Titan Adding "Off-The-Road" Tire Capacity At Illinois, Iowa Plants

Cites capacity constraints at Bryan, Ohio, facility.

Titan International said Monday that because of capacity constraints at its Bryan, Ohio, off-the-road tire facility, the company is adding OTR tire capacity at its Freeport, Illinois, and Des Moines, Iowa, tire facilities.

In the past year, Titan acquired Goodyear’s North American farm tire assets and Continental Tire North America’s OTR earthmover tire assets, spending about $153 million combined. The 2005 revenue of Goodyear’s farm tire business was over $200 million and Continental’s Bryan OTR business was over $100 million.

When compared with 2005, the 2006 farm business will be down at least $75 million. However, the purchase of Continental’s Bryan OTR business will compensate for some of agriculture’s shortfall in 2006. In October 2006, Titan determined that its Freeport, Illinois, facility has the basic equipment to produce OTR tires up to 35 inches. This means that Titan can expand capacity by adding building drums and molds and implementing modifications.

The company said its goal is to implement these changes in the fourth quarter 2006 and the first part of 2007. A steel radial 17.5R-25 is in production now and production on another size is expected within two weeks. Titan believes that the Freeport plant can produce in excess of $60 million in OTR tires in 2007.

“Titan is the only company in the world manufacturing OTR and farm tires and wheels,” said Titan Chairman and CEO Maurice M. Taylor. “If you look at the equipment used by mining companies, construction firms or farmers, you will see that they have been neglected when it comes to new wheel and tire designs for their equipment. An old John Wayne movie shows a construction loader with 25-inch wheels and now, 62 years later, the same 25-inch wheel is still used. Now Titan can improve equipment performance with custom engineered wheel and tire assemblies in this OTR market.”

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