Michelin's sales, income fell in 2008

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Groupe Michelin achieved net sales of 16.4 billion euros in 2008, down 2.9% from previous year levels. Michelin's net income for the year totaled 357 million euros, a drop of nearly 54% from 2007.

Sales at the company's Michelin North America Inc. subsidiary totaled $8.3 billion for the full year.(In 2007, Michelin North America posted $8.1 billion in sales.)

Describing general, industry-wide market conditions in North America, Michelin officials said the original equipment passenger tire business "plummeted as never before since the early 1980s," while the replacement passenger segment "experienced a dramatic slump in the second half as it was affected by the decline in mileage driven and the postponement of tire purchases."

On the medium truck and bus tire side, OE shipments were "at an all-time low market level," and the replacement truck and bus segment experienced a "sharp decline," which accelerated during the fourth quarter.

Looking ahead to the rest of 2009, Michelin offiials believe tire markets "will remain well below prior-year levels in the first half."

"In response to the prevailing bearish outlook for the coming months, Michelin is strengthening the management of its production programs in order to increase plant flexibility, tighten inventory management and optimize cash," says Michelin Managing Partner Michel Rollier.


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