Page 1

TDAFA vows to provide profitability guideline

Focus on Tyre Prices

BKT’s Bhuj plant about to change the game Point S members awarded big payouts Vipal Rubber grows global presence

Vol 22 • March 2016

Tyre price hikes on the cards

Introduction • 1

Contents One-On-One with TDAFA’s Hedley Judd.....................................................................3

Focus on Tyre Prices............................................................................................7

Industry News Big Payouts for Point S members at Group’s inaugural AGM............ 13 Vipal Rubber grows global presence................................................. 18

Global Industry News BKT’s Bhuj about to change the game............................................... 21 Earthmax SR 31 to make its world debut at Bauma 2016................. 23

Distribution News Supa Quick races to 30th birthday.................................................... 26 Van den Ban Autobanden to showcase range at Tyrexpo South Africa 2016.................................................. 27

Goodyear News New Goodyear Innovation at the 86th International Geneva Motor Show ............................................ 28 Introducing the Goodyear Eagle-360: The tyre of the future for the car of the future................................... 29

World News Michelin sees positive sales, demand growth in 2015...................... 31 Tyre Labelling steps into the computer chip age............................... 32 Cooper Posts Record Operating Profit in 2015................................. 32 Bridgestone takes top honours at the 2016 Tyre Technology Awards.................................................... 32

Visit a e r t a s www. past r u o e e to s issues Editor Reproduction Printing Advertising SA Advertising EU Distribution

Liana Shaw Diane van Noort TYPO – Colour Printing Specialists Liana Shaw – John Stone – Media Support Prosource

Publishers Sky Publications cc • PO Box 702, Douglasdale, 2165 Tel: 011 658 0011 • Fax: 011 658 0010 • Cell: 082 851 6777 E-mail: Website: •


note from



A leading economist was being interviewed on a local radio station recently where he argued that the rand had depreciated to the extent that a massive recovery of the currency was highly unlikely in the foreseeable future. Political uncertainty coupled with the recent drought and continuous service interruptions are thwarting confidence in the South African economy, with damaging effects to the currency and serious implications for business across a broad spectrum. The tyre industry has been especially hard hit. Raw materials for local tyre production are imported, as are more than 60 percent of our tyre sizes. Capital equipment suppliers who are at the mercy of the rand trading against the euro or US dollar, are equally affected. The inevitable outcome of all of this of course, will be to the consumer, as rising input costs must ultimately translate into price increases. On page 7 key industry figures discuss the implications to the passenger and commercial markets. In our exclusive interview on page 3, Hedley Judd of the TDAFA pledges to soften to the blow for the dealer trade at least, by providing a valuable guideline towards profitability. Moreover, members of the Point S Group of independent retailers were recently awarded sizeable payouts in exchange for their adherence to the Group’s purchasing policies and as part of their ongoing commitment to support and strengthen independents across the globe. For more on how this rebate scheme works, turn to page 16. Also in this issue we bring you an exclusive on Indian-based BKTs ambitious plans for the future, something which the company is hoping to achieve via their new state-of-the-art plant, Bhuj. In December of last year, scores of press and BKT partners from around the world arrived in Mumbai – the company’s headquarters – and were duly transported to Bhuj for the inauguration of this impressive new plant which promises far more than one would expect. SA TREADs was in the mix. All this and many more stories in this our first edition for 2016...happy reading.






Arguably the role and objectives of the TDAFA (an association within the RMI), have not always been that clear cut, at least not in the eyes of the Tyre Dealer Network, the very segment upon which the organisation relies for its existence. Historically, support of the TDAFA has been somewhat sporadic, something which the new man at the helm, Hedley Judd, is hoping to change. In a bid to redefine the organisation’s current and future path and provide real value to the distribution trade, the TDAFA is embarking on an extensive road campaign nationwide which is expected to reach franchise operations and independent stores alike. Hedley is intent on dispelling any doubt in the mind of South African fitment centre sector that the TDAFA cannot only provide value, but more importantly perhaps, serve as a crucial means in assisting them to reduce operating costs in a negative economic climate. We met up with Hedley who shed light on the TDAFAs current initiatives.



The TDAFA campaign is gathering speed. What has been the response

by following the recommendations of fellow dealers when it comes to

from the fitment centres you’ve visited thus far?

service suppliers. Word of mouth goes a long way.

I’m happy to say that any apathy initially encountered is quickly being replaced with positive interest once the goals and ambitions of the TDAFA

Do current initiatives include lobbying at government level?

are outlined and the dealer begins to recognise true value in our offering.

Most definitely. There are a number of important Projects and

Dealers have typically not realised the volume of work being done on

Developments on the table, among them the establishment of Puncture

their behalf behind the scenes, and this has also been kept “Secret” until

Repair Standards for South Africa. The TDAFA is liaising closely with the

now. As this realisation dawns through communication, fears are rapidly

SABS on this, and we are pleased to report that headway is being made.

set aside, and participation is pledged by the members.

These new standards are expected to hopefully be introduced in 2016, which will assist dealers with the sale of new tyres as opposed to the

What are your current initiatives and why should the fitment centre

repair of unsafe tyres in the future.

segment align with the TDAFA? The industry is under severe pressure with respect to margins and

We are also working closely with NRCS and ITAC to implement restrictions

profitability. Dealers are being compelled to reinvent themselves in an

on the importation and sale of Part Worn Tyres. We realise of course that

effort to remain competitive and this is precisely where their attention

this kind of initiative can take years to achieve and legislate, nevertheless,

should be focussed – on their core business.

we remain committed to lobbying and acting as a catalyst for change towards the economic benefit of the industry.

