ERJ staff report (TB)
Treleborg, Sweden -- Trelleborg Wheel Systems S.p.A.'s recent acquisition of pneumatic tyre-manufacturing assets in China will support the farm and forestry tyre specialist's strategy of building business in Asia, according to the firm's top farm tyre executive.
â€œThe project represents an important step forward for our company in creating added value for our customers and in reinforcing our brand-leading position as a specialist in agricultural solutionsâ€ said Paolo Pompei, president of agricultural and forestry tyres. â€œThere is huge potential in Asia for the development of agricultural mechanisation.â€
For example, he said, only 41 percent of Chinese farm work is mechanised and there are 300 million acres of arable land, or about half again as much as in Western Europe.
Trelleborg recently bought the pneumatic tyre assets of Maine Industrial Tire L.L.C.'s specialty tyre plant in Xingtai, Hebei, China. Trelleborg said it has budgeted $15.6 million for the acquisition and for investments over the coming three years.
The industrialisation plan includes both bias-ply and radial tyres necessary for the local markets, a new agro industrial radial line and the Maximo radial farm tyre line for tractors between 40 and 180 hp.
Trelleborg expects to begin producing Trelleborg-branded tyres in the second quarter at the Xingtai site. The company took over about one-fourth of the plant's floor space, according to Maine Tire, which said the pneumatic and solid industrial manufacturing spaces are clearly separated from each other, allowing each company to operate independetly of the other.
Trelleborg did not quantify what sort of growth it expects. The company, a business unit of Sweden's Trelleborg A.B., generates only about 6 percent of its global sales from business in Asia, according to company documents.
Trelleborg Wheel reported sales of $415 million last year, essentially unchanged from 2009.
The firm also operates an industrial tyre plant in Sri Lanka.
From Tire Business (A Crain publication)