Mazda Motor Corp. said April 23 that it will post its highest profits since 1990 in a revised estimate of earnings for the 1997 business year, which ended in March.

According to the revised estimates, Mazda’s sales revenues will decline from the previous forecast of 1.58 trillion yen to 1.51 trillion yen due to sluggish domestic demand. But its net profit is now estimated at 11.5 billion yen, compared to 10 billion yen in the earlier estimate, and pretax profit was put at 25.9 billion yen, up from 20 billion yen.

Mazda is also expecting to post 31.2 billion yen in operating profit, the first such profit since the 1992 business year. The company attributed the strong profits to cost-cutting efforts and the recent depreciation of the yen against the dollar.

Despite weak demand domestically, the company said sales of its Demio model, new Capella and new Roadster remained strong, substantially boosting overall sales. Its share of the domestic market has improved to 5.1 percent from 4.8 percent in the previous business year, Mazda said. It was the first such gain in seven years.

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