That said, ensuring their business remains compliant with regard to industry and government regulations, which is also a requirement, is not

Also on the cards is the eventual introduction of Fitment Centre Standards

necessarily something that dealers either have the time or knowledge and

in accordance with Fitment Centre Compliance Guidelines as well as

experience to handle. This is where the TDAFA can assist. We will provide

the refinement of the various portfolios of expertise within the National

guidance on these aspects to their business, thereby relieving them of

Executive Council including: technical (equipment and products); statutory

having to self-discover their way through this mammoth responsibility.

compliance; finance; training; marketing; communication; website restructuring and development; a national ‘services supplier’ database and

The TDAFA is actively engaged with government authorities and regulators

last but by no means least, a collective Group insurance offering.

such as SARS, ITAC, NRCS, MIO, BUSA, SABS and REDISA as a means of achieving our members’ objectives, as laid down by the National Executive

In short, how would you sum up your vision for the TDAFA and its

Council which is made up of dealers across all regions of South Africa.

role? Our road campaign, which will continue to roll out until such time as we

In other words, the NEC provides us with our ‘mission’. Currently, the

believe that every fitment centre across South Africa has been reached,

TDAFA is mandated:

will hopefully highlight the value and importance of becoming an active

• ‘To be the Fitment Centre Employer Body that sets and maintains the

member of the TDAFA.

Standards of Compliance in the Fitment Centre Industry to the best quality of the Customer, Employees, Suppliers and Dealer Members’.

I make a point of concluding my presentations by saying that while

We pledge to provide a network of Knowledge,

the TDAFA cannot influence your sales or

Experience and Opportunity to guide towards

income source, via our multitude of resources,

profitability, covering a range of portfolios managed by dedicated dealer members.

❝ Members


• By Unravelling the complexity of the industry is

benefiting from problem

not straightforward and this is where the TDAFA

sharing and by following

can greatly assist the fitment centre sector in

knowledge, expertise and lobbying, we can and will guide you to cut running expenses and operating costs, thereby contributing to your bottom line.

remaining compliant with current regulations.

the recommendations

For a minimal annual fee the TDAFA will alleviate

• Moreover, the building of a knowledge and

of fellow dealers when

much of the frustration associated with managing

experience network in which all dealer members can share provides that competitive edge.

it comes to service suppliers. Word of mouth

Members are benefiting from problem sharing and

goes a long way.

aspects to your business that are deemed tedious, frustrating and time consuming, and that ultimately detract from your ability to focus exclusively on generating revenue.



Fo c u s o n Ty r e s P r i c e s



The deterioration of the rand on the back of the ‘Nenegate scandal’ and other external factors is giving rise to grave concerns for many South African businesses. Economists warn of the threat of a possible recession and the downgrading of the country’s credit-rating to junk as investors lose faith in the ability of President Jacob Zuma’s government to steady the ship.


Fo c u s o n Ty r e s P r i c e s

According to fin24 rising inflation risks stemming from the rand may force the

❝ With

the weakening

figure also represents a share of premium brands that are being imported into the country.

Reserve Bank to take more aggressive

rand the landed cost

action in tightening policy at a time when

on tyres has gone up

Echoed Continental’s Niel Langner: “Sadly

dramatically in the past

imported. Along with increasing fuel prices,

the economy is barely growing. The article further states that while South Africa’s

economy has narrowly avoided a recession

fleet operators are in for a rough time from a


up until now, growth has been under

60 percent of all commercial vehicle tyres are

cost of operation perspective. Premium brand

pressure due to electricity shortages, weak

produced products are available below the

tyres offer the best cost per kilometre through

global demand, plunging metal prices and

landed cost of importers. The high exchange

reduced rolling resistance and durability and we

the drought.

rate coupled with high import duties are making

are working with our fleet customers to weather

it extremely difficult to import and compete with

this storm.”

The short and long term implications are likely

local manufacturers.” Langner suggested that transport companies

to affect every industry sector, and the tyre and Added Michelin’s Adriaan Coetzee: “In the

in particular would need to focus on the

past few months many elements have had a

maintenance of their vehicles and the attitude

“In our view, the South African economy is already

direct impact on the weakening South African

of their drivers as incentivising drivers to look

in a state of recession,” argued Pieter Kruger,

economy, resulting in a loss of confidence

after their vehicles and to check tyre inflation

Chairman of TIASA (Tyre Importers Association

from major stakeholders. The weak rand

pressures, at least twice daily, can translate into

of South Africa). “With the weakening rand the

created a more challenging environment for all

significant savings on fuel and tyre costs.

landed cost on tyres has gone up dramatically

manufacturers that rely on importing premium

in the past year. We have seen the rand moving

tyres into the South African market, with the cost

He claimed: “Tough times weed out poor

from R11.44 against the US dollar to R16.95

not only being pushed back onto consumers but

operators ultimately resulting in a stronger

which is a staggering drop in just one year.

also onto manufacturers as well who are having

industry that is more focussed on running

to absorb a portion of the costs to reduce the

optimal fleet operations. Consumers need to

impact on the bottom line for the end user.”

take more responsibility for their vehicles. Don’t

transport segments are no exception.

