Yokohama's half-year profits slip
Rising raw material and operating costs ate into Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd.'s profitability in the first six months of fiscal 2004.
Operating income fell 15.9 percent to $42.4 million primarily as a result of an increase in selling, general and administrative expenses, although cost-cutting measures largely offset rises in raw materials prices, the company said. Net income fell 23 percent to $13.6 million.
In its Tire Group, Yokohama reported a 0.8-percent decline in sales to $1.17 billion for the period and a 27.5-percent downturn in operating income to $18.6 million.
In North America, Yokohama posted sales of $296.5 million in the half, down from $317.2 million last year. Overall, the company reported consolidated net sales of $1.67 billion for the half, down 0.1 percent.
For the rest of the fiscal year, Yokohama forecasts a 0.1-percent decrease in consolidated net sales to $3.67 billion and net income of $91.7 million-a 1.4-percent decline.
Hwa Fong picks plant site
BANGKOK, Thailand-Hwa Fong Rubber Industry Co. Ltd. has picked a site in Thailand for its newest plant, a $10 million motorcycle, scooter, bicycle and ATV tire factory that will boost Hwa Fong Rubber (Thailand)'s annual capacity 40 percent to 30 million units.
To finance the project, Hwa Fong's Thai unit went partially public, offering nearly 12 million shares on the Stock Exchange of Thailand. The shares offered represent about 30 percent of the firm's asset base.
If all goes according to plan, the new plant will be operational before year-end 2004 with an annual capacity of 12 million tires-6 million industrial tires and tubes, 3 million motorcycle tires and tubes and 3 million bicycle tires and tubes.
The industrial tires and tubes are intended for export to the U.S. while the motorcycle and bicycle tires will be for distribution throughout the ASEAN (Association of South East Asian Nations) trading bloc, the prospectus said.