ERJ staff report (BC)
Tokyo – Lower raw materials costs and an improved product mix led to double-digit growth in fiscal 2012 operating and net income for Bridgestone Corp., reports Tire Business. Management is forecasting more of the same for fiscal 2013.
Bridgestone's operating income jumped 49.3 percent to $3.62 billion on 0.5 percent higher sales of $38.4 billion, for an operating margin of 9.4 percent. Net income jumped 66.7 percent to $2.17 billion, or a ratio of 5.6 percent.
Bridgestone's outlay for raw materials, especially natural rubber, dropped sufficiently to account for nearly 100 percent of the firm's operating income improvement, the firm's figures show.
The tire division reported a 40 percent increase in operating income to $3.3 billion on 1 percent higher sales of $32.4 billion, for a ratio of 10.1 percent.
For fiscal 2013, Bridgestone is predicting gains of 34 and 37 percent for operating and net income and 17 percent for sales, based on solid sales gain expectations for markets in emerging countries as well as rebounding replacement market growth in Europe and North America.
By region, the Americas recorded 49 percent operating income growth on 3 percent higher sales, and Bridgestone is forecasting continued success this year — operating earnings and sales up 33 and 17 percent, respectively. Earnings should grow based on improvements in the price/mix, foreign exchange losses and the introduction of new strategic products.
Bridgestone said unit sales of consumer in North America were unchanged from 2011 while unit sales of truck/bus tires fell.
On the positive side, unit sales in most Asian markets increased as did sales of earthmover/OTR tires globally, Bridgestone said.