“We also experienced one of the worst droughts

let the petrol pump attendant do the checks for

in history and some areas have had no harvest and planting for 18 months. This means that

As such, an average price hike of 6 to 8 percent

you,” he urged. “Do it yourself and check for

manufacturers as well as importers are sitting

across the Michelin and Kormoran brands

uneven wear and tyre damage at the same time.

with huge stock piles of agricultural tyres and

will be implemented in line with forecasted

Prevention is better than cure!

are compelled to reduce prices to get rid of

inflation figures. “Cost pressures will force all producers to

these items. And Farmers are repairing or buying cheaper products as they have no funds with

“For the commercial market specifically, we

increase prices. We have advised our dealers

which to purchase the more expensive quality

believe the current ratio between imported

that increases in the order of 10 percent can


and locally manufactured tyres to be around

be expected in the second quarter of 2016 and

the 60/40 ratio,” he added. “On a monthly

more may follow later in the year,” he added.

He added that globally tyre production appears

basis more tyres are being imported and this

Bridgestone’s Willem Els also expressed

to be exceeding off-take resulting in a surplus of

percentage is growing strongly year on year.”

concern over the current situation stating that a large portion of raw materials are imported

tyres that everyone is trying to export to some or other country. Factories, he said, were running at

But he was quick to add that this did not mean

and are therefore subject to the exchange rate.

70% and less production capacity with the trend

that the South African market would be flooded

He cautioned that consumers should expect

being to supply at cheaper and cheaper prices to

with low-grade imports by 2020 as the 60%

that these movements will be passed on by the

keep factories open. “I believe that factories worldwide have reached a point where prices need to be driven upwards,” said Kruger. Importers at this stage cannot compete in the high volume market as locally

❝ Tough

times weed

out poor operators ultimately resulting in a stronger industry.

manufacturers. “Tyres are subject to all normal inflationary pressures such as wages and electricity increases, as well as movements in raw material costs such as oil, rubber and steel.



Proudly South African, Tandem Tyres is a major supplier of passenger, SUV/LCV, truck, agricultural, industrial and OTR tyres with distribution channels throughout South Africa, Africa and beyond. We market and import a range of high quality KNOWN and OWNED brand tyres, and pride ourselves on exceptional service, uncompromising efficiencies and affordability, making us your complete tyre solution. | tel. 031 765 2650 | fax. 031 765 2695








Fo c u s o n Ty r e s P r i c e s

“We take cognisance of all market circumstances when determining the appropriate pricing for

❝ The

ever growing


“But as much as we would love to for retreading to grow, it’s not that easy. Retreaders also use

our product, including demand and supply

number of imports

imported raw materials in manufacturing which

factors such as capacity and cost of importing

filtering in from Asia –

means that our input costs are also increasing

sustainability of both the supply and price

both quality and inferior

tyres are largely ‘disposable’, does not help as

offerings and quality of the available product,

products – will also be

or manufacturing the tyres. We also consider

including the retreadability of the tyres. Different purposes specific tyres such as fuel efficient

negatively impacted.

as a result of the weaker rand. That cheap Asian many do not complete the new tyre life, let alone make it back for retreading.”

eco tyres, also offer additional value to the end

The bottom line

customer,” added Hiroshi Nakanishi, Technical

That tyre costs will rise, is inevitable. Industry

Services Executive Manager at Bridgestone. Asian imports under pressure

growing shortage of good quality casings, has

experts are therefore urging their customers to

seen a shift in this ratio over the last five years

purchase upfront wherever possible, and to buy

in particular.

premium tyres that will generate greater value

The ever growing number of imports filtering in

to their operations by decreasing the total cost

from Asia – both quality and inferior products

Notwithstanding, the retreading market still has

of ownership of tyres via extensive mileage,

– will also be negatively impacted, according to

great potential, according to Coetzee, as the

optimised fuel consumption due to reduced

industry experts.

procured rubber used in most retreading plants

rolling resistance and better retreadability.

are from factories that produce the best tyres “The overall impact that the weakening rand

known to the industry.

“The old adage, ‘goed koop is duur koop’, still

will have on Asian imports will be linked to the

applies,” cautioned Naik. “Transport operators

environment and actions of the operators,”

“When comparing the cost advantage of

should invest in testing various good quality

suggested Michelin’s Coetzee. “For an operator

retreading to cheap imports the initial cost is

brands until the best cpk achieved, and their tyre

who is cost sensitive, it would not be worthwhile

lower and the performance can be relatively

fleets should be subject to a good maintenance

to switch from one Asian import to another due

surprising depending on the operation and a

programme in order to derive maximum life.”

to the increasing costs across the board,” he said.

competent and cautious driver,” he said. Concluded TIASA’s Kruger: “If we look at what

“The only alternative would be to search for

“The number of truck tyres manufactured in

is happening in South Africa, I believe that tyre

products that are of better quality at the same

South Africa has declined dramatically with more

prices have now reached the bottom of the curve

price. An operator who is focused on ‘more for

than 60% of commercial tyres sold now being

and that we will see a couple of steep increases

less’, would do well to switch to higher quality tier

imported,” commented Bandag SA’s Monal Naik.

this year. Taking factors such as the exchange rate


“The weaker rand means that all brands imported

and raw materials into consideration, an increase

into the country will be affected, not just Asian

of around 20% is very likely this year. The current


prices are not sustainable even with a slowdown

According to Michelin’s research of the market over the years, an operator’s purchase behaviour

in the economy worldwide. I think that many

in general is not motivated by the origin of the

“It is our opinion that South African transport

factories worldwide will close which will leave

tyres they purchase, but rather by the value that

operators are becoming ever more aware of the

room for bigger factories to grow and up their

is derived on consumption.

limitations of these cheap Asian imports. In the


main, they deliver less mileage and cannot be Challenges





retreaded,” he said.

