Hayes Lemmerz International is going to acquire the Schenk foundry in Germany in order to expand its suspension presence in Europe. Klaus Jünger, President European Chassis Components Group said that this is an excellent base for our expansion in Europe. Major customers of Schenk are Audi, BMW, Opel and Porsche.
“The Leading Edge” Award For Ronal From Volkswagen Group
Light alloy wheel supplier Ronal has been honoured by the Volkswagen Group with the Corporate Supplier Award The Leading Edge. Ronal is a supplier of the car brands VW, Audi, Seat and Skoda and has also received new development orders for the prestigious Bentley brand.
Bridgestone/Firestone has announced that it is to recall 62,000 tyres sold in the Venezuelan market at an estimated cost of US$ 6.4 m. The tyres have been linked with 60 deaths in the country. The consumer protection agency is recommending investigation into charges of possible criminal negligence against Ford and Bridgestone/Firestone, plus a number of civil law suits are planned.
At the beginning of this year the Cruiser tyre ME 880 was introduced by the German motorcycle-tyre producer Metzeler. Now the company also offers ist widest tyre in a second dimension: 240/50 R16 M/C 84V TL.
Directors of The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. have declared a quarterly dividend of 30 cents per share. The dividend is payable December 15, to shareholders of record on November 16. The payout represents an annual rate of $1.20 per share.
DT 830 – New Supervolume Agricultural Tyre From Goodyear
Goodyear has introduced a new, supermodern agricultural tyre specifically for harvesters and tractor units. The new products have been developed with soil protection and high load resistance in mind. Thanks to its 900 mm width, tractor units equipped with the new DT830 remain within the three metre maximum legal width for highway use without the need for a special license. With a maximum pressure of 2.2 bar the new tyre is capable of carrying loads up to 11.8 tons. For use on delicate soil conditions the DT830 is well qualified with a low pressure of 0.8 bar and a wheel load of 7.5tons it creates a footprint of 96 cm by almost 90 cm, offering a contact area of more than 0.8 square metres. In addition the radial belt cords guarantee an even distribution of pressure over the whole contact area. Goodyear offers the DT830 in three sizes; The 900/55 R 32 to be available in Spring 2001, the 900/60 R 32 available in pre-series at present, and the 900/50 R 42 which is already available through Goodyear outlets. Find out more in the November issue of NEUE REIFENZEITUNG.
A tyre expert hired by Bridgestone/Firestone has identified cracks in the belt skim – the rubber compound used to bond steel belts – as the cause of problems with some Firestone tyres. However, another tyre consultant, Rex Grogan, said that he told the company back in April 1999 that he had found the same problem. He blamed the use of inexperienced personnel working at the Decatur plant during a labour dispute.
The Viborg-Group, which bought first Stinnes Reifendienst and later Gummi Meyer and now has more than 400 depots in Germany, is facing more departures by Managers. The relatively young managers Scharwenka, Rudolph, Roth and Lemle do not see their future within the group any longer and are leaving. As far as business in general for the Viborg-group in Germany is concerned we hear very different opinions. Viborg is asking for the deepest price and in addition to that for an overhead of 10 %, giving them a real advantage over all competitors. Strategic partners at the moment are Michelin, Pirelli and Dunlop. It is not clear whether all of them are paying the extra price of 10 %. Other tyre manufacturers can see how difficult it is for the Viborg Group to fulfil their promises despite the fact that all the warehouses are completely full. There will be a long article in a future issue of NEUE REIFENZEITUNG. Furthermore, Viborgs management is not willing to talk to the press and is urging employees not to talk to the press otherwise their jobs will be in jeopardy.
The 50m $ sale of 68 percent of the shares in Minardi F1 racing team owned by Gabriele Rumi (Fondmetal alloy wheel producer) seems likely to fail. Minardi – planning to start next season with Michelin tyres – could not find a motor supplier for 2001, so that potential purchaser Panamerican Sports Network (PSN) might withdraw.
Dr. Dieter Hillecke (61), Technical Managing Director of Dunlop Germany, retires on 31st December 1999. Before joining Dunlop in 1985, Hillecke filled various positions within the Pirelli international group.
The European Commission has agreed the accession of Conti Teves to the joint-venture Automotive Distance Control Systems ADC (Temic Telefunken Microelectronic/parent company: DaimlerChrysler and Leica Geosystems/Switzerland).
Michelin is to lose 473 jobs from its workforce of 2,700 at its factory in Stoke-on-Trent in the UK, mostly among those producing passenger car tyres. This is part of Michelins overall European strategy to improve efficiency. Michelin sees a long-term future for Stoke and this year will invest £11 million in updating the factory, which was opened in 1927.
Edouard Michelin, CEO of the French tyre giant, can see opportunities for technical alliances with competitors, a French magazine reports. As an example, he cites the new tyre and wheel system Pax, which will be presented jointly by Michelin and Pirelli in Geneva.
Pirelli Buy Energy Cable Activities From BICC General
With the acquisition of the energy cable activities from BICC General for US$216 million Pirelli is strengthening its world-wide leadership in this particular business which will bring it up to US$ 3.4 billion in turnover. Their nearest competitors are Alcatel (sales - US$2 bn) and Sumitomo (sales - US$1.5 bn).
Cooper-Avon has announced that it will be making 80 staff employees redundant in Europe. Locations affected are the Melksham (UK) HQ and offices in Switzerland, France and Germany. The cuts are blamed on the high level of the Pound and large numbers of imported tyres from the Far East and have been made, says Cooper-Avon, to reduce costs and increase job security for the remaining 900+ employees.