SEOUL, South Korea — Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards visited Kumho Tire Co. Inc.'s headquarters in Seoul recently to discuss Kumho's decision to open a logistics center near New Orleans in the coming years.
Bel Edwards led a trade delegation that also included Don Pierson, economic development secretary. They met with Il-Taek Jung, Kumho Tire CEO, Seung-Bin Lim, head global sales, and Eun-Sun Lee, head of supply chain management.
Kumho disclosed plans earlier this year to open by 2026 a 350,000-sq.-ft. distribution center in Franklin, La., to expand its U.S. supply-chain capabilities. The center will be capable of warehousing up to 500,000 tires.
"We will leverage our strategic location in the U.S. and the distribution center to expand our service coverage and boost our brand value in the global market," Jung said. "Continued expansion in the world's largest tire market will allow us to achieve sustainable growth and development down the road."
Kumho's expansion plans also include a 400,000-sq.-ft. distribution center in Dallas that's scheduled to open in April. The new facility, rated to warehouse 540,000 tires at full capacity, will serve customers in 15 Southern and Midwestern states.
It will be Kumho's third distribution center in the U.S., joining ones in Rancho Cucamongo, Calif., and McDonough, Ga.
Kumho, the No. 17 tire maker worldwide with fiscal 2021 revenue of $2.3 billion, derives about 25% of its annual sales from business in North America.