After receiving all regulatory approvals, the sale of Bridgestone’s Russian assets to S8 Capital has been completed. Bridgestone Europe NV/SA has transferred its tyre manufacturing facility in Ulyanovsk and sales and marketing office in Moscow to the investment company. Thus ends a relationship with Russia that began in 1998.
The expansion of Bridgestone Enliten into the replacement tyre market will commence in Europe this year with the launch of Bridgestone Turanza 6 and Duravis Van products featuring the technology. The tyre maker plans to debut a total of eight Enliten products for the European aftermarket in 2023, a figure representing around five per cent of all Bridgestone passenger car and light commercial vehicle tyres in the European replacement market.
The automatic Buffer 8550E is the latest addition to the Bandag retreading portfolio, and Bandag designed it to address one of the biggest challenges the retreading industry currently faces – adopting and optimising automation. By deploying the fully automated Bandag Buffer 8550E, retreaders can further reduce the manual effort required.
In 2018, Bridgestone Europe announced that three of its tyre plants in Spain – Bilbao, Puente San Miguel and Burgos – had begun sourcing 100 per cent of their electricity from renewable sources. This programme has been extended to other facilities in the region, and the company shares that the Tatabanya plant in Hungary and Stargard and Poznan plants in Poland will be moving to 100 per cent green electricity.
From 1 January 2020, Bridgestone’s India business will fall into the EMEA Strategic Business Unit (SBU), transferring from the China, Asia-Pacific SBU. As a result, Bridgestone Europe, Russia, Middle East and Africa (BSEMEA) will become Bridgestone Europe, Russia, Middle East, India and Africa (BSEMIA), one of four SBUs globally, alongside Bridgestone China, Asia-Pacific, Bridgestone Americas, and Bridgestone Japan. According to the company, the integration of Bridgestone India into EMEA comes as a result of Bridgestone EMEA’s “ongoing transformation capitalising on the opportunities digitalisation offers to pioneer mobility solutions that meet the needs of customers for convenience, efficiency and sustainability”.
Bridgestone has inaugurated the newly expanded warehouse at its tyre production plant in Tatabánya, Hungary. The new 10,000 square metre addition to facility’s warehousing was set up as part of a HUF 9.2 billion (£25.2 million) investment to develop the Tatabánya site and increases storage capacity by 180,000 tyres. The plant’s warehousing can now store up to 600,000 tyres, a growth that is expected to aid Bridgestone’s business with original equipment customers.
As of 1 July, Bridgestone Europe’s Central Europe region will grow to include the four countries currently grouped as the Nordic region. Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden will join Austria, Germany in Switzerland in the enlarged regional operation.
Bridgestone Europe NV, Bridgestone’s EMEA subsidiary and Iris Capital, a leading European venture capital firm, have entered a corporate venture partnership to investigate and invest in innovative new mobility services, industry 4.0 and digital transformation technologies across Europe, the Middle-East and Africa.
As of 1 January 2018, Thomas Higgins will take over as chairman of Bridgestone Europe NV/SA, succeeding Eduardo Minardi in this position. Higgins will also become a senior officer of Bridgestone Corporation and will retain his role as president of Bridgestone Americas’ US & Canada Consumer Tire Sales Division.
Tom Adams is Bridgestone Europe’s new director of replacement sales for the Consumer business unit. The former West Europe Region Consumer business unit director began in the position on 1 July, and in this Brussels-based role Adams will report to Jake Rønsholt, managing director of the Consumer business unit.
In what Cam International described as “a landmark moment for the commercial tyre service sector in Europe”, a fully digital jobsheet was completed between Bridgestone systems and the e-jobsheet digital tablet app – without a re-keying process required by office based administrators at either end.