News from Notch Consulting, Inc.

December 23, 2013

RMA expects US tire shipments to rise 4% in 2013

Filed under: Tires — Notch @ 6:25 am

Last week, the Rubber Manufacturers Association updated its tire shipment data for 2013. Under the new forecast, US tire shipments are expected to increase more than 4% in 2013 to 297 million, an increase of 12 million units compared with 2012. This represents a significant improvement over previous forecasts, particularly for replacement tires, where demand benefited from an increase in miles driven. However shipments are expected to slow in 2014: the RMA expects demand for 302 million total tire shipments, up less than 2% from 2013. A declining unemployment rate, a rebound in housing, increases in vehicle sales and vehicle miles traveled, as well as other macroeconomic factors are expected to account for the 2014 increase.

Details by segment available here.

Michelin inaugurates two new tire retreading plants in India

Filed under: Tires — Notch @ 6:20 am

Last week, Michelin inaugurated two new Michelin-certified Recamic tyre retreading facilities in Chennai and Pudukottai, Tamil Nadu region. The plants will retread radial truck and bus customers in the region and were built in collaboration with TVS Tread, the retreading arm of TVS Group.

Bridgestone expanding capacity in Brazil

Filed under: Uncategorized — Notch @ 6:10 am

Bridgestone’s Brazilian unit, Bridgestone do Brasil Industria e Comercio Ltda., will invest US$63 million to expand capacity for passenger car radial tires at its plant in Camaçari, Bahia, Brazil. The project will increase capacity by roughly 25 percent to more than 10,000 tires/day by May 2015. The expansion will focus on ultrahigh performance tires and light truck/SUV tires for both OEM and replacement markets.

This project is in addition to an expansion project on which Bridgestone Brazil broke ground last October. In that project, Bridgestone invest US$14 million to expand capacity for agricultural tires at Santo André (SP), Brazil by July 2015. The project will double capacity to 60 tires/day. With this investment, Bridgestone will add six new AGR tires in its production mix.

LANXESS raises prices for rubber chemicals

Filed under: Rubber Chemicals — Notch @ 6:05 am

LANXESS has announced a price increase for its rubber chemicals effective 1 January 2014. The company said in a press release that the increases are required to offset raw material cost increases. The price increase includes all product lines in the Rubber Chemicals business unit, including Vulkanox antidegradants, Vulkacit accelerators, as well as specialty chemicals such as bonding agents (Cohedur), retarders (Vulkalent), plasticisers (Vulkanol) and DBD based peptisers (Renacit). The increase will range from €0.05/kg to €0.30/kg depending on the product and region. These products are primarily used in the manufacture of tires, hoses, profiles, and other rubber items. The Rubber Chemicals business unit is part of LANXESS’ Performance Chemicals segment, which recorded sales of €2.2bn in fiscal 2012.

Michelin starts up new OTR tire plant in South Carolina

Filed under: Tires — Notch @ 6:00 am

This month, Michelin North America commissioned production at its new plant for giant off-road tires in Anderson, South Carolina. The plant, called US10, cost $750 million and took about 17 months to build, the fastest greenfield construction project in Michelin’s history. The plant will begin commercial production in January 2014 for sale by mid-2014. The facility will build giant OTR tires up to 63 inches in diameter, mainly for the mining industry. Output will serve both domestic and export customers. The new plant is located adjacent to Michelin’s existing rubber compounding plant in Starr, South Carolina. Michelin operates six other earthmover tire plants globally: Waterville, Nova Scotia; Campo Grande, Brazil; Le Puy and Montceau-les-Mines, France; Vitoria, Spain; and Zalau, Romania.

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