As we go to print on the December issue of Tyres & Accessories, Micheldever Group is marking a year since Sumitomo Rubber Industries, manufacturer of Falken Tyres for which MTS is UK distributor, bought the UK tyre distributor from previous owner Graphite Capital Management. While the sale was not unexpected, the identity of the new owner may have been somewhat surprising, though SRI’s investment in Falken Tyre Europe following the late-2015 dissolution of its alliance agreement with Goodyear makes the acquisition of a leading distributor a logical move. For Micheldever’s board, SRI was said to be an attractive new owner, with the presumption that it would offer offering longevity, stability, and consistency; as a large, well-established, high quality top-six tyre manufacturer seeking to broaden its knowledge of UK distribution with an already successful business.
Showcasing significant technological and performance breakthroughs, Falken launched its latest Azensis and Sincera products at the Ascari Race Resort near Malaga, Spain. Tyrepress took the opportunity to speak to Isamu Ishida, managing director, Falken Tyre Europe, and Matt Smith, managing director UK & Ireland, about the direction of Falken post Sumitomo and Goodyear’s Dunlop joint venture, having sampled the benefits of the new tyres at Ascari.