Suppliers

Baratta To Retire From Bridgestone March 1

Posted on January 9, 2017

John Baratta, president of consumer replacement tire sales in North America for Bridgestone Americas Inc., will retire March 1. The 34-year Bridgestone veteran will be replaced by Erik Seidel, who joined the tire company in 2013.

Baratta was a tire sales manager when he joined Firestone in 1983. He retires as the head of consumer replacement tire sales for the U.S. and Canada.
Baratta was a tire sales manager when he joined Firestone in 1983. He retires as the head of consumer replacement tire sales for the U.S. and Canada.
Baratta joined Firestone Tire & Rubber Co. in 1983 as a tire sales manager in Charleston, S.C. Over the next two decades, he ascended through the ranks of the Bridgestone consumer tire business, and in 2008, he assumed his current position as president of consumer replacement.

“John has been an outstanding member of our team, and his contributions to the consumer tire group have been fundamental to the growth and success of Bridgestone Americas,” says TJ Higgins, president of the integrated consumer tire division,U.S. & Canada, for Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations LLC. “We wish John the very best in retirement and are excited for Erik to take on this role. Erik shares John’s passion for our customers, and he is the right person to build upon the success of John’s leadership.”

Seidel has a diverse background that encompasses brand marketing, manufacturing and sales. He joined Bridgestone in 2013 as vice president of brand marketing for the consumer tire business. In that role, Seidel led the company’s brand-building efforts, developing breakthrough product launches, including the introduction of the company’s DriveGuard run-flat tire line.

Seidel will be promoted to president of consumer replacement tire sales effective March 1.
Seidel will be promoted to president of consumer replacement tire sales effective March 1.
In June 2015, Seidel was promoted to his current position of vice president of consumer replacement tire sales to work alongside Baratta. The company says Seidel has successfully delivered growth and driven new product development across North America, and has delivered new tools and technologies such as TireConnect and the side-by-side selling tool to help dealers engage with consumers online and ultimately drive sales.

“Erik has quickly demonstrated his ability to strengthen relationships, build trust and drive growth,” says Baratta. “I am excited for him to take on this role and have full confidence that his leadership will allow Bridgestone to achieve our vision of becoming an indispensable business partner.” 

Prior to joining Bridgestone, Seidel worked at Kimberly-Clark Corp., where he managed a number of brands including Viva Towels, the Scott brand and the Huggies brand of diapers and wipes.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a MBA and a master’s degree in manufacturing management from Northwestern University.

For more company news, visit www.BridgestoneAmericas.com.

Related Topics: Bridgestone, Erik Seidel, John Baratta, retirement

Comments ( 0 )
More Stories
Article

You’ve Got Email: It’s Still the Way to Go to Market, Digitally Speaking

Remember email? Sometimes in the communication that is texting, tweeting or ‘Snapchatting,’ email is taken for granted. Facebook is great for sharing your thoughts and feelings to everyone you have friended, but email is more targeted, especially when used for business. You might say it is even more personal than Facebook because it is designed for interaction between two people or among a small group of people.

Drew Howlett from Falken says developing the right M/T tire is critical. “There are too many other competitive products on the market to have any weaknesses.”
Article

M/T Tires are Having a Moment: Consumer Demand Is Blurring the Lines

There are off-road warriors who never let their vehicles or mud-terrain tires touch pavement. There are others who like to occasionally play in the dirt, but need their fun vehicles to do double duty to go to work or school. And increasingly, there are drivers with lifted trucks and mean-looking tires who chase the aesthetic more than the lifestyle their vehicle portrays.

News

Tireco's Milestar Brand Launches Responsive Website

Tireco Inc.'s new mobile responsive website for Milestar tires is designed to showcase updated news, features and available tire sizes while serving as a hub for consumers to interact with the Milestar brand.

Kenda newcomer Chris Tolbert will help expand the Traction Dealer Network.
News

Chris Tolbert Joins Kenda USA

Tire industry veteran Chris Tolbert has joined Kenda USA's North American Automotive Business team as director of business development. His assignment: help accelerate Kenda’s sales and brand awareness in the PCR and LTR segments.

The new Gabriel training menu is divided into two sections, one for light vehicle training and one for heavy-duty training. Both sections include a series of training videos for dealers and installers to better sell and install Gabriel shocks and struts.
News

Gabriel Website Offers Training Resources

Ride Control LLC has launched its Gabriel website training menu with a series of training options as an expansion of its Answerman technical service offerings. This includes videos, technical bulletins, online catalogs and FAQs for both light and heavy-duty vehicles.

News

Hankook Suffers Sales Slowdown in 2Q 2017

Hankook Tire Co. Ltd. posted income before taxes of 3.1 trillion won on net sales of nearly 17.3 trillion won for the second period ended June 30, 2017. That compares to income of 2 trillion won on sales of 16.4 trillion won for the same period in fiscal 2016.

News

Alliance Updates Its Website

Alliance Tire Group (ATG) has redesigned its website with features it says will help tire dealers and equipment owners find tires based on segment, application, tread pattern or size.  

Be the First to Know

Get the latest news and most popular articles from MTD delivered straight to your inbox. Stay on top of the tire industry and don't miss a thing!