HANOVER, Germany (March 14)—One-time restructuring-related costs of $55 million ate into Continental A.G.´s earnings last year, leaving its operating and net profits below fiscal 1999 figures. Continental´s sales grew 10.8 percent 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 are 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 Inc. increased sales by 2.4 percent—when adjusted for currency fluctuations—to $1.62 billion, Continental said. The ContiTech non-tire rubber products division—the bulk of which is for sale—reported 4.2 percent growth to $1.65 billion.