Mitas Tires North America Inc. is shortening all phases of construction on its Charles City, Iowa, factory from five to three years. The agricultural tiremaker says it is increasing its investment in the project by 19%, to $51 million.
Mitas says that due to a positive outlook in the North American market, investment feasibility to convert the former Winnebago plant into a tire factory, has improved. By late 2013, the factory capacity is planned to reach 12,000 metric tons of tires annually. The additional funds will be directed toward tire-building machines and curing presses.
“Charles City has given the word ‘tractor’ to the world,” project director Vladimir Dusanek says. “In early 2012, Charles City will start giving a better choice of tractor tires to the U.S. farmer. Mitas will become the third U.S.-based producer of radial agricultural tires.”
Dusanek says the reason for building the new tire factory in Iowa is the proximity to OE manufacturers such as Case IH. This past summer, Mitas started hiring workers in Iowa. This month, the first group of its U.S. employees will undergo training in the Czech Republic.
MTD previously reported that Mitas broke ground for the project.