Sixt's Sixth-Month Results Show Successful U-Turn


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Sixt's Sixth-Month Results Show Successful U-Turn

Germany's largest car rental provider, Sixt, cited growth in other European markets and a reduced fleet last week as reasons behind its return to profit in the first half of 2010. The group made a pre-tax profit of €34.8 million, compared with a loss of €25.5 million in the first six months of 2009.
Rental revenue was up 2.6 percent, with all the growth coming in the second quarter, which was up 5.5 percent. The company reported that much of the improvement was in European countries outside its home market. Sixt has subsidiaries in the United Kingdom, France, Spain, Benelux, Austria and Switzerland, giving it coverage in more than 70 percent of the total European marketplace. It also has franchisees in about 90 countries. In total, it has 1,843 locations worldwide, of which 508 are in Germany.
Sixt turned in increased rental revenue while shrinking its fleet by 7 percent from 67,700 vehicles to 62,800. The group also succeeded in lowering its costs.
Sixt said it expects to return a substantial improvement in profits for full-year 2010, but remains cautious in its outlook. "Of course, Sixt does not yet enjoy the same profitability it had before the recession and the financial crisis, but we are well on our way back to that level," said Erich Sixt, chairman of the managing board. "Our principles of setting our priority on increasing profitability over growing our volume and of pursuing a cautious fleet policy are paying off better and better. I am fundamentally confident about the second half as well. However, excessive optimism would be out of place, given that the economic environment in Europe remains fragile."

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