* Automotive business provides impetus
* Revenue forecast to fall 25% over the year
* Company has been shifting focus to digital mapping
Oct 14 (Reuters) - Shares in Dutch mapping and navigation
company TomTom jumped as much as 6% on Wednesday after
it reported quarterly results ahead of analysts' forecasts,
boosted by strong automotive sales in a recovering industry.
The location technology company, whose customers range from
major car companies to leading global tech firms, saw sales in
its automotive unit, which supplies maps and navigation software
to automakers, grow 19% year-on-year while earnings fell across
its other businesses in the third quarter.
TomTom's finance chief, Taco Titulaer, predicted further
growth for automotive in the fourth quarter, citing improved car
production as the sector recovers from global lockdowns that
shuttered showrooms and brought traffic to a halt.
Industry data showed new European car sales down just 18% in
August compared to the previous year, after falling 24% in July
and 78% in June.
TomTom also forecast a reported revenue of 530 million euros
($622 million) for 2020, down 25% and slightly below consensus
Independent Minds analyst Andrew Hayman noted "an energetic
performance in a difficult environment," while ING said the
final quarter would include "relatively high" deferred revenues
ING added that TomTom's contract extension with Uber
, which it announced on Tuesday, is a positive implying
a deeper data relationship and support from a major player.
TomTom has been shifting towards its digital mapping
services rather than the portable navigation devices which made
it a household name.
The group's consumer and enterprise divisions, which sell
portable satnavs and location technology to government bodies
and tech firms, saw sales fall 38% and 4% respectively.
The group reported earnings before interest, taxes,
depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of 3.9 million euros
($4.58 million), down from 15.9 million a year earlier, but
beating analysts' estimates of an EBITDA of 1 million euros.
By 0900 GMT, TomTom's share price was up 3.8% after gaining
more than 6% in early trading. It had previously lost around a
fifth of its value over the course of 2020.
($1 = 0.8516 euros)
(Reporting by Sarah Morland in Gdansk
Editing by Louise Heavens and Keith Weir)