x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Ferrari set to take the chequered flag in sales

Ferrari is keeping its foot on the pedal, with sales on track to race past the 300-unit mark across the Middle East and Africa this year.

Ferrari is keeping its foot on the pedal, with sales on track to race past the 300-unit mark across the Middle East and Africa this year, and with its theme park in the capital about to open.

Sales for the luxury sports car makerare expected to match last year's levels, about 8 per cent of the 6,250 cars produced globally last year, said Pietro Innocenti, Ferrari's general manager for the Middle East and Africa.

"We are on track to repeat the extremely positive results of last year, where the region was growing 30 per cent despite all the crisis in the rest of the world," Mr Innocenti said.

Ferrari's latest results show its global revenues for the first three quarters are up 4.8 per cent to €1.34 billion (Dh6.94bn), compared with the same period last year.

Meanwhile, trading profit is up by 46 per cent to €76 million, mainly because of increased sales, increased efficiency and progress in its "personalisation programme".

Mr Innocenti said buyers in the region were keen to tweak their Ferraris to match their personal taste.

A total of 4,598 cars have been delivered to dealers in the first nine months of this year, with the Middle East and Africa representing about 8 per cent of that figure, said Mr Innocenti.

"The [regional] market started very slow at the beginning of this year, and now it is catching up," he said. "I think by the end of 2010 we will probably show some improvement, some increase overall."

The strongest market across the region is the UAE, which makes up 30 per of the regional demand, Mr Innocenti said.

"It is mostly driven by Dubai, but we are seeing that Abu Dhabi is growing and will continue to do that in the future," he said. "And this is also the reason we decide, with our distributor, to expand our presence in Abu Dhabi."

It is building a new showroom on the capital's Corniche, which is due to open this year. Ferrari is also refurbishing its dealership in Dubai, as well as in Kuwait and Bahrain, he added.

And in what is likely to be its biggest stamp on the region, Ferrari World theme park is due to open on Yas Island tomorrow.

"Ferrari World is a completely new adventure," Mr Innocenti said. "It's difficult to forecast what impact it will have on the business.

"For sure, I think it will contribute to communication of what the brand is all about, and the history. We believe it will be appealing for the larger public to experience it."

aligaya@thenational.ae