TIEN GIANG, Vietnam—China's Guizhou Tyre Co. Ltd. produced the first tire at its Vietnam plant on April 1, and it plans to begin product testing and certification processes shortly.
The new plant, located near Ho Chi Minh City in the Long Giang Industrial Park in Tien Giang Province, has a rated capacity of 1.2 million truck and bus tires per year.
Guizhou Tyre, which goes to market under the Advance and Samson brand names, budgeted $214 million for the factory, which is predicted to generate annual sales of $179 million. All tires produced at the plant will be exported, Guizhou said.
The project first was announced in 2017 and broke ground in December 2019. Construction was delayed until March 2020 by the coronavirus pandemic, the company said.
Guizhou later expanded the plant's scope, adding adding heavy-duty and specialty tires to the plant's truck and bus tire capacities and boosting the budget to nearly $400 million.
Guizhou Tyre, considered the world's No. 32 tire maker with 2019 sales of $894 million based on Rubber & Plastics News' calculations, reported its net profit for 2020 ranges from $70 million to $86 million (481 million yuan to 596 million yuan), compared with $21 million in 2019.
Lower feedstock prices were the main contributor for raised profit margin, said the company.
Guizhou is represented in North America by North American Commercial Tire Resources Inc., formerly known as GTC North America, in Canton, Ohio.