HANOVER, Germany (March 15, 2001) — One-time restructuring-related costs of $55 million ate into Continental A.G.´s earnings last year, leaving the company´s operating and net profits below the fiscal 1999 performance.
Continental´s sales grew 10.8 percent last year, to $9.32 billion, largely due to the growth of its automotive systems group. Operating profits fell 15.5 percent to $398.2 million, while the net result was down 12.8 percent to $188.9 million.
The restructuring costs related primarily to the closing of a Uniroyal car tire plant in Newbridge, Scotland, Continental said. Adding to the bottom line problems were rising raw materials costs and a "very unsatisfactory" year by the company´s controlled distribution chains in Europe.
Continental Tire North America increased sales by 2.4 percent — when adjusted for currency fluctuations — to $1.62 billion, Continental said.
Each of the company´s tire operations — passenger car and commercial vehicle tires in Europe, and Conti North America — recorded "pleasing growth" in unit sales.
The ContiTech non-tire rubber products division — the bulk of which is for sale — reported 4.2 percent growth to $1.65 billion.