``The entry into the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is the culmination of a long-term product planning and development programme. We are now ready with products suited to cater to the Saudi market, which is the largest and important replacement tyre market in the Middle East region,” said Shubhro Ghosh, group head ASEAN, Middle East & Africa of Apollo Tyres.
The industry is concerned that heavy commercial segment, particularly truck tyre sales, continues to remain sluggish. The overall tyre production is down by 8-10 % for April-October 2019 year-on-year. Though passenger vehicle segment showed improvement, too many holidays and plant closures affected sales during the month.
The B K Birla group company decided to demerge its tyre vertical into a separate entity - Birla Tyres Ltd - to create and unlock value for both the businesses. Outstanding debt of Rs 3,000 crore will also be split between the two entities. While Kesoram Industries will retain Rs 2,000 cr of debt, the new tyre entity would be servicing Rs 1,000 cr of debt.
Bridgestone announced the merger of its India business with Europe, Middle-East and Africa (EMEA) block from next year, segregating it from the China Asia-Pacific strategic business unit. The integration of India business into EMEA comes as a result of the latter's ongoing transformation capitalising on the opportunities digitalisation offers, it said.
According to ICRA, subdued vehicle production due to weak consumer sentiments amidst slowing economic activities, rising cost of vehicle ownership and softened rural demand will impact the tyre demand in FY2020.