CHICAGO (June 17, 2011)—Goodyear expects to double the number of distribution points in five key Chinese markets in the coming four years to help build its market share and brand recognition, CFO Darren Wells said.
Wells said Goodyear's market share in China is in the low single digits, but the firm's brand reputation is disproportionately strong.
To help improve its position in China, Goodyear plans to increase the number of outlets selling its brands in five key cities to 1,100 by 2012, up from 700 last year. Those outlets should sell 100,000 units a month by next year, up from roughly 78,000 during 2010, he said.
In these cities, Goodyear's market share is above 10 percent, he said. By 2015 Goodyear expects to have 1,555 outlets in these markets selling 140,000 units a month.
However, the company is “supply constrained” in China and unable to meet rising consumer demand, Wells said. To rectify this position, Goodyear is building a $700 million factory in Pulandian, China, to make car and truck tires.
The plant, which started limited production earlier this year, will replace the firm's 19-year-old plant in nearby Dalian, China. Production of passenger tires should hit 8.2 million units by 2013, at which time the plant will also start making truck tires, Goodyear said.