Bosch, one of the six companies of the German group in India, which follows the calendar accounting year, reported a 6.8 per cent dip in its profit after tax at Rs.590.60 crore in 2009 against Rs.633.90 crore in 2008.

The profit before tax was also down by 7.4 per cent. However, net sales improved.

Company Managing Director V. K. Viswanathan told reporters here on Friday that “due to the global slowdown, our exports fell by 14 to 15 per cent and domestic sales began recovering only late in the year. However, we anticipate a better year ahead with segments within the automotive industry continuing some growth through 2009.''

The market saw 18 per cent growth in the passenger car and utility vehicles segment, 10 per cent increase in tractor sales and 12 per cent growth in three wheelers. But the heavy vehicles category declined by 20 per cent.

Net sales of Bosch went up in 2009 by 4.6 per cent to Rs.4,749.80 crore, Mr. Viswanathan said. In the first two months of 2010, certain factors affecting consumer demand was seen, especially in the car segment, he said.

Anticipation of a duty cut in the budget was one of them.

The situation might stabilise now with little change in taxes for smaller cars. A better monsoon might push up demand for tractors.

Joint Managing Director Manfred Duernholz said the group would go ahead with investing Rs.2,000 crore in India, mainly for technology needed to meet new emission standards and other research and development for parts like brake systems.

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