ERJ staff report (TB)
Akron, Ohio - During his address at Goodyear's annual shareholders meeting April 12, Chairman, President and CEO Richard Kramer said effective management, innovation and operational efficiency will be a top priority as the company strives to strengthen its leadership position in the tyre industry.
During the Akron meeting, Kramer told shareholders that the tyre maker's focus on operational efficiency has â€œbegun to deliver tangible results,â€ including a boost in manufacturing productivity as its plants that generated 22 million more tyres last year than in 2009.
â€œOur advantaged supply chain initiative has aligned our demand and supply process, resulting in a much more efficient supply chain both for Goodyear and our customers,â€ he said.
In addition, Kramer highlighted several areas of improvement for the tyre maker in 2010, including price/mix improvements that offset the impact of higher raw material costs; a high percentage of new products in the company's tyre lineup; cost actions and fixed cost recovery that went to Goodyear's bottom line; and investments in future growth in targeted market segments.
â€œWe have the right brands, channels and customers selling premium products through the channels where the margins are highest,â€ he said. â€œOur focus will continue to be on profitable growth, not chasing volume for volume's sake.â€
Going forward, Kramer said, Goodyear's goals will be to continue to be the industry leader in customer satisfaction, targeted market segments and innovation and to be â€œcompetitively advantaged in everything we do.â€
â€œI'm talking about products, marketing, supply chain and our manufacturing,â€ he added. â€œIn 2011, we will invest more than $1 billion in (capital expenditures) to both sustain our business and to maximise our ability to grow profitably.â€
Also during the meeting, Goodyear shareholders re-elected 12 members of the company's board of directors: James Boland, James Firestone, Werner Geissler, Peter Hellman, Kramer, W. Alan McCollough, Rodney O'Neal, Shirley Peterson, Stephanie Streeter, G. Craig Sullivan, Thomas Weidemeyer and Michael Wessel.
The appointment of PricewaterhouseCoopers L.L.P. as the company's 2011 independent registered public accounting firm was also ratified.
From Tire Business (A Crain publication)
Press release (Kramer's vision) from Goodyear
Press release (Directors re-elected) from Goodyear