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Continental AG posts strong first-half financial results for both earnings and sales

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Continental AG recorded net income of 573.7 million euros on consolidated sales of 8 billion euros for the first half ended June 30, 2007. That compares to income of 423.6 million euros on sales of 7.2 billion euros for the same period in 2006.

(Taking the exchange rate on Friday, June 29, 2007, into account, Continental posted net income of $776.5 million on sales of $10.8 billion for the first half.)

The 35.4% increase in net income and 10.8% increase in sales, as well as a two-digit in­crease in EBIT (26.2% to 911.5 million euros), bode well for Continental, according to Executive Board Chairman Manfred ofWennemer.

"This strong half-year performance gives us a rock-solid basis for yet another peak year. And, at the same time, the figures for the divisions prove that our strategic direction as a broad-based automotive sup­plier is successful and absolutely correct."

Passenger and Light Truck Tires division: compared to the first half of last year, sales increased by 6.5% to 2.39 billion euros.

The division reported a 68.3% increase in EBIT to 356.6 million euros, while the return on sales rose to 14.9%.

"We have reinforced our upward trend in The Americas region, posting marked improvements in EBIT over the first half of 2006 in both the original equipment and replacement sectors, says Dr. Alan Hippe, who is responsible for this business. "And this also applies to the adjusted figures."

Commercial Vehicle Tires division: sales declined 1.8% in the first half of 2007, from 719.7 million euros to 706.4 million euros.

The division increased its EBIT to 58.3 million euros, up 31.9%, while its return on sales rose to 8.3%.

Automotive Systems division: sales rose in the first half of 2007 to 3.4 billion euros, up 20.1% compared with the same period in 2006. The Motorola automo­tive electronics business contributed 558.7 million euros to sales, or 16.3% of the total.

The automotive electronics business from Motorola contributed 7.4 million euros to the EBIT, which totalted 332.4 million euros. The return on sales fell to 9.7% compared to 11.1% last year.

"Integration of the business acquired from Motorola is proceeding well, and we're on schedule," says Dr. Karl-Thomas Neumann, the Executive Board member in charge of the Automotive Systems division.

ContiTech division: sales increased to 1.56 billion euros, up 5.8%.

ContiTech raised EBIT by 8.1% to 189.5 million euros. Its return on sales increased to 12.1%.

"Our (overall) figures for the first six months of 2007 underpin our forecast of topping last year’s sales and earnings”, said Wennemer.

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