Shareholder approval for Titan International’s reincorporation in the US state of Delaware was given at the company’s annual meeting of stockholders on 4 June, clearing the way for the off-road tyre manufacturer to take advantage of the state’s more flexible tax laws. Stockholders also elected Anthony L. Soave to serve as a company director for a three-year term and voted to ratify Grant Thornton LLP as the company’s independent registered public accounting firm for 2015.
Details of a difficult 2014 have emerged in Titan International’s full-year financial report, which was published earlier today. The tyre maker’s CEO and chairman, Maurice Taylor, took the eye-watering US$80.4 million loss attributable to Titan on the chin, referring to 2014 as “a year of very real challenges for businesses in the agriculture, construction and mining sectors.” He also reported that Titan International shed at least 1,900 people from the payroll during the year due to lower production output, with the company’s global employee count sinking below 6,500. Other issues that arose during the 12 month period included currency impacts, impairment charges of approximately $76.5 million and a union slowdown.
France should turn communist when everything goes wrong. That’s the advice Maurice Taylor doled out during an interview with France Info radio. The contents of the interview have been reported by AFP and provide an interesting further chapter to the tome of outspoken comments the Titan International boss has made in relation to the tyre maker’s failed attempt to acquire the Goodyear agricultural tyre facility in Amiens Nord, France.
Titan International released its third quarter 2014 results yesterday, and in the words of chief executive officer and chairman Maurice Taylor, there were a lot of negatives to see. This is bad news for management, bad news for shareholders and, for many Titan employees, very bad news.
The second quarter of 2014 was, in the words of Titan International’s chief financial officer, “disappointing in terms of performance.” John Hrudicka reports that the 11.7 per cent year-on-year decline in sales to US$523.7 million occurred against a backdrop of price reductions, a downturn in the mining segment and a decline in agricultural markets. Gross profit also decreased 74.0 per cent to $22.6 million and was 4.3 per cent of net sales, as compared to 14.6 per cent of net sales a year earlier. Loss from operations amounted to $29.5 million in the second quarter of 2014, compared with a profit from operations of $36.9 million in the second quarter of 2013. Net income went $20.5 million into the red. Dividend declared per common share was $0.05.
Titan International has announced that its subsidiary, Titan Tire Reclamation Corp., (TTRC) is leasing ten acres (4 hectares) of land from Suncor Energy, north of Fort McMurray, Canada for ten years to operate a pyrolysis system developed by Green Carbon, a company controlled by Fred Taylor, brother of Titan International chairman and CEO Maurice Taylor. Titan Tire Reclamation has already engaged in negotiations with various companies operating in Canada’s oil sands regarding the disposal of OTR tyres and conveyor belting.
The Board of Directors at Titan International is set to grow with the appointment of a new director. On 1 June, Dr. Mark Rachesky will join chairman Maurice Taylor and six other directors on the board. Taylor has commented that “all of Titan’s directors had the opportunity to meet Dr. Rachesky and agreed he would make an excellent board member and bring a new voice to Titan’s shareholders. We look forward to his participation on the board.”
First quarter 2014 financials for Titan International are out, and Maurice Taylor says the company’s performance during the opening three months of the fiscal year fell short of expectations, mainly due to a “nonexistent” mining business, declines in the original equipment and aftermarket agricultural segments, and higher fuel costs. Titan now intends to instigate a series of optimisation measures at its global facilities.