A number of Chinese tyre manufacturers have stated that their net profits significantly increased year-on-year in 2023. Doublestar is one of the few tyre companies that was still losing money. Jiangsu General turned losses into profits. In terms of net profit alone, Sailun’s 3.1 billion yuan suggest the company gradually widened the gap between itself and Linglong. Currently, ZC Rubber has not officially disclosed its operating data for 2023. Therefore, it is not yet possible to judge who is in the leading position in terms of net profit between Sailun and ZC Rubber.
When Kumho Tire recently shared news about its tyre made from 80 per cent sustainable materials, we couldn’t help but notice that the accompanying artwork featured a different company logo than the one in use since Doublestar acquired the company. The tyre maker says this new logo is “designed to represent modernity, strength and commitment to the future,” but it also places further distance between the brand and former parent company the Kumho Asiana Group.
From 29 November to 2 December 2023, the National Exhibition and Convention Center (Shanghai) hosts the 18th instalment of Automechanika Shanghai. The show will span over 300,000 sqm, a 36 per cent increase compared to the previous edition. 5,652 exhibitors (up 71 per cent increase from the previous edition) and buyers from around the world will meet to discuss cooperation. Indeed, the organisers report that visitor pre-registration has already overtaken previous records from the 15th edition.
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.
On 7 November, the Shanghai Stock Exchange published the 2023 credit rating report for Qingdao City Construction Investment (Group) Co Ltd. (Qingdao City Investment), the holding company of Qingdao Doublestar and Kumho Tire. Our sister publication Tyrepresschina.com has shared some of the key details contained within the report, which is dated June 2023.
In the third quarter of 2023, Doublestar’s revenue increased by 11.95 per cent year-on-year to 1.23 billion yuan (approximately £139 million; €159 million). Doublestar specified that its PCR products had achieved profitability from July to September. However, overall, during the reporting period, the tyre manufacturer was still in the red despite an increase in operating income, with a loss of 53.32 million yuan (approximately £6 million; €6.87 million).
On 4 September the 18th China International Tire Expo (CITExpo) officially opened in Shanghai. Tyrepress China was present and found that many well-known tyre companies, including ZC Rubber, Sailun, Prinx Chengshan, Guizhou Tyre, Doublestar, and Jiangsu General have all made appearances at this exhibition and brought their flagship products.
Doublestar, Guizhou Tyre, Linglong, Triangle, and Aeolus recently disclosed their semi-annual results forecasts. Doublestar was in the red in the first half of 2023. The other four tyre companies estimated that their performance would rise. Tyrepress China found that adjusting market and product structure became essential reasons for the net profit growth of several Chinese tyre companies. At the same time, the decline in raw material prices and shipping costs benefited tyre manufacturers in the first half of the year.
Recently, the tyre manufacturer Qingdao Doublestar received the “Commitment on Delaying the Resolution of Horizontal Competition” from the controlling shareholder Doublestar Group. Doublestar Group stated that “it is not yet ripe for solving horizontal competition through asset injection, which is not conducive to the rights and interests of Qingdao Doublestar, and there is great uncertainty”. It is reported that Doublestar Group has decided to extend the fulfilment period of the original commitment for three years to July 5, 2026. Tyrepress China learned that the Doublestar Group also mentioned that it is “looking for other solutions that are more conducive to solving horizontal competition and can promote the development of Qingdao Doublestar”.
On May 17, 2023, the three-day 13th China (Guangrao) International Rubber Tire & Auto Accessory Exhibition (ChinaGRTAE 2023) ended, with Chinese language Tyrepress sister site, Tyrepress China in attendance. An organiser press conference on the last day of the show claimed that ChinaGRTAE 2023 had “achieved outstanding results”. According to preliminary statistics, more than 830 trade intentions, agreements, and contracts were reached on May 15th and 16th, exceeding 21.9 billion yuan. One special event hosted by the exhibition achieved more than 330 “one-to-one” negotiations, reaching an intention amount of 2.3 billion yuan.
On 9 May, numerous regional and company dignitaries attended the groundbreaking ceremony for Doublestar Tire’s new factory in Cambodia. Doublestar (Cambodia), a joint venture with UBE Development Co. Ltd., aims to meet growing international demand for high-performance radial tyres. The 400,000 square metre plant will have capacities to produce 7 million PCR tyres and 1.5 million TBR tyres annually.
Qingdao Doublestar’s 2022 annual report shows stable revenues and growing losses. While operating income amounted to 3.91 billion yuan (£460 million), an amount fundamentally unchanged from the previous year, the bottom line net loss attributable to shareholders grew 87.93% year-on-year to 601.9 million yuan (£70.82 million).
On 20 February 2023, the board of directors of Doublestar reviewed and approved the proposal to build a factory in Cambodia. The tyre manufacturer reportedly plans to establish a joint venture with UBE Development Co., Ltd in order to complete the plans.
Recently, several tyre manufacturers have released recruitment information, which is not enough to be strong evidence that China’s tyre industry is gradually recovering. However, the recruitment information shows that some Chinese tyre companies have not hesitated in the challenging environment.