Exide EMEA bought by lenders, but still up for sale
Following news that Exide Technologies entered Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on 19 May 2020, Exide has been bought by long-term lenders who have injected cash, but remains up for sale until the end of July. Specifically, the new owners of Exide EMEA and Asia-Pacific are subject to conditions outlined in the transaction document to “maintain continued employment of the company’s workforce in these regions”. For example, as part of the agreement, the ad hoc lender group has provided additional liquidity of up to $75 million. The agreement also includes a “go-shop” period with a bid submission deadline and auction to be held in early July 2020.
On 19 May battery manufacturer Exide Technologies entered chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, announcing “a comprehensive strategy to best position its businesses in North America, EMEA, and Asia-Pacific to benefit its employees, customers, suppliers, and other stakeholders across the globe.” In short, the strategy puts the Exide’s US business in chapter 11 and sells the Europe Middle East and Africa (EMEA) to the firm’s long-term lenders.
The UK government is searching for 4 million square feet of industrial space to house an electric vehicle Gigafactory. According to Property Week, the Department for International Trade (DIT) has made the request for “an electric vehicle research, development and manufacturing plant in the UK”. In addition, the 650-acre Gravity site in Somerset has been specifically linked as prospective location for the apparent Gigafactory project. And what’s more Property Week has linked Tesla to the search for the site. Taken together, the scale of the project, DIT’s confirmation that it is for vehicle research, development and manufacturing, and the suggestion that it is all for Tesla mean the project is a prospective Gigafactory.
Prometeon appoints Ali Yilmaz as UK, Eire and Nordic marketing manager
Prometeon Tyre Group has appointed Ali Yilmaz as marketing manager for the UK, Eire and Nordic countries. In this new position, he will report to Peter Fairlie, managing director, and will lead the company’s UK marketing team.
Clear International analysts are warning that, while trailer production has restarted, second-quarter demand is likely to be 44 per cent down. At the same time, the analysts report that European countries are likely to suffer gross domestic product (GDP) drops of up to 10 per cent in 2020. The conclusions are based on the facts that, since Clear International’s last report in February, all West European countries have had their forecasts for 2020 economic growth downgraded again. All forecasts now show negative GDP growth of between -6% and -10% in 2020 with every country in recession during this year.
European auto markets ‘exceed expectations’ in May – GlobalData
For the three national markets of France, Italy and Spain, combined new light vehicle sales fell by 55 per cent on last year to 268,000 in May, which compares with a 75 per cent drop in March and a 93 per cent decline in April. This represents a slightly better scenario than had been anticipated, as Calum MacRae, automotive analyst at GlobalData, explains: “After the seized up and locked down markets of March and April, this is a welcome sign of life in markets that were the first in Europe to be engulfed by the COVID-19 outbreak.
Team Yokohama’s Travis Pastrana to star in Gymkhana action video
Team Yokohama member and US rally champion Travis Pastrana will star in Gymkhana 2020. The newest edition of the global stunt video series will see the Nitro Circus co-founder take a Subaru fitted with Yokohama to the limits – and beyond.
Cooper has begun the process of restarting its tyre manufacturing plant in El Salto, Mexico. The manufacturer said it is restarting production on a limited basis today. It states that it has “put in place a comprehensive set of procedures that include required employee health disclosures, increased cleaning and disinfecting of facilities and equipment, social distancing and physical barriers, visitor restrictions, and other measures.” These measures are aligned with the company’s “first priority of employee health and safety,” it added.
Indian tyre manufacturer JK Tyre & Industries has inaugurated a new sales and marketing operation in the USA. The new arm of the company, Western Tires, Inc, is based in Houston, Texas. It will focus on sales, service and network expansion, the company stated. JK Tyre has been accelerating its global expansion efforts recently, in common with other Indian players, Apollo and MRF. With around 1.3 billion euros in turnover from tyres, JK Tyre is just outside the global top 20 manufacturers, according to the latest Tyrepress research.
GS Yuasa launch new company to service Nordic and Baltic markets
GS Yuasa Battery Sales UK Ltd are pleased to announce the establishment of a new sales company to serve their Nordic and Baltic export regions. GS Yuasa Battery Nordic began trading from a new distribution centre in Jönköping, Sweden in December 2019. The creation of a new sales company and distribution centre in Sweden represents a significant investment from the battery manufacturer, as it aims to increase market share in the Nordic and Baltic regions.
Prometeon supporting Red Cross during coronavirus pandemic
Prometeon Tyre Group is donating one euro for each tyre sold in Europe in May to the International Committee of the Red Cross’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As part of its Together initiative, Prometeon has invited suppliers, customers and its staff to donate as well. Furthermore, Prometeon will match its suppliers’ contributions.
Brexit and COVID-19 leading UK businesses to turn to international markets
A survey among of over 900 decision-makers within UK businesses has found that: 57 per cent of UK private sector organisations are considering expansion into new global markets in the near future as a result of COVID-19. The research, commissioned by One World Express, also found that 45 per cent of businesses say the pandemic has made them realise they are overly reliant on one market. At the same time, 44 per cent are looking to expand into markets outside of the Single Market due to Brexit.