GRAPEVINE, Texas (Feb. 1)—Goodyear's North American Tire operation is on track to finish 2004 in the black for the first time since 2001, according to the unit's top executive.
Jon Rich, North American Tire president, told more than 1,600 dealers attending Goodyear's 2005 Dealer Conference in Grapevine that operating earnings in North America had more than doubled through the first nine months of 2004. He was unable to comment on year-end results until they are officially released, however.
The company's stock price also performed well during the year, gaining 87 percent, he said.
For the year, Goodyear gained market share in North America led by the success of the Assurance lines launched last year and despite a 15-percent increase in imports of Asian tires.
Goodyear achieved earnings by enhancing productivity—including closing the Huntsville, Ala., tire plant—and implementing other initiatives like Six Sigma, Rich said.