The UK’s largest tyre retailer, Kwik Fit, is being prepared for a sale. The Japanese Itochu group, which owns the European Tyre Enterprises Ltd (ETEL) holding company that controls both Kwik Fit and its wholesale counterpart Stapleton’s Tyre Services, has appointed investment bankers Nomura to advise on strategic options for the company, according to Sky News, with insiders suggesting a sale is very likely.
On 4 September 2020 Guizhou Tyre Co. Ltd’s board of directors approved plans for a private share issue. The plan was to raise 1 billion yuan in funding via the sale of now more than 200 million shares to 35 selected investors. By 11 September, the company had received the green light from the state-funded Guiyang Industrial Investment Holding Group Co., Ltd. that it would purchase no less than 43.5 per cent of the issued shares.
The Serbian state is set to give Japanese tyre manufacturer Toyo 637,455 square metres of land worth roughly 3 million euros for its newest factory. According to a Serbian State Aid Control Commission decision, the countries Tax Administration calculated that – based on a land valuation of 5 euros per square metre, Toyo will have to employ 523 workers indefinitely by 2023.
Landsail Tyres is the new Official Tyre Partner of Leicester City. The Sentury Tire brand has signed a multi-year deal with the Premier League football club, starting this season. The brand has excellent penetration in the UK tyre market, distributed by Grouptyre, and is present in more than 100 countries globally. It says the partnership with Leicester City is part of its strategic development plan. It will be “a core pillar of its marketing strategy.” The brand hopes to benefit from enhanced exposure across Leicester City’s digital channels as well as on matchdays at the King Power Stadium.
This year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans commences tomorrow, but you’re not invited. Nobody is – for the first time in its long history, the event will take place behind closed doors, sans partners, sponsors and spectators. Michelin will be present though, with 54 of the 59 competing cars running on its tyres.
As reported earlier this month, Hankook Tire has released its latest winter products for motorists and Western and Central Europe. And the new tyre line is off to a promising start, with Auto Bild awarding the new tyre its top ‘exemplary’ rating in its winter 2020 comparative evaluation.
Two supplier businesses closely linked to the end-of-life tyre recovery chain in the UK have joined the Tyre Recovery Association. The new member companies are: Accent Wire based in Solihull, West Midlands and Bradford, Yorkshire; and Gateway Resources of Dubai, UAE.
TyreSafe has launched its 2020 Tyre Safety Month campaign with its first online briefing. Following the success of its previous ‘Get Into The Groove’ campaign, TyreSafe has prepared a fresh batch of cultural parodies with which to publicise its ACT acronym – standing for Air pressure, Condition, Tread. A range of movie poster parodies, including ‘Judge Tread’, ‘The Good, The Bad, and The Under Inflated’, and ‘Done in 60 Seconds’, are available for garages, businesses and other organisations to encourage motorists to take better care of their tyres. The distribution of the materials will reflect the digitalisation trend of this year, driven by the necessity of adapting to Covid-19 Crisis conditions; a wide variety of banners formatted for each of the major social media networks will be available. The briefing featured a panel discussion with Stuart Lovatt, Highways England strategic road safety lead; Tony Crook, National Fire Chief Council lead officer road safety; Simon Turner, Driving for Better Business campaign manager; and James Luckhurst, Project EDWARD founder.
The Tyre Collective – winners of the James Dyson Awards 2020 – have designed a device to capture tyre particulate at source. According to the UK Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs’ “Air Quality: Brake, Tyre and Road Surface Wear” report, tyre-wear accounts for nearly half of road transport particulate emissions. Furthermore, a reported half a million tonnes of tyre particles are produced annually in Europe alone, from vehicles accelerating, braking and cornering. As we move towards electric vehicles in the future, exhaust emissions will reduce but tyre particles will continue. The Tyre Collective estimate that tyre emissions may even increase, as electric vehicles become heavier due to the added battery weight. For both reasons, this year’s UK national James Dyson Award winners attempt to address this issue.
The European Commission’s new target of a 55 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 has been welcomed by the tyre industry. The European Tyre & Rubber Manufacturers’ Association said that the industry is ready to “ready to contribute” to the latest decarbonisation goals. The association added that its “members have been committed to reducing their CO2 footprint throughout the tyre life cycle and investing in innovative and sustainable mobility technologies for many years now.” The association was responding to European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen’s 16 September State of the Union address.
Continental is changing the name of its StraddleMaster+ port tyre line to TerminalMaster V.ply. This change of name is also accompanied by a significant expansion of the tyre’s application recommendations: Instead of primarily being intended for use on straddle carriers, Continental says “intensive tests in the laboratory and in real-life use” have led it to additionally recommend the tyre for use at airports and for heavy-duty transport in the industrial sector.
On 12 September 2020, the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology published its fourth batch of green manufacturing lists. The list includes 602 green factories, 371 green design products, 39 green parks and 50 green supply chain management demonstration enterprises.
During the first eight months of this year, 3,481,721 fewer new cars were registered throughout the UK and the European Union than in the same period of 2019. This is, of course, unhappy news for tyre makers, who’ve thus delivered around 14 million fewer original equipment tyres to customers supplying the region. Registration figures for August don’t indicate a turnaround, either.