Tokyo – Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd has terminated its technology tie-ups with Kumho Tire Co. Inc., the Japanese tire and rubber products maker announced 9 Aug.
Effective as of 6 July, the decision was taken as a result of the recent changes in Kumho Tire’s ownership, a Yokohama statement explained.
As ERJ reported 11 July, Qingdao Doublestar Group acquired a 45% ownership stake in Kumho Tire, making it the controlling shareholder in the South Korea-based tire maker.
Yokohama Rubber and Kumho Tire entered into a ‘master technological alliance agreement,’ followed by R&D-cooperation and ‘license and technology exchange’ agreements in 2014.
The link-up was focused on joint-development of future-oriented technologies, including environmentally-friendly and new-concept tires.
The agreements, however, have now been terminated “based on the terms and conditions thereof,” according to Yokohama’s statement.
Yokohama Rubber recorded 2017 sales of 646.3 billion yen, with tires accounting for 459.9 billion yen of the total. It operates 14 tire plants in eight countries around the world and employs about 25,000 people globally.
Kumho Tire, headquartered in Gwangju, South Korea, recorded consolidated net sales of 2,876.4 billion won in fiscal 2017. It has eight tire plants in South Korea, China, Vietnam and the US and employs about 10,000 people worldwide.