MORRISON, Tenn. — Bridgestone Americas Inc. is planning to boost capacity at its flagship Warren County truck/bus radial (TBR) tire plant in Morrison by nearly a third with a $550 million, 22-month investment project.
The expansion, which will add 850,000 square feet to the plant’s footprint and create 380 additional jobs, is designed to increase capacity and accelerate the use of advanced technologies “that support cleaner, safer and more efficient commercial truck and bus fleets.”
The 32-year-old plant’s capacity will increase to more than 12,000 units a day from its current rated capacity of 9,150 units per day. The factory’s floor space will jump 42% to 2.8 million square feet.
“With new investment and new jobs, we are moving our Warren County plant forward, driven by growing demand for our products, our commitment to investing in U.S. manufacturing, and our Warren team’s dedication to innovation, efficiency and quality for our customers,” President and CEO Paolo Ferrari said, thanking the state and county.
“Our Warren County plant team plays a vital role in supporting our company’s commitment to providing safe and sustainable mobility solutions,” he said.
The addition of 380 jobs “reinforces Bridgestone’s commitment to American manufacturing” and brings the company’s U.S. workforce to nearly 10,000, the Nashville-based company said, including 1,400 at the Warren County plant.
"This is an investment for the long term, and we have tremendous confidence in the future of our truck and bus tire business here in North America and globally," said Riccardo Cichi, president and chief sales officer, North America.
The plant also reflects Bridgestone's plan to deliver more digital ready products, Cichi said.
"We will be investing not only in smart tire technologies, but digital manufacturing capabilities including AI control technology to increase productivity," he said. "The mobility space is becoming more connected, and the Warren County team will play a leading role in how these sustainable solutions are enabled and implemented within the production environment."
The plant will support more efficient fleet management by using technology for digital readiness in tires, including the integration of tire-mounted sensors that offer advanced, data-driven insights.
The Warren County plant will be fully RFID capable, which allows fleets to have more efficient asset management and optimization, including retreading, he said.
"RFID and other technologies also enable our solutions business and new models like tire-as-service models that we are launching now in the last-mile-delivery space," Cichi said.
Bridgestone is making critical investments in that solutions business — dubbed Bridgestone Fleet Care — which takes the company beyond just tires to complete, end-to-end solutions for fleets, he said.
"Bridgestone is transforming into a sustainable solutions company and our future isn’t just in tires, it’s also in data," he said.
“These technologies combined will help accelerate the company’s progress toward its sustainability goals, including carbon neutrality by 2050,” Bridgestone said.