EDINBURGH, Scotland-Kwik-Fit Holdings P.L.C., the largest independent tire distributor in Europe, has expanded its reach in the United Kingdom with the purchase of Superdrive Motoring Centres Ltd., a 125-outlet tire and exhaust fitting chain, from Shell Petroleum Co. Ltd. The acquisition, valued at $35.1 million, gives Kwik-Fit 615 tire stores in the U.K. Shell set up Superdrive in 1982 as a complement to its gasoline service station network, but decided to divest it last year after a series of losses.
Kumho forms China venture
SEOUL, South Korea-Kumho & Co. Inc., the world's 10th-largest tire maker, has entered into a 75/25 tire manufacturing joint venture in Nan Jing, China.
Kumho and its partner, Nan Jing Tire, will invest $120 million in the next few years to install capacity for more than 3 million passenger, light truck and heavy truck/bus radials annually. Production should commence early in 1997.
As a result of these talks, Kumho has tabled plans to build a 10 million unit per year plant near Hanam, South Korea, but still will expand its Koksung, South Korea, plant.