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China Automotive Systems Reports Fourth Quarter and Fiscal 2019 Results

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WUHAN, China, May 14, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- China Automotive Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CAAS) ("CAAS" or the "Company"), a leading power steering components and systems supplier in China, today announced its unaudited financial results for the fourth quarter and the audited results for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2019.

Fourth Quarter 2019 Highlights

  • Net sales were $115.9 million compared with $124.3 million in the fourth quarter of 2018
  • Gross profit was $16.8 million compared with $11.4 million in the fourth quarter of 2018; gross margin was 14.5% compared with 9.6% in the fourth quarter of 2018
  • Net income attributable to parent company's common shareholders was $1.7 million, or diluted income per share of $0.06, compared to a net loss of $3.2 million, or diluted loss per share of $0.10, in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Fiscal Year 2019 Highlights

  • Net sales were $431.4 million compared to $496.2 million in 2018
  • Operating income was $6.2 million compared to an operating loss of $2.9 million last year
  • Diluted income per share attributable to parent company's common shareholders was $0.32 compared to diluted income per share attributable to parent company's common shareholders of $0.08 in 2018
  • Cash and cash equivalents, pledged cash and short-term investments were $112.2 million as of December 31, 2019
  • Net cash flow provided by operating activities was $30.3 million in 2019 compared to $12.5 million for 2018
  • Approximately 452,559 shares of common stock were repurchased during 2019.

Mr. Qizhou Wu, chief executive officer of CAAS, commented, "Our sales continued to mirror the continuing slow economic growth in the Chinese economy in 2019, as well as the trade dispute between the U.S. and China, the introduction of more stringent emission standards, and significantly reduced automobile subsidies. Chinese GDP grew by 6.1% in 2019, the slowest annual rate of economic growth for China since 1990, and car sales weakened in December 2019 compared with the same month a year ago, marking 18 consecutive months of  decline. However, Chinese-branded cars, our main market, lost only 2.9% of market share in 2019."

"On the other hand, our sales to our tier-1 North American customers remained stable. In addition, our electric motor subsidiary, Hyoseong (Wuhan) Motion Mechatronics System, successfully completed its phase one development plan for powerpack brushless motors to address significant market opportunities. With three new highly automated production lines installed and tested, the mass production of our proprietary brushless electric motors will start in June 2020. We are also producing EPS systems to steer the new all-electric small vehicle, model ORA R150, for Great Wall Motor. Furthermore, SAIC Maxus, an SUV and commercial vehicle subsidiary of SAIC Motor, also selected us as their type A preferred supplier. For the international markets, we began producing a new steering system for our customer in North America. And our Brazilian operation was nominated as one of three chassis finalists for South America's 2018 Best Supplier by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. (FCA)," Mr. Wu concluded.

Mr. Jie Li, chief financial officer of CAAS, commented, "Our operations continued to generate positive cash flow in 2019. We have reduced our operating expenses to become more efficient while the sales of our higher-margin products are expanding."

Fourth Quarter of 2019

Net sales were $115.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2019 compared to $124.3 million in the same quarter of 2018. The net sales decrease was mainly due to a change in the product mix and lower demand for Chinese domestic-branded automobiles in the fourth quarter of 2019 compared with the fourth quarter of 2018.    

Gross profit was $16.8 million compared to $11.4 million in the fourth quarter of 2018. Gross margin in the fourth quarter of 2019 was 14.5% compared to 9.2% in the fourth quarter of 2018.  The increase in gross profit and gross margin was primarily due to a change in the product mix and reduced costs compared with the fourth quarter of 2018.

Gain on other sales was $0.2 million, compared to $1.0 million in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Selling expenses were $3.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2019 compared to $4.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2018. The decline was primarily due to better cost controls with lower personnel costs, and reduced transportation expenses related to decreased volume. Selling expenses represented 3.3% of net sales in the fourth quarter of 2019 compared to 3.9% in the fourth quarter of 2018.

General and administrative expenses ("G&A expenses") decreased by 9.7% to $6.5 million from $7.2 million in the fourth quarter of 2018. G&A expenses represented 5.6% of net sales in the fourth quarter of 2019 compared to 5.8% of net sales in the fourth quarter of 2018. The decrease in G&A expenses in the fourth quarter of 2019 was mainly due to improved cost controls.

Research and development expenses ("R&D expenses") were $8.6 million in the fourth quarter of 2018 compared to $10.2 million in the fourth quarter of 2018. R&D expenses represented 7.4% of net sales in the fourth quarter of 2019 compared to 8.2% in the fourth quarter of 2018. 

