Despite all the negative publicity and sentiment that the Chrysler group is more of a punch line than a legitimate automaker, it appears Marchionne and company have made good progress with the troubled automaker in a relatively short amount of time.
Chrysler posted a $197 million loss for the first quarter of ’10, over an operating profit of $143 million. Since it emerged from bankruptcy June 10, 2009, Chrysler has lost nearly $4 billion.
The automaker ended the quarter with $1.5 billion positive cashflow.
Despite being the only major automaker to see continuing declines in U.S. sales, Chrysler ended the first quarter with 9.1 percent market share, up from 8.1 percent in the fourth quarter of ’09. Marchionne said Chrysler still expects to end 2010 with 1.6 million vehicle sales in the U.S., and essentially break-even financials. Negative cashflow will be under $1 billion for the year, he said.
Chrysler will hold a conference call on its earnings on May 10 in the “spirit of increasing the transparency of operations,” which Marchionne acknowledged were lacking under the company’s previous management.