DAEJEON, South Korea—Hankook Tire Co. Ltd. plans to build a research and development facility in Daejeon, which the company said will help accelerate its development of "cutting-edge" tire technology.
Hankook expects to occupy the 1 million-sq.-ft. facility by end of 2015, according to Hyun Bum Cho, president and chief marketing/corporate management officer.
The tire maker did not disclose the project's value nor say how many R&D personnel will be based at the new facility. The company listed in its 2011 annual report a budget of roughly $133 million for the "relocation and rebuilding" of the main R&D center.
Hankook operates R&D facilities at its plant in Daejeon, South Korea, as well as in Uniontown, Ohio; Hanover, Germany; Jiaxing, China; and Osaka, Japan. The firm spent $105.6 million, or 1.8 percent of sales, in 2011 on R&D activities.
Hankook has selected architects Foster+Partners of London to design the structure. The firms held a signing ceremony Jan. 7 in Daejeon to commemorate their partnership.
Hankook also recently announced the expansion of its R&D efforts in Europe, where its Europe Technical Centre inaugurated new facilities in Hanover.