SALEM, Va.—Senior engineers from Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd. are coming from Japan to the tire maker's only U.S. plant to examine its operations and see where efficiency can be improved.
But Dan Hunter, Yokohama Tire Corp. vice president and general manager of consumer products, said any changes made in production at the Salem radial passenger and light truck tire factory are unrelated to reported financial troubles at the company, and Tokyo personnel will act as consultants, offering advice and direction for ways to improve the U.S. operations.
Since Yokohama Rubber took over the Salem plant as part of its Mohawk Rubber Co. purchase in 1989, the parent company has been active and instrumental in changes, he said.
A Nov. 29 report from Bloomberg News Service quoted Yokohama Managing Director Keimei Kiyoura as saying the company would "overhaul the (Yokohama Tire) unit" and focus on "restructuring in our manufacturing operations" in the U.S.
But Mr. Hunter said there is no major restructuring planned in Salem.