Loss from operations was $1.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2019 compared to a loss from operations of $9.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2018. The much reduced loss was mainly due to higher gross profit and lower operating expenses compared to the fourth quarter of 2018.

Interest expense was $0.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2019, compared to $1.3 million in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Net income attributable to parent company's common shareholders was $1.7 million in the fourth quarter of 2019 compared to a net loss attributable to parent company's common shareholders of $3.2 million in the fourth quarter of 2018. Diluted income per share was $0.06 in the fourth quarter of 2019 compared to diluted loss per share of $0.10 in the fourth quarter of 2018.

The weighted average number of diluted common shares outstanding was 31,333,740 in the fourth quarter of 2019 compared to 31,645,510 in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Fiscal Year 2019

Annual net sales were $431.4 million in 2019 compared to $496.2 million in 2018. The decrease was due to lower sales of legacy hydraulic products and total EPS systems. EPS sales represented 19.1% of total revenue in 2019 compared with 21.7% in 2018. Net sales of vehicle steering systems to the Company's North America customers were down slightly in 2019 compared with 2018.

Gross profit in 2019 was $63.4 million compared to $65.4 million in 2018. The gross margin increased to 14.7% from 13.2% in 2018 mainly due to increased sales of higher margin products.  

Gain on other sales mainly consisted of the net amount retained from rental income, gain on disposal of intangible assets and the sales of property, plant and equipment and technical service revenue. For the year ended December 31, 2019, gain on other sales amounted to $5.1 million compared to $3.9 million in 2018. This increase was primarily due to the increase in gain on disposal of property, plant and equipment.

Selling expenses were $14.3 million in 2019 compared to $18.9 million in 2018, mainly due to lower net sales resulting in decreased personnel expenses and marketing expenditures. Selling expenses represented 3.3% of net sales in 2019 compared to 3.8% in 2018.

G&A expenses were $20.0 million generally consistent with $19.8 million in 2018. G&A expenses represented 4.6% of net sales in 2019 compared to 4.0% of net sales in 2018.

R&D expenses were $28.0 million in 2019 compared to $33.6 million in 2018. R&D expenses represented 6.5% of net sales in 2019, compared to 6.8% of net sales in 2018.

Operating income was $6.2 million in 2019 compared to an operating loss of $2.9 million in 2018. The change was primarily due to lower selling and research and development expenses in 2019.

Interest expense was $3.0 million in 2019 generally consistent with $2.9 million in 2018.

Net financial income was $2.5 million in 2019 compared with $2.2 million in 2018 due to an increase in  interest income.

Income before income tax expenses and equity in earnings of affiliated companies was $7.6 million compared to a loss before income tax expenses and equity in loss of affiliated companies of $2.5 million for 2018. This increase was mainly due to the higher operating profit.

Net income attributable to parent company's common shareholders was $10.0 million in 2019 compared to net income attributable to parent company's common shareholders of $2.4 million in 2018. Diluted net income per share was $0.32 in 2019 compared to diluted income per share of $0.08 in 2018.

The weighted average number of diluted common shares outstanding was 31,458,926 in 2019 compared to 31,645,594 in 2018.

Balance Sheet

As of December 31, 2019, total cash and cash equivalents, pledged cash and short-term investments were $112.2 million, total accounts receivable including notes receivable were $233.0 million, accounts payable including notes payable were $186.7 million and short-term bank and government loans were $46.6 million. Total parent company stockholders' equity was $289.2 million as of December 31, 2019, compared to $285.9 million as of December 31, 2018. During 2019, a total of 452,559 shares were repurchased for aggregate consideration of $1.3 million under a repurchase program approved on December 5, 2018. Net cash flow from operating activities was $30.3 million in 2019. 

Business Outlook

By mid-March, most of the Company's production operations were up and running after the lockdown restrictions were lifted by the respective local governments as the COVID-19 outbreak subsided. In April, the Company regained its full operating capacity and reopened its Wuhan headquarters after a temporary relocation to Jingzhou City in March.

Management provides revenue guidance for the full year 2020 of $360 million. This target is based on the Company's current views on operating and market conditions, which are subject to change.

Conference Call

Management will conduct a conference call on May 14, 2020 at 8:00 A.M. EDT/8:00 P.M. Beijing Time to discuss these results. A question and answer session will follow management's presentation. To participate, please call the following numbers 10 minutes before the call start time and ask to be connected to the "China Automotive Systems" conference call:

US Toll Free:

+1-877-407-8031

International:

+1-201-689-8031

China (toll free):

+86 400 120 2840

A replay of the call will be available on the Company's website under the investor relations section.

