In response to the increasing demand for truck and bus tires in Africa, Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd. is expanding production at its factory in South Africa.
Sumitomo says in recent years, demand for tires in African markets has grown steadily in tandem with rapid economic growth, and the tire maker anticipates even more growth in the near future. Until now, the South Africa factory has produced tires solely for passenger cars and light trucks.
In 2014, Sumitomo announced a 1.1 billion rand (approximately $66 million) investment plan with the goal of enhancing the factory’s production capacity and product quality, especially with regard to high-performance tires. The company now is making an additional 910 million rand investment in the installation of production equipment for truck and bus tires.
At present, Sumitomo Rubber South Africa Ltd. supplies truck and bus tires to African markets. With this new investment plan, the company will gain production facilities for truck and bus tires within the continent, ensuring a steady supply of locally produced tires for the immediate markets. As a result, Sumitomo says it will strengthen tire sales business in Africa and simultaneously accelerate the pace of the global growth and development of the Sumitomo Rubber Group.
Sumitomo Rubber North America Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd.