CHARLOTTE, N.C. (Feb. 10, 2009)—Carlisle Cos. Inc.'s Transportation Products division—which includes the firm's Carlisle Tire & Wheel business unit—fell $3.1 million into the red in the fourth quarter on lower sales and higher raw material costs.
Division sales in the fourth quarter fell 8.2 percent to $170.1 million as continued softness in the lawn and garden, high-speed trailer, styled wheel and construction trailer markets offset gains in the agricultural and construction tire and wheel markets, Carlisle said.
The unit's full year operating income fell 36.4 percent to $50.6 million despite 0.9-percent higher sales of $861.1 million. The division represents 29 percent of Carlisle's overall sales.
On the whole, Carlisle reported net income from continuing operations of $149.5 million, a 30.3-percent drop from fiscal 2007. Net sales from continuing operations were $2.97 billion, an 11-percent increase over 2007. Sales increased in all segments, and organic sales growth was 3 percent, Carlisle said.
Carlisle President and CEO David Roberts called 2008 a “very challenging year” with “unprecedented” raw material cost increases, which the firm was never able to completely offset with productivity improvements and price increases.
In December Carlisle closed its tire, wheel, trailer, and industrial brake plants for the holiday season in response to a “significant slowing” in orders and kept many of those plants closed in early January.
Carlisle also said it expects the loss of its Bowdon, Ga., tire and wheel facility by fire in December to be “fully recoverable” by insurance.