GM Beats Profit Estimates With a Raise From Lyft

Kyle Grillot/Bloomberg News

General Motors Co. needed a little help from ride-hailing company Lyft Inc. to beat analysts for first-quarter profit as cost cuts only partially made up for lower sales.

The Detroit-based company posted adjusted earnings of $1.41 a share for the first three months of the year, topping analysts’ average projection for $1.10. The 31-cent surprise, however, came entirely from the higher valuation of stakes in Lyft, which listed its stock in March, and French carmaker Peugeot SA, which has revived GM’s German castoff brand, Opel.

Without Lyft and Peugeot propping up profit, GM would have only met projections for lower profit. Net revenue fell to $34.9 billion and was more than a half-billion below what analysts were projecting. The company has been losing market share in North America as it has killed off slower-selling sedans including the Chevrolet Cruze and taken months to roll out redesigned pickups.

“GM’s first-quarter operating results were in line with expectations,” Mary Barra CEO of GM, said in a statement. “My confidence in the year ahead remains strong, driven by our all-new full-size truck launch and our ongoing business transformation.”

GM shares are up 16% this year.