KOBE, Japan (Sept. 24, 2009)—Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd. has opened a $56 million tire technical center at its Kobe headquarters complex, which will serve as a cornerstone to Sumitomo's centennial celebration.
Sumitomo—founded in Kobe in October 1909 as a unit of Great Britain's Dunlop Rubber Co. Ltd.—is marking its 100th anniversary with the slogan: “Now, toward the next century.”
The 86,000-sq.-ft., six-story center will play a key role in developing eco-friendly products, the company said, such as tires free of fossil resources or that exhibit 50-percent lower rolling resistance. The company held an opening ceremony Sept. 17 at the facility.
It uses wind power, solar power and biomass as power sources, Sumitomo said, and has a rooftop garden and other amenities to improve the working atmosphere.