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Conti's Caldwell addresses supply situation

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Conti's Caldwell addresses supply situation

Like other tire manufacturers, Continental Tire the Americas LLC (CTA) is suffering from supply problems, Bill Caldwell, the company's vice president of sales and marketing, said during CTA's 2010 Gold Dealer meeting earlier today, April 13, in Nassau, the Bahamas.

But if all goes as planned, the problem should be rectified by the second half of 2010, he reassured dealers.

Continental, along with many of its competitors, slowed production last year due to uncertainty about future demand, said Caldwell. "It was a frightening time to make decisions because we didn't know what the future held. The market picked up at such a quick pace" near the end of 2009, "we had little time" to restore capacity.

Now, however, all of CTA's plants are operating at full throttle, and the company is selling every tire it's producing. "We have activities in place to speed that up."

Caldwell believes the industry is headed for a rebound in 2010. "Not only were January and February tire shipments above last year's levels, our preliminary research indicates that shipments are close to 2008 levels. I think this bodes well for the industry."

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