News from Notch Consulting, Inc.

August 22, 2011

Jiangsu tires do not satisfy EU fuel economy standards

Filed under: Tires — Notch @ 9:11 am

A report on the China Rubber Industry Association website, according to the European Rubber Journal’s translation, indicates that Jiangsu tire manufacturers are finding the EU standards for rolling resistance and REACH difficult to achieve. The report “suggests that the new EU regulations may be, ‘another malicious EU trade barrier’, but even so, will improve the quality of Chinese-made tyres for those who succesfully meet the new standards,” according to the ERJ news item.

August 21, 2011

Bridgestone’s Wuxi plant (China) to increase tire production capacity

Filed under: Tires — Notch @ 10:58 am

Bridgestone Corporation will increase production capacity at its Wuxi plant in China. The production capacity of radial passenger tires for the domestic market will increase from 4100 tires/day to 16,300 tires/day by May 2012. The Wuxi Plant will make a total investment of approximately 563 million yuan (approximately ¥8.3 billion). Production of eco-friendly tires, such as the “ECOPIA” brand, is a particular emphasis.

August 20, 2011

Bridgestone to increase production capacity of radial passenger tires at its plant in Tianjin, China

Filed under: Tires — Notch @ 1:38 pm

Bridgestone Corporation has announced that it will increase the production capacity of its Chinese radial passenger tire plant in Tianjin to meet the demand for tires in China. Under the current schedule, the Tianjin Plant will begin production at its increased capacity in July 2012. The Tianjin Plant will make a total investment of approximately 1,054 million yuan (approximately ¥15.5 billion), which will boost the plant’s production capacity by 8,800 tires per day for a production total of 25,300 tires per day. The Bridgestone Group particularly will expand the production capacity of eco-friendly tires, such as “ECOPIA” brand tires.

August 19, 2011

Toyo to build new tire plant in Malaysia

Filed under: Tires — Notch @ 10:08 am

Toyo Tire & Rubber Co., Ltd. has announced that it will build a new tire plant in Malaysia that will produce 5 million passenger car and light truck tires by 2015. The longer-term target is an annual production of 10 million tires.

China’s Triangle Group to Open Technical Center in Akron

Filed under: Uncategorized — Notch @ 9:51 am

WKYC in Cleveland and Tire Review report that the China-based Triangle Group will open a U.S. headquarters and technical center in Akron, Ohio. Triangle Group Co., Ltd. is the second largest tire maker in China. The venture will initially
create 30 local sales and R&D jobs.

August 18, 2011

Japan’s tire industry rebounded in 2010

Filed under: Tires — Notch @ 9:24 am

The Japanese Automobile Tyre Manufacturers Association (JATMA) reports in its publication, Tyre Industry of Japan 2011, that Japan’s tire industry rebounded strongly in 2010. The production volume of automobile tires in 2010 increased for both domestic consumption and exports. This is the first increase in tire production in Japan in the past three years.

Chinese municipal leaders shut down chemical plant in response to local protests

Filed under: Uncategorized — Notch @ 8:57 am

The New York Times reports that municipal leaders in a northeastern Chinese port city announced plans to shut down a chemical plant on Sunday after thousands of protesters confronted riot police officers and demanded that it be closed because of safety concerns. The decision in the port city of Dalian, in Liaoning Province, represents an uncommonly rapid response by the authorities to public anger. The chemical factory in Dalian manufactures paraxylene, a raw material used in the production of polyester. Paraxylene vapor can cause eye and nose irritation and, in high concentrations, lead to death. The chemical factory in Dalian sits 50 yards behind a sea wall. A tropical storm pushed ocean waves, some of them topping 60 feet, against the wall a week ago, breaching the barrier and raising worries that chemicals might leak from the factory.

August 15, 2011

Aditya Birla Nuvo reports 32% volume growth in carbon black

Filed under: Carbon Black — Notch @ 12:31 am

Aditya Birla Nuvo Limited reported strong quarterly results for the quarter ended June 30, 2011. Net earnings were up 70% compared to the same quarter last year, while the company’s revenue grew by 24% from Rs 3,857 crore to Rs 4,767 crore. Along with strong results in the fashion, apparel and textiles businesses, a 32% volume growth and higher power sales in the carbon black business contributed to the growth.

“Carbon Black World” indeed

Filed under: Carbon Black — Notch @ 12:19 am

Astronomers report the discovery of a distant planet in the constellation of Draco that is as black as coal, or pure carbon.

Like Jupiter, TrES-2b (discovered in 2006 by the Trans-Atlantic Exoplanet Survey or TrES, hence its name) is a gas giant. However, while “our” giant planet is covered by bright clouds of ammonia, which reflect more than one third of the light from the Sun, TrES-2b only returns less than one percent of that comes from its star. And this despite the fact that orbits it at least five million km., A fraction of the average distance between Jupiter and the Sun is 778 million km.

“TrES-2b is significantly less reflective than the black paint, which makes it a very strange world,” said David Kipping, of the Harvard-Smithsonian and author of the research to be published soon in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.

August 1, 2011

Evonik completes divestiture of carbon black business

Filed under: Carbon Black — Notch @ 1:22 pm

On August 1, Evonik Industries announced that it had successfully completed the divestment of its carbon black activities on July 29, 2011. The new owners are the investors Rhône Capital and Triton Partners. Including the assumption of certain obligations, the transaction is valued at over €900 million. The carbon black business generated sales of around €1.2 billion in fiscal 2010. The business has been acquired intact as a whole, with its approximately 1,650 employees, about 500 of whom are based in Germany. Evonik Carbon Black was renamed upon transfer and now operates as Orion Engineered Carbons.

As was previously announced, the new CEO of Orion Engineered Carbons is Jack Clem, previously the President of US-based Evonik Engineered Carbons. In the press release, Mr. Clem said, “We are indeed pleased with the results of this process. Rhône and Triton offer our business the opportunity to meet its full potential with investments in technology and people. Our customers and employees can be confident that we will continue our successful growth as a global leader in carbon black.”

Following careful analysis of the strategic options, in September 2010 Evonik’s Executive Board decided to exit the carbon blacks business completely. The divestment process started in November 2010 and the contracts were signed on April 16, 2011.

Here is the press release.

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