Marubeni range of international tyre-related investment interests also includes projects in Russia. One example is the establishment of Marubeni Rubber RUS LLC (MRR) in February 2019. In this case the Marubeni Corporation chose to connect with Russia’s very active mining industry due based on the country’s rich natural resources.
Marubeni is well-known for its range of tyre-related investment interests. While the conglomerate began in Japan, recent additions in Russia and US-based Tyrata demonstrate the diversity of its tyre-related portfolio.
Tyrata Inc. and Marubeni Corporation are collaborating in the distribution of Tyrata’s IntelliTread drive-over tread-depth reading system. Specifically, Marubeni will be introducing the technology to its customer base in Japan. Marubeni will begin selling units in Japan in the fourth quarter of 2020.
On 24 October Japanese conglomerate Marubeni announced it had purchased a large minority shareholding in Mexican tyre dealer Radial Llantas. According to the company, Marubeni has bought 49 per cent of the shares in Radial Llantas. The pricetag for the stockholding is said to be “several billion yen”, according to Wards Auto.
Russian mining and metals company Mechel OAO has announced the signing of five-year contracts for supplies of extra-size Bridgestone tyres with Japan's Marubeni Corporation. These agreements were signed by several Mechel group enterprises – Yakutugol Holding Company OAO, Southern Kuzbass Coal Company OAO and Korshunov Mining Plant OAO –on the sidelines of the official visit of the Russian Federation's First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov to Japan. The deals cover the supply of Bridgestone off-road tyres for heavy dump trucks. The contracts cover the delivery of more than 5,000 tyres.
Just over a month after the news that Kwik-Fit owners PAI had appointed Credit Suisse to analyse the options for the sale of the company, newspaper reports have linked Japanese trading house Marubeni with a possible purchase. Marubeni’s other UK interests include ownership of Yokohama HPT tyres and a network of 24 car showrooms through its Marubeni Automotive Ltd subsidiary. It is also said to own one of the largest dealers for Toyota and Mazda in Europe.
Despite the reports, a company spokesperson told Tyres & Accessories that Kwik-Fit is “not in advanced discussions with anyone, specifically not Marubeni.” Rather the reported sale of the company is said to be in the very early stages, with the timeframe to completion unclear at this time.
B-Quik, Thailand’s biggest independent automotive repair organization, saw revenue grow over 30 per cent in the first 6 months of 2010, this despite the unrest in the Thai capital in the month of May. The company has opened two new stores so far this year (one on the island of Phuket and one in Bangkok) and now operates through 64 outlets. For the second half of the year another seven new stores are confirmed and three more are pending. B-Quik adjusted its revenue expectation for 2010 to exceed 2.5 billion Thai baht (£50 million, 61 million Euros). Growth is almost equally split, 15 per cent from like for like same store increase and the other 15 per cent from new stores build last year and this year. The sales growth is divided evenly over the various product groups but aircon repairs and servicing and oil/filter changes lead the growth.
New figures published by the International Rubber Study Group of Singapore suggest that the rubber price rebound of 42 per cent over the past four months is coming to an end. The Group estimates that tyre manufacturers’ sales will see a slump of 6.8 per cent in 2009, in line with the general worldwide decline in the figures of the automotive industries. 67 per cent of global output was used in the manufacture of tyres in 2008, making the industry the biggest consumer of natural rubber. Top exporter Thailand is about to increase its supply following its seasonal drop, with prices at $1,530 per tonne – 18 per cent higher than oil-based alternatives – says Bloomberg. The financial news source quotes Goodyear spokesman Keith Price’s assertion that the company would be able to convert 20 per cent of its rubber consumption to synthetic alternatives “without impacting tyre performance”. The manufacturer is keen to enhance its ability to cut costs through synthetic substitution, a sign – alongside increased supply – that natural rubber costs may be on the verge of a downturn.
Thai based commercial and two-wheel vehicle tyre specialist Deestone, through the founding of the new company Deestone Radial Tire Co. and the establishment of a new factory, has set foot into market territory held by the “Big Three”. The Thai radial tyre market, like almost every other around the world, is dominated by Bridgestone, Michelin and Goodyear. Yet the decision makers at Deestone Ltd. are losing no sleep over the position their own passenger car and light commercial vehicle radials hold in the domestic market – only two years after the opening of the company’s first radial tyre factory, its Thai market share has grown to five per cent. As Deestone’s business development manager Noppadol Nimdee explained during Tyrexpo Asia, this market share is expected to further increase.
2006 was the 6th consecutive record year for B-Quik, the Thailand-based tyre and car services retailer. The company serviced 250,000 customers through its total of 45 centres, of which three were new stores opened during 2006.