For the Ford Motor Company, this past year was all about exceeding sales expectations. The company set several sales records in 2015, including a pre-tax profit of $10.8 billion, a $3.5 billion increase over the previous year and the highest figure in the company’s 112-year history. In addition, Ford’s 2015 net income of $7.4 billion quintupled the mark set in 2015.
The automaker’s 2015 sales were aided in large measure by the automaker’s fourth quarter profits of $1.9 billion, which was yet another record Ford set last year. Ford’s fourth quarter turnaround is particularly remarkable, given that the company reported a $2.5 billion net income loss in 2015. Moreover, the company generated $149.6 billion in revenue, a 3.8 increase over the previous record, as well as set the highest operating margins since the 1990s.
Ford president and CEO Mark Fields (pictured) affirmed his company’s commitment to exceed the high water mark it set for itself in 2015.
“We promised a breakthrough year in 2015, and we delivered,” Fields said in a Ford statement. “In 2016, we will continue to build on our strengths and accelerate our pace of progress even further, while transforming Ford into both an auto and a mobility company and creating value for all of our stakeholders.”
In North America alone, Ford set a fourth-quarter record of $2 billion in profits. Ford also set record profits in the Asia-Pacific region, where it earned $765 million in 2015, while improving its profit margins in Europe.
Ford pickup and SUV sales played a determining factor in boosting Ford profits, thanks in large part to the high profit margins associated with both model types. Correspondingly, when Ford experienced a sales lull in the first half of 2015 it was because of the low availability of the popular F-150 model. As the top-selling vehicle line in the U.S., regardless of segment, the F-Series helped accelerate Ford’s sales growth in the second half of the year.
As Ford earns record profits, some of those financial benefits will trickle down to the rank and file. Ford’s 53,000 union workers are set to receive profit-sharing bonuses averaging $9,300 each, making it the largest ever bonus of its type.
One optimistic omen for Ford’s long-term success is that the company doesn’t expect sales to tail off despite hitting record highs. In fact, Ford CFO Bob Shanks recently told reporters that vehicle sales should stay steady “through this year and probably into 2018.” Shanks cited low gas prices as one of the key factors that will continue to make full-size pickups popular among consumers.
Check out Ford’s full-year and fourth-quarter financial results for a full breakdown of Ford’s 2015 sales.
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