Marangoni adds 12th franchisee
MADISON, Tenn.-Marangoni Tread North America Inc. has signed its 12th licensed retreader, Blevins Tire & Recapping of Bristol, Va.
Madison-based Marangoni said the two-outlet commercial dealer and retreader plans to begin manufacturing retreads using Marangoni's Ringtread system in May. Blevins will serve the Tri-City, Tennessee, south West Virginia and upper east Tennessee areas. The dealership sells Michelin, BFGoodrich, Kelly and Dunlop new tires, Marangoni said.
``The area Blevins will market the Ringtread closes the gap for our growing fleet customers and reinforces our commitment to expanding our dealer network,'' said Bob Miner, vice president of sales for Marangoni.
Dealer group taps new execs
LOS ANGELES-The Independent Tire Dealer Group (ITDG) appointed Michael Cox president and Edward Long vice president of sales.
Mr. Cox, a 27-year veteran of the tire industry, most recently worked as regional vice president of sales for TBC Corp.'s subsidiary, Tire Kingdom Inc., where he was responsible for starting Tire Kingdom's associate dealer program. Prior to that, he was senior vice president of corporate accounts.
Mr. Long served as regional director of operations for Tire Kingdom. Prior to that, he served as southeast regional general manager for Bridgestone/Firestone Consumer Tires.
Los Angeles-based ITDG is comprised of 81 dealer members with more than 270 locations in California, Arizona, Nevada, Colorado, New Mexico and Hawaii.
Yokohama to cut truck tire prices
FULLERTON, Calif.-Yokohama Tire Corp. plans to drop the prices of its most fuel-efficient commercial tires by at least 10 percent for national accounts until diesel fuel prices drop below $1.50 a gallon on a national average.
The ``Fuel Price Buster'' program, which Yokohama said it believes is the first of its kind, is aimed at giving the tire maker's national accounts a tool to be profitable and successful, the company said.
``This is a true discount-no coupons, no rebates or credits-just an immediate, across-the-board discount to every single Yokohama national account,'' said John Cooney, director of commercial sales for Yokohama.
The program will run from April 1 to June 30, at which point it will be reevaluated. It revolves primarily around Yokohama's Maintenance Saving Concept line of commercial tires, which Yokohama claims is among the most fuel efficient in the market. The RY637 is designed to lengthen original tread life, the RY587 aims to reduce the average cost per mile, and the TY527 also is designed to maximize original tread life, according to the firm.
The tire maker said it is using statistics for the national average of diesel fuel prices from the Energy Information Administration's Retail On-Highway Diesel Prices report.
Ford gets last shipment from BFS
NASHVILLE, Tenn.-Bridgestone/Firestone (BFS) made its last shipment of tires to Ford Motor Co. in North America April 1, officially ending the 97-year business relationship that began with a handshake deal between Henry Ford and Harvey Firestone.
Bridgestone/Firestone terminated all business with Ford in May 2002, after the auto maker made a unilateral decision to replace 13 million Firestone Wilderness AT tires over and above the 6.5 million Nashville-based BFS already recalled in August 2000.
``Once the decision was made to dissolve the relationship, we also decided that we wouldn't leave Ford in the lurch,'' a BFS spokesman said. ``In some cases contracts were extended when Ford couldn't find an alternative supplier.''
Wholesaler to hold May open house
TROY, Mich.-Tire Wholesalers Inc. (TWI) plans to hold an open house from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. May 15 to mark the opening of a 44,800-sq.-ft. addition to its warehouse, the Troy-based firm said.
The addition, which nearly doubled the size of the Troy warehouse to about 80,000 square feet, will be marked with a trade fair for TWI customers, including seminars and information about new products.
The seminars will focus primarily on the TREAD Act and rising insurance costs. The speakers are Becky MacDicken, director of government affairs for the Tire Industry Association, and Gordon Dudley, president of Risk Assessment Management Services.
Exhibitors TBC Corp., Titan International and Cooper Tire & Rubber Co., among others, also are expected.
The event for TWI customers will run from 4 to 9 p.m. and will include food, drink and entertainment.