Stockholm, Sweden, April 23, 2021
(NYSE: ALV and SSE: ALIV.sdb)
Q1 2021: Good progress in sales, profits, balance sheet
Financial highlights Q1 2021
$2,242m net sales
17.9% organic sales growth*
10.6% operating margin
10.6% adjusted operating margin*
$1.79 EPS - an increase of 108%
$1.79 adjusted EPS* - an increase of 103%
Full year 2021 indicationsKey business developments in the first quarter of 2021
Around 23% net sales growth
Around 20% organic sales growth
Around 10% adjusted operating margin
- Strong organic sales growth*, fueled by good performance in all regions. Sales increased organically by 17.9%, outperforming global LVP by more than 4pp (according to IHS Markit April 2021) despite adverse geographical mix effects as LVP grew strongly in lower CPV markets. All regions outperformed LVP by 6-23pp driven by launches and positive vehicle mix. Our order intake was in line with a year earlier.
- Strong improvement in operating income, driven by strong sales growth and continued cost control. Adjusted operating margin* improved by 3.2 pp to 10.6%. RoCE improved to 26.3%.
- Strong cash flow and strengthened balance sheet. Operating cash flow increased to $186m and free cash flow* grew to $93m. Net debt* declined substantially and our leverage ratio* of 1.4x is now inside our target range of 0.5x-1.5x.
*For non-U.S. GAAP measures see enclosed reconciliation tables. All change figures in this release compare to the same period of previous year except when stated otherwise.
(Dollars in millions, Q1 Q1 Change
except per share data) 2021 2020
Net sales $2,242 $1,846 21%
Operating income $237 $134 77%
Adjusted operating $237 $136 74%
Operating margin, % 10.6 7.3 3.3pp
Adjusted operating 10.6 7.4 3.2pp
Earnings per share, $1.79 $0.86 108%
Adjusted earnings per $1.79 $0.88 103%
share, diluted[1, 2,
Operating cash flow $186 $156 19%
Return on capital 26.3 14.5 11.8pp
Adjusted return on 26.3 14.6 11.7pp
capital employed, %[5)]
1) Excluding costs for
capacity alignment. 2)
Assuming dilution when
applicable and net of
treasury shares. 3)
awards with right to
equivalents are (under
the two-class method)
excluded from the EPS
income and income from
to average capital
employed. 5) Annualized
operating income and
income from equity
relative to average
capital employed. Non
-U.S. GAAP measure, see
Comments from Mikael Bratt, President & CEO
The COVID-19 pandemic is still affecting us in several ways and our first priority remains the health and safety of our employees. The industry is experiencing adverse business effects, with a supply-demand imbalance of certain input materials such as steel, chemicals and semiconductors. Temporary shortages of these materials limited the light vehicle production in the first quarter and we expect this situation to continue in the second and third quarter of this year.
In this tough environment, I am proud that the Autoliv organization delivered a strong first quarter performance where we saw high sales growth and a significant improvement in profitability compared to the first quarter in both 2020 and 2019. I am also pleased that we continued to generate a strong cash flow, that our net debt declined further, and that our leverage ratio is now back inside our target range. Our progress in the past few quarters strengthens our confidence in the journey towards our medium term targets and our opportunities to create shareholder value.
Our sales outperformed the global light vehicle production organically by more than 4pp in the quarter, despite adverse geographical mix effects as LVP mainly grew in lower CPV markets. Driven by new launches and positive vehicle mix our sales outperformed LVP significantly in all regions. Supported by new and recent vehicle launches such as Jeep Grand Cherokee L, Mitsubishi Outlander and Peugeot 308, we expect to outgrow LVP by mid-single digits in 2021.
We are still in an uncertain environment and we continue to face challenges in 2021. We expect adverse cost development from rising raw material prices throughout 2021. We remain focused on responding to sudden changes in light vehicle production with agility and flexibility. Despite increased industry wide supply chain challenges, we are pleased to be able to reiterate our full year guidance of around 20% organic sales growth and an adjusted operating margin of around 10% as we expect effects of the supply chain challenges to be balanced with positive sales mix and cost reduction actions.
We can see that our strategic initiatives gradually are yielding good results, and we expect 2021 to be a solid stepping stone towards our 2022-24 targets which include a significant growth above light vehicle production as well as a solid adjusted operating margin increase.
Inquiries: Investors and Analysts
Vice President Investor Relations
Tel +46 (0)8 5872 0671
Director Investor Relations
Tel +46 (0)8 5872 0614
Senior Vice President Communications
Tel +46 (0)70 612 6424
Autoliv, Inc. is obliged to make this information public pursuant to the EU Market Abuse Regulation. The information was submitted for publication, through the agency of the VP of Investor Relations set out above, at 12.00 CET on April 23, 2021.