Could this mean the emissions scandal fog is finally starting to clear for Volkswagen?
Volkswagen Group announced their new set date – April 28th – for its annual earnings press conference and shareholders meeting, possibly indicating that the company are making progress in resolving the financial issues caused by the emissions scandal.
VW Group will host journalists and investors at their annual press conference in Wolfsburg, Germany, while shareholders will gather in Hanover on June 22nd, the company revealed in a statement last Friday. Last year’s earnings were originally scheduled for public release on March 10th and the shareholders meeting on April 21st, however, Volkswagen had to take the unprecedented step of delaying the events whilst the company continued to deal with the ramifications from the emission scandal revelation back in September.
The scandal has obliterated stock prices, caused a sales freeze of diesel vehicles in the United States and tarnished Volkswagen’s reputation, both in the industry and to the public. Though a proposed fix was considered acceptable in Europe, the company failed – and at the time of writing have still failed – to come up with a solution for the diesel cars impacted in the United States. This was a large factor in delaying their earnings reports.
Though the company had announced plans to set aside 6.7 billion Euros to repair the estimated 11 million vehicles affected by the scandal around the world, it is now believed that this sum will not cover the full extent of damages, including the various fines and proposed measures to restore trust among consumers. PricewaterhouseCoopers, Volkswagen’s auditor, said that it couldn’t determine whether the company’s provisions for the scandal were sufficient. Volkswagen would need its auditors to sign off on the report without any cautions or caveats to avoid concern among large investors and lenders.
When the earnings are released, the full scope of the emissions scandal can be put into factual context. We know it has been a PR disaster, but will it prove to be an economical one too?