Michelin Announces July End to Japanese Factory’s Tyre Production
Plans to cease tyre production at Michelin’s factory in Ota, Japan were announced on January 15. Upon giving word of the July 2010 end of passenger car and light truck tyres at the Gunma Prefecture site, Michelin explained that, despite taking measures to improve productivity, reduce production costs and, since 2007, refocus on the production of ‘complex products’, production costs at the Ota plant have remained around twice as high as those of other plants serving that tyre segment.
Despite the end of tyre production in Ota, Michelin says it will “continue to develop its operations and expand its presence in Japan and the Asia Pacific region, notably through its research and development programs in Ota, its sales operations throughout the country and its activities at Nihon Michelin Tire Co Ltd. headquarters in Tokyo.”
Costs associated with the end of production at Ota plant will bring the restructuring charges the group will book in 2009 to 410 million euros, Michelin said. The tyre maker added that discussions with representatives of the plant’s approximately 380 employees are being held “in order to rapidly deploy measures to enable employees affected by the closing to find jobs, either within Michelin Group, in particular in Ota site in Japan, or elsewhere.”
The manufacture of tyres currently made at the Ota plant will be transferred to other Michelin facilities producing passenger cars and light trucks tyres in Asia, Europe and North America.