FINDLAY, Ohio — Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. has reported a net loss of $143 million, or $2.43 per share, for the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2008. Net sales for the period were $636 million, down $130 million from the prior year. The decreased revenues were driven by volume declines offset by improved pricing and mix.
Cooper’s results during the quarter included pretax restructuring charges of $76 million related to the impending closure of its facility in Albany, Ga. The company also had a $31 million pretax charge for impairment of goodwill in its international segment. Results were pressured by high raw material cost increases and production curtailments as the company manages inventory to align with demand.
For the year Cooper generated net sales of $2.9 billion, down slightly from 2007. Net losses were $219 million for the year compared with net income of $91 million from continuing operations in 2007.
Roy Armes, chief executive officer, commented, "The tire industry and our business are under intense pressure from several angles. These include volatile raw material costs, decreased global demand and more intense competition. We are proactively taking steps to implement elements of our strategic plan and at the same time address market conditions. During the fourth quarter there were further decreases in the global demand for tires.
"We are focused on improving our global cost structure and are beginning to see some of the benefits from these actions; unfortunately much of what we have done is camouflaged by current market conditions.
"While the near term outlook is pressured by macroeconomic events around the globe, we believe the actions we are taking are appropriate and will strengthen our business longer term. We have been able to maintain considerable cash reserves to support our plans, and we maintain unused existing credit facilities. We are repositioning Cooper to emerge from the current recession a stronger competitor."