“I also believe that local manufacturers will

retreading sector Historically, the South African end user, especially in the commercial sector has embraced the

be forced to increase their prices as they too

❝ An

operator who is

are paying more for raw materials. Importers especially, are in a situation where their average

‘cradle-to-grave’ concept thereby maximising tyre

focused on ‘more for

life, so much so that up until recently, retreads

less’, would do well to

stock levels being replaced with product landed

switch to higher quality

a point where we either need to increase prices,

constituted up to 60% of the transporter’s overall usage. Of course, the growing influx of cheapies from other parts of the world, coupled with a

tier brands.

landed cost is increasing all the time with current at a higher price. In my view, we have reached and soon, or close our doors.”

We’re right behind you wherever you are. 24 /7. TrenTyre is the largest commercial tyre fitment

network in the country. Our outlets stand ready and waiting to help. So you can take confidence in the fact that whenever you need us, wherever you are, we’re right behind you.

At your service

Industry News




All received a Cheque In the Point S network – every single member will earn a reward – the size of the reward is dependent on each member’s effort.

Sizeable amounts of money were paid out to Point S members at the Group’s inaugural AGM in Johannesburg in February, by way of bonuses based upon each member’s purchasing contribution irrespective of their size.

independent operators often lack. The Point S model allows equal access to every single member but its individual contributing volume determines the profit share percentage it will earn. At the heart of the Point S value system is pure independence which means that none of its members are subject to the dominance of wholesalers and/ or manufacturers. Therefore the Point S network locally and internationally is made up exclusively of independent tyre dealers. The concept originated 45

In keeping with their unique business model, members of the Point S Group

years ago in Europe and today there are over 3400 outlets across Europe,

of independent dealers worldwide are privy to pay-backs in exchange for

Canada, America and South Africa.

adhering to the Group’s purchasing model from preferred suppliers. This encompasses not only tyres, but underbody components as well, such as

“Our network is not a franchise,” explained Nico de Rouwe, outgoing chairman

batteries and brakes.

of Point S, but rather a network that allows its members to build their business around its own exclusive private label range which boldly displays the Point S

The members of Point S commit 60% of their purchasing power to its selected

brand name.

preferred suppliers and the remaining 40% is left for the members to trade as their areas dictate. Therefore the group’s collective buying power enables

“Annual rebates received from preferred suppliers and international bonuses

its members to trade competitively with a reward in mind - something that

earned based on the Group’s annual purchases as well as the profit earned


Industry News

Member of the Year Armand Patricio Point S Bloemfontein: Achieved overall growth: Best performance across the preferred brands, shop harmonized to show spirit of Point S and advancing the interest of the group.

from the Point S trading account, are allocated into a Loyalty Fund which gets paid out every year at the Group’s Annual General Meeting. Irrespective of size, Point S members all qualify for the same discounts and rebate schemes, with larger outlets that contribute higher volumes earning a larger share of the Loyalty Fund.” Best of all, according to de Rouwe, Point S operates much like a non-profit organisation, with operating costs at head office level remaining lean and frugal. “Our preferred suppliers contribute towards our running costs by way of head office support and marketing, while Point S members are subject to a minimal monthly contribution (currently set at R3 500.00). Independents are being challenged to remain competitive which is why the Point S business model does not subscribe to excessive membership fees. “More important, because there are no major investors or shareholders in the Group, rebates and monetary rewards are instantly passed on to Point S members,” argued de Rouwe.

Morne Honiball Morne Honiball Receiving his reward

Growth of the Point S Collective Buying Cooperation is mushrooming worldwide. The Group now boasts over 3 400 points of sale in 30 countries

Industry News


Most Improved Store over a 12 month period Yusuf Dhoda Point S Newcastle – Increased his sell out through adopting the Point S purchase model most effectively.

and is selling over 16 million tyres per year. Its own exclusive tyre brand,

“The Point S business model has enjoyed worldwide success and

the Summerstar, which has earned worldwide acclaim at multiple tyre kick

acceptance. Here in South Africa, the group is in its growth stage.

outs, has been fundamental in its growth, with the house brand obviously

Importantly, our goal is to more than double the pay-out to our members

enjoying equal status in the preferred category.

at next year’s AGM,” said de Rouwe.

Wuk Bothma Point S Polokwane

Marius Viljoen

Wuk Bothma receiving a cheque for over R100 000

Marius Viljoen receiving a well-deserved cheque of over R50 000


Industry News

VIPAL RUBBER GROWS GLOBAL PRESENCE VipalTec and CPT are only a few of the initiatives that Brazil based Vipal

Vipal Rubber amongst the greatest tyre retreading companies in the world.

Rubber has introduced to ensure a global service of excellence, with an

In its home country of Brazil, Vipal is the recognised market leader, with

efficient and committed structure.

a 38% market share in the truck tyre retreading sector. Furthermore, the

According to a company spokesman, the end result of such development activities are specific solutions for the different needs of its customers spread across 90 countries where Vipal operates.

company is responsible for 80% of Brazilian exports of procured treads. Elsewhere, with Spain being one example, Vipal (established in 2006), enjoys a market share of 25%, making it one of the most important manufacturers of retreading products in the country. Representation is

A tangible result of this strategy is the product line Vipal ECO treads,

also growing in other European markets like Italy, Portugal and the United

launched in 2009. Advanced ECO treads technology is manufactured

Kingdom. The company is also showing growth in the North American,

using special compounds and unique designs that ensure lower rolling

African and Middle East markets following a strategic decision in 2013 to

resistance and reduced fuel consumption, thereby assisting the end user

dedicate one of its three Brazilian factories to meeting export demands.

to reduce fuel consumption by up to 10%, the company claims. Moreover the technology is environmentally friendly and savings generated through its use are internationally acknowledged.

