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Transporters on massive drive to lower cpk costs Continental launches new generation truck tyres with Airkeep technology

Vol 17 • March 2011


CFP Tyres, Tyre Importer of the Year, in the spotlight

Auto & Truck becomes world’s largest retreader Second hand tyres – Russian roulette with rubber?

a set of locally produced Goodyear branded tyres to the value of R5000.00

With the reliability you get from Bandag, your fleet can take on anything. For more information contact Bandag -

Tel: +27 11 439 6000

Fax: +27 11 506 8717

I n t r o d u c t i o n • 1




One-on-One Charles Pitout of CFP Tyres – Winner of Tyre Importer of the Year 2010..........................................


Focus on the Trucking Industry Transport operators re-seize control as cpk drive intesifies...................


Industry News Chemvulc launches new catalogue with new product lines....................


Manufacturing Continental launches major product offensive....................................... 2011 Pirelli Calendar is launched in style!..............................................

15 21

Retreading News Auto & Truck Tyres (ATT) becomes largest retreading facility in world...........................................................


Conti Corner Always ahead with Continental Truck & Bus Tyres.................................


Talking Tyres Second hand tyres – Russian roulette. . .with rubber . ..........................


Goodyear News New Goodyear Call Centre keeps customers on a roll...........................


Dealer Profile Regional Kings Jody’s Tyres – 20 years on and still going strong...........


World News Sky-high raw material costs put pressure on tyre suppliers................... Hankook, Goodyear, Yokohama winners at Tire Technology Awards..... New Apollo factories: First Eastern Europe, then Indonesia...................

43 43 43

Competition, Subscription, Website . .......................................


Front Cover: Courtesy Cargo Carriers Editor

Liana Shaw

Technical Consultant

Wray Shaw


Diane van Noort


Tel: (011) 658 0011 T YPO (011) 658 0010 – Colour Printing Specialists Fax: Cell: 082 851 6777 Prestige Bulk Mailers E-mail: Liana Shaw Website:

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The New Year kicked off with a new tyre price hike which was not altogether unexpected given the soaring price of natural rubber and other raw materials which are hitting the global tyre industry particularly hard. Not only are we experiencing a global shortage on natural rubber, what little there is of this precious natural resource is being all but consumed by emerging markets from the East. As our Interview with CFP Tyres on page 3 will go to show, tyre producers from the East are a growing force to be reckoned with, not only on price, but also as far as quality and after sales service are concerned. Of course there are still plenty of backyard operators churning out sub-standard products from ill-equipped factories, but there are also Chinese companies such as Triangle (now 35 years old), that have rightfully earned their place on the global tyre stage. Our interview with the Tyre Importer of the Year (as voted by the TDAFA) outlines the stiff criteria imposed on this category, and explains why CFP Tyres (distributors of Triangle in SA) stood head and shoulders above the rest. We then take a closer look at the transport segment and the industry’s direct involvement with its end users. Commercial operators are always a good barometer by which to gauge how the tyre industry is faring in its product and service offering. This time around it’s interesting to note a definite trend towards greater ownership of their tyre fleets, coupled with a renewed interest in brand performance and comparative testing. Turn to page 9 for some of the views we encountered on our recent visits with prominent transport operators. Also in this issue we bring you the latest new generation truck tyres from Continental Tyre which were released alongside their brand new technology in Airkeep – a process that promises to slow down the rate of air loss from the tyre. Read all about that on page 15 We believe there are some exciting things in store by way of new product launches and interesting developments this year, so watch this space. We’ll bring you all the latest news as they happen.

O n e - o n - O n e • 3

Charles Pitout of CFP Tyres

– Winner of Tyre Importer of the Year 2010 CFP Tyres winning the award for Top Importer of the Year at last year’s TDAFA Awards Dinner in October was an astonishing achievement. Being picked from a group of nominees that included SA Tyre and Michelin Tyres was a huge honour, especially for a family business that’s only been around since 2001.

Charles Pitout

We flew to Cape Town to meet with CEO Charles Pitout and his top

First, congratulations on your recent win folks. Allegedly you were not

management team – Deon Mouton, Alida Mouton and Pieter Pitout - in the

expecting it?

company’s new headquarters in Durbanville. During an animated meeting

No, not at all. We were elated just to be nominated.

in their new boardroom, they chronicled the company’s journey and future

We’re still actively working towards our goal and there’s much to strive for

plans whilst also giving us an inkling into the business model that has

in terms of getting the company to where we would like it to be, so winning

catapulted them into the limelight.

this award for us was premature and totally unexpected. However, it served

O n e - o n - O n e • 5

to confirm that we were on the right path. It’s great to be recognised for

something. My late father, Charles Pitout Senior, thought it would be a good

one’s efforts by one’s peers.

idea to open a tyre distribution company in South Africa and get involved in the selling of Triangle Tyres.

What are the criteria for winning in this category? According to the TDAFA, an independent market survey is conducted

His company was one of few tyre dealers who bought tyres from

every year among customers to assess product quality, service, quality,

Continental Worldwide Developments and when the chairman decided to

warranties and the like. The results are then accumulated and compiled to

sell off surplus stock, it was decided among these dealers, to buy the whole

determine the nominees and final winner.

company instead of just the stock.

When you say customers, to whom are you referring?

In 2006, CFP Tyres was officially born when it purchased all shares in

By customers we mean the distribution trade who commented on the

Continental Worldwide Developments. Alida flew to China, secured brand

product and its performance.

exclusivity and unwittingly began her career in the tyre business.

As wholesalers, we took the decision upfront to stay true to our core

Before joining the Board of CFP in 2008, I did my engineering degree at the

business to supply to the retail industry. Our customers are the trade

University of Pretoria where after I was involved in the day to day running

and we’d like to believe that our unwavering loyalty to them coupled with

of various family owned enterprises such as franchises, manufacturing and

our pledge not to approach their clients directly, had a lot to do with our

precision farming.

winning the award. Principles such as integrity, honesty and hard work are the hallmark upon which this company is being built.

Deon, our Financial Director, has a very strong financial background

Tell us of your early beginnings.

manages sales in Namibia and Angola. Pieter, heading the position of Sales

We actually stumbled upon the concept of importing and distributing tyres

& Marketing Director, is brilliant at growing & expanding business and

into South Africa by default. In 1999 Alida was working for a trading firm

seeking new opportunities in South Africa as well as the rest of Africa.

and plays a crucial role in managing the company’s financials. He also

– Continental Worldwide Developments – which, among other things, specialised in ladies fashion. A small subsidiary of that company was

Alida continues to run global purchasing, sourcing of product and

Triangle tyres, a facet to their business which they eventually elected to

international liaison with factories, something she’s exceptionally

dispose of.

professional about.