About China Automotive Systems, Inc.

Based in Hubei Province, the People's Republic of China, China Automotive Systems, Inc. is a leading supplier of power steering components and systems to the Chinese automotive industry, operating through ten Sino-foreign joint ventures. The Company offers a full range of steering system parts for passenger automobiles and commercial vehicles. The Company currently offers four separate series of power steering with an annual production capacity of over 6 million sets of steering gears, columns and steering hoses. Its customer base is comprised of leading auto manufacturers, such as China FAW Group, Corp., Dongfeng Auto Group Co., Ltd., BYD Auto Company Limited, Beiqi Foton Motor Co., Ltd. and Chery Automobile Co., Ltd. in China, and Chrysler Group LLC, Ford Motor Company in North America. For more information, please visit: http://www.caasauto.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains statements that are "forward-looking statements" as defined under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements represent our estimates and assumptions only as of the date of this press release. These forward-looking statements include statements regarding the qualitative and quantitative effects of the accounting errors, the periods involved, the nature of the Company's review and any anticipated conclusions of the Company or its management and other statements that are not historical facts. Our actual results may differ materially from the results described in or anticipated by our forward-looking statements due to certain risks and uncertainties. As a result, the Company's actual results could differ materially from those contained in these forward-looking statements due to a number of factors, including those described under the heading "Risk Factors" in the Company's Form 10-K annual report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 28, 2019, in the form 8-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 20, 2020 and May 11, 2020, and in documents subsequently filed by the Company from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission. If the outbreak of COVID-19 is not effectively and timely controlled, our business operations and financial condition may be materially and adversely affected as a result of the deteriorating market outlook for automobile sales, the slowdown in regional and national economic growth, weakened liquidity and financial condition of our customers or other factors that we cannot foresee. Any of these factors and other factors beyond our control, could have an adverse effect on the overall business environment, cause uncertainties in the regions where we conduct business, cause our business to suffer in ways that we cannot predict and materially and adversely impact our business, financial condition and results of operations. A prolonged disruption or any further unforeseen delay in our operations of the manufacturing, delivery and assembly process within any of our production facilities could continue to result in delays in the shipment of products to our customers, increased costs and reduced revenue.  We expressly disclaim any duty to provide updates to any forward-looking statements made in this press release, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

For further information, please contact:

Jie Li
Chief Financial Officer
China Automotive Systems, Inc.
jieli@chl.com.cn

Kevin Theiss
Awaken Advisors
+1-212-521-4050
Kevin@awakenlab.com 

-Tables Follow -

China Automotive Systems, Inc. and Subsidiaries

Consolidated Balance Sheets

(In thousands of USD, except share and per share amounts)




December 31,




2019



2018


ASSETS









Current assets:









Cash and cash equivalents


$

76,708



$

86,346


Pledged cash



29,688




29,623


Short-term investments



5,832




17,543


Accounts and notes receivable, net - unrelated parties



211,841




237,519


Accounts and notes receivable - related parties



21,164




18,825


Advance payments and others, net - unrelated parties



11,714




16,270


Advance payments and others - related parties



1,287




1,281


Inventories



82,931




88,021


     Total current assets



441,165




495,428


Non-current assets:









Property, plant and equipment, net



140,437




122,310


Land use right, net



10,346




7,543


Intangible assets, net



1,352




605


Operating lease assets



376




-


Other receivables, net



307




1,799


Advance payment for property, plant and equipment - unrelated parties



6,157




6,135


Advance payment for property, plant and equipment - related parties



2,311




8,723


Long-term investments



39,642




32,620


Deferred tax assets



15,291




15,336


Other non-current assets



2,580




-


     Total assets


$

659,964



$

690,499











LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY









Current liabilities:









Bank and government loans


$

46,636



$

60,952


Accounts and notes payable - unrelated parties



180,175




205,643


Accounts and notes payable - related parties



6,492




4,477


Customer deposits



1,303




750


Accrued payroll and related costs



8,400




7,346


Accrued expenses and other payables



45,337




47,032


Accrued pension costs



3,161




3,282


Taxes payable



11,492




11,137


Operating lease liabilities - current portion



116




-


Amounts due to shareholders/directors



309




317


Advances payable (current portion)



353




364


     Total current liabilities



303,774




341,300


Long-term liabilities:









Long-term government loan



7,167




291


Advances payable



3,486




1,654


Operating lease liabilities - non-current portion



271




-


Other long-term payable



4,948




8,726


Deferred tax liabilities



4,253




4,198


Long-term taxes payable



26,693




29,503


     Total liabilities



350,592




385,672


Stockholders' Equity









Common stock, $0.0001 par value - Authorized -

80,000,000 shares Issued - 32,338,302 and 32,338,302 shares at December 31,
2019 and 2018, respectively



3




3


Additional paid-in capital



64,429




64,429


Retained earnings-









Appropriated



11,265




11,104


Unappropriated



221,237




211,439


Accumulated other comprehensive (loss)/income



(3,462)




1,855


Treasury stock - 1,164,257 and 711,698 shares at December 31, 2019 and 2018,
respectively



(4,261)




(2,953)


Total parent company stockholders' equity



289,211




285,877


Non-controlling interests



20,161




18,950


     Total stockholders' equity



309,372




304,827


     Total liabilities and stockholders' equity


$

659,964



$

690,499


 

 

China Automotive Systems, Inc. and Subsidiaries

Consolidated Statements of Income and Loss

(In thousands of USD, except share and per share amounts)




Year Ended December 31,




2019



2018









Net product sales ($50,740 and $37,606 sold to related parties for the years ended December 31,
2019 and 2018)


$

431,427



$

496,158


Cost of products sold ($23,814 and $25,558 purchased from related parties for the years ended
December 31, 2019 and 2018)



368,076




430,745


Gross profit



63,351




65,413


Net gain on other sales



5,067




3,940


Operating expenses:









Selling expenses



14,270




18,949


General and administrative expenses



19,976




19,761


Research and development expenses



27,992




33,551


Total operating expenses



62,238




72,261


Operating income/(loss)



6,180




(2,908)


Other income, net



1,957




1,173


Interest expense



(3,034)




(2,928)


Financial income, net



2,456




2,162


Income/(loss) before income tax expenses and equity in earnings of affiliated companies



7,559




(2,501)


Less: Income taxes



586




(1,465)


Add: Equity in earnings of affiliated companies



1,406




1,115


Net income



8,379




79


Net loss attributable to non-controlling interest



(1,580)




(2,298)


Net income attributable to parent company's common shareholders



9,959




2,377











Net income attributable to parent company's common shareholders per share -









Basic


$

0.32



$

0.08











Diluted


$

0.32



$

0.08











Weighted average number of common shares outstanding -









Basic



31,456,828




31,643,813


Diluted



31,458,926




31,645,594


 

 



Year Ended December 31,




2019



2018









Net income



8,379




79


Other comprehensive loss:









Foreign currency translation loss



(5,735)




(16,548)


Comprehensive income/(loss)



2,644




(16,469)


Comprehensive loss attributable to non-controlling interest



(1,998)




(2,921)


Comprehensive income/(loss) attributable to parent company


$

4,642



$

(13,548)


 

 

China Automotive Systems, Inc. and Subsidiaries

Consolidated Statements of Changes in Stockholders' Equity

(In thousands of USD, except share and per share amounts)




2019



2018









Common Stock









Balance at January 1, 2019 and 2018 - 32,338,302 and 32,338,302 shares, respectively


$

3



$

3


Balance at December 31, 2019 and 2018 - 32,338,302 and 32,338,302 shares, respectively


$

3



$

3











Additional Paid-in Capital









Balance at January 1


$

64,429



$

64,406


Stock-based compensation



-




23


Balance at December 31


$

64,429



$

64,429











Retained Earnings - Appropriated









Balance at January 1


$

11,104



$

10,707


Appropriation of retained earnings



161




397


Balance at December 31


$

11,265



$

11,104











Unappropriated









Balance at January 1


$

211,439



$

209,459


Net income attributable to parent company



9,959




2,377


Appropriation of retained earnings



(161)




(397)


Balance at December 31


$

221,237



$

211,439











Accumulated Other Comprehensive (Loss)/Income









Balance at January 1


$

1,855



$

17,780


Net foreign currency translation adjustment attributable to parent company



(5,317)




(15,925)


Balance at December 31


$

(3,462)



$

1,855











Treasury Stock









Balance at January 1, 2019 and 2018 - 711,698 and 694,298 shares, respectively



(2,953)




(2,907)


Repurchase of common stock in 2019 and 2018 - 452,559 shares and 17,400 shares, respectively



(1,308)




(46)