In addition to investing in new products and structural improvements, and the constant pursuit of best practices in the tyre retreading sector, Vipal has set its sights on offering excellent service to its customers. The company’s

Because the specific needs of tyre retreading across the world differs by way of

Authorised Retreader Network, currently numbering 300 partner retreaders

technical requirements, culture, geography and legislation, Vipal has stationed

in the Latin America region, has proven successful because the retreader is

permanent regional teams together with its own distribution centres in strategic

privy to a service package that is linked to a high-tech product.

locations to provide international customers with a complete after-sales service. The ability to provide the right product market for each market has positioned

According to Vipal, the company’s ability to adapt and display flexibility is the reason behind its mushrooming growth.



Vipal’s ability to adapt

and display flexibility is

key to its mushrooming World’s leading trade fair, expert meeting and growth. order platform – all about tyres

Essen · Germany Ideal Sponsor

24.05. – 27.05.2016



It’s in our DNA!

Ever so often you will hear of companies boasting that their offering is part of their DNA. That they eat, sleep and breathe whatever they are selling. We are not in any way questioning this inner belief! In fact, we have no doubt whatsoever that this is especially true for Bandag and its Network of Tyre Professionals.

Van Rensburg family since their pioneering days in the South African tyre industry. Proud parents Wynand and Louise set the example by being involved in every facet of the business. All the while, these ‘littlings’ demonstrate their own various skills and passion within the family business.

But like you, we are sceptical of the claims. Just like you, we also think that seeing is believing! Just why should you believe that Bandag and its Network of Tyre Professionals eat, sleep and breathe tyres?

Many Bandag franchisees hail from pioneering families in the SA tyre industry. Many are second, third and fourth generation family businesses that not only sell tyres but eat, sleep and breathe tyres! They have built their businesses on passion, trust and reliability.

Let’s take little Minki, Linda and Hendrik who one Saturday morning were pictured helping their parents paint recently retreaded tyres at their East London Bandag factory. They are the fourth generation in the Janse

Now ask yourself if you want just a retread supplier or a Business Partner. Put Bandag and its Network of Tyre Professionals to the test. We will bring the passion!

With Bandag, you don’t have to be a tyre expert. You just have to know one! Bandag specialises in the manufacture of retreads and best-in-class after sales service. That’s what we do! For more information please contact Bandag on 011 439 6000 or visit the website at

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

Global Industry News



“When a man dreams alone, the dream remains just a dream, but if many people dream the same thing together, the dream is transformed into reality.’

Having elected to be a main player on the global chessboard of Off Highway tyres, the official launch of Bhuj was entitled ‘The Game Changer’ in a bid to illustrate the company’s evolution over time as well as its commitment

In keeping with its vision, ‘to achieve leadership in the Off Highway tyre

to future growth.

market worldwide’, Indian-based BKT saw fit to make radical changes to their production set up by way of a new tyre plant. The newly-established

Introducing the proceedings, Mr Arvind Poddar, Chairman and MD said:

Bhuj plant in the Indian state of Gujarat, not only bears testament to the

“BKT is poised to become the ‘Game Changer’. Since its inception in 1954

company’s determination to continue to build on its successes in the

by my late father, Mr Mahabirprasad Poddar, the company has come a long

domestic and global market, but in effect, is a dream that has come true.

way in 60 years, having achieved a number of milestones, from becoming an international player that produces more than 230 sizes and services 130

Press members from across the globe were recently invited to witness the

countries, to pioneering the Agrimax Force tyres for high powered tractors

realisation of Bhuj, which incidentally, is much more than a tyre plant. The

in 2007 using advanced ‘IF Technology’.

facility also boasts a state-of-the-art R&D centre, a modern outdoor testing track, large warehouses as well as residential and recreational facilities for

“2008 further marked our entry into the specialised segment of OTR All-

the staff.

Steel radial tyres: an essential strategic move to strengthen BKT’s leadership in the Off-Highway tyre market.

SA TREADS was among the group of journalists who arrived for the official

“Today, we have the production capability to manufacture sizes ranging

plant inauguration in November/December last year.

from 17.5” to 49” and in 2016, we will go up to 51”,” said Poddar.


Global Industry News

The pay-off line, ‘Game Changer’, further served to highlight the many hurdles encountered along the way together with the company’s resourcefulness in facing and overcoming these obstacles. ‘The area where our largest and most modern production plant was to rise – formerly a desert area – lacked serious infrastructure. There was no electricity or water supply and it was inhabited by wild animals. These were but a few reasons why we were unable to secure a labour force at first. But, when the going gets tough, the tough gets going.” We gritted

The new R&D Centre and testing circuit will open this year.

our teeth, rolled up our sleeves and got on with the job on hand. Showing great commitment and dedication, in the end, everything was created out of nothing,” explained Mr Rajiv Poddar, MD.

area with jogging trails, a large recreation centre for indoor and outdoor activities, a medical centre and a shopping mall.

Stretching over a total surface area of 312 acres, almost 25 acres of this space is dedicated to a modern outdoor track that will test tractors and

BKT is also able to accommodate university students who have opted to

industrial vehicles equipped with BKT tyres. The new R&D Centre which will be

work with the company. And additional 90 rooms have been allocated for

completed in the next few months, will contain an innovative structure where

this purpose.

research on new polymers is done and new tread compounds are developed. Bhuj plant also has its own fire station with seven fire-fighting trucks, The ‘Township Area’ extending over 15 acres comprises 406 flats for the

two ambulances and a smooth fire-fighting system that covers the entire

company’s employees and their families and there is also a large green

complex which extends over 37km.

