MELKSHAM, England (March 30) — Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. is creating a technical center at its Melksham factory to serve Europe, and the company is planning a second tech center in China to serve the Asian market.
The centers will be concerned primarily with product development to suit the local market conditions, said Julian Baldwin, managing director of Cooper Europe. He was speaking about the European operations, but said the same thinking applies in Asia.
"The European tech center comes from a recognition that if you are going to be fast into the market, then it is more effective to develop locally in the markets than to have something several thousand miles away," Baldwin said.
Baldwin said the European tech center will be housed in an existing building on the Melksham site. Staffing initially will be about 20, he said, and will increase to 30 or more by 2008.