TOKYO (May 23) — Bridgestone Corp. will build a 35,000-metric-ton-per-year carbon black plant in Mexico over the next two years to ensure reliable supplies of high-quality black to its North American plants.
Bridgestone will invest $81 million in the plant, to be built in Altamira, in Mexico´s Tamaulipas Province. The plant, Bridgestone´s third carbon black facility, is slated to start production in June 2008 with about 110 employees.
The new plant will be operated by Mexico Carbon Manufacturing S.A. de C.V., a wholly owned Bridgestone subsidiary since September last year.
The investment strengthens Bridgestone´s presence in captive raw materials. Besides carbon black plants in Japan and Thailand, Bridgestone operates synthetic rubber plants in the U.S. and, starting in 2007, China; steel cord plants in Japan, the U.S., Italy, Thailand and China; and natural rubber estates in Indonesia and Liberia. It also has two more steel cord plants under construction in China.
In addition, Bridgestone is building a $220 million passenger and light truck tire in Monterrey, Mexico, due on stream in July 2007.