CHINNAPANDURU VILLAGE, India — Apollo Tyres Ltd. executives and local officials laid the ceremonial foundation stone Jan. 8 in this village in Andhra Pradesh state, for a $280 million passenger tire plant that the company expects to be on stream by mid-2020.
Construction on the plant is expected to start within six months, Apollo said, with manufacturing slated to start 24 months later.
Participating in the foundation stone ceremony were: Shri N Chandrababu Naidu, chief minister, Andhra Pradesh state; and Onkar and Neeraj Kanwar, Apollo Tyres chairman and vice chairman/managing director, respectively.
Apollo Tyres has purchased 200 acres of land from the Andhra Pradesh government for the facility. The site is in Andhra Pradesh's Chittoor district, about 100 miles west of Chennai, the coastal city where Apollo operates a combined passenger/truck tire plant that it opened in 2010.
Apollo did not disclose the plant's expected capacity but did say employment there would be close to 700 in the first phase. The company expects to add capacity for other tire types as well in later stages.
The factory will be Apollo's fifth in India and seventh overall.
At the ceremony, Onkar Kanwar said Apollo envisions the new factory is part of his company's plans for expanding capacities in India in the coming years.
He also thanked the Andhra Pradesh government for the "excellent cooperation" received thus far in bringing this project forward.
Apollo disclosed Andrah Pradesh state in November 2016 as the proposed site for this plant. At that time, Indian media reports indicated it would focus initially on motorcycle and scooter tires and eventually would include capacity for light truck tires.
With fiscal 2017 sales of $1.94 billion, Apollo is India's second largest tire maker and No. 17 worldwide, according to Tire Business' annual Global Top 75 ranking.