Global Industry Newsn


What is more, in adherence with BKT’s business model, Bhuj includes an area entirely dedicated to plant design and installation that optimises all site issues related to water, waste management and energy autonomy. Said Poddar: “At Bhuj, our green motto, ‘reuse-renew-recycle’, is being implemented as a means to use energy and resources as efficiently as possible, in respect of the environment.”

From an initial production of 10 metric tonnes per day in 1954, BKT currently produces up to 600 metric tonnes per day, a figure which is expected to rise to 800 metric tonnes per day by 2017. Plus, investments in infrastructure has grown to beyond the company’s national borders, leading to the opening of four overseas offices to support local markets, one in Europe, two in the USA and one in Canada. And with the establishment of Bhuj, the company believes it is well placed to achieve its lofty ambitions and become a global leader in its segment.

EARTHMAX SR 31 TO MAKE ITS WORLD DEBUT AT BAUMA 2016 The brand new Earthmax SR 31, which has just rolled off the

The cut-and-heat resistant tread compound ensures a long product life-cycle

production line, will be displayed as world preview at Bauma

while the multi-layer steel belts along with the non-directional rigid block

2016 in April in Munich, Germany. Providing extraordinary

pattern stand for excellent traction and maneuverability even on muddy

strength and stability under the toughest operating

ground. Moreover, the radial casing structure allegedly provides reduced

conditions, this tyre is said to feature excellent traction and

rolling resistance which translates into better fuel economy as well as reduced

maneuverability, as well as riding comfort.

operating costs.






















/wasteintoworth |

@wasteintoworth | +27 87 35-REUSE (73873)


Distribution News

Supa Quick Races To 30th Birthday What’s red and white, and sells 1.6 million tyres a year? The Supa Quick

150 000 shock absorbers, 120 000 batteries and 103 000 exhaust parts a

chain of tyre outlets, which celebrates its 30th birthday this year.

year. More than two million customers were served last year, and the chain plans to have in excess of 300 stores in operation by 2020.

The Bridgestone-backed chain started life in 1986 with a single outlet in Port Elizabeth, and has grown to be South Africa’s largest countrywide

Wustmann commented that Supa Quick’s growth has contributed to

fitment franchise, with over 260 stores. “Franchising tyre fitment was a

making motoring safer and more affordable. “If the tyre franchising model

novel concept back in 1986, but Firestone’s MD of the time, Bill Taylor,

hadn’t been adopted, or had been introduced much later, consumers

was certain it would work,” said Bridgestone South Africa’s Head of Sales

would not have had access to our bulk buying power, so prices would have

and Marketing Shaun Wustmann. “His approach revolutionised the tyre

been higher,” he said. “We have seen that higher prices delay a consumer’s

fitment market, and the majority of tyres sold in South Africa nowadays are

decision to replace tyres, which has an effect on road safety.”

supplied through a franchised tyre fitment centre.” He also said that Supa Quick had revolutionised service standards in Firestone was subsequently purchased by Bridgestone Japan, but the Supa

the fitment industry. “A modern tyre customer who suddenly found

Quick stores are still owned and managed by individual franchisees, with

themselves back in the mid-1980s would be in for a shock,” he

support from Bridgestone. The growth of the chain reflects the growth in

commented. “Fitting and balancing four tyres could take up to two hours!

South Africa’s motor industry. In 1986, seven motor manufacturers produced

Almost overnight, Supa Quick cut this by half or more.”

a handful of models, compared to the current market in which motorists can select from over a thousand models. With this growth has come an increased

The improvements were due mainly to the chain’s policy of installing the

diversity of tyre sizes and replacement parts – Supa Quick’s stores sell over

most modern equipment in the stores, and emphasising staff training as

Distribution News




  a priority. Since 1986, Supa Quick has trained several thousand staff in a broad range of technical and administrative skills. The Supa Quick concept which changed the way everyday motorists buy their tyres is now targeting business customers too. Bridgestone recently announced it will offer commercial tyre services, including retreading, at selected Supa Quick outlets. “Our business customers have similar underlying needs to our


    Â Â Â

individual clients: good service, affordability, and convenience,� Wustmann


said. “In future, we expect this market to expand quickly as awareness grows that a franchised tyre outlet can handle commercial tyre needs.� New fitment technology, used tyre disposal and eco-friendly tyres are some of the leading concerns for the tyre industry. “As Supa Quick for these issues,� Wustmann concluded.

Van den Ban Autobanden to showcase range at Tyrexpo South Africa 2016



                Â Â?Â? Â?  Â? 

Van den Ban Autobanden B.V. (VDB) will proudly showcase the company’s extensive range of PCR, 4x4/SUV tyres, trailer/caravan tyres, truck and light truck tyres at this year’s Tyrexpo Africa.   

Also to be showcased at the hands of the company’s international sales team will be their ultra-high performance and run-flat tyres. Multi-brand Distributor Known as an international multi-brand distributor offering premium quality brands as well as budget brands, VDB has an extensive assortment of product with 1.5 million tyres in stock. Alongside premium brands such as Bridgestone, Continental, Dunlop, Goodyear, Michelin and Pirelli, VDB also offers Uniroyal, Fulda, Kleber, Firestone, Yokohama, Hankook, Kumho, Toyo, General (4x4), BF Goodrich (4x4) and Cooper (4x4). What is more, the exclusive budget brands Hifly and Gripmax (4x4) which have established a successful reputation abroad will also be on offer. All of these brands are supplied directly from stock. Outstanding service VDB pride themselves on their outstanding level of availability coupled with competitive pricing and outstanding service. And according to the company, their completely automated Logistic Tyre Centre and highly efficient distribution network enables them to make ‘just in time’ deliveries, in accordance with client specifications. VDB promises loading and shipment to the African market, within one week after ordering and specializes in mixed full container loads in adherence to its motto to respond to market needs in a timeous manner.









