Qatar-backed Porsche posts 22% profit growth

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German luxury car maker Porsche, in which Qatar holds a 10 percent stake, has reported a near-23 percent increase in earnings in the first nine months of 2012.

It said surging demand in leading emerging economies and booming sales for its updated iconic 911 model were behind the boost in performance.

Stuttgart-based Porsche said operating profit rose to 1.88 billion euros ($2.44bn) between January and September, compared with 1.53 billion euros in the same period last year.

"Porsche is taking the pole position in the automotive industry," said Porsche chief Matthias Mueller.

The luxury car maker said it expects full earnings for 2012 to outpace last year's, with profit in the first nine months of this year already coming in higher than for the whole of 2011.

Group sales were driven by soaring demand in the world's leading emerging car markets, with sales in Russia bounding ahead by 69.7 percent to 2,628 vehicles and by 35.4 percent to 24,859 units in China.

The United States remained Porsche's biggest market with sales there climbing by 22.1 percent to 24,982 vehicles.

The performance comes as Porsche announces a key appointment to drive sales in the Middle East and Africa.

It has hired Lee Newton as marketing director for the region with immediate effect.

Newton has been with the Porsche brand for the past 16 years and was most recently marketing director for Porsche Latin America.

Prior to this Newton worked for Porsche Cars North America and Porsche Cars Great Britain focusing on event marketing, sponsorship management as well as the roll-out of brand experience strategies. 

George Wills, managing director of Porsche Middle East and Africa, said:  “Lee brings with him a wealth of experience in a number of Marketing disciplines and a keen interest in motorsport. With his extensive global insight and diversity he will be a valuable asset to our regional office.”

Newton will supervise all marketing related issues for Porsche in the region and head a department that supports an importer network with 24 dealers in 18 countries.

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