HANOVER, Germany (June 22) — Continental A.G. is setting up business units covering the company´s replacement car and truck tire activities in Asia and has named Andreas Esser, head of Conti´s original equipment car tire business, to head the Shanghai-based units.
Creating the new business units enables Continental to consolidate its growing activities in the car, light van and commercial vehicle tire replacement business throughout Asia, the company said.
Last year Conti recorded $346 million in tire-related sales in Asia, according to the firm´s 2006 annual report, or roughtly 4.5 percent of the firm´s global tire sales. Conti has tire production at two plants in Malaysia and some off-take production agreements with firms in India and Vietnam.
The tire maker has been pursuing a tire production venture in China for several years—even signing a joint venture memorandum three years ago—but to date has not been able to secure a deal.
Esser, 48, has headed Conti´s original equipment (OE) car tire business for more than six years, during which time Continental became No. 1 in Europe and No. 3 in North America, the company said.
His new position, as head of Replacement Business Car Tires Asia and Replacement Business Truck Tires Asia, is effective July 1.
Nikolai Setzer, responsible for the OE car tire business in North and South America, will succeed Esser in the global OE position.