Bridgestone ups retail/retread holdings BRISBANE, Australia—Bridgestone Australia Ltd. is negotiating to buy Boral Ltd.'s tire retailing and retreading businesses in Australia, a move Bridgestone said will help it compete more effectively, especially in the truck tire sector.
Boral, a $3 billion-per-year building, construction and energy concern based in Sydney, has about 50 retail sites and 40 retreading plants operating under a Bandag Inc. license. Altogether, they employ 600 and produce annual sales of about $80 million. Of the 40 retread plants, Boral owns 15 outright; the other 25 operate as independent affiliates.
In June, Bridgestone-Firestone South Africa bought a 26-percent stake in Maxiprest Tyres Ltd., South Africa's largest independent tire dealership and one of the largest retreaders in southern Africa.
Maxiprest operates 93 tire service outlets in South Africa, including 16 with retread plants. It also has retreading and tire distribution activities in Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Michelin making cuts in England
LONDON—Group Michelin will reduce employment at its 2,700-employee Stoke-on-Trent, England, tire and tire products plant this year by 473.
The job cuts are considered part of Michelin's overall plan to reduce its workforce in Europe by about 10 percent, or 7,500 jobs.
They will come primarily in the passenger tire and tire components production areas, Michelin said, and will coincide with an investment program of $18 million to upgrade equipment and facilities. These improvements will reduce manufacturing costs and hike productivity and competitiveness, Michelin said.
Besides passenger and light truck tires, the factory has capacity for truck tire retreading. Capacity is listed as 22,000 units per day.