News from Notch Consulting, Inc.

October 19, 2017

Michelin to double capacity at India manufacturing plant

Filed under: Tires — Tags: — Notch @ 12:52 pm

Michelin has inaugurated a new production line at its Chennai plant that will help double the current capacity of the facility by 2018. The company projects to raise capacity to over 30,000 tons per year and increase employment at the facility to about 1,000 people, up from 850.

During the inauguration ceremony of the new production line, Mr. Jean-Dominique Senard, Chief Executive Officer of Michelin Group said: “India is a priority market for us and growing demand for our products in the country reaffirms our commitment to keep innovating for our customers here. In a very short time, our Chennai plant has evolved to become one of our most advanced manufacturing facilities globally. The purpose of this plant was to cater to the needs to the Indian market and I am happy to see that we are on target in this journey. The MICHELIN X® Guard™ was conceived to address the Indian market’s need for a tire that is fuel efficient, safe and lasts longer and to this end we adapted the very best of Michelin technologies to produce a premium tire at an affordable price.”

The full press release can be found here.

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Bridgestone invests in European plant expansions

Filed under: Tires — Tags: — Notch @ 12:36 pm

Bridgestone Corp. has announced a $315 million, five-year investment program in Europe to upgrade and expand capacity by approximately 20 percent at tire plants in Burgos, Spain and Poznan and Stargard sites in Poland. The projects are expected to be completed by early 2022.

“Increasing demand from our replacement and original equipment partners for our outstanding and diverse range of premium tires drives this investment”, explains Paolo Ferrari, CEO and President of Bridgestone EMEA. “This next step enables us to bring our products even closer to our partners and further strengthens Bridgestone’s footprint in the region.”

Read the full press release here.

Hankook opens first U.S. manufacturing plant

Filed under: Tires — Tags: — Notch @ 12:24 pm

On October 17, Hankook Tire America Corp. held a grand opening ceremony for its first U.S. manufacturing facility. The $800 million plant in Clarksville, Tennessee is expected to bring 1,800 jobs, according to a company press release.

The plant, Hankook’s eighth facility worldwide, will produce 5.5 million units annually in its first phase. When the second phase of development is complete, Hankook Tire will double its production capacity to 11 million units annually.

“The new Tennessee plant signifies Hankook Tire’s growing business in the United States and our continued journey toward being a global leader in the tire industry,” said Seung Hwa Suh, Global CEO of Hankook Tire. “The investment in the U.S. is part of our ongoing commitment to innovation, state-of-the-art technology and service for our customers. This high-tech, sustainable facility will enable Hankook Tire to execute every phase of our business in the U.S., from R&D to production and sales.”

Read the full press release here.

China’s Black Cat to build carbon black research institute

Filed under: Carbon Black — Notch @ 12:14 pm

ERJ reports that China’s largest carbon black maker Black Cat is planning to break ground on a research institute in Qingdao, Shandong province by the end of this year.

The company told ERJ that it plans to invest $23 million (156 million yuan) into the Black Cat New Materials Institute specializing in nanocarbon composite materials and carbon nanocubes.

The new site is located in Qingdao’s Sino-German Ecopark with a roughly 290,600-sq.-ft. area. Phase one of the project includes a research lab and pilot trial plant; Phase two includes another pilot trial plant and an office building.

According to the company, each pilot trial plant has 5,000 metric ton annual capacity. The project is expected to fully come on stream in 2019.

Sourced article found here (subscription required).

Conti’s Mississippi plant construction on schedule

Filed under: Tires — Tags: — Notch @ 12:03 pm

Site clearing for Continental A.G.’s $1.4 billion commercial truck and bus tire plant near Clinton, Mississippi is nearly finished, keeping the project on schedule to begin tire production by year-end 2019.

The plant is projected to produce 750,000 truck and bus tires annually in the first phase, Conti said, starting with approximately 500 employees. Full projected employment of 2,500 won’t be reached until 2028.

Referenced article found here.

October 9, 2017

Conti, Kordsa partner on adhesion system

Filed under: Tires — Notch @ 11:11 am

Continental A.G.’s tire division and Kordsa Inc. recently entered into a joint initiative to develop a sustainable adhesion system standard for bonding textile reinforcing materials to rubber-based compounds.

The two companies aim to have a free licensing concept and replace resorcinol and formaldehyde with more eco-friendly chemicals for adhesion. Continental and Kordsa worked together previously on other projects in the tire textile reinforcement market.

“Continental has to build and test the new technology according to a complex and extensive approval process in tires to ensure that the latest status of technology can be offered without compromising any performance,” said Boris Mergell, Conti senior vice president of research and development for passenger and light truck tires.

Further details will be presented at Tire Expo 2018, which will take place in February in Hanover.

Referenced article found here.

October 5, 2017

Giti ribbon cutting marks start of production at South Carolina plant

Filed under: Tires — Tags: — Notch @ 11:09 am

South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster and Walmert President and CEO, Greg Foran were present to help Giti Tire Group mark the start of production at the firm’s $560 million, 1.7 million-sq.-ft. Richburg tire plant and distribution center on October 4.

Originally announced in early 2015, the plant is scheduled to produce several hundred thousand Dextero-branded passenger tires for Wal-Mart in the remainder of 2017. Giti Tire hopes to ramp up production to several million passenger and light truck tires in 2018.

The plant’s first-phase nameplate capacity is 5 million tires.

A second-phase capacity expansion will be market-driven, the company said.

Read the full press release here.

October 2, 2017

Toyo Tires to expand tire production capacity

Filed under: Tires — Tags: — Notch @ 5:29 pm

Toyo Tire & Rubber Co. Ltd. plans to expand tire production capacity in the U.S. and Malaysia, and is considering additional capacity expansions at new and/or existing plants to fulfill its growth expectations.

Toyo is budgeting $125 million for the U.S. plant in White, Georgia, which will increase capacity by 2.4 million passenger tires a year, and $187.5 million for the plant in Perak, Malaysia which will add 4.8 million tires a year.

Read the full press release here.

Nokian breaks ground on Tennessee plant

Filed under: Tires — Tags: — Notch @ 11:29 am

Taking the next step toward its first tire plant in North America, Nokian broke ground on the $360 million manufacturing facility in Dayton, Tennessee on September 20. Nokian Tyres CEO Hille Korhonen and Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam joined the celebration.

With production launching in 2020, the new plant will service customers across the United States and Canada, concentrating on the production of North American-specific car and light truck all-season tires. The Tennessee location will increase production and warehouse capacity, allowing Nokian Tyres to meet the increasing demand throughout North America.

The new plant will be capable of producing four million tires annually with the room for expansion to meet future demand. The site will also house a distribution facility with a storage capacity of 600,000 tires.

Read the full press release here.

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