 ���� ­��

enters its fourth decade, it will continue to be Bridgestone’s touchpoint

28 • Goodyear News

New Goodyear Innovation at the 86th International Geneva Motor Show

The highly anticipated 86th International Geneva Motor Show took place from 3 - 13 March 2016, in Geneva, Switzerland. This acclaimed auto show, of which Goodyear has been a part for over

Just like connected cars, self-driving cars make use of all the latest

30 years, is held in particularly high esteem by journalists, experts

technologies – be they software programmes or high-performance

and buyers for its comprehensive view of current offers, new trends,

cameras – to analyse the landscape by means of shape recognition,

available technologies and future developments – and this year was

and then using algorithms to send instructions to the vehicle’s controls.

no different.

They might be the solution to reduce the number of accidents, traffic jams or even car parks in city centres (they would park on their own

Attended by over 680 000* visitors and 11 300+* media

in suburban areas).

representatives, the show featured all the latest innovations and offerings in the automotive industry, presented by manufacturers,

But of course, this innovative autonomous vehicle will need a very

exhibitors, service providers, garage owners, suppliers, sales persons

unique set of tyres…

and other automotive brand representatives. One of the most talked about innovations at this year’s show was the model of a self-driving car, the car of the future, which some people claim will become a must in years to come.

* As recorded at the International Geneva Motor Show 2015.

Goodyear News • 29

Introducing the Goodyear Eagle-360: The tyre of the future for the car of the future After 117 years of making tyres, Goodyear presented a vision of a future tyre that looks radically different from tyres today – it’s a sphere. Goodyear unveiled its latest concept tyre, Eagle-360, at the 2016 Geneva International Motor Show. The spherical, 3-D printed tyre highlights Goodyear’s vision for the future and presents an inspiring solution for when autonomous driving is expected to be more mainstream.

Spherical shape for ultimate manoeuvrability and safety The unique spherical shape of the Goodyear Eagle-360 could contribute to safety and manoeuvrability to match the demands of autonomous mobility. The multi-orientation tyres move in all directions, contributing to passenger safety, and active technology allows the tyre to move as needed to reduce sliding caused by potential hazards.

Connected via magnetic levitation To connect with the body of the car, the Goodyear Eagle-360 concept tyre relies on magnetic levitation. The tyre is suspended from the car by magnetic fields, similar to magnetic levitation trains, which increase passenger comfort and reduce noise.

Sensors ensure connectivity with car and increase safety Goodyear imagined another feature, connectivity, to optimise driving conditions in autonomous vehicles. Sensors inside the Eagle-360 concept tyre register the road conditions, including weather and road surface conditions, and communicate this information to the car as well as to other vehicles to enhance safety. Also, leveraging Goodyear’s tread wear and pressure monitoring technology, sensors regulate the wear of the tyre to extend mileage.

In addition, the shape provides a smooth ride by creating a fluid, lateral

Biomimicry – inspired by nature

movement. This helps the car to overtake an obstacle without changing

Elements of the Eagle-360 design showcase biomimicry, which is the

its driving direction – and what’s more, as a 3-D printer produces the

imitation of nature, a principle Goodyear often uses in its designs. The

tread, customising the tyre based on the region where the driver lives

tread mimics the pattern of brain coral, and its multidirectional blocks

is also a possibility.

and grooves help to secure a safe contact patch. The grooved bottom has the same elements as a natural sponge, which stiffens when dry

Finally, because 360-degree turns are possible with this tyre, it could

yet softens when wet to deliver adequate driving performance and

tackle anticipated parking constrictions of the future, as less space will

aquaplaning resistance. This texture also absorbs water on the road

be needed to pull into parking spots.

and ejects water from the tyre footprint through centrifugal force, to reduce the risk of aquaplaning.

E N G I N E E R E D TO G O T H E D I S TA N C E Truck and Bus | Dump Trucks | Scrapers | Loaders | Compactors | Graders Official Distributors in South Africa:


Johannesburg tel: +27 11 974 7732 | email: Cape Town tel: +27 82 337 8699 | email:

World News


Michelin Sees Positive Sales, Demand Growth in 2015 Groupe Michelin’s recent 2015 financial report shows the company has increased its passenger car and light truck demand in the North America,



said. An increase of 1%

European and Asian markets, while the recession in Brazil and Argentina


continue to negatively affect Michelin’s demand in South America.

comes from the strong growth

‘‘In 2015, we successfully drove profitable, over-market growth in tonnages

in Mexico, which offset the nearly flat

sold and gained new market share in all our businesses, thanks to the

demand in the U.S. and Canada.

quality of the Group’s offering. Our growth and margins have both improved

Overall medium truck tire demand is down 7% in OE

significantly,” said Jean-Dominique Senard, CEO of Groupe Michelin.

and 1% in replacement due to the decrease in demand in the Asia and

Michelin’s 2015 net sales of €21,199 million were up 8.4% from 2014’s

South American markets. In all other markets, OE demand is up – with a

€19,553 million. Net income was also up to €1,163 million from €1,031

7% increase in North America. Additionally, replacement demand is up 4%

million in 2014.

in North America.

Passenger car and light truck tires were up 14.6% and pulled in €12,028

In 2016, Michelin said it expects passenger car, light truck and truck tire

million in net sales, up from last year’s €10,498, while medium truck tire net

demand to continue growing.

sales increased to €6,229 million from €6,082 million.

