ERJ Staff report (RN)
Paris − Michelin reported a 2.4 percent drop in sales revenue in its fiscal 2014 first quarter despite a 3.4 percent increase in sales volume, reported Bruce Davis for Rubber News.
The drop in revenue reflects negative changes in the price-mix ratio and currency exchange rate differences, Michelin said.
Sales totalled $6.6bn (€4.76bn) in the period, with revenues in the specialty businesses sector dropping the most at 5.2 percent.
Michelin did not disclose earnings at this time, but said it expects to improve its gross unit margin for the entire year, “while preserving a positive balance between pricing policy and raw materials costs.”
By business unit, revenue in the passenger/light truck area slipped 2.4 percent to $3.5bn (€2.5bn); truck tire revenue was off 1 percent to $2.03bn (€1.46bn); and specialty business sales slid to $1.07bn (€773m).
Regarding the increase in volumes, Michelin said this reflects a “generally improving market environment,” except in Eastern Europe and the mining segment.
As for the market environment, Michelin replacement demand for consumer tires was up overall 7 percent, including 11 percent growth in Asia and 7 percent in North America. Likewise, aftermarket demand for truck tires was up in all markets, including 8 percent in North America.
Original equipment demand was more of a mixed bag, Michelin reported, with gains in Europe, North America and Asia for consumer tires offsetting declines in South America and Africa/Middle East. In truck tires, gains in Asia and North and South America offset drops in Europe and Africa/Middle East.