Mexico City – Pirelli is planning to invest an additional $200 million (€177 million) in a new factory, in addition to its existing car tire plant in Silao, Mexico, the Italian tire-maker announced on 20 April.
The announcement comes four years after the inauguration of the Pirelli factory within the Silao “Puerto Interior” industrial hub, in Guanajuato state.
The investment will begin in 2016 and will be in addition to the $360 million invested to date and the $50 million already earmarked for the 2016-2017, said Pirelli.
The company expects to have made a total of $600 million of investment in its two plants in Silao by the end of 2018.
Production at the new plant is scheduled to begin in 2017.
The Silao site is focused on production for the premium segment, mainly high performance and ultra high performance tires for passenger cars and SUVs, locally and throughout NAFTA.
The Silao plant, which currently covers 140,000 square metres, produces 3 million tires annually and will increase capacity to 5 million tires a day once its production phases are complete.
The new investment in the new plant will add another 2.5 million tires annual capacity to raise the total production to 7.5 million by the end of 2018.
The plant currently employs 1,400, and employment is forecast to grow to over 1,800, excluding the already existing 400 ancillary workers.
According to Pirelli, Mexico is an important international operation due to its “strategic position”. The company has significantly developed its presence in the Nafta area, a market which, it said, has been one of the “most promising for the success of the premium strategy”.
In 2015, Pirelli’s premium sales in the region grew by 24.3 percent and accounted for 90 percent of the total at the local level.
Overall, last year the area registered sales of €861 million, a year-on-year increase of 21.7 percent and representing 13.7 percent of total group sales.