TOKYO—Bridgestone Corp. has seen its operating income decline 3 percent to $2.6 billion in the first nine months of 2018, compared to the same period the year before.
The Japanese tire and rubber company reported a 0.4 percent increase in net sales for the period at $23.5 billion in its third quarter results published Nov. 8.
When compared with the same period in 2017, this year's sales in the tire division rose 1 percent to $19.5 billion, while diversified products' sales remained flat at $4.1 billion.
Operating income for the tires business increased 2 percent to $2.5 billion, in stark contrast with a 57 percent decline in operating income from the diversified products segment.
Bridgestone attributed the overall decline in operating income to a 17 percent rise in selling, general and administrative expenses, and a 4.8 percent drop in price mix and volumes. These factors offset an 18 percent improvement in raw materials costs.
In the third quarter, particularly, Bridgestone said weakness in Latin American currencies and one-off costs to restructure the diversified products business negatively affected operating income.
The company statement did not further elaborate on the restructuring program, but said it was currently focusing on a reorganization to strengthen the solution business.
In the tires business, revenue was up due to promotion activities, Bridgestone said, noting growth in sales for large-rim size tires and large OTR tires.
Additionally, the company said it is raising prices in Americas and Europe "to keep appropriate price positioning."
For the full year, Bridgestone expects sales to remain flat at $32 billion, with revenue remaining on par with prior-year levels in both the tire and diversified products divisions.
Operating income is projected to fall 2 percent to $3.6 million, Bridgestone said.