ERJ staff report (TB)
Tokyo – Bridgestone Corp. cited double-digit growth in sales and earnings for the six months ended 30 June, with lower raw materials costs and foreign currency exchange gains playing key roles in the earnings improvements, Tire Business has reported.
Bridgestone reported 42.3- and 55.5-percent jumps in operating and net income to $1.99 billion (€1.50 billion) and $1.23 billion (€0.93 billion), respectively. Sales rose 14.5 percent to $17.9 billion (€13.5 billion), yielding an operating ratio of 11.2 percent—two full percentage points higher than a year ago.
Partially offsetting the gains from materials and currency was $685m (€515m) in reduced revenue from lower volumes and prices and a less advantageous product mix, Bridgestone said.
The Tokyo-based company's tire business unit performed equally well, showing 44.8-percent higher operating income of $1.81 billion (€1.36 billion) on 17-percent better sales of $15.2 billion (€11.4 billion).
Bridgestone attributed its sales gains to strong unit sales in both consumer and commercial sectors in North America and Asia/Pacific. Consumer tire demand in Europe was unchanged from a year earlier but commercial demand was up. In Japan, replacement sales rose but OE volume was down.
OTR tire volume was up "firmly" over the first half of 2012, the tire maker said.
Overall sales – tire and non-tire combined – in the Americas jumped 21.3 percent to $8.4 billion (€6.3 billion). Operating income for the region shot up 50.7 percent to $818.9m (€615.9m).
For the full fiscal year, Bridgestone is projecting roughly 40 percent growth in both operating and net income and 18 percent for sales.