Belron Experienced Strong Sales Growth, Despite a Slow Start for Safelite

Belron’s revenue increased by 5.5 percent in comparison to 2016, despite a mild winter in the United States, which negatively impacted Safelite’s sales in the first quarter, according to D’Ieteren’s 2017 financial report.

D’Ieteren, a Belgium-based company, owns Belron, which in turn owns Safelite AutoGlass in the U.S.

The company reported consolidated sales of $4252.29 million USD (EUR 3486.2 million) in 2017, representing a 5.5-percent increase, including a 6-percent organic increase and 1.8-percent growth from acquisitions. However, Belron’s earnings were negatively impacted by 2.3 percent because of the weaker U.S. dollar and British pound, the report states.

D’Ieteren’s consolidated sales before tax amounted to $302.4 million (EUR 247.9 million), an increase of 2.6 percent year-over year. Of that $302.4 million, Belron reached $164 million (EUR 134.5 million), representing a 9.4 percent decrease compared to 2016. The company attributes this decrease to higher charges associated with its long-term management incentive plan, added costs related to the service extension strategy and foreign exchange headwinds.

Sales outside of Europe increased by 3.4 percent, including a growth in organic sales of 6.3 percent and 0.2-percent growth from acquisitions. Sales were impacted negatively by 3.1 percent due to weaker currency translations, the report notes.

The report says Safelite had a slow start because of mild winters experienced in the Northeast, yet the company still showed strong growth attributed to market share gains.

“The small drop in U.S. profitability resulted from the weaker U.S. dollar and the market decline due to mild winter conditions in the Northeast in Q1 2017,” report states.

The weaker U.S. dollar had a negative impact of about $6 million USD (EUR 5 million) on the adjusted operating result.

European sales increased by 7.6 percent, consisting of a 5.2-percent organic increase and 3.7-percent increase from acquisitions. Organic sales grew due to market share gains and higher revenues from complementary products in France, Germany and the U.K. Growth from acquisitions relates to the inclusion of CARe Carrosserie in Belgium. Sales were offset by 1.3 percent due to the weaker British pound.


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