BFS may close three plants
NASHVILLE, Tenn.-Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. is considering closing tire plants in Mexico and Argentina unless it gets wage and benefit concessions from unions in those countries.
In Mexico, where BFS operates tire plants in Cuernavaca and Mexico City, the company ``is working with the union to come up with a mutually beneficial plan,'' a company spokesman said. ``A wage reduction measure is necessary to remain competitive in this market.''
At the company's factory near Buenos Aires, ``we have requested union concessions which would put us more in line with the two other local tire manufacturers, Pirelli and Fate,'' said Mark A. Emkes, president, international tire operations.
``In view of losses being incurred at our Argentina location, we need these concessions in order to survive,'' Mr. Emke said.
Sumitomo's income climbs in 2000
KOBE, Japan-Despite a 16.9-percent decline in sales last year, Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd. posted increases in both operating and net earnings
For 2000, Sumitomo reported revenues of $3.92 billion, reflecting the sale of majority control of the Dunlop tire activities in Europe and North America in late 1999 to Goodyear, and the integration of Ohtsu Tire & Rubber Co. Ltd. figures following Sumitomo's taking majority ownership of Ohtsu last year.
Operating income grew 7.1 percent to $235.5 million, while net earnings were up 8.2 percent to $49.4 million. Sumitomo credited its joint purchasing alliance with Goodyear for $18.5 million in savings last year.
For 2001, Sumitomo is building additional tire manufacturing capacity in Indonesia to service its Asian markets.