NOKIA, Finland (Feb. 13, 2009)—Nokian Tyres P.L.C. suffered a net loss and a 25-percent drop in sales in the fourth quarter but still ended the year with higher sales and operating profits than in fiscal 2007.
Looking forward, management said the financial crisis “makes it difficult to draw up precise forecasts for demand in the tire market,” but the company expects first quarter sales and operating profit to fall “clearly short” of the previous year.
Nokian President and CEO Kim Gran said the firm's focus this year will be on “securing cash flow and managing risks.”
For the quarter ended Dec. 31, Nokian reported a net loss of $17 million on sales of $392 million. Included in the lower sales figures was a 13.1-percent drop in invoiced orders in the U.S., Nokian said. Operating earnings fell 50.1 percent to $68.1 million.
For the year, Nokian reported a 17.2-percent drop in net income to $204.8 million, but 5.6- and 5.5-percent gains in operating earnings and sales to $361.6 million and $1.58 billion, respectively.
Invoiced sales in the U.S. grew 11.9 percent for the year, despite the fourth quarter decline, to roughly $110 million.