SIXT has seen its business performance “brighten” in recent weeks despite current restrictions on international travel.
The car rental firm generated consolidated revenue in March at last year’s level, which was primarily due to an upturn in demand in the U.S., where the company achieved positive earnings (EBITDA) in the first quarter of the year.
This growth in demand, coupled with continuing cost controls, helped limit first quarter losses to €13.7 million.
The company achieved savings of €136 million (32 per cent compared to the same period last year) through a reduction of fleet costs of 31 per cent and a 33 per cent fall in personnel and material expenses.
“Despite the encouraging signals, we must remain cautious and monitor the further course of the pandemic closely. It is definitely too early to sound the all-clear.”
Overall, however, business performance in the period from January to March continued to be impacted by the tough, and in some cases even stricter, lockdown in Europe. As a result of this high level of uncertainty, the board continues to refrain from issuing a forecast for the full year.
Erich Sixt, CEO of Sixt SE: “The positive development in the first quarter, which continued in the month of April, gives us hope for the important second and third quarters.
“We are seeing that once COVID-19 restrictions are relaxed, people have an unbridled urge to be individually mobile and travel. Sixt will benefit greatly from this with its broad product portfolio.
“The easing that has now also been announced in many European countries should have a positive impact on how demand develops.
Despite the encouraging signals, we must remain cautious and monitor the further course of the pandemic closely. It is definitely too early to sound the all-clear.”
In March, Erich Sixt announced that he was stepping down as CEO after 50 years in charge; he is set to be replaced by his sons, Alexander and Konstantin Sixt, who have both served on the management board.