Five years have passed since Bridgestone launched its Blizzak LM005, and during that time the tyre has won 23 winter tyre tests. Now a successor is positioned on the starting block. Presenting the new Blizzak 6 Enliten, Laurent Dartoux says that although the prior model tyre “set the bar high,” Bridgestone has now “taken things to another level.” The EMEA region group president believes that Bridgestone’s development team “has created a premium winter tyre that can handle whatever winter throws at it.”
Christian Mühlhäuser, Managing Director of Bridgestone Central Europe since July 2019, has taken on additional responsibilities at the tyre maker. From today he is also acting as Vice President North Europe within Bridgestone EMEA.
Bridgestone’s agricultural team has made one of its “biggest breakthroughs”, securing fitment of the VX-Tractor tyre to over 50 New Holland tractors across seven Lloyd Ltd agricultural branches in the north of England and Scotland. The Bridgestone tyre, which New Holland has already chosen as an original equipment option, is now fitted to New Holland tractors at Lloyd Ltd branches in Cumbria, Bishop Auckland, Newcastle, Dumfries and Kelso.
Reporting its financial performance in the 2023 financial year, Bridgestone Corporation shares that it achieved revenue of ¥4,313.8 billion (£22.8 billion), a year-on-year increase of 5%; adjusted operating profit was ¥480.6 billion (£2.5 billion), a year-on-year decrease of 0.4%; operating profit was ¥481.8 billion (£2.5 billion), a year-on-year increase of 9%; profit before tax was ¥444.2 billion (£2.3 billion), a year-on-year increase of 5%; and profit attributable to owners of parent was ¥331.3 billion (£1.8 billion), a year-on-year increase of 10%.
Tim Dougherty has taken on the role of TBR national sales manager at Kumho Tyre UK. He joins the company from Bridgestone, where he served as sales manager, and brings with him nearly 30 years of tyre experience, all in the truck tyre sector.
Bridgestone Aircraft Tire Europe (BAE) has received a ‘Factory of the Future’ award for its facility in Frameries, Belgium. BAE is one of 17 firms honoured by Digital Wallonie, the Walloon Government’s digital strategy, at a ceremony that took place in Brussels on 8 February.
The UK’s vehicles and tyres need some more TLC, according to Bridgestone, with 73 per cent of motorists not even checking their tyres. A survey of 2000 drivers conducted by Bridgestone revealed that nearly three-quarters of drivers don’t check their treads or pressures themselves, either never thinking about it, leaving it to the garage to do or asking their partners to check instead.
Days after the European Commission announced that it is investigating a number of leading tyre manufacturers in relation to allegations of price-fixing, the same companies have become the subject of a similar class-action lawsuit in the USA. The class action relates to “…purchases of tyres within four years prior to the filing” – which clearly relates to a potentially enormous number of tyres. The case basically alleges that the named tyremakers colluded to raise and sustain higher tyre prices and that such action was at least partly facilitated via public communications. The named tyremakers have all already denied price fixing and stated their compliance with the law and their cooperation with investigations in relation the EC investigation.
Bridgestone is celebrating the 50th anniversary of its Bulldog retread factory in Bourne, Lincolnshire with a multi-million-pound investment designed to “mark the beginning of an exciting new chapter in the site’s history”. Specifically, executives said the investment equates to “close to £5 million”.
It appears that Bridgestone is preparing to close its tyre factory in Shenyang, China. A plant employee told our Tyrepress China site that production in Shenyang ceased at the end of January 2024 and that Bridgestone will officially shutter the site at the end of February. As of 5 February, Bridgestone had issued no official announcement regarding the plant.
The Supreme People’s Court of the People’s Republic of China has ruled in favour of Bridgestone Corporation in a lawsuit against Shandong Hawk International Rubber Industry Co., Ltd. (Hawk Tyre). Bridgestone had alleged that the Chinese manufacturer infringed its tyre tread design rights.
The share prices of Bridgestone, Continental, Goodyear, Michelin, Nokian and Pirelli were down by an average of 2.35 per cent following the news that the European Commission has started an antitrust investigation within the European Union.
With the recent launch of the Bridgestone Turanza 6, the manufacturer presented a touring summer tyre built on its Enliten technology platform that offered maximum applicability to the general motorist market. Succeeding the award winning Turanza T005 and the T001 Evo before it, the Turanza 6 incorporates electric vehicle-readiness and is presented in a wide range of sizes for both passenger cars and on-road SUVs, whether they are internal combustion engine, hybrids, or EVs. The tyre meets the demands of both general driving and the specific requirements of electric vehicles such as improving energy efficiency, maximising battery range, and accommodating the increased weight and torque of EVs.
Unannounced inspections, investigations, visits, raids. Whatever you call them, having the European Commission come knocking uninvited is not how any tyre manufacturer wants to start 2024. Nevertheless, that is exactly what happened at the tail-end of January across “several member states” within the European Union.
Following the news that the European Commission has opened a price-fixing investigation across “several member states”, Michelin has officially confirmed that it too has been investigated as part of EC antitrust case. Nokian, Goodyear, Continental, Pirelli and Bridgestone have also been investigated as part of the EC case.