TRELLEBORG, Sweden (April 4. 2000)—Trelleborg Wheel Systems will invest $14 million this year to modernize and upgrade manufacturing facilities at its joint-venture farm tire plant in Tivoli, Italy.
The company, the tire and wheel division of Trelleborg A.B., also is in the process of transferring production of light industrial tires from its headquarters plant in Trelleborg to its Bergougnan Lanka subsidiary in Sri Lanka, and increasing the degree of automation at its industrial tire plant in Evergem, Belgium.
The company also phased out production of motorcycle tires in order to focus its attention on the more core forestry, farm and industrial tire sectors.
The investments at Tivoli are designed to increase manufacturing efficiency, Trelleborg said in its fiscal 1999 annual report. The company did not specify details of the investment project.
Trelleborg and Pirelli S.p.A. are 60-40 joint-venture partners in the plant, opened originally by Pirelli in 1939. The 460-employee plant produces 800 farm tires a day.
The full-year consolidation of the joint venture contributed heavily to a 27.8-percent jump in Trelleborg Wheel Systems´ sales last year, to $334.9 million. Operating profits jumped 34.6 percent, to $20.7 million, raising the operating margin to 6.2 percent.
In addition to the tire manufacturing projects, Trelleborg is planning to upgrade and increase rim production at plants in Sweden, Denmark and Belgium, and is studying the market for further acquisitions and/or alliances. ©: