GURGAON, India (Sept. 30) — Groupe Michelin is buying out Apollo Tyres Ltd.´s share of their Michelin Apollo Tyres Pvt. Ltd. joint venture and will take full control of the firms´ project to make radial truck and bus tires in India.
At the same time, the partners said they are delaying by at least a year their plan to set up radial production. The new plant, at a site in Ranjanguaon, originally was to have come on stream this year, the partners said in early 2004, with annual capacity of 300,000 to 350,000 tires.
Michelin and Apollo had budgeted $70 million to build the plant. In addition, Michelin bought a 14.9-percent stake in Apollo Tyres for $28 million and agreed to provide Apollo with technical support for making radial tires.
The partners decided to delay the project because the pace of radialization of the Indian market is proceeding slower than that projected two years ago.
Apollo said Michelin will remain a shareholder, and the partners will continue to explore opportunities for co-operation in India. The firms did not say what Michelin would pay for Apollo's 49-percent stake in Michelin Apollo Tyres.