HELSINKI, FinlandNokian Tyres P.L.C. suffered double-digit drops in operating income in the 2014 fourth quarter and year on the combined negative effects of falling oil prices and weak Russian and CIS currencies and economies.
The drops could have been worse, however, according to Nokian President and CEO Ari Lehtoranta, but the company was able to counteract some of the negatives by strengthened market positioning, which allowed for improved operational efficiences and higher-than-estimated raw materials cost reductions.
Fourth-quarter operating profit fell 16.9 percent to $102.9 million on 7.7-percent lower sales of $504.6 million. Full year operating income was down 19.9 percent to $410 million on 8.7-percent lower sales of $1.84 billion. Net income rose 13.4 percent to $276.8 million.
Business in North America grew 16.8 percent in 2014 to $168 million, or 9.1 percent of global sales.
For 2015, Nokian expects that, with stable exchange rates, net sales and operating profit will decline slightly.