Nexen plans new tech center in North America
The new Nexen Tire Corp. plant in the Czech Republic is not the only construction project on the Korean tire maker’s to-do list. The company also plans to build a larger North American technical center in 2016.
The company says it has outgrown its current technical center, which opened in 2008 in Richfield, Ohio, which is about 20 miles northwest of Akron. Nexen says it will break ground on a new building by the end of 2015 or the beginning of 2016.
There are 16 employees at the current facility. Nexen expects to employ up to 30 people at the new tech center and invest about $7 million in the project. The tech center will develop tires for the North and South American markets.
Nexen is the oldest tire company in Korea. The company operates two Korean facilities that produce tires for the U.S. market. Nexen is aggressively promoting its brand in the U.S. market, and is counting on an increase in unit sales of nearly 50% this year.
Annual capacity at Nexen’s three tire manufacturing plants is 42 million tires. Unit sales in the U.S. will be close to 5 million tires this year, up from 3.4 million last year. About 50% of the total will be made up of ultra-high performance tires.
Modern Tire Dealer Editor Bob Ulrich visited Nexen’s highly automated Changnyeong, Korea, plant in May 2015. For his report on the plant and Nexen’s plans for the future see: