NASHVILLE, TN — Bridgestone Corp., parent company of Bridgestone Americas Holding (BAH) Inc. announced consolidated financial results for the six-month period ending June 30. The company reported consolidated net sales of $10.64 billion and net income of $482 million.
Bridgestone/Firestone North American Tire (BFNAT) reported an increase in overall unit sales of passenger and light truck tires as well as increases in overall unit sales of truck and bus tires and significant unit sales growth in ag and OTR tires. Though BFNAT did post a net loss for the first six months of 2004, BAH officials said the positive results are evidence that the company is “continuing on the road to financial recovery.” The losses were due primarily to continuing increases in raw material costs, as well as pension and health care expenses, the company said. BAH continues to forecast a net profit for the year.
“Continued growth in major brand and high performance tire sales in 2004 demonstrate that our new products and product enhancements have been well received by the market,” said John Vispo, BAH controller and CFO and vice president of BFNAT. “Particularly gratifying is the strength of customer acceptance of our recently introduced innovative lines of truck and bus tires. The success of new products is a key to our continued profit improvement.”
At BAH, first half sales increased 12 percent over the previous year — to $4.35 billion. Operating income improved over the prior year to $159 million (from $31 million in the first half of 2003), according to the company. However, operating income continues to be negatively impacted by continuing increases in raw material costs.
Net income also rose significantly in the first half of 2004 to $102 million, from $11 million in the first half of 2003. BAH benefited from strong growth in its Latin American Operations and in BFS Diversified Products and BFS Retail & Commercial Operations.
BAH has forecasted net sales of $8.96 billion, operating profit of $300 million and net income of $180 million for the entire year. Demand for tires in 2004 will remain strong, and unit sales of tires in the Americas will continue to increase, the tiremaker said.
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