Tire makers also dominated Rubber & Plastics News' ranking of the world's top 25 rubber product manufacturers, including both tires and non-tire products. In fact, you have to go all the way to No. 10 to find a company, France's Hutchinson S.A., that doesn't make tires at all. Japan's Bridgestone Corp. surfaced once again as the largest maker of tire and non-tire rubber products, based on 1993 sales, outpacing Goodyear and Groupe Michelin.
Goodyear overtook Michelin in the ranking, based both on a sales decline by Michelin and a shift in currency exchange rates.
The value of the French franc slipped against the dollar by about 7 percent, using the annual averaged rates for comparison.
The rest of the top 10 remained unchanged from a year ago: Continental A.G. at No. 4, followed by Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd., Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd., Pirelli S.p.A., Toyo Tire & Rubber Co. Ltd., BTR P.L.C. and Hutchinson.
However, if the sales of Sumitomo's Ohtsu Tire & Rubber Co. Ltd. subsidiary had been included in Sumitomo's figures, the parent company would have slid past Continental into fourth place.
Twelve of the 25 companies on the list are predominantly tire manufacturers and Bandag Inc., ranked No. 25, realizes nearly its entire rubber product sales volume from tire treads.
The devaluation of the British pound in late 1992 had a negative effect on BTR, which failed to overtake Toyo for eighth.
Cleveland-based Standard Products Co., parent of tread rubber maker Oliver Rubber Co., slipped slightly on the list, falling to No. 24 this year from No. 23 in 1992.
Japan led the rankings with eight companies, ahead of the U.S. with seven. France, Germany, South Korea and the United Kingdom had two companies each in the top 25, while Italy and Australia had one each.
Taken all together, the top 25 companies' sales of tires and other rubber products totaled nearly $65 billion in 1993.
RPN, a sister publication of TIRE BUSINESS, compiled this list from information obtained from surveys, annual reports and industry sources. Non-U.S. companies' results were converted from the local currencies into U.S. dollars at the average annual exchange rates for 1993.