Lassa Tyres has become tyre sponsor for the V1 Challenge Moldova – a series held in a number of cities and run using Volkicars, a race car developed by Turkish racing driver Volkan Işık. And while Lassa’s sponsorship deal is new, the tyre maker can claim a further connection of sorts to the V1 Challenge – the series was developed by Işık, who led the Lassa Rally Team from 2007 to 2010.
Turkey’s Sabanci Holding intends to invest around US$130 million in its Kordsa cord and yarn operation and $110 million in its Brisa tyre making division during the course of 2012. According to Mehmet Pekarun head of Sabanci’s Tire, Tire Reinforcement and Automotive Group, these two investments are being undertaken as part of an overall $275 million investment programme.
As what is traditionally known as winter season in Western Europe draws to a close after an unusually mild season, Turkish tyre brand Lassa has issued a series of winter tyre selection tips. As the industry well knows, winter tyres feature a combination of elements designed to equip them for the cold season. Here’s what Lassa is communicating to consumers when it comes to choosing winter rubber:
Lassa has introduced a new studdable winter tyre designed for heavy winter conditions. The new product, Iceways, is said to feature a combination of optimised winter compound and deeply-siped tread pattern that facilitates handling characteristics in severe conditions; Lassa reports that Iceways offers up to 12 per cent better handling than its main competitors in ice, snow and wet conditions and up to eight per cent better traction. The tyre maker adds that Iceways’ braking distance on ice is up to 17 per cent shorter than for these competitor tyres.
Turkish tyre maker Brisa reports a 36 per cent year-on-year rise in revenues between January and September. In a statement released on October 30, the company disclosed it earned some TL942.5 million (₤329.8 million) during the nine-month period. Net profits rose 35 per cent year-on-year over the same timeframe, to approximately TL47,500 (₤16,600) while EBITA grew 41 per cent to TL114 million (₤39.9 million).
Brisa’s Lassa brand is presenting its Competus HP and Phenoma tyres at the 81st Geneva International Motor Show, on an 80sqm stand in Hall 7. The Competus HP is the latest edition to the Lassa Competus family, and the new sports tyre, Phenoma, have been tested and approved by Germany’s TÜV SÜD Automotive. The show continues until 13 March.
Qingdao, China-based tyre manufacturer Sailun Co., Ltd., has appointed Martin West as managing director of its new Sailun Tyres (Europe) subsidiary. West previously held a number of senior roles with Goodyear, Lassa and most recently Infinity. Tyres & Accessories understands that the new European team, which will be based in the UK, currently consists of two people including the recent appointment of a back office manager that brings with him logistics experience at Goodyear Dunlop. According to a statement released by Sailun Europe, the recent moves follow the firm’s decision to begin “strategically focussing to further develop their presence in the European market.”
After some 46 years in the industry, well known tyre industry veteran Dick Anderson retired from wholesaler RH Claydon on 30 June. Having started as a youngster in the industry with North British Tyre & Rubber (latter to become Uniroyal Tyres) in Edinburgh in 1964, Anderson says that he has enjoyed his time “in a fascinating and now complex industry” and seen the many changes over the years.
Al Dobowi Group, the owner of the Infinity brand and distributor of the Westlake tyre brand, has announced that the company “terminated its relationship with their general manager (West Europe), Martin West” this week. The news comes just six months after West, who previously held a similar position for Turkish-produced tyre brand Lassa, joined the Infinity team. The company’s dealer partners were informed that the company’s “relationship” with West ceased “with immediate effect” on 20 April 2010. The company has not released any further details about who will replace him.
Infinity Tyres (Europe) Limited has announced the appointments of two new senior executives. Martin Lumb joins as sales manager, East Europe, while former Lassa and Goodyear manager Martin West, has been appointed as general manager, West Europe.
Prior to his appointment, Martin Lumb was Regional Manager (Mediterranean) for Goodyear, responsible for the development of key markets, such as Libya, Egypt and Lebanon. Originally employed as a graduate geologist in Cyprus and a financial consultant in Egypt, Martin has been in the tyre industry for over 18 years. Lumb will be based in Austria and have commercial and sales responsibility for the existing and developing markets of Eastern Europe.
Martin West was previously director, European marketing and business development of Lassa Tyres in Europe. Prior to this he worked for Goodyear in the UK, where he held a number of roles in both the manufacturing organisation and the retail unit, HiQ. West’s last role at Goodyear (UK) was general manager, retail development.
S.D. International, the company behind the Pace and Zeta brands, has been accepted into membership of the Imported Tyre Manufacturers’ Association. The manufacturer’s membership means that the association now comprises twelve members: Alliance, Alfred Graham Ltd., GiTi, Hankook, Kumho, Lassa, Maxxis, S.D.International, Toyo, Westlake and Yokohama.
Peter Nicholls, S.D. International’s Sales & Marketing Director explained his company’s decision to join ITMA: “We are rapidly becoming a significant player in the UK and European markets, so have been considering this move for some time. We want to play our part in the industry as well as better protect our interests in the face of the current legislative and regulatory onslaught. ITMA membership fulfils that need.”
RH Claydon is promoting a new marketing programme to participating Lassa passenger, 4×4 and van tyre retail dealers and service providers. Lassa tyres are produced by Brisa, a joint venture between Bridgestone and the Turkish Sabanci Corporation. According to a press release issued by RH Claydon, the company’s “collection for all seasons” includes Lassa Impetus Revo, Impetus Sport, Impetus 2, Atracta and Miratta tyres in passenger car, not to mention van units, transway and LC/R and more. In addition the programme purports too offer “extremely meaningful…incentive rewards within” to the participating dealers.
Lassa’s 4×4 offering focuses on its Competus range of on/off road four-wheel drive radials. According to company literature the Competus design philosophy was to produce a tyre that can “handle all types of weather on all kinds of driving surfaces including snow, mud and dirt.”
Two of the largest tyre manufacturing plants in Turkey paused production for a week following reduced OE demand. The Brisa (Bridgestone/Sabanci) plant which produces Lassa branded tyres initiated a week-long production break in order to “realign production” company representatives told Tyres & Accessories. Turkish Pirelli Tyres Corporation also halted production at its factory in the north-western province of Kocaeli, according to the Hurriyet newspaper. Around 2,200 workers are employed at the two plants, 1,072 of which work for Brisa and will remain on the pay roll, Turkish Tyre-Labor Union representative Huseyin Cakar told Hurriyet.
Lassa has announced the introduction of the new High Performance Impetus Revo tyre. In a like-for-like competitor comparison, the new Lassa Impetus Revo “performed well in all areas and exceptionally when compared for aquaplaning and riding comfort,” Lassa representatives told Tyres & Accessories. 27 Revo sizes will be phased in during 2008, with a furher 15 further sizes following in 2009.