NASHVILLE, Tenn.-Bridge-stone/Firestone Inc. will boost production at its radial passenger/light truck tire plant in Joliette, Quebec, from 14,000 units per day to 18,000 units by mid-1998. The company plans to invest $50 million in the expansion and add about 70 employees to the plant's current staff of about 900.
The expansion will help meet the increasing tire demand of automakers and consumers in North America, BFS said, and improve customer fill rate.
AKRON-Goodyear appointed Marco Molinari as vice president of sales and marketing for the company's North American Tires unit Nov. 1, succeeding Al Eastwood, 57, who will retire after 32 years with Goodyear.
Since August, Mr. Molinari was director of marketing for North American Tires and previously spent the majority of his Goodyear career in Europe in marketing, sales and general management positions.
Mr. Eastwood will be on special assignment pending his Dec. 31 retirement. He has served as vice president of marketing since 1995 and earlier served as vice president of replacement sales.
ENGLEWOOD, Colo.-Big O Tires Inc. has named Brad Findlay to the newly created position of manager of franchise sales, with the responsibility of helping existing Big O dealers grow and of converting existing tire dealerships into Big O locations.
Mr. Findlay previously served as director of distribution at the company's Las Vegas warehouse.
Mr. Findlay plans to target the many family-owned dealerships now being handed over to a second generation. ``While a founder may not have wanted to be part of a franchise, his son who is now running the store may see today's competition and want to be part of a unique program like Big O's,'' he said.
CHARLOTTE, N.C.-Continental General Tire has named Dennis DeLeonard as director of business development and John Zeola as manager of market planning in an effort to strengthen the replacement tire marketing department of the company's passenger and light truck division.
Mr. DeLeonard, previously general manager of American Car Care Centers, will plan and implement marketing programs for independent tire dealers and associated dealers. Mr. Zeola, previously a district manager for Yokohama Tire Corp., will organize market research, information, and planning and product research.
AKRON-Goodyear has converted several strategic business unit and functional vice president posts from appointed to elected officers to reflect a business-driven image and significantly increase the responsibility and accountability of business unit leaders.
The affected positions, which are now elected by the company's board of directors, instead of appointed by the chairman, include: corporate vice president and Kelly-Springfield Division president; vice president, European region; vice president, Asia Region; vice president, Latin America region; vice president, engineered products division; vice president, chemical division; vice president, corporate finance; and vice president, business development.
TOKYO-Bridgestone Corp. will serve as an official supplier for the 18th Winter Olympic Games in Nagano, Japan, in 1998 under a basic agreement reached Oct. 17.
Bridgestone will support the Olympics with such items as studless snow tires, aluminum wheels and rubber chains for installation on official vehicles.
As an official supplier, Bridgestone plans to help publicize the Games and actively use the Olympic emblem, beginning this winter, in its advertising and marketing campaigns in Japan.
PACIFIC GROVE, Calif.-The Tire Retread Information Bureau is issuing a new nine-minute video featuring representatives of the U.S. Forest Service and General Services Administration telling their successes with retreaded tires.
The video, ``How government fleets (city/state/federal) can save money and help the environment by using retreaded tires,'' was adapted from a longer video on buying recycled vehicle products produced by the U.S. Postal Service and the Office of the Federal Environmental Executive.
Public sector fleets and trucking firms may obtain a free copy of the video by contacting TRIB at (888) 473-8732.