Before long and to Alida’s surprise, requests for more of these Triangle

As for me, I bring the customer’s perspective to the business courtesy of a

tyres came pouring in. That’s when Alida realised that we might be onto

long business career, where I was both the customer and the supplier. The way I see it, it’s not about tyres, it’s about running a business. We want to become involved with our customers and their respective businesses to the extent that both parties stand to benefit. If their businesses succeed, so will ours. Who are your primary customers? Around 60% of our customer base is made of company owned tyre groups with the balance comprising independent outlets. Bear in mind, multi-brand dealers are always on the lookout for brands that provide added value, so even those with specified alliances still have room for additional tyre makes. For which applications do you import tyres? For the PCR, TBR, OTR, Agricultural & Industrial markets. What sort of feedback are you getting from the end user trade on the

The Management team: Left to right: Pieter Pitout, Charles Pitout, Alida Mouton and Deon Mouton

performance of the Triangle brand? A growing number of customers are coming back and asking for the Triangle brand after they’ve seen first-hand what it can do. In conjunction

6 • O n e - o n - O n e

Alida proudly accepts the award from Triangle Tyres on behalf of CFP Tyres.

with our customers, test results reviewed that our product performances

our brand from the rest at this point is by letting the product speak for itself.

are far superior then other comparative products and on par with premium

And it does.

brands. This is due to product developments in Triangle. Bear in mind Triangle is a massive global enterprise and OE supplier. How does CFP brands compare to other Chinese brands in the market?

Most of the engineers the company employs come from leading new tyre

Firstly we spend a lot of time and effort in testing and researching quality

manufacturing companies. Added to that, China’s strong economy means

brands before importing.

that leading manufacturing concerns such as Triangle, are in the position to invest by way of machinery, technology, knowledge and new factories.

Triangle is a premium tyre brand that can compete with the world’s best.

Triangle’s new green TBR plant measuring approximately 350,000 sqm in

Bear in mind that Triangle is the fourth largest OTR radial manufacturer in

size, is testament to that.

the world, so it’s a brand to be reckoned with. Initially, we have to break new barriers through price (not that Triangle is the Closer to home, the brand continues to astound us on mileage and

cheapest brand around), and we’re prepared to do that for a time so that


the brand can establish itself. This is not an overnight success story – we’re in it for the long haul.

Recently, we were approached by D1S a drifting motorsport club which unbeknown to us, has been using Triangles in the harshest of conditions.

What is your vision going forward?

They claim the Triangle is outlasting every other tyre on the circuit, so much

To be widely recognised as the best leading tyre importer and distributor

so, that even their pro driver competes on Triangle tyres on the Supa Drift

in SA, a strategy that encompasses fine-tuning every function making up


the company.

A fine endorsement indeed! Do you find it difficult to separate CFP

Coupled to this, our mission is to proactively market and deliver only the

brands from the stigma that surrounds Chinese imports?

highest quality products, to provide outstanding after sales service at all

This remains one of our biggest challenges. The only way to differentiate

times and to become involved in the wellbeing of each of our customers.

O n e - o n - O n e • 7

Proud winners of the TDFA award for Tyre Importer of the Year 2010.

Are you looking to expand your footprint into Africa?

forward. That being said, we’ve adopted a controlled, systematic approach

Most definitely. The continent offers many opportunities for us, both in

to growth, and will endeavour to meet all our targets without becoming

terms of bias and radial products. What is more, another impending global

distracted. We would rather provide 1000 customers with excellent service

OTR shortage to which the experts are alluding could hold us in good stead

than disappoint 2000 through our inability to deliver.

to secure important market share. Tyre industry experts also agree that in the event of a shortage, should you be able to get your hands on OTR tyres,

I’m intrigued…what’s behind the name CFP Tyres?

it will probably be from China.

They were my late father’s initials. It seemed appropriate keeping my father’s legacy alive since it is a family business. Equally important, we want

What is your view on cheap Chinese brands infiltrating the country?

to be known as CFP Tyres. The CFP brand must endure longer than the

Just like the local producers, we’re dead set against them. As long as people

product it sells. We also want to allow ourselves the freedom to bring in

keep buying them we’ll be unable to structure the market effectively.

additional brands where necessary.

The products we offer provide a complete value for money solution which

We are also fortunate to be recently appointed as the distributor for Armour

includes a strong distribution network, sales & technical team as well as a

Tyres. Armour is a well-known brand and has been in the market for many

after-sales service.

years and we intend growing the business as well as the brand, even further.

Again, this is why it’s vital for us, as CFP, to constantly broadcast the

We’ve also been developing a new business venture with another Chinese

fundamental differences between sound products such as ours and low

premium brand, Sailun, which we are very excited about!

cost Chinese tyres being churned out of backyard factories. CFP wants to be known for a company who offers the highest quality What is your claim rate?

products to our customers. With Triangle and now Armour and Sailun we

It’s less than 0.1%. Part of our after market service includes tailor making

are moving in the right direction to achieving our mission.

and honouring warranty policies. This involves settling with our clients immediately and exploring the problem later, but I’m happy to say that

With a growing staff force, warehousing facilities in every province and a

warranty claims are becoming a rarity.

strong relationship with the Triangle company (In 2009 CFP won an award

What would you say is the biggest challenge to your business?

the company’s network of more than 160 countries worldwide) it would

Like most businesses, cash flow and capital required to propel the business

seem CFP is well positioned to achieve its goals.

as one of Triangle’s leading customers and currently ranks in the top 15 of

8 • O n e - o n - O n e

F o c u s o n t h e T r u c k i n g I n d u s t r y • 9

Transport operators re-seize control

as cpk drive intesifies

The transport trucker strike in February which saw no less than 30 000 truckers serving businesses in South Africa and neighbouring states taking part, not only brought the transport industry to its knees, it also threatened to cripple an already fragile economy. In theory, the main truckers’ unions agreed to a new pay offer of a 9% increase this year and 8.5% increase next year, thereby bringing an end to the dispute. Clearly the transport sector is under pressure to meet rising wage demands in what is already, a tough trading environment.

1 0 • F o c u s o n t h e T r u c k i n g I n d u s t r y

Added to that, the price of new tyres is soaring due to raw material price

States Potgieter: “Recapping the tyre twice is essential to achieving a good

hikes and the ongoing shortage of natural rubber.

cpk. Granted, some casings are damaged en route, due to the deterioration of the roads, but wherever a road-related problem arises, we swiftly

With operating costs rising and South Africa’s roads (particularly the

address the problem in conjunction with our operational staff, who are not

secondary ones) gradually deteriorating, transport companies are becoming

only compelled to travel to the route in question to ascertain the problem,

ever more vigilant over the management of their primary cost centres. Any

but also to attend scrap tyre sessions.

complacency that may have formerly existed as a result of outsourcing their tyres is now being replaced with a renewed zeal to assume a more active

“No local make has ever been able to achieve close to half the mileage to

role in their businesses.

that of a Michelin. We may have to fork out a little more upfront, but when used in tandem with good on-site maintenance, the end results of running

Claims Pieter Potgieter, General Manager – Technical Cargo Carriers

on a premium make speak for themselves,” suggests Potgieter.

Wheels, Vanderbijlpark: “Only since we began taking a more hands-on approach in our operation, has our cpk on reduced. Past suppliers were

Another tranporter who is lauding the merits of the Michelin brand in

pretty good at generating regular reports that all looked favourable on

the quest for a lower cpk is Frikkie Dreyer, Operations Manager Unitrans

paper, but did little in the way of tackling our rising tyre costs. Instead, they

Foods PnP Longmeadow. Three tyre service providers tendered to

would come back to us with suggestions on what needed to be replaced (all

service this company and after careful consideration, the contract was

at an extra cost of course!) That was when we decided to step in and adopt

awarded to Bandag. This is the first time that Bandag has been awarded

a different approach.” End users become more brand conscious Six years ago, Cargo Carriers entered into a cpk contract with Michelin Tyres, an arrangement which saw them buying new and retreaded Recamic tyres directly from

a Unitrans contract and Dreyer says they’re looking forward to working hand in hand with them to achieve

the best results, performance and cpk out of their tyres.

