Goodyear 'playing to win,' Keegan tells shareholders

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"Today, Goodyear is a refocused company," Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. Chairman and CEO Bob Keegan announced at the company's annual shareholders meeting today. "We have zero interest in mere survival. We are playing to win. And we are winning."

Keegan said Goodyear remains committed to its strategic turnaround plan that was launched two years ago.

Keegan told shareholders that Goodyear intends to create a "richer" product mix and boost its brand equity by accelerating the introduction of new products.

He also said that he is pleased with Goodyear's efforts in:

* rebuilding dealer relationships;

* changing the allocation of Goodyear's capital by investing to create value and eliminating costs where little or no value creation was identified;

* increasing the earnings capacity of businesses that were doing well while working on the turnaround in the North American Tire business;

* taking steps to improve the balance sheet by extending debt maturities, thereby creating sufficient time to turn around the company;

* improving the capabilities of the Akron, Ohio-based tiremaker's leadership team.

Keegan added that the company remains committed to improving the core economics of its businesses while striving for better market positions.

"The state of our company – your company – is improving steadily.

"We certainly have more challenges ahead of us, but I believe we are far better positioned to meet those challenges today than we were two years ago.

"There are dramatic changes taking place in our company today and there are more to come tomorrow.

"We are still a work in progress," he concluded. "But we are now enjoying both the work and the progress."

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