May 9th, 2012
11:30 AM GMT
Toyota says profits for the last year stalled due to a strong yen and the effects of the devastating earthquake and tsunami on its supply chain.
In a statement Wednesday, the Japanese automaker revealed net profit for the year ending March 31 had dropped by 30.5% to 283.56 billion yen ($3.56 billion).
The company also ceded its number one spot in the global carmakers' league last year, as the twin disasters in Japan on March 11 followed by flooding in Thailand a few months later curtailed supplies of auto parts and reduced its output by about 400,000 vehicles, the Financial Times reported.
But Toyota predicted a sharp rebound in fortunes for 2013 off the back of strong car and truck sales, with an expected net income of 760 billion yen ($9.5 billion).
“Certainly the last fiscal year was extremely challenging due to the natural disasters in Japan and Thailand, plus the unprecedented strength of the yen,” said Toyota President Akio Toyoda.
“But, thanks to the concerted efforts of our employees, suppliers, and dealers, we were able to recover production and sales faster than anticipated and achieved a strong result.
“I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude for their efforts to improve our business structure. Thanks to their hard work, we were able to remain profitable, even in such a challenging environment. And special thanks, of course, go to our customers, who continue to demonstrate their loyalty in choosing Toyota and Lexus vehicles.”
Last month fellow Japanese automaker, Honda, reported a 61% jump in its net profit as it continued its own recovery from last year's national crisis. It also expects record global sales of 4.3 million vehicles for this fiscal year.
Analysts believe Nissan will join its local rivals in forecasting a positive profit outlook when it releases first quarter results and its projection for the year on May 11.
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