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BMW reports 2003 profits down, but proposes increased dividend

BMW Group group's profit from ordinary activities, at €3,205 million, was 2.8% below the record level of 2002. Net profit for 2003 was €1,947 million, 3.6% down from 2002.

Earnings per share were €2.89 (2002: €3.00) per share of common stock and €2.91 against €3.02 in 2002 per share of preferred stock. Cash flow of €4,490 million was 2.7% above the level of the previous year.

German taxation and early retirement provisions led to exceptional charges totalling €160m.

The BMW Board of Management and the Supervisory Board have proposed an increased dividend of €0.58 for each common stock share, 12% higher than last year.

Car operations were particularly affected by investment in product and market offensives. Profit was €2,761 million, 4.2% down on 2002, but BMW Financial Services achieved a record profit, up 7.1% on 2002 to €452 million. The volume of new retail customer financing contracts grew by 10.7% to exceed 710,000 contracts.

With a total of 1,104,916 BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce brand cars sold, the BMW Group achieved a new sales volume record in 2003, surpassing the 2002 record by 4.5% (2002: 1,057,344 cars). Sales of BMWs rose by 1.6% to 928,151 units (2002: 913,225 cars). A total of 176,465 Minis sold was 22.4% up on the year before. BMW sold a total of 300 Rolls-Royces during 2003, and 92,962 motorcycles, just 0.4% more than in the previous year.

The low US dollar made group revenues fall 2.1% to €41,525 million, but adjusted for exchange rate changes, sales revenue showed growth of 4.2%. Revenue from cars, at €38,317 million, was 0.4% up on 2002.

In 2003, the Group invested €3,249 million in tangible and intangible assets against €3,184 million in 2002. Total additions to intangible assets and property, plant and equipment amounted to €4,245 million, 5% up on the year before.

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