QUINCY, Ill. (March 2, 2005) — Titan International Inc. plans to use the Kelly farm tire brand for the next year, but the brand's long-term future hasn't been discussed yet, according to Maurice Taylor Jr., Titan's president and CEO.
During a March 2 conference call discussing Titan's acquisition of Goodyear's agricultural tire business—announced Feb. 28—Mr. Taylor said he foresees some “decent-sized runs” of Kelly ag products. But Titan will be streamlining its products and “when you do that you can't make the same types of tires with the same tread designs,” Mr. Taylor said. The priority will be to build the Goodyear brand as the premium brand, with the Titan brand next, he added.
Kelly ag tires are made along with the Goodyear brand at Goodyear's farm tire plant in Freeport, Ill., which was included in the sale. The deal will cost Titan about $100 million, and Mr. Taylor estimates it will yield about $225 million in revenue annually for Titan. The deal is contingent on government approvals and an agreement with the United Steelworkers of America.