Continental tyres raises target despite hot rubber prices
German auto parts group Continental raised its full-year sales target on solid quarterly results on Wednesday, but warned that soaring commodities prices and debt were a serious handicap.
The tyre specialist now sees 2010 sales of more than 25 billion euros (35 billion dollars), an increase of about 20 percent from a previous estimate of 15 percent.
Net profit is expected to reach just 400 million euros however, down from 1.16 billion last year, owing to a higher tax rate and reimbursements, a statement said.
For the third quarter of 2010, Continental posted a 20 percent gain in sales to 6.49 billion euros and a net profit of 14 million euros.
In the same period last year it suffered a net loss of one billion euros.
Net debt stagnated at eight billion euros, and cost Continental 531 million euros in interest payments in the first nine months of the year, it said.
Continental is pursuing a complex merger with its dominant shareholder, the industrial group Schaeffler, but completion of the deal is not expected before 2012.
© 2010 AFP