ERJ staff report (DS)
Helsinki -- â€The tide has turned but it's not plain sailing yet," said Kim Gran, chief executive of Nokian Tyres, reporting the company's first quarter results. He continued, "Our order book is improving and in 2010 we will have a good possibility to increase our sales and results, and to provide a strong cash flow from operations."
The company will also begin negotiations next week with employees at its plant in Nokia Finland to reduce the employee count by around 70 people. The adjustment measures are estimated to concern approximately 10 office employees and 60 blue-collar employees.
The Group's net sales increased by 18.1 percent to EUR 183.8 million (EUR 155.6 million in Jan-March 2009). Operating result grew to EUR 21.1 million (EUR -2.7 million).
Gran said the company would be pushing for price increases of 2-6% in July to defend margins, following increases in raw material prices.
Positive signs in the Nokian Tyres' core markets became more visible in the first quarter of 2010. In Q1 the new car sales increased by 28% year-over-year in the Nordic countries and by 10% in Europe. In Russia the car sales development turned positive in March. The aftermarket sales volume for car tyres increased in the Nordic countries by an estimated 4% and in Europe by 10% year-over-year. Tyre deliveries increased more clearly in Russia, trailing the stabilizing economy and improved consumer confidence.
Gran said the business environment in Russia is now improving
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Press release relating to Q1 results from Nokian