Triangle Tire to build PCR, TBR factories in North Carolina

By David Shaw On 12 November, Triangle Tire issued a Chinese-language stock market announcement announcing plans for two tire factories at an unspecified location in North Carolina, United States. These will be Triangle’s first non-Chinese manufacturing operations. In the first phase, Triangle plans to build a factory for 5mn units/year of high-performance PCR and SUV

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Michelin gets interested in tire recycling with Lehigh acquisition

Michelin has bought tire recycler Lehigh Technologies for an undisclosed sum. The deal was completed on 13 October, and means that Lehigh is becoming a wholly-owned subsidiary of Michelin. No financial details were revealed. Although neither party gave any indication of the value of the company, Lehigh said in early 2017 that it was expecting

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Recycled materials and new tires

By David Shaw Every now and then, I have a conversation that makes me realise my mental model of the tire universe needs re-adjusting in some way. That happened twice last week. Both occasions related indirectly to the disposal of end-of-life tires and how to recover value from the materials. Sustainable Materials Group One of

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DriveGuard changes the game for Bridgestone

Bridgestone’s European Driveguard was launched today in France. It was marketed as a ‘Game Changer’ within the tire business. At first glance, the product is just another runflat tire, launched 2 years behind its US namesake. But there is a story behind the development, which marks a change of game not necessarily for the tire

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A bit of fun in the tire industry for the mid-Winter break

Many cultures regard this period as the end of one year and the beginning of the next. I’m using that as an excuse to adopt a slightly more frivolous approach to this column. With no more pre-amble, let me look back at 2015 and make some predictions for 2016. The themes of 2015 were pretty

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Future of Rubber Machinery

I was lucky enough to be interviewed by Prasanth Warrier of Rubber Machinery World last week in his Know a Rubber Leader series. The interview is in full on his website, but I thought I’d re-print two of the ten questions he asked me here, as a bit of a teaser for his full article.

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Pirelli’s Calendar enters 21st century

After three or four years of struggling with image problems, Pirelli has found a way to produce a calendar which celebrates women without objectifying them. Three years ago I wrote a blog congratulating Pirelli on its decision to reduce the number of naked images in its 2013 calendar. At the time I wrote, “It is

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Natural Rubber risks drive strategic realignments

Here in Guatemala, the fantastic Rubber days meeting has just finished. Measured by volumes, Guatemala is barely even on the map of Natural Rubber (NR) producing nations. But measured by creativity and energy it is up there among the leaders. Guatemala has the first (and I think only) FSC-accredited rubber plantation anywhere in the world.

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China’s Tire industry – the fog begins to clear

China’s tire industry is in melt-down. The question now is, how long can the current situation last? I’ve just come back from Shandong Province and the mood is not good. When things are not going well, Chinese people will rarely tell you the real situation. When they tell you things are bad, you know the

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Visions of the future for the global tire industry

Disruption. Change. Revolution. Usually when we talk about the tire industry, we talk about incremental change. Tires are safety critical and big changes introduce too much risk. Vehicle makers, tire retailers and the vehicle operators like tires to be reliable, safe and secure. Tire manufacture is both capital-intensive and labour-intensive. This means tire makers need

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