Q&A: CEAT sees opportunities amid global tire-market challenges

The global tire industry is currently undergoing an unexpected series of market-disruptions and upheaval, according to Anant Goenka, managing director of Indian tire maker CEAT Ltd. However, the tire boss sees opportunities alongside the challenges now impacting domestic and global tire markets:

ERJ:    How would you describe the current state of the tire market, both domestic and global and what are the key trends in tire-manufacture going forward?

Growing nationalism, currency fluctuations, rising crude and commodity prices have resulted in market conditions that could not be anticipated as early as a year ago. China which has become a dominant player in the world tire market is threatened by duties imposed by EU and possibly the US soon. Rising crude and depreciating currencies are leading to an increase in the RM prices for many Asian and developing economies.

There has not been a dramatic change in tires as a product in its entire history. But this is likely to change in the next decade with the rapid pace of change in technology landscape. The convergence of ride sharing, autonomous driving, Electric vehicles (EVs) and connected vehicles will change the face of the mobility industry. Taxi aggregators like UBER, Lyft, Didi Chuxing, OLA have now become a part of our daily lives.

ERJ: What other developments are reshaping CEAT’s markets?

We could have a future where data-management and analytics will yield much more rather than just the hardware or tires in our case. The ones who owns the data will have considerable advantage over others. As mentioned on the cover of recent edition of The Economist, data is the new oil…


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