Only since we began taking a more hands-on

In conjunction with service supplier, Bandag, which supplies him with retreads, the latest technologies

the tyre importer. Although satisfied with the product

approach in our operation,

in IT systems as well as on-site service and on-road

performance, Michelin was unable to carry out on-site

has our cpk on reduced

breakdown support, Dreyer, who is responsible for no

servicing, which was when Sentrum Bande in the Vaal Triangle came on board to provide the after-sales service.

Sentrum Bande remains an important supplier to this day. Elsewhere in South Africa they rely on service providers such as Supa

less than 140 vehicles and 93 trailers (2 300 rolling wheels) within the Unitrans Group, Dreyer says he’s pleased with the service which Bandag, in conjunction

with Safety Grip, is rendering him thus far.

Quick and Tyres 2000 for their servicing needs. He’s been able to achieve great results through the support of his current “Comparative testing has shown a massive reduction in our cpk costs, to

after-sales supplier coupled with the ‘cradle-to-grave’ advantages of

way below the industry norm,” says Potgieter.

the Michelin, Bridgestone and Firestone brands. According to Dreyer, the three most important points are pressures, matching and driver

Despite the initial higher purchasing cost of the product, Potgieter


maintains that running on a premium brand such as Michelin, enables them to attain the true benefits of the ‘cradle-to-grave’ concept. Each casing is

He says: “Our current pressures are running at around 94% correct, and

retreaded twice (with the Recamic process only), after which the casings

this is a definite contributing factor in our achieving an excellent cpk.

are regrooved to Michelin specifications in order to achieve the additional

Tyre maintenance is key and operators must have a firm handle on this

mileage for which they were intended.

important aspect to their business at all times.”

F o c u s o n t h e T r u c k i n g I n d u s t r y • 1 1

1 2 • F o c u s o n t h e T r u c k i n g I n d u s t r y

Adds Tony Crole, General Manager of Elite Line Haul: “Abdicating your

and assist with on-road breakdowns, but we are not tied to purchasing

ownership of your tyre function is a big mistake. We’ve learnt that the hard

tyres from anyone in particular. The footprint Bandag provides is as good

way. At one time our breakdowns (the best criteria of how your business

as any we’ve had thus far, but we now manage the entire process ourselves,

is working) were multiplying despite the fact that we operate mainly at

insisting on the preferred tyre makes (Bridgestone, Firestone and Michelin)

night when ambient temperatures are low, and don’t carry heavy loads.

to be fitted en route and ensuring that our in-house person who manages

At first, we couldn’t understand it and then it came to us – “we were abdicating one of our most important cost centres to people on the ground with limited skills and education, whose job it was to enter important data into

some 2 700 tyres in the fleet, captures the data correctly.

For example, it’s important to determine the cut-off point

Our current pressures

the system, reliably and efficiently. This in turn, determined

are running at around

our management of the tyres!” No wonder we were not

94% correct, and this

achieving the results. “We also realised that outsourcing this function to a tyre supplier could potentially pose a conflict of interests. After all, their aim is to sell more tyres! More worrying still, the

when it comes to retreading so as to arrive at an acceptable number of retreads per casing. Our new way of working enables us to accurately derive this type of information.” Elite is even considering setting up its own Call Centre,

is a definite contributing

manned by personnel of their choice to assist with

factor in our achieving

roadside incidents on a specialised basis, a task which

an excellent cpk

calibre of staff they employ is not always up to standard.”

suffice to say, is a work in progress. Says Crole: “People manning outsourced call centres don’t necessarily have the right attitude or skills set to provide a

Transporters take back control

good service, so the less we have to rely on outsourcing, the better.”

In a bold move to rectify the situation, Elite decided to appoint its own ground staff to oversee the tyres. They have spent time training their

“In 2010 we doubled our profits, and I’d like to think some of that could be

people with respect to tyre fitment and reporting, an exercise which they

attributed towards our ability to curtail our tyre costs.”

say has reaped dividends. “We’ve always believed in keeping a tight control on our tyres,” adds Leon “Don’t get me wrong,” adds Crole. “Tyre companies have their place. We’re

Grobelaar, General Manager Technical for Buscor. “Some years back we

lucky to have found the right ‘marriage’ with Bandag who provide expertise

entered into a cpk contract with a tyre company, which on paper looked

Left to Right. Thomas Hlapo Supervisor, Rudi van der Merwe, Contract Manager; Magiel Riekert Workshop Forman; Frikkie Dreyer, Operations Manager; Sylvia Meyburgh, Admin and Ashley Loehmer, Assistant Contract Manager. Pick n Pay Longmeadow has entered into a servicing agreement with Bandag.

F o c u s o n t h e T r u c k i n g I n d u s t r y • 1 3

very lucrative. In reality, it didn’t work. Since then, we resumed tighter

be fitted in an emergency situation, the replacement tyre will immediately

controls and split our retreading and servicing requirements between three

be taken off on the vehicle’s return and returned to Michelin who will then

suppliers, Max-T Solutions, Thomas Tyres and Protea Tyres, in order to

supply us with a Michelin,” says Potgieter.

compare performance.” A great arrangement it would seem but one that apparently does not extend Generally speaking, Grobelaar claims the new arrangement, together with

to newly purchased vehicles. “99% of our fleet are Mercedes trucks, but

an on-site presence, is working well. He buys Firestone through Max-T

they don’t come fitted with Michelins unless you order them six months in

Solutions and Dunlop directly from the new tyre manufacturer not for cost

advance and as tenders are only awarded two months ahead, this is just not

reasons, but because claims are easier to resolve without a middleman.

possible” claims Potgieter.

Areas of concern

Allegedly, this is playing havoc with his cpk as he says that other casings

Notwithstanding this newfound willingness to take ownership of their tyre

simply do not offer the original life or retreadability of a Michelin.

interests, there are certain services, such as roadside breakdowns, for which transporters are still reliant on the tyre industry. A few years back, response time to breakdowns was of major concern for the transport sector, but for the most part, this issue appears to have been resolved. Now,

Another major concern cited was over the deterioration of the road infrastructure, which every transporter we spoke with raised,

Buscor’s Grobelaar also suggests that new tyre technology

We operate in harsh

is failing to keep up with developments on the OE front which find vehicle manufacturers introducing more powerful

transporters are facing a new challenge – their vehicles

conditions, which as it

vehicles (with a bigger horsepower) on the market, for which

being fitted with unwanted tyre makes en route in the

is, do not contribute

the tyres often take a pounding, particularly on the drive axle.

to a favourable cpk.