“Looking forward to 2016 and beyond, we have to continue our efforts

Michelin’s total passenger car and light truck tire OE demand was up 2%, while

in four areas – enhancing customer service, streamlining operating

replacement was up 3%.

procedures, deploying digital solutions and increasing the empowerment

The North American market remained buoyant, with OE demand up 4%,

of our teams. With our strengthened fundamentals, the Group is on the

backing the strong vehicle demand, low fuel prices and favorable economic

right track,” Senard said.



OUR STRENGTH IS OUR ASSORTMENT! Very extensive assortment in segments PCR, TBR, (U)HP, RFT, OE, SUV/4x4

...and many more!

Specialized in mixed full container loads

Our tyres travel the world

Van den Ban Autobanden BV Ravenseweg 13m, 3223 LM Hellevoetsluis, the Netherlands Tel.: +31 (0) 181 - 331 444,


World News

Tyre Labelling steps into the computer chip age

Cooper Posts Record Operating Profit in 2015

The Tire Technology Expo in Hanover, Germany was predictably buzzing

Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. had a record operating profit of $354

with new innovations and the SA Treads European correspondent was

million in 2015, as well as an increase in net sales and unit volume,

able to target several new developments of particular interest for the

according to the tiremaker’s 2015 financial results.

global industry.

“It was an exciting year for Cooper as we took numerous steps around

Such as Computype who were introducing a completely new type of RFID

the globe to continue to transform and enhance our business,” said Roy

system at the event and we spoke with Mike Sanislo P.E. the company’s

Armes, Cooper chairman, CEO and president. “Our fourth quarter and

Vice President who is one of the few people who exclusively specialises on

full year performance was very strong, with unit volume increases in all

RFID systems which he firmly considers will be the future for the global tyre

regions and excellent operating profit. In fact, our full year operating


margin of nearly 12% exceeded the 8% to 10% that we established as a

Mike states, “As the next phase in Computype working towards the ultimate

mid-term goal for Cooper.”

level in intelligent (Smart) tyres we are launching a special computer chip

Cooper’s $354 million operating profit accounted for 11.9% of net sales

within the tyre to record its performance like never before.”

and was a 59% increase from 2014. Net sales increased 3.3% to $2.97

Computype have produced bar-code labels for the past 30 years but this

million and increases in all regions drove unit volume to increase 6.8%

completely new technological advancement means it is possible to replace

year over year. Net income was down at $213 million compared to $214

this system with a unique computer chip called an RFID Inlay, an inexpensive

million in 2014, which included a gain of $56 million from selling its CCT

innovation that enables data to be recorded and opens a completely new

joint venture in China.

direction for the international tyre market.

In North America, Cooper has seen a 3.8% increase in net sales to

Mike adds, “In fact the technology itself dates back to the 1940’s and

$2,685 million and an operating profit increase of 53.9% at $425 million.

was actually used in espionage activities during World War 2 to transmit

“We continued to execute our strategic plan and invest in operations

information through radio frequency waves data. It has also been used in

around the globe to improve our competitive position,” Armes said.

other industries in the mid 1990’s and the tyre industry first explored its

“Specifically, we invested in modernizing and enhancing our facilities

possibilities for speciality tyres around 2000. Now this Smart technology is

and continued to invest in technology and product innovation. We are

being seriously considered by major tyre manufacturers for use in passenger

seeing a return on these investments as Cooper moves upstream, selling

car and light truck tyres.”

more high value, high margin products.”

Mike believes the future of this computer chip development will result in

“In 2015, we broadened our global reach and capabilities through

tyres eventually possessing the ‘intelligence to communicate wirelessly and

expansion in Latin America and strategic partnerships such as our

produce vital information to drivers such as measuring tyre grip as well as

recently announcedagreement to acquire a majority interest in China-

tread life and temperature.

based Qingdao Ge Rui Da Rubber Co., Ltd. (GRT),” Armes continued.

Computype were founded 40 years ago in Minnesota, USA and currently has

“We look forward to another exciting year in 2016, and want to thank

a European office in the UK and was one of the first companies to create a

all of our employees around the world for their continued dedication

bar-code that could withstand tyre vulcanisation and with the RFID Inlay chip

and hard work.”

they look set to raise the bar for the tyre industry once again.

Bridgestone takes top honours at the 2016 Tyre Technology Awards This year’s Tire Technology International Awards 2016 were held at a special

Hakkapeliitta R2 tyre for being the most energy efficient cold weather tyre and

gala Dinner in Hanover where Bridgestone Corporation took centre stage

achieving an ‘A’’ European label rating, the Tyre Manufacturing Innovation of the

as ‘Tyre Manufacturer of the Year’ beating off competition from Cooper Tire,

Year was awarded to Kobe Steel for recognition of the company’s scientific and

Goodyear and Nexen Tire.

technological excellence with Aquajet from Hungary named as winner of the

Bridgestone captured the prestigious award as an accolade to the company’s

Environmental Achievement of the Year award for its water jet rubber recycling

impressive upgrades to their Asia Pacific Technical Center in Thailand along


with the production of their first passenger tyres whose natural rubber content

Finally Mesnac from China were named as the Tyre Industry’s Supplier of

was entirely derived from Guayule-sourced rubber.

the Year as recognition for their continuing commitment to research and

Whilst the Tyre Technology of the Year Award went to Nokian for its

development investment and innovative products.


On our journey, we learned a very important lesson: all roads speak the same language. This is the reason we have been oering the best treads and tyre retreading solutions for your business, anywhere in the world, for over 40 years. | | +55 51 3205 3051

Sa Treads March 2016  

SA Treads Tyre Industry Magazine

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you