Ford Motor Co Earnings Call Insights: Asia Pacific & Latin American Regions and Loss Forecast

Ford Motor Co (NYSE:F) recently reported its second quarter earnings and discussed the following topics in its earnings conference call.

Asia Pacific & Latin American Regions

Colin Langan – UBS: Any color on Asia Pacific results, are there anything unique in the quarter that’s not sustainable, I know – I think at your Investor Day a couple of years ago you highlighted that Asia Pacific would be a meaningful contributor, it seems to be evidence of that, but is there anything that we should think about as it proceeds through the year?

Alan Mulally – President and CEO: Bob?

Robert L. Shanks – EVP and CFO: Colin, I think the only thing that I would just note in the result is there was an insurance recovery but it was relatively minor, I think it was around $30 million if you will. So, even if you put that to the side, $150 million profit or so, very, very strong for us. So, I think what you’re seen is the strong topline performance that we’ve seen for quite some time is now starting to show up, which we knew it would on the bottom line and as we look ahead at the balance of the year and at the very, very strong market reaction to all the new products, we’ve got more coming in the second half of the year. That’s what’s given us the confidence built on the momentum that we’ve established in the first quarter to raise our guidance on Asia Pacific. So, we feel very good about it and it’s a quality result through and through.

Colin Langan – UBS: Then on South America, you highlighted in your closing comments that Brazil has some uncertainty and there’s risk in Argentina and Venezuela, and it does seem like even within the quarter, foreign currency kept working against you. What gives you confidence to maintain your guidance for that region?

Robert L. Shanks – EVP and CFO: Well a couple of things. One is the first half was largely affected by the one-time devaluation of the bolivar. That was nearly $200 million and so that’s what’s pushing us into the loss cumulatively in the first half and we don’t expect the Venezuelan government to do anything on that front in the second half of the year. So, we think that was if you will a one-time or at least from the perspective of the calendar year. So, if you put that to the side, we would have been at low level, but we would have been at a run rate that was profitable in the half. We think that will continue into the second half. The strong market reaction that we’re seeing to the Ranger to the EcoSport will continue. It’s really giving us great performance in terms of market share growth. It’s giving us favorable mix, because the margins on these products are very healthy and we’ve got the all-new Focus coming in the second half of the year, which will build on that. So, putting aside some anomalous events that could occur, we think that probably will get us, at least a breakeven result. I should have mentioned also, we’ve introduced the refreshed Fiesta, which is also doing very, very well in the marketplace. So feel pretty good about where we are right now, and we think breakeven is the appropriate call at this point in time.

 

Loss Forecast

Patrick Archambault – Goldman Sachs: I just wanted to follow-up on that Latin America question actually it does seem in fact that the guidance implies, a sequential pretty big drop down right I think it was 150 this quarter and haven’t done the fine-tuning but it would be substantially below that to get to break even, on a quarterly basis and the second half is. Can you tell us a little bit more I mean obviously you’ve got a lot going on there in terms of product, but I guess maybe the production outlook is a little bit different given some of the uncertainty you are facing are you actually taking schedules down a little bit, little bit more color on that sequential path.

Alan Mulally – President and CEO: We think, if you just sit back for a minute Patrick and look at the region. Clearly you are looking at the headlines of Brazil and so there’s some uncertainty in terms of what that will all mean it clearly we’re seeing the growth — the GDP growth of Brazil soften and then trying well below its and what should be a much stronger run rate. In the case of Venezuela, Venezuela is Venezuela, and presents us unique challenges every day, every quarter when you look at Argentina it’s going through a one of its cyclical themes. And you that presents challenges as well. So I understand your point, we do think that we will be profitable obviously in the second half and we’ll work hard to make it better, but that’s just our best call at this time…

Patrick Archambault – Goldman Sachs: If I can ask one on Europe, you know maybe a two-part question there. Out of the $1.8 billion loss that you are forecasting this year, can you remind us of how much of that is really one-time related to accelerated depreciation or like, how much of that kind of comes out once you close once you do remove Dagenham and Southampton? And then, kind of the second part to that question is also, can you tell us a little bit more about the transition cost now that you’ve got permission to close Genk I guess you really start sort of the efforts to ramp up at Valencia and sort of how big of a nut is that in terms of a cost headwind? Thanks.

Robert L. Shanks – EVP and CFO: I’ll just give you an answer to the first and then maybe Mark could give you perspective on what we’re doing in terms of the footprint reconfiguration. We think that the impact issue on our restructuring cost would be $400 million to $500 million and you can see what we have here in the quarter, which included a one-time write-off of some assets related to largely to Genk. So, we think and that’s what we’ve been sense. So we think we’re on track to that and now moving ahead with the reconfiguration since in fact the plants in the U.K. closed this week and we’ve gotten past the information and consultation process in Belgium and now moving towards closure at the end of ’14. But Mark can tell you a bit more, give you some color in terms of how we’re moving forward on that.

Mark Fields – COO: Thanks, Bob, well as you know we’re going to, we’ve mentioned before that as we look at the transformation plan in Europe. That our structural cost over time will actually increase and that’s to support our growth strategy and as part of that will be the cost associated with moving products around as you mentioned down to Valencia as well as (indiscernible) to make sure that we can continue to produce those products in a more efficient footprint. So, we’ll report out on that as we go forward.

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