“In stop-start operations such as ours, this is particularly

Anything that can

noticeable,” says Grobelaar, who has raised the issue with

were supplied with a proliferation of rubbish for which we

be done from our

resolution. “We operate in harsh conditions, which as it is,

were expected to pay top dollar. Our latest agreement with

side to improve tyre

event of a tyre failure. “Common practice out there is for service providers en route to fit cheap brands at a premium! In the past, we

Bandag clearly specifies that only brands of our choosing are to be fitted to our vehicles,” claims Crole.

the new tyre companies in the hopes of finding some

performance and lower

do not contribute to a favourable cpk. Anything that can be done from our side to improve tyre performance and lower costs must be done.”

costs must be done Concurs Potgieter: “The last thing we want is for makes of tyres other than Michelin to begin infiltrating our fleet, and yet this still happens in a breakdown situation.”

Clearly, the transport trade – the sophisticated operations at least – are taking back control, in every sense of the

word. Gone are the days when it was all left up to the tyre supplier. Any saving yielded by a reduction in operational costs, directly translates into

That being said, even they accept that logistically, it’s not always possible

profit margins, something which they allude to as becoming ever narrower.

for tyre dealers and third party providers in the outlying areas to carry a

Whether this be by comparative tyre testing, switching brands, enhanced

wide range of makes and sizes.

tyre fleet maintenance or better control, operators are pulling out all the stops in the quest to manage their businesses in a more cost-effective

“We’ve come to an agreement with Michelin that should an unwanted brand


1 4 • I n d u s t r y N e w s

Chemvulc launches new catalogue with new product lines Chemvulc’s new Automotive Catalogue is out with more products for servicing tyres. The catalogue has been expanded and revised for more quality products for the tyre industry. In addition, two new product ranges have been added to the Chemvulc range. The full range of Esco equipment is now available through Chemvulc Marketing. Esco’s latest range of 3-piece, 5-pieces bead breakers and hydraulic pumps are due to land in SA towards the end of March. All of the Esco professional series will carry a two year warranty and the Esco Yellow Jackit Series will carry a one year warranty. Included in the Esco range are trolley jacks, bottle jacks and high tonnage jacks, 55 ton and 100 ton, for heavy duty use with Earthmover equipment. The Exactra range of Super Large Bore and OTR specialty valves has also

Chemvulc’s new Automotive Catalogue is now

been introduced. Super Large Bore Extensions can be made to order and

available. Please contact Chemvulc to ensure

includes the cap and core. Innovative new extension fittings for making

that you receive a copy today.

large bore extensions in the field are also available. Simply reuse the fitting

and replace the hose on site.

Tel: 011 472 1016


2nd China (Guangrao) International Rubber Tire & Auto Accessory Exhibition

15, 16 & 17 May 2011

Guangrao International Expo Center, Shandong, China

Organizer: China Council for the Promotion of Int’l Trade People's Government of Shandong Province Exhibition Organizing Committee Tel: +86(0)546-7797255, 7797455, 7797755, 7797855 Fax: +86(0)546-7799111, 7799333 Email:


M a n u f a c t u r i n g • 1 5

CONTINENTAL LAUNCHES MAJOR PRODUCT OFFENSIVE Well it may have taken them a while, but when the long anticipated launch of Continental’s six new premium truck tyres finally did take place at the Wanderers Club in early February, it was worth the wait. Not only did the new tyre company release an exciting commercial vehicle tyre range onto the market, they also unveiled Continental’s patented Airkeep technology, which is an added feature throughout the entire new generation truck tyre range.

E+I 15535

M a n u f a c t u r i n g • 1 7

The new truck tyre range caters for long distance, regional and construction applications.

The press gathered in earnest to hear all about Continental Tyre’s

as the tyre comprises a 4-ply triangular belt that absorbs the forces from

aggressive plans to expand its market share in the commercial vehicle

lateral and radial moments and reduces the intrinsic movement of the tyre


at the root. This ensures a more stable ride with increased driving safety.

We were introduced to six new tyre patterns, available in five different

Plus the steel cord bead reinforcement has been redesigned and

sizes (all of which will become available during the next six months) and

improved considerably compared with its predecessor, and now offers a

all to be produced locally at the company’s Port Elizabeth plant.

stable seat on the wheel rim.

According to Continental, the design brief was simple: produce a

Together, Continental claims, these improvements offer higher mileage,

tyre that can cope with strenuous every day use, while significantly

reduced rolling resistance, improved retreadability and a considerable

reducing running costs for the transport industry. And by all accounts

increase in safety, not to mention lower fuel consumption.

the engineering team came to the party. The new generation truck tyres are allegedly made from superior, lab-engineered rubber compounds,

Putting fuel consumption to the test

suitable for South African conditions. This is the first time that the German-

During September 2010 a local evaluation was conducted at Gerotek to

based company has designed and engineered truck tyre products unique

test rolling resistance and fuel consumption, factors which play a major

to our operating conditions, but the fact that they did holds their local

role in the choice of tyre for every fleet.

subsidiary in good stead. Four brands were tested over a period of four days; one brand per day Continental has cited quality and new casing technology as the basis for

with the data correlated by independent Gerotek technicians and verified

the all-new truck tyre design. They say the stiffer casing has been designed

daily. Rolling resistance was tested using a ‘Coast Down’ test from

in a new optimised contour that allows a considerably larger air volume

80km/h to 40km/h which fuel consumption was determined by means

to be created that increases the load-bearing capacity and the mileage

of a flow meter accurately measuring fuel consumption at 60km/h and

significantly. Additionally, undesirable movement of the tyre is reduced

again at 80km/h, under controlled conditions. The results are as follows:

1 8 • M a n u f a c t u r i n g

The range Three very different market applications are catered for by the

or maximum transfer of braking power to the road surface, if they are

new generation truck tyres, namely long distance, regional and

incorrectly inflated. What’s more, improper inflation has a notable

construction, with tyres specially designed for steer and drive

negative effect on running costs in terms of both fuel consumption and

wheels as well as trailers.

tyre life.

Apparently, testing is already underway locally with local transporters

As the whole interior of the tyre, the so-called inner liner, is now coated

keen to see if they deliver to expectation.

with a special rubber compound in a patented process, Continental tyre engineers have managed to effectively combat the creeping pressure

Airkeep technology is a major breakthrough

loss resulting from the natural diffusion of air, i.e. the escape of air

Developed by the German tyre experts, the inner layer of these

molecules from inside the tyre.

truck tyres is manufactured using a special non-air-permeable rubber to maintain a constant air pressure for considerably longer

The enlarged molecules in this ‘airtight’ layer of rubber form a tightly

than conventional tyres. Gradual loss of pressure is thus effectively

packed structure, comparable to a bird’s coat of feathers. This slows


down the constant escape of air as the oxygen molecules need to be

And regular vehicle checks show how vital this technology is.

