Brussels – Belgian steel wire and tire cord maker Bekaert has seen its sales to the tire market increase over the first nine months of the year, but expects a slowdown in the final quarter.
Sales of the rubber reinforcement segment, which covers 45% of the company’s total revenue, grew 5.2% to just under €1.5 billion for the nine months to end of September.
The company linked the growth to volume-driven organic growth and favourable currency movements.
In particular, the business unit achieved more than 11% volume growth in China, due to strong demand in the first half of the year and increased market share throughout the first nine months, the company announced 15 Nov.
While the tires markets “held up well” in the first nine months, the company said it expected a slowdown in the fourth quarter.
This, it said, was a result of “the normal seasonality and destocking actions throughout the supply chain in anticipation of a continued weak business climate.”
The business unit also saw continued weak demand from hose reinforcement markets in EMEA and North America offsetting the volume growth from tire cord markets in those regions.
Notably, the “severe deceleration” of the Indian economy also affected Bekaert’s third quarter sales in the country.