QUINCY, Ill. (April 28, 2010)—Titan International Inc. reported lower sales and income for the first quarter of 2010, but Chairman and CEO Maurice Taylor Jr. is expecting the firm's fortunes to turn around later this year as demand picks up.
Net income for the quarter ended March 31 fell 70 percent to $2.1 million as sales dropped 15.6 percent to $196.4 million. Titan blamed the sales decline primarily on the agricultural segment, where demand was down by about 19 percent from the 2009 first quarter.
On the earnings side, the gross profit margin showed a slight improvement despite the reduction in sales because of improved manufacturing efficiencies—including reduced headcount—in the agricultural segment.
Taylor said he sees a bright future for Titan's mining products, where the firm's second-generation large OTR tires are performing above expectations.
“It is the mining tire business that will determine whether Titan has a good year or a great one,” Taylor said, noting that Titan expects demand will improve with each successive quarter.
Titan also expects the big farm segment to show strength in the second and fourth quarters and construction to rebound, even though demand still will be only about half of what it was in 2007.
At the same time, Titan is notifying customers of impending price increases in the wake of rising raw materials costs.