HANOVER, Germany (Nov. 3)—Continental A.G. said it remains on the road to success despite rather weak economic conditions in the automotive industry, particularly in the U.S.
In the first nine months, Conti reported consolidated sales jumped 11.1 percent to $12.3 billion. Phoenix A.G., the rubber products maker Conti acquired in 2004 and integrated into its ContiTech unit, contributed $881.9 million in sales.
Before consolidation changes and exchange rate effects, consolidated sales increased by 4.2 percent. Consolidated operating profits climbed 35.9 percent to $1.37 billion, with a return on sales of 11.1 percent.
Consolidated net earnings increased 54.9 percent to $881.9 million from $569.2 million.
"In addition to the excellent operational performance, this is also a result of one-off effects," said Conti Chairman Manfred Wennemer, Nov. 2 in Hanover. "There is no indication that this trend will change in the fourth quarter, so we will top our record figures from last year, even when the one-off effects are not taken into consideration."
The passenger and light truck tires division increased sales 8.5 percent in the first nine months over 2004 to $3.86 billion; pre-tax earnings grew by 59.7 percent to $577.1 million, increasing the earnings/sales ratio to 15 percent.
Sales by the commercial vehicle tires unit fell 8.6 percent during the period to $1.2 billion, but the pre-tax earnings were up 50 percent to $136.4 million, Conti reported.