Aston Martin’s chief executive says the British firm plans to follow Ferrari’s example of “controlling supply and demand”.
Speaking to Autocar after an investment consortium led by Lawrence Stroll purchased a 16,7 percent stake in Aston Martin, Andy Palmer said the opportunity had finally arrived to “start operating properly”.
“It [the investment] allows us to once and for all start doing the right things, chief among them controlling supply and demand in a way that Ferrari has demonstrated can be so effective,” said Palmer.
“In the past, we have had a balance sheet that has required us to push wholesales to pay our bills. Now we can reset, reduce our stock and start operating properly,” he said.
Palmer explained it would not have been possible to take such an approach before the investment.
“We had to pay our bills, most notably the one to build a new factory [for the new DBX]. We made that decision in 2016 when the going was good and were committed to it. You can’t build a new factory and a new SUV that’s true to your values by cutting corners. The costs were fixed in a bullish market that turned to crap,” he said.
Palmer added 2019 was “a bad year”, saying despite retail sales having increased, the “slice of the pie was less and the profitability of what we sold not good enough”.
Ryan has spent most of his career in online media, writing about everything from sport to politics and other forms of crime. But his true passion – reignited by a 1971 Austin Mini Mk3 still tucked lifeless in a dark corner of his garage – is of the automotive variety.