DES MOINES, Iowa (March 29, 2010) — Bridgestone Americas will invest $77 million over three years at its Firestone Des Moines agricultural tire plant to expand capacity and upgrade manufacturing to meet demand for high-capacity radial farm tires.
“This investment will allow Firestone to maintain our market position, continue to develop advanced solutions and supply improved tire technology to the agricultural industry,” said Ken Allen, president, agricultural tire, U.S. & Canada commercial tire sales division, Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations.
Investments will be made in tire building, curing and necessary support equipment, Bridgestone said, in part to meet demand for larger-sized tires being used on more powerful farm equipment. At the same time, though, producers want to minimize ground compaction.
“As farm equipment applications become more specialized, such as the self-propelled sprayer market, we will be in a position to provide tires that meet the unique demands of these applications,” Mr. Allen said.
Bridgestone did not comment on the project's impact on employment. The 65-year-old plant counts 1,400 employees. Plant capacity is listed as 12,100 units a day.