Replacement tyre specialist TBC Corporation boosted net sales in the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2004 by 31.6% to $US487.8 million compared to $370.7 million in the fourth quarter of 2003.

Total unit tyre sales increased 21.1% compared to a 3.3% increase in unit shipments by tyre manufacturers in the fourth quarter. Same store sales for TBC's retail segment increased 2.9% in the fourth quarter of 2004.

Net income for the fourth quarter of 2004 was $12.1 million, or $0.52 per diluted share, versus $9.6 million, or $0.41 per diluted share, in the fourth quarter of 2003.

Results for the fourth quarter of 2004 included an after-tax charge of $0.9 million, or $0.04 per diluted share, due to the final disposition of discontinued inventories purchased in connection with the NTB acquisition. Results for the fourth quarter of 2003 were restated to reflect the company-wide adoption of the FIFO inventory costing method.

"Fourth quarter results demonstrate positive momentum in both our retail and wholesale units," said Larry Day, TBC president and CEO.

"Within our retail segment, sales were driven by an increase in tyre demand and continued expansion in mechanical services.  Overall, we were pleased with the performance of our company-operated stores throughout 2004, and Big O turned in a solid performance for the quarter and the year."

For the year ended December 31, 2004, the company reported a 40.7% increase in net sales from $1,318.5 million in 2003 to $1,854.6 million in 2004.

Total unit tyre sales increased 19.6% during the year compared to a 3.0% increase in unit shipments by tyre manufacturers. Same store sales for TBC's retail segment increased 2.0% in 2004.

Net income in 2004 was $37.6 million, or $1.62 per diluted share, versus $32.2 million, or $1.42 per diluted share, in 2003.