Research by Bridgestone and Webfleet has found that 85 per cent of UK fleet operators are seeking ways to spend less in 2023. Sentiment in the sector is not optimistic about their business prospects too, with more than a third of HGV operators (36%) predicting that they will contract. The tyre manufacturer and its fleet services arm commissioned research consultancy Perspectus Global to conduct online research with more than 200 UK fleet decision makers in an attempt to appreciate the economic landscape from their unique perspective and how they plan to navigate their way through it. Following this research, the companies said that they have compiled four money-saving solutions to ease fleets’ financial pressures.
Bridgestone is bringing its sustainability and efficiency focused tyre technology to its range of commercial tyres for long-haul transportation with the new Bridgestone Ecopia Enliten. The latest generation Ecopia has been created for fleets seeking to maximise fuel efficiency and boost total value of ownership, Bridgestone states, saying the new tyres boast enhanced wear and reduced rolling resistance in year-round long-haul commercial fleet applications. The new Bridgestone Ecopia Steer Enliten and Ecopia Drive Enliten tyres are available from January 2024 in size 315/70 R22.5, with four additional sizes added throughout 2024 and one further size in 2025. Bridgestone will add the Ecopia Trailer Enliten from late 2024 to complete the range.
Airbus has bestowed a supplier award upon Bridgestone Corporation in recognition of the tyre maker’s “efforts to realise a sustainable society.” Bridgestone received this award, given in the sustainability category, during last month’s Airbus Global Supplier Conference in Toulouse, France.
Mid-Devon garage Cully Tyres & Autocare is enjoying its most profitable period of trading since new owners took over in May 2022. The biggest independent tyre dealer in Cullompton recently invested £100,000 on a wide-ranging refurbishment, new equipment and opting to become a member of the First Stop network. Cully Tyres & Autocare, formerly known as Marsh Tyres, has recruited new staff and now offers additional automotive services, such as repairs and solutions for electric vehicles and hybrids. As a result of its First Stop membership, the branch has also broadened its range of premium tyre brands in stock, naturally featuring the ranges from First Stop parent company, Bridgestone and its Firestone brand.
Last month, Bridgestone Corporation announced many changes within its management team that will take effect on 1 January 2024 as part of a wider restructuring of management operations. The company has now given word that it is further tweaking the roles of two of these managers.
Firestone has launched the new Roadhawk 2 Enliten summer touring tyre. The Bridgestone brand says the new model offers “best-in-class wet grip” as well as longer mileage and a greater than 10 per cent reduction in rolling resistance, optimising fuel or energy consumption, based on internal testing on size 225/55 R17 101W. The integration of Bridgestone’s Enliten technology, which reduces material consumption and tyre weight, as well as using the new NanoPro-Tech high-silica compound for greater wear resistance, ensures the Roadhawk 2 Enliten is an “EV-ready tyre”: a tyre suitable for fitment on vehicles using and electric or conventional combustion engine powertrain. The new tyre will be available from January 2024 in 17-21” sizes to cover 90 per cent of the market. After the addition of 16” sizes in 2025, the range will comprise 112 size variations. The Firestone Roadhawk 2 Enliten is the successor to the Roadhawk summer touring tyre.
At the end of September, the list of Asia’s most influential brands of 2023 was published at the “Asia Brand Summit” in Hong Kong. A total of 500 brands from 20 countries and regions, were honoured at the 18th World Brand Lab summit themed “The Impact of New Technologies on Brand Transformation and Consumer Behavior.” Seven of them were tyre brands and all seven were ranked amongst the top 350 of the 500 honoured brands.
Bridgestone Corporation announced its financial results for the third quarter of 2023 earlier today, reporting year-to-date consolidated revenue of 3,198.1 billion yen (£17.26 billion, US$21.17 billion), a seven per cent year-on-year increase. Operating profit rose six per cent year-on-year in the first nine months of 2023, to 362.3 million yen (£1.76 billion, $2.16 billion). The operating profit margin declined 20bps, to 11.3 per cent.
Bridgestone Corporation has introduced a new mining solution service that uses a proprietary, Bridgestone-developed algorithm to estimate tyre durability. It first introduced this offering in July 2023 to the BHP Group’s Spence copper mine (Pampa Norte operation) in Chile, which also uses the service to propose the optimal timing for tyre timing as well as driving routes for the mine.
Following on from their call to action at the 2021 Smithers rCB conference, Bridgestone Corporation and Michelin Group have updated progress on their goal of increasing recovered carbon black (rCB) utilisation in tyre production. A joint technical white paper, titled Bridgestone & Michelin: Recovered Carbon Black Guidelines, shares the results of their work with other stakeholders to develop a global standard to this end.
Bridgestone is collaborating with Goumbook and the UAE Food Bank as part of its ongoing CSR efforts. The initiative involved Bridgestone’s UAE-based employees and their families working together to prepare meals for 1,000 beneficiaries. According to the company, the initiative “elicited positive responses from the community…”
Bridgestone spread the tyre safety message to hundreds of motorists across October with free tyre safety checks and postcards at two events during Tyre Safety Month. Bridgestone said it communicated the messages to hundreds of motorists at Roadchef’s Norton Canes Services on the M6 Toll in Staffordshire on 19 October, carrying out free safety checks throughout the day. The company repeated these activities at Ireland’s Japfest in Mondello Park, where it encouraged young drivers to get into the habit of checking their tyres regularly.
The CEOs of 10 leading tyre manufacturers have gathered to confirm a two-year Tire Industry Project (TIP) workplan focused on “sustainability in the tyre lifecycle”. The plans includes targets relating to tyre-emission research and end-of-life tyre management amongst other points.
Financial analysts have responded positively to the news of Bridgestone’s investment in Halfords Group’s Avayler Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). Their analysis also reveals further details of the current scale and future plans associated with the Avayler business.