Keegan: Goodyear is an ‘Aggressive Marketing Company’
In his address at Goodyear’s Annual Shareholder Meeting, chairman and CEO Robert J. Keegan said the tyremaker remains committed to the strategic direction implemented three years ago, describing the business as an “aggressive marketing company.”
“Innovation, quality and a sharp market focus continue to drive Goodyear in the right direction,” he said. “We believe we are taking the required steps to drive improving future performance.” Keegan cited the company’s important financial milestones in 2005, including record sales, net income double the 2004 level, and growth in its business segments.
He also stressed the importance of product and brand leadership, noting that recent new products have been an important part of recent developments. “Thanks to the capabilities of our scientists, engineers and marketers, we are creating relevant technology that consumers want,” he said.
The ability to identify consumer needs and make product differentiation easy for consumers to understand is helping Goodyear grow its brands and to quickly capitalize on attractive market opportunities, resulting in a richer product, brand and customer mix.
Keegan cited examples such as: RunOnFlat tyres, being promoted in Europe to address consumers’ concern of being stranded by a flat tyre; TripleTred technology, with distinctive tread zones for varying conditions, to reduce anxiety associated with changing weather conditions in North America; and Silent Armor with Kevlar, which delivers the durable, smooth ride desired by pickup and SUV drivers.
“We are a fundamentally different company today than we were three years ago, and a considerably stronger competitor,” he said. “These initiatives — and more — will help us continue on the right path for the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company and its shareholders.
“We see ourselves much differently today,” he said. “We see ourselves not as an auto supplier as some would characterize us, but rather as an aggressive marketing company. That change for us is huge.”