Volvo looks to maintain momentum during ‘tougher times’ for the market

VOLVO CE has reported that sales across all regions either decreased or remained flat in Q1 this year, in line with the ‘expected market downturn’.

The manufacturer said that, compared to the ‘strong’ sales of the same period last year, market demand is softening across the globe, with lower deliveries and order intake in Europe and North America compensated slightly by a stronger performance in Asia.

For Q1 2024, net sales dipped 9% to SEK 22,877 M. Adjusted for currency movements, net sales of machines have decreased by 9% and service sales by 3%.

Deliveries were on a par with last year, with a lower performance in Europe and North America offset by China. During the same period, net order intake increased by 4%, largely driven by the China market and the SDLG brand. Overall, order intake for the Volvo brand decreased in line with market development in Europe and North America, the company explained. Orders in South America increased from a low level in 2023, driven by signs of a recovery in Brazil.

However, Volvo said the ‘tougher climate’ has not stopped the business from furthering its commitment to the sustainable transformation. The manufacturer has introduced its first commercial grid-connected excavator, the EWR240 Electric material handler, to select customers. This was followed by a partnership with Sweden ski company SkiStar to help develop a roadmap towards fossil-free ski resorts. Later in the quarter, Volvo CE announced the trial of an electric shuttle delivery solution for transporting its machines from Belley, France, together with Volvo Trucks and logistics firm Capelle Transports.

Melker Jernberg, head of Volvo CE, said, “Maintaining profitability remains a high priority and we have taken great steps to ensure as strong a performance as possible during these tougher times. While the industry feels the effects of this market downturn, we are maintaining our momentum to come out stronger – ensuring that we remain flexible in our systems while continuing to deliver on our transformation ambitions.”