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10 August 2017

Lotus Claims to Have Actually Made a Profit

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As a brand, Lotus is known for all kinds of things. Simple, agile sports cars. Classic cars with maintenance costs that devour owners’ wallets. The Esprit’s starring role in the James Bond film The Spy Who Loved Me. Requiring all articles about its cars to use the phrase “add lightness” at least once, if not twice. But Lotus has never really been known for making money. Until now.

Today, the British automaker announced that it has made a “radical financial turnaround,” finishing the fiscal year with a $2.6 million (£2 million) profit. Considering that by the same measure, it posted a $21 million (£16.3 million) loss the year before, that’s a huge improvement. Or, as the release worded it, “a major milestone in the history of Lotus Group.”

Granted, that’s calculated using earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization. If instead of using EBITDA, you simply look at profits before taxes, Lotus still lost $14.5 million (£11.2 million) for the year. But considering that by that measure, Lotus lost $53.5 million (£41.2 million) the year before, it’s still doing a lot better than it was.

Interestingly, this turnaround isn’t the result of Lotus introducing an all-new model. Instead, it gave its current models a refresh, including the now-fantastic Evora 400. It has also opened more dealerships, expanding from 138 to 215 since 2014.

“This is a proud moment for Lotus and to have achieved so much is testament to the hard work of all our staff. Our vastly improved profitability, together with an increase in revenue means that for the first time in many years Lotus is now a self-sufficient and sustainable business,” said Jean-Marc Gales, Lotus Group’s CEO, in a statement.

Of course, Lotus also has an SUV in the works. And as we’ve seen with other performance brands, that’s the ticket to real profitability. With the help of new funding from Geely, the Chinese company that turned Volvo around, we might see the Lotus SUV as early as 2019.

Source: Lotus

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