PARIS-Groupe Michelin is building two new plants in France incorporating the firm's revolutionary ``C3M'' flexible manufacturing process. Company spokesmen declined to comment on size, capacity, investment or construction timetable for either of the plants, to be located in Michelin's headquarters city, Clermont-Ferrand, and in Saint-Priest near Lyon. Michelin has said the C3M process-which eliminates most of the steps involving semi-finished components-promises an 85-percent reduction in manufacturing time, and would reduce the area needed for a tire factory-and its energy use-by as much as 90 percent.
S. American tire makers merge
LIMA, Peru-Colombia's Grupo Humano de Industria Colombiana de Llantas SA (Icollantas) has taken a majority stake in Peruvian tire maker Lima Caucho SA and authorized a $7 million investment to modernize its facilities.
Lima Caucho said the firms had been studying alternative forms of cooperation for over a year. Icollantas already operates two plants in Colombia; the addition of Lima Caucho will boost annual tire sales to more than $63 million.