NEW HAVEN, Conn. (March 16)—Pirelli Tire North America Inc. has opened an original equipment sales office in Southfield, Mich. The new office, staffed with sales and engineering personnel, is designed to strengthen Pirelli´s ties with North America´s auto makers and allow it to take part in vehicle development projects. Carlo Bianconi, president and CEO of Pirelli Tire North America, said it was important for the company to have an office in the Detroit area. "We are aggressively pursuing new contracts with a number of the major car companies based in Detroit," he said. "Our progress so far has created a need to be in contact with these companies practically on a daily basis. We fully expect our strategy to gain OE market share in North America to begin to show positive results very soon." The company´s OE Group in Detroit will be headed by John Hagan, director of OE sales; David Ortoli, OE technical account manager; and Paul Belloni, manager of testing engineering.