Automobile

Autoliv swings to $164M operating profit in Q2, but cuts 2021 forecast

STOCKHOLM — Sweden’s Autoliv, the world’s largest producer of airbags and seatbelts, swung to a strong operating profit during the second quarter, but scaled back its full-year guidance as component shortages crimped car production.

Autoliv on Friday reported an operating profit of $164 million compared with a $234 million operating loss in the year-ago quarter when many automakers idled several weeks of production due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Total sales surged 93 percent to $2.0 billion. The company generated net income of $105 million compared with a $174 million loss a year ago.

Airbag revenue doubled to $1.3 billion while seatbelt business grew 81 percent to $712 million.

Autoliv is the first major global auto supplier to post its second-quarter results, with several more scheduled to report over the next few weeks.

While the demand recovery from the market plunge in the early months of the pandemic has been strong, a global shortage of semiconductors has hit the automotive sector hard, forcing many automakers and their suppliers to curtail production plans.

CEO Mikael Bratt said in a statement that lower-than-expected light vehicle production dinged the company’s sales and profitability in the quarter.

“The low visibility of these changes prevented us from using furloughs effectively to mitigate the effects of the lower customer demand,” he said.

“Although the situation improved towards the end of the quarter, we still expect supply disruptions to impact (light vehicle production) negatively in the third quarter with some improvement in the fourth quarter.”

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