Phelps Tire drops Bandag for Mich. SEATTLE—Phelps Tire Co. has shifted its retread production to Michelin Retread Technologies Inc.'s (MRTI) process, ending a 32-year relationship with Bandag Inc.
Phelps, a Michelin dealer in the Puget Sound area for 23 years, converted its existing, 5-year-old retread plant in south Seattle to MRTI pre-cured "Pre-Mold" technology in late November, and began production under the new system Dec. 6.
The plant is set up to produce 154 tires a day—about what it was before the conversion, said General manager Charlie Allfrey.
The switch to Michelin occurred after Phelps Tire's franchise agreement with Bandag lapsed. Phelps operates five commercial tire outlets in the Puget Sound area.
Bandag still is represented in the area by its Tire Distribution Systems Inc. unit, which operates a former Sound Tire plant there.
BFTT, Dell offer equipment deal
NASHVILLE, Tenn.—Bridgestone/ Firestone Truck Tire Sales Co., a division of Bridgestone/Firestone Inc., and Dell Computer Corp. have launched a program allowing BFTT dealers to purchase or lease the latest Dell computers, printers, monitors and a variety of software.
BFTT said dealers who participate can order prepackaged computer systems or a customized system to meet their specific needs. They will then have access to free technical support from Dell's customer service line 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Instead of purchasing a system, dealers can choose a 36-month business lease with Dell Financial Services L.P., subject to credit approval and availability.
Dealers can apply for the program via the Internet at the BFTT Web site, www.trucktires.com.
BFGoodrich MVP pricing a success
PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas—Although initially considered controversial, Michelin Americas Small Tires' Maximum Value Policy (MVP), requiring retailers to adhere to minimum prices on the BFGoodrich Radial All-Terrain T/A and its successor, the All-Terrain T/A KO, has paid off for dealers and the company alike, MAST officials said.
"By the time the All-Terrain T/A KO celebrates its first anniversary, the MVP program will have delivered an additional $26 million in profits for dealers," BFGoodrich Brand Manager Mathew Aaron said.
Michelin will continue enforcing the policy, designed to protect dealer profitability, but has no plans to expand its coverage to other products, he said.
To date, the company has suspended delivery to only four retailers for failing to comply with the minimum-price policy.
Lee Fieldler running for mayoral post
CUMBERLAND, Md.—Lee Fiedler, retired president of Goodyear's Kelly-Springfield Tire Co. unit, has formally announced his candidacy for mayor of Cumberland. He had indicated last year that he was thinking about running for the post.
Cumberland's mayoral primary is scheduled for May 2, with the general election set for May 16. Mayoral candidates in Cumberland do not have to declare a party.
Current Mayor Edward Athey, himself a Kelly-Springfield retiree, has decided against a sixth two-year term, Mr. Fiedler said. At present, there are no other candidates in the race, but they have until March 30 to declare themselves.
Mr. Fiedler's strategic plan, released in early january, calls for a four-pronged platform of "economic development, getting people downtown, keeping government services and strengthening neighborhoods," he said.
Goodyear is closing down Kelly's Cumberland operations and consolidating them into Goodyear's Akron headquarters.
Up next in TB
The Feb. 14 issue of Tire Business will feature special reports on the tire industry's agricultural and off-the-road segments.