ERJ staff report (PR)
Kochi, India – "As soon as we knew that Plan A [a €1.9-billion bid for Cooper Tire & Rubber] was not working out, we launched Plan B," Apollo Tyres Ltd chairman Onkar Kanwar said at the group annual general meeting on 6 August.
The revised global-expansion plan involves a new greenfield tire plant in eastern Europe, expansion of capacity at Apollo's Chennai plant and a revised product mix at its facility in Kalamassery (see ERJ report on both these projects).
The €500-million greenfield project – reportedly either in Hungary or Slovakia (ERJ report) – aside, expansion in Europe does not seem to be a top priority for the Indian group going forward.
Kanwar said that while Europe would remain a very significant market, "I do not believe we will look at rapid growth for the industry."
By contrast, Kanmar expects the shale-gas-led US resurgence in manufacturing and job creation to increase the attractiveness of the American market for Apollo.
Meanwhile, consolidation of systems, processes and fiscal measures would reinforce the position of China as "a huge influence on our industry," the Apollo boss stated.
Kanmar was, however, even more upbeat on Apollo's home country, which he said was "at the cusp of a golden era and about to see the unleashing of our potential [within] the global economy.
"I am extremely confident that we will once again go back to the years of sustained high growth in India."
Full transcript of Kanmar's speech here:
Chairman's AGM Speech, August 6, 2014.pdf
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