WEST CHICAGO, Ill. — Recently published positive outlooks for the U.S. farming and construction sectors bode well for Titan International Inc. in 2022, Chairman Maurice Taylor Jr. said this week.
In a prepared statement released Jan. 20, Taylor said Titan "will be good coming out of the gate" after ending 2021 on a strong note, "which will lead to a really good year (in 2022)."
Mr. Taylor's comments come about a month after he issued a public appeal to potential investors to reconsider Titan as an investment with upsides.
In his latest statement, Mr. Taylor cited recently published U.S. Department of Agriculture data that predict a record number of acres will be planted in 2022. That, coupled with strong commodity prices and relatively low levels of inventory, could lead to record harvests this year.
In addition, he noted that all the major manufacturers of farm equipment are reporting "nearly full" order books for 2022.
"If a farmer cannot make a profit in these markets, then they should find a different career," he said.
Titan's construction tire and wheel business also stands to benefit from growth in the construction sector, buoyed by the infrastructure bill passed this past fall, he said.
That "should be a big force if the bureaucrats can get it moving," he said. "Then, this momentum could keep rolling right through 2023 and into 2024.
"The USA is going to go back to building things and rebuilding our supply chains," he said. "The last 30 years America lost a lot of business, the next 30 we will see a lot of that come back. Our best years are ahead if we learn from the mistakes of the last 30 years."
Titan also has new labor agreements in place at its three U.S. tire plants that include incentives for the workforce that are based on rewarding increases in production output. Mr. Taylor called this new element in the contracts a "win/win" for both the production workers and Titan.
"An increase in overall production output to meet customer demand along with improvements in plant efficiencies is also a win for our shareholders," he said.
Buoyed by a particularly strong third quarter, Titan — which ranks among the largest farm and construction tire makers worldwide with estimated fiscal 2020 tire-related sales of $1 billion — reported sales through the first nine months of fiscal 2021 were up nearly 39% over the comparable 2020 period.
The agricultural and earthmoving/construction sectors' sales for the period were 44.7% and 36.8% higher than the comparable 2020 period.
In addition, Titan is evaluating a number of "potential acquisitions that could be interesting" for the farm, industrial and OTR tire and wheel maker, Mr. Taylor said in his December message to shareholders.
More recently, Titan disclosed it has secured a deal in Europe for the supply of radial Goodyear-brand farm tires to complement bias-ply tires it produces at a plant in Russia.
Titan will report fiscal 2021 results in early March.