Bridgestone has announced three new US-based marketing appointments within its Bridgestone Commercial Solutions business. Matt Loos has been promoted to director of truck and bus marketing, Michelle Lane has been promoted to director of off-the-road marketing, and Cassandra Kilareski has joined the Bridgestone Commercial Solutions marketing team as senior manager of marketing communications and digital.
Moody’s Investors Service has affirmed Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company’s, Corporate Family Rating at Ba3 and Probability of Default Rating at Ba3-PD. In addition Moody’s has revised the company’s rating outlook to positive from negative. The Speculative Grade Liquidity Rating was affirmed at SGL-2. The news is likely to be interpreted as a signal of improved financial performance at Goodyear, following the publication of good financial results from the US tyremaker yesterday (13 February 2014). The timing of the announcement is also interesting in light of the new that Goodyear and Sumitomo are dissolving their joint venture.
MAM Software reports that its MAM Autopart Tyres has helped Darcy’s of Durham get its business up and running. With in-built point of sale functionality, Autopart Tyres gives Darcy’s access to extensive features such as labour allocation, parts look up, and technical data. Darcy’s can also keep in touch with its customers by SMS and email, which reduces the cost of postage and paper. The cloud-hosted Software as a Service (SaaS) approach allows the company to spread server license fees through monthly payments.
Peter Sephton, who joined as Parts Alliance group CEO in August 2013 has announced some senior appointments. Sephton is aligning the four businesses into two regional alliances, the Western Alliance formed from GMF and CES and the Eastern Alliance, formed by SCMF and Allparts. Each Alliance will share resources, systems and best practice to accelerate growth, facilitate new branch openings, develop staff training and invest in tools to take customer service to world leading standards.
A famous saying posits that nothing is certain except for death and taxes, but Nokian Tyres may argue that taxes and then further taxes are more certain. Following on from the reassessment and €26.9 million bill received in December for the 2007 financial year, Nokian Tyres announced on 21 January that Finland’s Tax Administration has also reassessed Nokian’s tax for the years 2008 to 2010. According to this reassessment, the tyre maker must pay an extra €73.3 million tax and interest (€51.0 million of which is tax) for these three years. Payment must be made in February 2014.
For 2014, Maxxis International aims to make motorcycle tyre sales more rewarding than ever – and to accomplish this, it has revised its UK dealer pricing policy and made entry into its fully-supported ‘Elite Dealer Program’ even easier. By doing so, the company says dealers can benefit from lower trade prices and healthy profit margins, along with aggressive marketing and Maxxis’ rewards scheme.
On 30 December, Nokian Tyres received the unwelcome news that a reassessment made by Finland’s Tax Administration has determined the company must pay €26.9 million in additional taxes, plus punitive tax increases and interest, for the year 2007. The full amount will be recorded in Nokian’s 2013 financial statement and results. The company says it will appeal the ruling, however should it be upheld Nokian’s corporate tax rate will rise over the next five years to the maximum rate of 22 per cent, rather than to the previously announced 17 per cent.
“As Australia’s largest supermarkets cease making fuel offers after a watchdog deems that offering customers discounted petrol is a threat to competition, it is imperative that the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) re-open their investigation into the UK fuel market” said Brian Madderson, Petrol Retailers’ Association Chairman.
SMMT figures reveal that new car registrations rose seven per cent in November to 159,581 units, the month’s best performance since 2004. 2,111,819 cars have been registered for the year-to-date, up 9.9 per cent and already ahead of the 2012 full-year figure of 2,044,609. This means that the car market is on target to hit the SMMT forecast of 2.25 million registrations for 2013.
As of 1 December 2013 Ferdinando Visconti di Modrone takes over responsibility for marketing in Central Europe within Pirelli’s Truck business unit. He succeeds Alain Versace, who will leave Pirelli on 30 November.
Titan International has set a 2014 revenue goal of US$2.4 billion to $2.7 billion, the company reported on 25 November. This target assumes that Titan will not make any further acquisitions and is calculated on the premise that pricing and raw material costs will remain flat next year. Titan forecasts maintenance capital expenditure will be $70 million in 2014.
Deutsche Bank Equity Research Automotive has adjusted its 2013 and 2014 earnings outlook for Bridgestone Corporation. In a company update published on 18 November, analyst Kurt Sanger wrote that overall, Bridgestone’s strong third quarter performance highlighted the company’s “operational excellence through cost controls.”
The Grizz, aka Maurice Taylor, would have growled at Titan International’s designation as Zacks Investment Research’s ‘Bear of the Day’ on 13 November. Explaining why Titan was Zacks’ Ursidae of choice yesterday, Tracey Ryniec, a strategy analyst with the investment industry firm, opined that Titan International continues to suffer from a build-up in tyre inventory in the farm and construction industries and weak pricing.
In its consolidated financial statements for the first three quarters of the 2013 fiscal year, Bridgestone Corporation reports net sales of ¥2,606.0 billion (£16.4 billion) between January and September, a 17 per cent increase from the first three quarters of 2012. Net sales in the third quarter alone were ¥900.8 billion (£5.7 billion). Operating income amounted to ¥318.9 billion (£2.0 billion) for the first nine months of the year, a year-on-year increase of 56 per cent, and ¥126.5 billion (£797.9 million) in the third quarter.
Nexen’s third quarter figures have underperformed market expectations. According to Deutsche Bank research published 1 November, Nexen’s operating profit results were 13 per cent below consensus expectations.