Airkeep inner layer, thanks to this technology.

up to 50 percent longer to escape the labyrinth-like structure of the A large percentage of trucks on our roads are travelling with incorrectly inflated tyres, which accounts for the major portion of

That Airkeep promises definite economic advantages is not hard to

truck roadside breakdowns.

fathom. That it greatly reduces tyre maintenance work, thereby virtually eliminating the risk of driving on incorrectly inflated tyres, potentially

What many don’t realise is that not even modern truck tyres can

impacts favourably towards lower fuel consumption. Considering that

provide all safety-related properties, such as optimum side support

with inflation pressure just 10 percent lower than required, the fuel

M a n u f a c t u r i n g • 1 9

consumption of a truck will rise by three percent, this revolutionary system promises higher mileage with less rolling resistance and reduced wear thanks to the constant air pressure. There’s even less risk that a tyre will generate excessive heat build-up due to low pressure and the resulting energy-producing flexing which, in extreme cases, could even destroy the tyre. Last but by no means least, the correct use of the tyre first time around also guarantees the ideal re-use of its casing for retreading. In short, Continental is confident that their new technology increases reliability, reduces fuel consumption and extends the tyre life noticeably in practical use.

* We will report on the progress and performance of these newlylaunched tyres in future issues.

F1 teams made a choice.

pirelli. oFFicial tyre supplier F1.


M a n u f a c t u r i n g • 2 1

2011 PIRELLI CALENDAR IS LAUNCHED IN STYLE! The unveiling of the 2011 Pirelli Calendar – an art piece that has achieved cult status over the decades – took on a whole new perspective late last year. Annually, the new Calendar is unveiled at a glitzy cocktail function, teeming with celebrities and media, however, this time Pirelli management decided on a more low-key affair targeted at a small group of key media. We were flown down to Cape Town and transported to our hotel – 15 on Orange – in true Pirelli style in a fleet of glamorous Maseratis to check in and freshen up for the evening. Over fresh oysters and copious amounts of good quality champagne, Karl Lagerfeld’s ‘Mythology’ calendar reflecting his deep passion for Greek and Roman mythology, was revealed to loud applause. The 36 photos that make up the 2011 Calendar show 24 different subjects, including gods, heroes and myths. With his keen eye, Lagerfeld has ‘sculpted’ these photos both in terms of their aesthetic rigour and for the recurring references to the art of sculpture and its classical tenets. All of the photos are in black and white, which lends character to the images, exalts the beauty of the figures represented in sharp chromatic contrast and gives them a certain three-dimensionality through the careful use of light. “Actresses and models bring these new heroes to life and depict a new concept of the beautiful,” said Karl Lagerfeld, who, within the 2011 Pirelli Calendar, has offered up any idyllic, immortal representation of beauty. Beauty, youth, the veneration of form and desire depict this new concept of beauty and embody the modernity in mythology. A true masterpiece, for the few that manage to get their hands on it, the new Cal looks set to captivate and seduce. As for us, we finally made our way to 95 Keerom for an Italian feast at the accomplished hands of owner and chef, Giorgio, only to return to our hotel much later where the press gathered on the terrace for a welcome nightcap to crown what can only be described as a first-class evening!

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2 4 • M a n u f a c t u r i n g


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becomes largest retreading facility in world An expansion programme which was completed in 2010 has led to Wadeville-based Auto & Truck Tyres being officially declared the largest retreading facility in the world.

2 6 • R e t r e a d i n g N e w s

ATT’s growth drive has led to massive plant expansion

Using Leader Tread rubber with the

and 950 truck tyres per day. (The first

Also adding to its success, ATT is proud

innovative Ringtread availableas a premium

factory was installed in 1989 and has

to have in its employ some of the leading

rubber option, ATT has built a formidable

grown from strength to strength under

South African experts in the giant truck and

reputation in the market and is well known in

the expert management of Johan du Preez

passenger tyre fields, many of whom have

the industry for delivering superior service

who has been with the company as Factory

been with the company since its inception

levels and total commitment to quality

Manager for the past 18 years.)

in 1987.

In addition to its retreading facility, the

Under the visionary directorship of Rob

company offers a comprehensive tyre

Beaumont as Managing Director, Nick

service to the transport sector that

Herbst as Operations Director, Lizel

includes the supply and fitment of new and

Nicolau as Sales and Marketing Director

control, something which management continues to drive home. In support of this, the company was also awarded the SABS mark of approval in December 2010. Says Managing Director Rob Beaumont:

retread tyres and accessories, truck wheel

and Marius Hanekom as Financial Director,

“Phenomenal growth was the catalyst for

alignment and balancing, as well as fleet

ATT has doubled its turnover during

plant expansion which has since doubled

surveys and maintenance tailored to the

the past four years, and this despite a

in capacity, now processing between 850

needs of individual clients.

repressed economy. So much so in fact, that ATT has twice moved to bigger premises before finally settling into its current home in Wadeville in 1992. Two additional premises have since been added to the ATT portfolio, the first housing the Rim Division, truck wheel alignment and fitting bay and the second, a 10 000sqm warehouse (also housing a registered Bond Store) to accommodate stock of new locally produced and imported tyres. It would seem their mission statement – We are Customer Driven – has reaped desirable results.

E v e n t s • 2 7

E+I 15535

2 8 • C o n t i C o r n e r

Always ahead with Continental Truck & Bus Tyres Confidently going where few other tyres fear to tread - the new Generation 2 truck tyres from Continental







For both long-distance and regional-traffic • Very high mileage • High resilience • Reduced fuel consumption For mixed on/off-road • Maximum resistance to damage • Above average mileage • High-traction tread patterns


Optimised for motorway use • Lowest fuel consumption • Maximum mileage • Comfortable driving conditions


For local and long-distance traffic • Very high mileage • Premium retreadability • Reduced fuel consumption


E+I 15558

Optimised for motorway use • Lowest fuel consumption • Maximum mileage • Comfortable driving conditions




For poor road conditions • Maximum resistance to damage • Above average mileage • High-traction tread pattern For both long-distance and regional-traffic • Very high mileage • Premium retreadability • Reduced fuel consumption For combined on/off-use • Maximum resistance to damage • Above average mileage • High-traction tread patterns For harsh terrain • Maximum strength • Best traction on all types of ground

In the present economic climate, businesses are actively seeking to find more value from their consumables. This is especially true for various sectors of industry that rely on their vehicle’s tyres to keep their businesses turning. Continental Tyre South Africa have recognised three major industry sectors that need dependable tyres, and have segmented the market into Goods, People and Construction. With each segment, Continental have produced a revolutionary new range of tyres that addresses the various requirements placed on the vehicle and the load they carry, based on local road and climatic conditions. Why segment the market this way? Engineers at Continental started with the end user and not the drawing board. By understanding their needs and that a goods vehicle or bus coach will operate under different conditions and parameters from a construction vehicle, the R&D drawing board started with these needs and requirements in mind. Considering that the majority of goods in South Africa are transported on rubber, both on long distance and regional roads and sometimes, into neighbouring countries within Africa. Quite often these tyres need to carry heavy loads within these varied conditions and applications. Reduced fuel consumption and high mileage at the correct running conditions were the minimum requirements that these tyres needed to offer in this segment. The transportation of people and their safety requires a tyre that can be driven on tarred roads, constantly being exposed to stop-start driving in an urban environment, while the sidewall is constantly driven against curbs when loading or unloading passengers. A high margin of safety and comfort was therefore a primary concern when designing for this application.

