HANOVER, Germany (May 4)—Continental A.G. is projecting record sales and earnings for 2005 based on the positive results of the first quarter, which saw both profits and sales up measurably.
Pretax operating earnings rose 9.5 percent to $388 million while sales, buoyed by the first-time inclusion of the Phoenix activities acquired last year, grew 8.9 percent to $4.27 billion. Net earnings jumped 24.8 percent to $219.2 million.
"Despite the rather weak economy in the automotive industry, we still have our sights firmly set on record targets for the year as a whole," said Manfred Wennemer, executive board chairman.
The passenger and light truck tires unit's sales rose 6.7 percent to $1.29 billion and the operating result was up 7.6 percent to $119.6 million, while the commercial vehicle tires unit posted a 12.9-percent gain in operating profits to $23 million on 9.6-percent better sales of $402.4 million. The ContiTech businesses reported 43-percent higher sales of $929 million and 19.5-percent better operating profits of $76.5 million, with the Phoenix activities contributing $14.8 million in earnings and $312 million in sales.