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Hankook Posts 2020 Results, Outlines 2021 Targets

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Eighteen-inch-and-above tires made up 35% of Hankook's consumer tire sales during 2020.

Hankook & Co., the parent company of Hankook Tire America Corp., is targeting year-over-year sales growth of 10% in 2021.

The company recently reported a year-over-year sales decline of 6.2% for the full year of 2020. However, its operating profit improved by 15.5%, 2019 versus 2020, with sales of 18-inch and higher tires increasing by 2.6%.

Hankook wants to make18-inch and higher tires 38% of its overall consumer tire product mix. (Today, tires in that range comprise 35% of the company's mix, up from 32% during 2019.)

The company also plans to make a significant investment in its Clarksville, Tenn., consumer tire plant, which has the capacity to build 12,600 passenger tires and 1,300 light truck tires per day, according to MTD's 2021 Facts Issue.

Looking ahead to the rest of 2021, Hankook officials say that "despite signals of market recovery, uncertainties remain" due to the "threat" of COVID-19. The company also foresees "increased competitiveness for SUVs and EV fitments," while noting that its Laufenn brand "has been recognized by the global market for its good quality" and continues to gain acceptance.

In an interview with MTD from mid-2020, Sooil Lee, president of Hankook Tire America Corp., said that "in the short-term, we expect relatively stronger demand for budget-segment products and growth in all-weather product markets, as we expect consumers will gravitate towards cost-effective, all-season options, rather than seasonal products.

“Another movement we are seeing is the ‘trading down effect.’ People are going for more value-for-money products. To accommodate this movement, we are actively promoting Hankook’s second brand, Laufenn. In difficult times like these, we must consider end-user value.”


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