E+I 15320

C o n t i C o r n e r • 2 9

Handling all challenges with confidence. Construction tyres from Continental. When building South Africa’s infrastructure, on every construction site, it’s the terrain that places the toughest demands on tyres. Over stones, rocks, mud and sand, Continental truck tyres will ensure that your project remains on schedule. Continental truck tyres - engineered with superior performance flexibility to handle maximum strain under tough conditions. With AirKeep® Technology


As in the case of the construction vehicle, the tyres operate in off-road environments. They are constantly exposed to sharp stones and building debris on site, they are driven on muddy and often unstable ground. Resistance to damage and traction were therefore stringent requirements during the design of Continental tyres for construction. How the segmentation works For a long time, customers were uncertain about the type of replacement tyre they should be ordering. Confusing nomenclature often prevented them from finding a specialised tyre that suited their needs perfectly. Now, with the innovative way in which Continental Tyre has segmented the market, naming and describing each product has become easier. Within the three segments, each tyre is grouped under ‘Steer’, ‘Drive’ and ‘Trailer’ which describes the wheel position for the tyre. The letters ‘H’, and ‘L’ denote ‘heavy truck’ or ‘light truck’, and the letters ‘R’, ‘L’, ‘C’ and ‘O’ each represent road conditions viz. ‘regional traffic’, ‘long distance’, ‘construction’ and ‘off-road’ respectively. The numbers ‘1’ and ‘2’ indicate the tyre generation [e.g. Generation 2].

The new range also features specially engineered rubber compounds to allow the tyres to perform at their best under the most challenging South African road conditions, and an increase of 1.5mm in useable tread depth. The new Generation 2 tyres are designed to be more economical, more environmentally friendly, more practical and easier to remember which tyres goes where, than ever before. Fuel economy is enhanced by the tyre’s improved rolling resistance, offering end users the lowest overall driving costs. Key H = Heavy Truck D = Drive R = Regional 2 = Generation 2 Vehicle

Tread Pattern

Light / Light Truck Heavy / Heavy Truck

Steer Drive Trailer

Product Category

Regional-Traffic Long-Distance Construction

What this translates to, for the end user A new development from Continental is the innovative AirKeep® Technology that each tyre in the new generation comes with. A micro-thin film inside the tyre keeps air inside, for up to 50% longer.



B a n d a g N e w s • 3 1

Is your fleet in check?

Air pressure, rubber on the road, missing valve extensions, tyre

Both site supervisors have been instrumental in ensuring ‘their’

mismatching... These are just some of the words you will have heard your

respective fleets run at optimal level and are deserving winners of prizes

site supervisor throw around. Let us assume that you have regular fleet

to the value of R5,000 each! The Bandag Site Audits are strict internal

inspections; are you sure that your air pressure is corrected? Are your

criteria that are used to measure all competing supervisors. These criteria,

casings being removed for retreading prior to being destroyed? Is your tyre

to name a few are: air pressure maintenance, tyre matching and tread

mismatching rectified prior to affecting your tyres’ wear characteristics?

depth management.

Important considerations and ones reliant on your fitters... With this in mind, Bandag recognised the need to ensure the very basics are carried out at fleet level and in so doing, ensure a positive impact on fleet operating costs. The link of course – a TYRE EXPERT – someone that is in constant contact with your fleet and more importantly, your tyres, relentlessly ensuring all KPI’s are maintained. This led to Bandag incentivising its site supervisors at ‘National’ fleet sites through the Site Supervisor Competition. The competition, now in its 4th year of running, was devised and implemented to ensure site supervisors go beyond the call of duty to ensure the tyres in a fleet run at optimal level. The Bandag Site Supervisor Competition divides fleets into those with less than, and those with more than, 1,000 rolling wheels. It goes without saying that the dynamics in each are very different and a fair approach is to reward both categories. To keep the momentum of the incentive, quarterly site audits are carried out by Bandag where quarterly winners

Central to the competition are the needs of the fleets. The competition

are rewarded with a cash prize before the BIG annual award.

is all about rewarding excellence and commitment to lowering tyre

The final winners for 2010:

operating costs. This is done through proper and consistent tyre



Site Audit Score

Imperial Logistics Refrigerated Services Centurion

More than 1,000 rolling wheels


Parmalat Tankers Cape Town

Less than 1,000 rolling wheels


maintenance and where ‘national’ fleets are concerned, Bandag adopts a zero tolerance policy. To find out more and how you can benefit from the Bandag National Fleet Programme, contact Bandag today. For a list of franchisees or to

contact Bandag, visit

With the reliability you get from Bandag, your fleet can take on anything. 8182 Bandag Strip Ad.indd 3 5/15/08 4:39:38 PM

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T a l k i n g T y r e s • 3 3



roulette. . .

with rubber

You’re not likely to put a gun to your head with a one-in-six chance of meeting a premature end. So why then play the same ‘game’ of chance with second-hand tyres? By Colin Mileman

Russian rouelette is that warped, much-maligned ‘game’ where,

I was discussing the topic with one of the tyre industry’s most

courtesy of a single bullet placed in a revolver, you stand a one-

experienced and respected experts at a recent Continental truck

in-six chance of heading off early to meet your maker. What, you may ask, does this have to do with tyres? Actually, a lot

tyre launch and, in his view, new tyres have, and always will, make better financial sense.

I’d say, judging by the growing prevalence of second-hand tyres

He indicated that in all his years in the business, it has been

of all shapes and sizes flooding the market.

proven that in terms of truck tyres, it’s actually cheaper and more

From used tyres stacked neatly in piles on the side of the road, individuals and so-called dealers that claim to specialise in

productive in the long run to fit new tyres rather than retreaded or, naturally, used tyres.

second-hand rubber, and container-loads of the stuff landing on

For transport operators in particular, he made the point that time

our shores, it’s becoming an increasingly insidious headache for

is money, and although a retreaded tyre costs around 60-percent

the local tyre industry. Of course the established names in the game will always protect their vested interests and market share. But forget about the

less, it is more likely to fail, resulting in a stranded vehicle on the side of the road with turn-around times and operating efficiency falling through the floor.

capitalist intent for a moment, and it’s worth pondering the

Although the retreading industry is a massive one, employing

industry’s view that this is a dangerous trend that needs to be

modern technology and rigorous safety and inspection standards,

nipped in the bud.

you can never be 100-percent sure of what you’re getting. Has

34 48 • TGaol ok di ny ge aTr y rNeesw s

the casing been subjected to abuse, or run at excessive speeds and

Much of the damage to a tyre occurs beneath the neat façade of the surface

temperatures? Exactly how many times has it been retreaded?

rubber, discreetly hiding the likes of sidewall damage, tread separation or

The trusted retreading brands are fairly well proven to be a safe choice, with advanced systems to track a tyre’s full life cycle, including repairs and running costs. But what about rest? A particularly problematic issue, our expert pointed out, is the large number of imported casings which may be of an unknown history or quality, or

poor puncture repairs that allow moisture penetration and deterioration of the essential steel cords. Then you have the dodgy pavement specials that have been regrooved to create the impression of decent remaining tread, despite the fact this severely compromises the structure and strength of the tyre.

are totally inappropriate for South African conditions. Batches of snow tyre

There’s a general lack of understanding of the crucial role that tyres play in

casings have even landed on our shores – and it doesn’t take a genius to

road safety – both from the general public, as well as from the government

figure out the dire implications of using these in hot, hard-working and

and its various agencies.

heavily-laden local applications.

