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DN TYRE & RUBBER PROJECTS IMPROVED PROFITABILITY

By NBF News
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BASED on the increasing demand for its imported tyres, DN Tyre & Rubber (DNTR) Plc will return to profitability within a very 'short time.'

According to the Chairman of the company, Jabez Dayo Lawuyi, there is also need to bring in some good quality budget tyres for the low-income segments.

Formerly Dunlop Nigeria Plc, DNTR, according to Lawuyi, presently distributes Dunlop Tyres in Nigeria, and has sole distributorship arrangement with Taishan Tyres of China, in addition to 'our own brand of Crown brand of tyres for which we are exclusive distributors in Nigeria.'

Speaking during the company's yealy general meeting at the weekend in Lagos, Lawuyi said DNTR has established direct tyre services facilities with an increasing number of fleets, 'bringing in guaranteed market for our products, especially heavy truck tyres for country haulage.'

Lawuyi said the company would continue to negotiate for funds from alternative sources in view of what he described as 'some challenges' with established banks for now.

Explaining further, Lawuyi said, 'these challenges will hopefully be resolved when either we obtain the much-needed bail out funds or indeed we realise more assets that may be surplus to our requirements'.

He added, 'your directors continue to guard the company's assets very jealously and it is gratifying to note that the assets of the company, if realised, cover significant parts of the company's liabilities.'

Lawuyi told the shareholders that the main challenge, which affect the company's early return to profitability is the availability of cash for its tyre import business.

He said, 'this challenge is being addressed vigorously and I am happy to note that progress is being made in this area. In the meantime, the company will continue to make its presence felt in the market with importation of good quality products.

'It is my hope that the government will conclude all deliberations on the automotive sector bail out shortly and it is my expectation that this will take place before the current Federal Executive Council is discharged.'

Making reference to the financial performance for the year ended September 30, 2009, Lawuyi said the company has managed to stay afloat and even reduced losses.

He explained that at the end of the third quarter, a loss before tax of N177.8 million was recorded, adding that the loss is significant improvement on the figure for the same period in previous year, which stood at N590.4 million.

Speaking on behalf of the Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), Mr. Adekunle Odokun advised the management of the company to remain focused 'so that any policy inconsistency will not affect us.'