Stone laying for Bridgestone’s Thai OTR plant
A stone laying ceremony marking the start of work on Bridgestone’s new OTR tyre factory in Thailand was held on 29 April. Attendees included representatives from the industrial estate where the site is located and from the company that will build the plant. Bridgestone Group management present at the ceremony included CEO Masaaki Tsuya and Shigeru Kaneko, managing director of Bridgestone Specialty Tire Manufacturing (Thailand) Co., Ltd., the company that will operate the new plant. In accord with tradition, the ceremony included prayers for the success of the plant's building, after which the attendees put the foundation stone in place, giving their blessings for the company's ongoing prosperity.
The new facility will produce ORRs, or off-road radials, for construction and mining vehicles. In the past, Bridgestone has solely produced these tyres in Japan and the US. The tyre maker says building a new plant in Thailand will enable it to “establish an optimal ORR production system that will enable us to respond to growing tyre demand, and also to any future changes that might occur in the operating environment.” The factory is scheduled to begin production in the first half of 2015 and total production capacity is expected to reach approximately 85 tons by the first half of 2019.