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Goodyear to Explore Unit Sale

The company may shed its engineered products operations.
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Goodyear Tire & Rubber


will consider selling its engineered products unit in an effort to focus on core operations.

The company said after the bell Tuesday it has engaged J. P. Morgan Securities and Goldman Sachs as financial advisers.

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"While Engineered Products is performing well, it is a non-core operation for Goodyear," said Chairman and CEO Robert J. Keegan. "As we continue to build on the considerable progress we have made in recent years, we believe the best course of action is to focus all of our resources on the growth of our core consumer and commercial tire businesses."

"We will consider the sale of the business to a buyer that will recognize the considerable value of the business and its associates while maintaining Goodyear's level of service to customers," Keegan added.

Goodyear's Engineered Products unit makes engineered rubber products for industrial, military, consumer and transportation original equipment end-users. In 2004, the business had sales of roughly $1.5 billion and operating income of $113 million. It operates 30 facilities worldwide and has about 7,000 employees.

The unit accounted for roughly 10% of the company's overall 2004 revenue.

Shares of Goodyear closed Tuesday down 44 cents, or 2.8%, to $15.44.