Balance at December 31, 2019 and 2018 - 1,164,257 and 711,698 shares, respectively


$

(4,261)




(2,953)











Total parent company stockholders' equity


$

289,211



$

285,877











Non-controlling Interest









Balance at January 1


$

18,950



$

6,681


Net foreign currency translation adjustment attributable to non-controlling interest



(418)




(623)


Net loss attributable to non-controlling interest



(1,580)




(2,298)


Contribution by non-controlling shareholder



3,542




15,728


Distribution of retained earnings



(333)




(538)


Balance at December 31


$

20,161



$

18,950











Total stockholders' equity


$

309,372



$

304,827


 

 

China Automotive Systems, Inc. and Subsidiaries

Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows

(In thousands of USD unless otherwise indicated)




Year Ended December 31,




2019



2018









Cash flows from operating activities:









Net income


$

8,379



$

79


Adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash provided by operating activities:









Stock-based compensation



-




23


Depreciation and amortization



17,841




16,816


Deferred income taxes



16




(2,502)


(Reversal)/accrual of provision for doubtful accounts



(441)




887


Equity in net loss/(earnings) of affiliates



(1,406)




(1,115)


Gain on disposal of fixed assets



(632)




(445)


(Increase)/decrease in:









Accounts and notes receivable



21,036




27,526


Advance payments and others



4,733




(3,790)


Inventories



3,992




(11,614)


Increase/(decrease) in:









Accounts and notes payable



(22,138)




(22,491)


Customer deposits



561




(346)


Accrued payroll and related costs



1,115




(964)


Accrued expenses and other payables



(1,340)




8,893


Accrued pension costs



(96)




(646)


Taxes payable



(1,326)




2,215


     Net cash provided by operating activities



30,294




12,526











Cash flows from investing activities:









Purchase of short-term investments



(19,647)




(22,923)


Proceeds from maturities of short-term investments



31,268




34,175


Decrease in demand loans and employee housing loans included in other
receivables



1,504




337


Cash received from property, plant and equipment sales



1,561




1,022


Government subsidy received for purchase of property, plant and equipment



1,898




1,322


Cash paid to acquire property, plant and equipment and land used rights 
(including $5,238 and $9,207 paid to related parties for the year ended
December 31, 2019 and 2018, respectively)



(34,396)




(25,764)


Cash paid to acquire intangible assets



(1,505)




(189)


Cash received from long-term investment



579




-


Cash received from repayment of the loan to a related party



-




20,430


Investment under equity method



(6,018)




(5,957)


Cash prepaid for acquisition of a subsidiary



(2,560)




-


     Net cash (used in)/provided by investing activities



(27,316)




2,453











Cash flows from financing activities:









Proceeds from bank and government loans



57,101




78,917


Repayment of bank and government loans



(65,576)




(92,215)


Proceeds from sale and leaseback transaction



-




11,758


Payment to broker agents for repurchase of common stock



(1,308)




(300)


Repayments of the borrowing for sale and leaseback transaction



(4,164)




(3,218)


Dividends paid to the non-controlling interest holders of non-wholly
owned subsidiaries



(333)




(524)


Decrease in amounts due to shareholders/directors



-




(26)


Cash received from capital contributions by non-controlling interest
holder



3,542




15,728


     Net cash (used in)/provided by financing activities



(10,738)




10,120











Cash and cash equivalents affected by foreign currency



(1,813)




(5,223)


Net (decrease)/increase in cash and cash equivalents



(9,573)




19,876


Cash, cash equivalents and pledged cash at beginning of year



115,969




96,093


Cash, cash equivalents and pledged cash at end of year


$

106,396



$

115,969


 

 

SUPPLEMENTAL DISCLOSURE OF CASH FLOW INFORMATION:




Year Ended December 31,




2019



2018


Cash paid for interest


$

3,390



$

3,852


Cash paid for income taxes


$

4,607



$

3,717


 

 

SUPPLEMENTAL DISCLOSURE OF NON-CASH ACTIVITIES:


Non-cash investing activities:




Year Ended December 31,




2019



2018









Property, plant and equipment recorded during the year which previously were advance payments


$

13,964



$

13,347


Accounts payable for acquiring property, plant and equipment


$

782



$

1,046


Property, plant and equipment and inventories used for investment in an associated company


$

492



$

-


 

Cision View original content:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/china-automotive-systems-reports-fourth-quarter-and-fiscal-2019-results-301059037.html

SOURCE China Automotive Systems, Inc.

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