Your suggestion that Lear Corp. is benefiting as a result of limited competition ("Lower production squeezes supplier profits," July 28) is completely inaccurate.
Several high-quality companies that compete for automotive interior content are formidable competitors (Lear, Intier, Visteon, Collins & Aikman, Delphi, Faurecia and Johnson Controls, to name the largest). Certainly, there are not fewer competitors than in other automotive product segments.
The Lear team was able to hold our operating margin about equal to a year ago despite a lower production environment by working hard to add new business, improve our quality and reduce our costs.
Your claim that we are able to wield pricing pressure is completely without merit. Our net operating margin of about 2 percent is among the lowest in the automotive supply industry. That margin certainly does not suggest that we have the ability to price freely, as you suggest. In fact, your characterization of our operating philosophy is completely inaccurate.
For some time, we have had a strategic focus to become the world leader in automotive interiors. That is our sole focus, and we are completely dedicated to be the best.
The only power we wield in a highly competitive industry is our relentless focus on customer satisfaction and operational excellence.