In the case of the latter, this is particularly evident in the absence of any

The same applies on the passenger car side, and typically, it will be the less

specific legislation regarding the importation and sale of second-hand tyres.

well-informed motorist that will consider used over new, prioritising price

And the fact that penalties for driving on unroadworthy tyres are totally

above all else.

out of kilter with the fundamental role they play, even in the continuously

Google “cheap tyres South Africa” and the wonder of the worldwide web will spew out close to 100 000 results in less than half a second. Even worse, punch in “second-hand tyres” and Google will oblige with some 578  000 entries, ranging from dealers purportedly selling ‘good’ used tyres to the guy next door clearing out his garage. Firstly, you have to ask where all this “perfectly good” rubber comes from. If the tyres were fine why have they been replaced? Are they beyond the legal tread limits, and possibly imported from countries where a 1,6 mm or

delayed new AARTO legislation. Commendably, the government rolled out the ‘Make Roads Safe’ campaign in October 2010, and proceeded to ‘check’ around 4,5-million vehicles by the end of the year. Brilliant, except it seemed little more than a numbers game. On the couple of occasions I was stopped, not once was my car checked for roadworthiness nor were the tyres examined – despite the transport minister listing tyre bursts as one of the major contributing factors in road accidents.

2 mm restriction applies compared to 1 mm in SA? A small gain in tread

Clearly it’s impossible to gather official statistics for used tyres, but it’s safe

depth, but at what cost?

to assume that, of the almost 15 000 people that died on our roads last

How old are they (the recommended lifespan is around 5-6 years), how long have they been standing, and in what conditions – sweltering under

year, far too many played Russian roulette with dodgy used, abused or neglected tyres … and lost.

the African sun or dumped in a damp storeroom? Have they been carelessly

With lax import laws and woeful implementation of regulations, it’s clear

stripped from an accident-damaged car, or possibly even stolen?

that this problem won’t go away any time soon. In fact, it will only get worse.

The major problem with all of these scenarios is that the tyre’s history is

Accordingly, it’s about time the tyre industry in its entirety – local

typically an unknown entity, a complete mystery to the end user. There

manufacturers and official importers alike – combined its resources and

are lots of questions but very few answers. Unless there’s major external abuse, it’s often impossible to tell – particularly for Mr and Mrs Average -- if it’s been subjected to excessive heat, been pummelled through rigorous terrain or had its share of dodgy repairs..

Colin Mileman is a freelance motoring journalist, photographer and advanced driving specialist with over 13 years of experience in this field. As a former editor of Topcar and Topbike magazines, he’s as enthusiastic about cars and bikes as they come, and has extensive knowledge of all motoring-related matters, including the topic of tyres, having run the annual and highly regarded Topcar tyre tests for several years.

creative minds to undertake a bold, assertive and even shocking awareness campaign to educate and inform about the dangers of second-hand tyres. Hopefully education would ultimately triumph over little or no regulation. Because if they don’t do it, who will?

Please note: The pictures used on page 47 and 48 in Volume 16, December 2010 of SA Treads were courtesy of Goodyear.

O n e - o n - O n e • 3 5

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3 6 • G o o d y e a r N e w s

HERE TO HELP… Goodyear’s new one-stop Customer Service Centre provides product, technical and administrative support that keeps tyres rolling and helps customers get there. From left are Ettienne de Vries (Director Supply Chain, Goodyear South Africa), Leszek Szafran (General Manager, Goodyear South Africa), George Vlok (Operations Director, Trentyre), Ardiela Savahl (Group Customer Services Manager), Jean-Jacques Wiroth (Managing Director, Goodyear Tyre & Rubber Holdings) and Jaco Symington (Group Director Supply Chain, Goodyear Tyre & Rubber Holdings).


Keeps customers on a roll Come power failures, electric storms or strikes, there will always be a trained representative on

“Whether that customer is a truck driver, desperate for roadside assistance at midnight because he needs to make his dawn delivery deadline, or a tyre dealer in urgent need of specific products for his customer, our team’s

hand at the Goodyear group’s new Customer

mission is to be their helping hand at any time, day or night,” he explained.

Service Centre to help keep customers safely

global drive to be first with our customers. Our service is part of this

on the road. According to Goodyear Supply Chain Director Ettienne de Vries, that’s a “24/7/365 guarantee!”

“It’s a mission in line with Goodyear’s policy of ‘Safety together’ and our partnership promise.” The new, integrated Goodyear Customer Service Centre took its first call on 7 January 2011. In essence, the service provides all customers – dealers, sales force, fleet controllers and end users –with a single communication point with the large organisation. Previously spread between separate

centres in Gauteng and Uitenhage, the 21 call representatives are now based on site at Goodyear’s Uitenhage manufacturing plant. “By carefully consolidating and integrating the Goodyear, Trentyre Roadside Assistance and 4Fleet (account handling) customer call centres, the group now shares crucial support structures and technology to ensure the service is never interrupted and customers never inconvenienced,” said De Vries. “The move has synergised the best of people, technology and processes to offer all our customers an even higher level of service excellence.”

red to handle:

cility is enginee The centralised fa

y; product availabilit as ordering and ch su les sa of re cts rts; Trenty ’s including all aspe ents and sales repo m ce pla r de Dealer support, or lk rough changes, bu ment of tyres th ort, including price repair or replace e Sales force supp th s ate ilit fac ich tion, to ensure e Assistance, wh count administra ac re ty en non-stop Roadsid Tr ; int tion, liate footpr count Administra tyre dealer and affi quiries; 4Fleet Ac en l the national Tren ra ne ge d an ing oicing n, includ a nch transfers, inv Customer liaiso s; irie qu en effective inter-bra l ra ne ing and ge fleets with invoic ed concerns. which supports e and delivery relat us ho re wa all r fo t line complaints suppor Heading the call centre operation is Group Customer Service Manager, Ardiela Savahl, supported by Operations Manager Vaughn Herbert. A calm, direct woman with vast experience, Savahl exudes an almost motherly air about her team and nurtures their wellbeing under the demanding shift schedule to ensure they stay motivated, dynamic and attentive for customers. “The excellent team spirit here encourages a high level of support and accountability amongst the agents. Our top achiever, Roxanne Bosman, handles around 2000 calls per month. This job requires a special sort of

customers so we can track their perceptions and continually improve on

person: tenacious, energised and, of course, customer focused.

our service levels.”

“Fleets, in particular, experience an element of risk on the road and there is

In addition to the Goodyear group centre, a dedicated Export Division call

big money at stake, so customers are understandably feeling the pressure.

centre assists the group’s African customers stretching from South African

Our job provides the opportunity to turn a potentially negative experience

borders right up to the equator.

around, actually build on brand loyalty for the Goodyear group and improve

“Theirs is predominantly a sales administration function, so these agents


are knowledgeable about the systems within each country and are able to

“In fact, we like to believe we are an extension of the sales team. Our

establish positive relationships with these customers.”

agents benefit from continuous training and development. They are well

In fact, the call centre covers such a wide area of the group’s service offering

informed about products, business processes and systems. Every call is

that it even provides a useful background for new employees, particularly

recorded and randomly checked by management to track response quality

those in sales. De Vries said, “all graduates-in-training spend four months

and end user customer experience. We also receive valuable feedback on

in the call centre to help them get a grip on the vast range of products and

a quarterly basis from an independent research company that surveys our

processes of Goodyear.”

