TOKYO-Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. expects net profits in 1995 to jump three and a half times over last year's, according to a revised forecast released by its parent company, Tokyo-based Bridgestone Corp. BFS's net profits (after taxes) are expected to reach $100 million this year and total sales to climb to $6.2 billion, according to Bridgestone.
Last year, the Nashville, Tenn.-based subsidiary earned $29 million on total sales of $5.67 billion.
Bridgestone is attributing the large increase in profits to a strong performance in BFS's South American and non-tire divisions, a continued increase in its overall market share and strong demand for light truck and truck tires in North Amer-ica.
The tire maker also expects higher sales volumes and increases in productivity to outweigh the effects of higher raw materials prices.
Worldwide, however, the company is expecting a slight decrease in consolidated sales this year to $18.6 billion (1.58 trillion yen at the conversion rate of 85 yen=$1). Net profits should increase 56.7 percent to $588.2 million, the company said.
Tire sales are increasing in every major global market, the company said, but unfavorable exchange rates are offsetting those increases.
Bridgestone's first-half non-consolidated sales totaled $3.61 billion, up slightly from last year.
Non-consolidated tire sales were $2.68 billion, up 8.4 percent from last year's first-half sales.
First-half non-consolidated net profits increased 29.6 percent to $122.2 million from 1994 to 1995, Bridgestone said.