SEOUL — Hyundai posted its biggest quarterly net profit gain in over seven years, as a weaker local currency helped lift U.S. income, while new models boosted domestic sales.
Solid performance at home and in the United States helped offset a sales slump in China, where a slowing economy, trade war with the United States and a lack of competitive models prompted the automaker to suspend production at its oldest factory earlier this year.
April-June net profit rose 31 percent to 919.3 billion won ($780.44 million) – the biggest percentage gain since the first quarter of 2012.
Operating profit rose 30 percent to 1.24 trillion won while revenue rose 9.1 percent to 26.97 trillion won, the automaker said in a stock exchange filing.
However, the earnings recovery could weaken as Hyundai braces for a potential strike by its South Korean labor union that could disrupt supplies of models such as its Palisade SUV both at home and overseas, analysts said.
Heir apparent Euisun Chung has been steering the profit recovery following six years of decline. The executive vice chairman is widely considered to be seeking investor support to revisit an ownership restructuring plan as he prepares to take over from his 81-year-old father and chairman.
A previous proposal was scrapped last year following shareholder opposition, notably from U.S. hedge fund Elliott Management.