D e a l e r P r o f i l e • 3 9



– 20 years on and still going strong Take a young man with passion for the motor vehicle industry. Add to this tenacity, determination, integrity and sound business principles and you have the makings of an entrepreneurial family business that has not only survived the test of time it’s become a serious contender in the industry.

4 0 • D e a l e r P r o f i l e

The company in question is Jody’s Tyres, the man at the helm - Jody

which opens this weekend. This space will offer customers a complete

Robey. Where retail is concerned, his is an unopposed success story. As

4x4 tyre service, from tyre fitment to the sale of 4x4 vehicles and

a young man with learning disabilities (a self-confessed ADD sufferer),

accessories, and even a Garmin concept store.”

he entered the workforce by landing a job with Goodyear in 1977 as a production management trainee. This led to his later involvement in

Jody, who prides himself on the excellent relationships he’s built up over

the retail industry as a member of the-then Discount Tyres (eventually

the years, not only with customers but also with his suppliers, claims

became Safe-T-Tyre). Jody sought the opportunity to start his own

that the Group is as much on a drive to capitalise on its entrepreneurial

retail operation with the help of his wife, Kim & sales manager, Daniel

spirit and the Jody’s Tyres brand as it is on maintaining its invaluable

Rathando in 1991. His brother, Brent joined him in 1994 and business

relationships with the companies that supply him.

partner, Herman Swart joined later in May 2001. “We place great value in our relationships with our suppliers – they are Astonishingly the original premises where this interview took place –

an integral part of our business. That being said, it’s equally important

Jody’s Tyres Hi-Q Randpark Ridge – celebrated

for us to develop and grow the Jody’s Tyres

its 20th birthday on 6 February of this year, a

brand. We never want to lose sight that as an

massive milestone for a family-owned concern

independent family operation, we also have

to achieve in this day and age, particularly as the operation extends beyond this one retail store. Over the years, Jody and his team have added several more outlets to the Jody’s Tyres brand and currently operate a total of nine regional stores - 5 Hi-Q stores, 2 ContiPartners, one Speedy and one SupaQuick.

our own brand to protect,” explains Jody.

❝ “Succession planning is something I’m addressing

is something that’s uppermost in Jody’s mind, a mindset that accounts for the appointment of

head on, I’m very

new, young blood in Francois and Louis, who

confident that we’ve

are both earmarked to take over the reins in

Says retail manager, Louis van Dyk: “The

now got the right

recession did us a favour. It offered a welcome

people on board to lead

opportunity to consolidate, and also compelled

Protecting the brand and passing on a legacy

us to concentrate more intently on internal

Jody’s Tyres into the

issues such as training and the implementation


of systems.

the years to come. “Succession planning is something I’m addressing head on,” says Jody, “and I’m very confident that we’ve now got the right people on board to lead Jody’s Tyres into the future.”

Not that he’s about to make a hasty exit. Jody

“And whereas other companies curbed their

is passionate about the industry and plans

marketing spend in response to the economic

to work alongside his management team in

downturn, we chose to invest in additional

growing the business, something they plan to

marketing as well as in the creation of an information-packed, user-

achieve via continuing to diversify and targeting a bigger share of the

friendly website which motorists can access at the touch of a button to

corporate market in their region.

compare prices, find their respective tyre size and locate the nearest store.

Says Louis: “The time to focus on the new generation of motorists is here. Today’s consumer is far more informed and has access to the

“Our website achieved no less than 18 000 hits in the first six weeks

internet and other information sources. They also tend to shop around.

of inception, testament that it’s being well received by the public,” says

We need to adapt to these market dynamics, going so far as to re-


invent ourselves if necessary, in order to effectively cater to the new consumer.”

Adds Francois Nel, Financial Manager: “We also seized on the opportunity to diversify with the opening of two Thule fitment centres

Big plans and exciting developments indeed for one of South Africa’s

alongside a dedicated 4x4 fitment centre-cum-dealership next door,

most respected independents!

W o r l d N e w s • 4 3

SKY-HIGH RAW MATERIAL COSTS PUT PRESSURE ON TYRE SUPPLIERS With relative shortages in supply and increased demand from


the rapidly expanding emerging markets of the East pushing

Recent news from Chennai, India based newspaper the

natural rubber and other raw material costs higher and higher,

Economic Times indicates a new factory in Eastern Europe is

most tyre manufacturers are again raising their prices in

still on the cards.

response. But what do the latest raw material hikes mean for

“We are looking at geographies like Eastern Europe and Indonesia

the world’s tyre manufacturers? And how much longer will this

for new plants,’ company chairman Onkar S. Kanwar told the

price boom continue?

Economic Times “First, we will have our factory in Eastern Europe

With post recession tyre demand recovering in mature markets and continuing to boom in emerging economies it is clear that this scenario still has much to play out. “We expect raw material prices to increase by a further 20 percent in 2011 if natural rubber stabilises at its current high level. Thus, in two years, 2010-11, raw material prices would have increased by a high 35 percent,” claims Deutsche Bank’s report.

where the labour cost is low and the factory can run for longer hours as in India.” Vice chairman and managing director Neeraj Kanwar noted, however, that ‘the Eastern Europe project is still in the planning stage. I don’t see us there before a year.” According to Neeraj Kanwar, any passenger car tyre plant Apollo builds in Eastern Europe would have a daily output of at least 400 tons. To supply potential production at this site and other global

So far the tyre industry in general is reported to have increased selling prices by 6 percent in 2010 and by a further 8 percent in 2011. There were a record three rounds of price increases in North America last year and two in Europe. Despite this proactive response to the price pressures facing them, Deutsche Bank reports that manufacturers have not been able to pass enough of the price increase they face onto their customers.


HANKOOK, GOODYEAR, YOKOHAMA WINNERS AT TIRE TECHNOLOGY AWARDS The products and activities of three tyre makers have been acknowledged at the Tire Technology International Awards for Innovation and Excellence 2011. This year’s awards were presented at a ceremony in Cologne, Germany on February 16 and saw Hankook Tire take the Tire Manufacturer of the Year award and Goodyear the award for Tire Technology of the Year. Last but not least was the Yokohama Rubber Company whose award was for Environmental Achievement of the Year. The awards judges were allegedly impressed by Hankook’s ‘advances over the past 12 months’, growth that may see the company become the world’s fifth largest tyre maker over the coming years. Runners up in this category were Apollo Tyres and Bridgestone.


production, Apollo Tyres says it is looking for rubber plantations outside of India.


4 4 • C o m p e t i t i o n / S u b s c r i p t i o n


to our previous competition winner

Jansen van Rensburg of Big Sky Coaches whose correct answer wins him a 2011 Pirelli Calendar!

quarterly competition QUESTION: How many representatives are now on hand to assist customers through Goodyear’s new dedicated Call Centre? ANSWER:������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ Name:����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� Company:������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ Address:��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������


… a set of

locally produced


branded tyres




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SA Treads March 2011  

Leading Tyres Industry Magazine

SA Treads March 2011  

Leading Tyres Industry Magazine