ERJ staff report (LMH)
Seoul -- Global sales at Hankook Tire grew by 16.3 percent in the first quarter of 2011 to KRW 1.4 trillion (euro 892 million), which the Korean tyre maker said was a record-breaking first quarter result.
Operating profit was KRW 179 billion (euro 114 million), despite rising raw material costs, Hankook said in a 20 April statement.
Growth was good in all markets, the company said, and was significant in developed markets. Sales in Europe jumped 20.9 percent, on the back of improved productivity in Hungary, while Q1 sales in North America also saw strong growth -- some 29.1 percent higher than the same period in 2010.
In emerging markets, Hankook said sales figures in Latin America, the Middle East and Asia-Pacific showed steady growth. Sales ballooned by 38.4 percent and 21.8 percent from last year's first quarter in Latin America and the Asia-Pacific regions respectively. Korea, China and Hungary operations achieved 18-percent, 19-percent and 59-percent increases from the first quarter of 2010.
The Seoul-headquartered company said that its ultra-high performance tyres continued to see robust growth with a 42.5-percent year-on-year increase.
Seung Hwa Suh, ceo of Hankook said, â€œHankook Tire continues to see positive performance in the first quarter this year. We believe that Hankook's competitive product quality has greatly contributed to our sustainable growth during a time when the global business environment was unstable. I expect this is just the start of a dynamic growth in 2011.â€
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Press release from Hankook Tire