MILAN, Italy-Pirelli S.p.A. and its majority-held tire unit, Pirelli Tyre Holding N.V. (PTH), both reported vastly improved earnings in the first half, reflecting efforts of the past few years to streamline operations and improve efficiency. Management said it expects results in the second half to at least match those in the first six months, based on a ``picture of general stability in the various business areas.''
In the U.S., ``actions are being undertaken to improve upon the difficult situation'' of the company's Pirelli Armstrong Tire Corp. (PATC), following its lengthy labor strikes.
Pirelli is the last of major tire and rubber product makers with calendar year fiscal periods to report half-year earnings, and results have been positive in all cases.
Pirelli Tyre's net results tripled from last year to $17.7 million, in spite of more than $18 million in extraordinary items taken to account for the cost of cleaning up the Breuberg, Germany, plant after it was flooded in late January.
PTH's first half sales of $1.72 billion were down marginally from a year ago. But on a direct comparison basis, sales were up about 10 percent after discounting the sales of divested activities, primarily PATC's farm tire business.