to continue to invest in R&D and stop winging about Toyota and the like.
    Nov 23, 2012. 07:32 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • "It's a man's world," screamed James Brown, but not as much as it used to be in the aerospace and defense industry. By January, Marillyn Hewson will be CEO of Lockheed Martin (LMT) and Phebe Novakovic the head of General Dynamics (GD), joining BAE's Linda Hudson as leaders of major companies in the sector in the U.S. However, the trend of female engineers and scientists entering the industry has stalled or even reversed.  [View news story]
    Women are excellent in top jobs - calm, intelligent, fair and tough, of this there is no doubt. However equality in the workplace has still not arrived and we need more women in male dominated industries to make this happen. The German Schaeffler Group are currently in the process of expanding their factory in Hungary and two of the top jobs have gone to women, namely Mathe Agnes as Purchasing Manager and Rita Kenyeres as Personnel Manager, but of course it should not be forgotten that Schaeffler is headed by the incredible Maria-Elisabeth Schaeffler. They also held a 2 day open doors at their factory in the UK for school children aged between 14 and 16 years, of which there was a good mix of girls and boys, thus giving girls the opportunity to realize first hand the potential for them within the autoparts industry. Also in the UK the Top Business Analyst Award 2011 went to a woman as did the runner's up award. So watch out guys in top jobs - do not get complacent - we want your job !!
    Nov 21, 2012. 12:04 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 4 Resilient Auto Stocks To Consider Now  [View article]
    I wonder what shenanigans are going on between Ford and the EU powers that be. I say this because of the fact that the EU has lent 80 million Euros to Ford, an American business, at a low rate of interest to improve a plant in non- EU Turkey at the same time as Ford decides to close the plant in Southampton. They then transfer production that was at Southampton to the same factory in Turkey. Business I business I suppose !!! Another company to watch out for is the German Continental AG who operate globally. Their largest single shareholder Schaeffler recently sold off around 10% of their shares in Continental so there should still be some available and I predict a definate money earner.
    Nov 5, 2012. 11:32 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Automakers Raise The Stakes Again In The Micro-Hybrid Battery Battle  [View article]
    The battle of the batteries is on !!! My money's on Continental AG being the first to come up with a solution. With their strengths in innovation and systems expertise amongst other things, they will be hard to match.
    Oct 17, 2012. 04:24 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • It's Time To Take A Fresh Look At China's Auto Industry  [View article]
    One has to accept that whilst the EU struggles along, the companies that are coming through smiling are the one's that operate globally. Amongst those it is acknowledged that China along with Eastern Europe and Brazil are countries to be watched very closely. Two companies not mentioned above that are doing very well in all these areas are Continental AG and The Schaeffler Group from Germany. Continental at the end of August this year signed an agreement with the Chinese city of Wuhu to build a € 33 million euro plant to produce infotainment components whilst also announcing plans for a 10,000-square-meter expansion of a plant in the Jiading industrial zone of Shanghai. Schaeffler made a substantial expenditure, aound €465 million I believe, to expand capacity production facilities in not just China but India and Thailand as well. Definately an area for the Automotive parts industry.
    Oct 8, 2012. 07:33 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Moody's places Harman's (HAR) ratings on review for possible upgrade, saying the company maintains a strong competitive position in the infotainment segment of the automotive parts supplier industry and has demonstrated revenue growth that has outperformed the recovery in global automotive industry volume over recent years.  [View news story]
    Another one to watch in the infotainment sector is the German supplier Continental AG. They have recently signed an agreement with the Chinese city of Wuhu to build a € 33 million plant to produce infotainment components. This will be wholly owned by Continental's Interiors division. Together with Schaeffler they look to have a growing presence in the Asian market.
    Sep 22, 2012. 04:23 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The use of e-cigarettes doesn't increase the risk of heart disease, according to a research study. Though sales in the sub-sector haven't met many of the rosy forecasts put out by tobacco companies, UBS still sees over $500M in revenue getting churned up this year. Players: LO, PM  [View news story]
    Great so now there is a ' more healthy ' way to get your fix. Excellent - but does it carry the same kudos of puffing away on a real cigarette. Can kids show off to their friends ? Can they say - hey - have one of mine ?

    I sincerely hope this works as addiction is a terrible thing. Recent surveys show that children start smoking as young as 8 years old. Surely it's time for some serious education for children rather than giving them something else to ' puff ' on. But where would be the profits in that. I do like the idea of a vegetable chew enhanced with vitamins though - just without the nicotine. Great for those on a diet !!!
    Aug 28, 2012. 04:51 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • J.C. Penney (JCP +0.8%) banks on a late back-to-school season surge as it retools fashion lines and stays goods-light waiting for a second wave of buying. If the retailer's read is spot-on it may avoid the fate of Abercrombie & Fitch which played its hand too quick with fall and winter lines - putting it in a forecasting mode instead of a reactionary one.  [View news story]
    I'm sure that people buy as much as possible during the sales in the USA. They certainly do in the UK. Since there doesn't seem to be a strict code of dress anymore - parents are going to buy the cheapest. I just love it in France where all the kiddies still where school uniform.
    Aug 28, 2012. 04:38 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Don't count out Avis Budget (CAR +4.9%) following the long-awaited merger between Dollar Thrifty and Hertz, extolls MKM Partners. The take: The company should benefit from industry consolidation.  [View news story]
    Avis is an extremely well known name in Europe. But in the end, as always, it's going to come down to price. Let's face it, the customer really doesn't care who they rent the car from so long as they get a good deal.
    Aug 28, 2012. 04:33 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Yahoo (YHOO) has hired Kathy Savitt, formerly the CEO of photo-sharing site Lockerz, to be its new chief marketing officer. Savitt replaces Mollie Spilman, who was appointed CMO by the departed Ross Levinsohn in May. (PR[View news story]
    Indeed Yahoo needs to increase it's share of the market. With the constant changing of staff - one out another in. Marissa Meyer appears to be gathering a strong supportive team around her. It would seem that we all have to wait to see where this is going to go.
    Aug 28, 2012. 04:27 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment