WASHINGTON—National Tire Dealers & Retreaders Association Executive Vice President Philip P. Friedlander Jr. officially retired from his post Dec. 31. The 42-year NTDRA veteran was replaced by David E. Poisson, former president and chief operating officer of the Computer Leasing and Remarketing Association.
Mr. Friedlander joined the NTDRA in 1954 as editor of Dealer News magazine. Later he was promoted to director of public relations, then director of communications and, finally, executive vice president in 1978.
MEMPHIS, Tenn.—To focus growth on the replacement tire market, TBC Corp. said it sold its aftermarket battery distribution subsidiary to Douglas Battery Manufacturing Co.
The company also is discontinuing marketing other non-tire products to distributors, including custom wheels, ride-control products, filters, brake parts and chassis parts.
``Our decision to concentrate TBC's managerial and financial resources solely on the replacement tire market is a solid strategy because, simply, it is what we do best,'' said Louis S. DiPasqua, president and CEO.
Non-tire products accounted for 9 percent of TBC's 1995 total sales of $548 million but did not make a significant contribution to net income, the Memphis-based company reported.
CITY OF COMMERCE, Calif.—After operating the 15-outlet David Early Tire Stores chain for three years, AHJ Co. has sold the Utah-based tire retailer back to its founder, David Early.
The total-assets divestiture was finalized Nov. 19, according to John Andonian, president of AHJ and its sister company, AKH Co., which does business as Discount Tire Centers.
``A careful assessment of return on investment guided our decision to sever our relationship with David Early Tires,'' he said.
``While divestiture is always a difficult decision, we're particularly pleased that the spirit of David Early Tire Stores has been preserved. All assets of this well-respected chain of automotive service centers will once again belong to its founder.''
IRVINE, Calif.—Heavy Duty Trucking has included two new tires and a retread line among its annual ``Nifty Fifty'' list of most significant new products in the commercial trucking industry during the past year.
In its December issue, the trucking publication selected Continental General Tire's D450 and D460 tire series designed for lower rolling resistance and longer mileage; Bridgestone Inc.'s R227 steer tire featuring two patented technologies to reduce irregular tread wear; and Bandag Inc.'s FCR Series retreads with new tread design and compounding to deliver better wear and fuel economy.
CONYERS, Ga.—Larry Duckett, the former president of Edwards-Warren Tire Co., will retire as vice president of Fletcher's Cobre Tire in February, Cobre Tire said.
Mr. Duckett served as president of Edwards-Warren for 40 years and joined Cobre Tire when it purchased the dealership in January 1996.
NASHVILLE, Tenn.—To offset rising costs, Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. said Dec. 18 that it's Firestone Tube Co. division will raise prices an average 2 percent, effective Feb. 1.
Orders placed through Jan. 24 and shipped by Feb. 28 will be invoiced at the current price.
The increase is the first for the company since May 1995.
JENNINGS, Mo.—The owner of a small tire shop in Jennings was shot to death Dec. 9 during an apparent robbery, according to area police.
James A. Brown, 53, owner of Jim's Tire & Auto Repair, was found in his dealership at about 6 p.m. Police said the shooting occurred at about 5:30 p.m.
Police continue to investigate the shooting but declined to discuss details of the case.
Jim's Tire & Auto is a two-bay facility located on Janet Avenue, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Jennings is a small community located just outside the northwest border of St. Louis.
The telephone number listed for Jim's Tire & Auto has been disconnected.
AKRON—Goodyear's tire plant in Napanee, Ontario, became the first tire plant to be certified to QS 9000 quality standards, the company announced Dec. 10.
The certification came in conjunction with that of the firm's Akron Technical Center.
The tech center certification, which covers product design, provides the base for all Goodyear North American plants to receive QS 9000 certification.
The company's Union City, Tenn., plant already has been recommended for certification, the company announced Dec. 20.
The Big Three automakers developed QS 9000 certification to focus on ongoing improvement and manufacturing capabilities.
FINDLAY, Ohio—A U.S. District Court ruled Dec. 11 that Hercules Tire and Rubber Co.'s Power Trac tread design does not infringe on Goodyear's patent for its G362 tread design.
Goodyear filed suit against the Findlay-based retread supplier in May 1995. Hercules filed a counterclaim seeking, among other things, a judgment declaring the Power Trac design was original. The case went to trial in October.
``Judge (Sam H.) Bell's opinion recognizes that the Power Trac tread design is fundamentally different from the Goodyear design,'' said Paul D. Rinauro, Hercules vice president and general manager. ``It allows us to continue to offer this economical and very popular retread design to our customers.''
ATLANTA—It took firefighters three days to extinguish a fire at an Atlanta tire recycling yard near the end of November.
The fire at the Waste Recovery Inc. facility on Huber Street involved scraps from about 20,000 tires, the fire department said. The blaze started in a tire-shredding machine.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said oily water that leaked into the nearby Chattahoochee River will cause little long-term damage to the environment.
AKRON—Rubber & Plastics News, a sister publication of TIRE BUSINESS, named Maurice Taylor Jr. its 1996 Rubber Industry Executive of the Year.
The Titan Wheel International Inc. CEO and chairman has taken the company from $150 million to $700 million in sales during the past three years while finding time last year to run—albeit unsuccessfully—for the Republican nomination for president.
In November, the firm began construction of a $100 million agricultural and off-the-road tire plant in Brownsville, Texas.