Tokyo – Bridgestone Corp.'s 2018 operating income fell 4% year-on-year to Yen402 billion (€3.2 billion) on sales stuck at prior-year levels, the company announced 15 Feb.
The tire and rubber-products maker posted sales of Yen3.65 trillion, only marginally higher than the Yen3.64 trillion registered in 2017.
Bridgestone attributed the earnings decline to higher administrative costs, offset to an extent by improvements in price/mix and volumes.
Group operating income showed “gradual signs of recovery” domestically amid rising uncertainties overseas, said the Japanese group.
While the US and European economies performed well, Chinese economic recovery has been at a “standstill,” Bridgestone added.
Overall, Tire Division operating income rose 2% year-on-year to Yen393.9 billion, on sales 1% higher at Yen3.05 trillion.
Bridgestone’s Diversified Products segment, which includes industrial hoses and conveyor belts, reported a 1% year-on-year dip in sales to Yen618.7 billion.
Operating profit for the segment fell 72% year-on-year to Yen8.9 billion for the full year 2018.
Bridgestone attributed the profit decline to a “radical restructuring” scheme within the diversified products unit.
The restructuring is set for completion by 2021, the group’s statement further added.
For 2019, Bridgestone forecast 'slightly higher' earnings and sales, helped by a strong second-half performance.
The group anticipates growth to be driven by increased sales of higher rim diameter passenger car tires and of large OTR tires.