TOKYO—Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd. and Kumho Tire Co. Inc. have signed a research and development agreement that includes cooperative licensing and exchanging technologies.
The agreements expand on the firms' original technological alliance, which they signed Feb. 15.
Under this new agreement, Yokohama Rubber and Kumho Tire will begin joint R&D on tire-related technologies, including ultra lightweight tires and other environmentally friendly tire technologies as well as concept tires.
The two companies earlier said the alliance will help them increase their competitiveness in the global tire market by sharing R&D resources and making better use of them through joint research and development on tire-related technologies, including environmental technology.
Kumho Tire, established in 1960, is headquartered in Gwangju, South Korea. The company is a member of the Kumho Asiana Group. Kumho Tire has eight tire plants in South Korea, China, and Vietnam and employs about 11,000.
Yokohama Rubber, founded in 1917, manufactures and sells tires in addition to making other rubber products, including high-pressure hoses, sealants, marine hoses and golf equipment. Yokohama Rubber operates 12 tire plants (not including those currently under construction) in seven countries and employs about 20,000 globally.
Yokohama and Kumho are the Nos. 8 and 11 tire makers worldwide, with fiscal 2013 tire-related sales of about $4.9 billion and $3.1 billion, respectively.