MILAN, Italy—Versalis A.G. and Bridgestone Europe Middle East India and Africa (EMIA) have joined forces to co-develop synthetic rubber with advanced properties for high-performance tires, the Italian materials supplier announced March 29.
The two sides signed a joint development agreement for the research, production and supply of styrene butadiene rubber (SBR) for the manufacture of differentiated tires.
As part of the project, the R&D divisions of both organizations will collaborate, using an "open innovation model" to develop technologies and new elastomer grades.
Versalis will leverage the expertise of its research centers in Ravenna and Ferrara, Italy, while Bridgestone will use its European technical center near Rome.
"This agreement combines our technological knowledge with that of Bridgestone ... to accelerate the development of grades and applications in tires improving their performance, starting from raw material," Versalis CEO Adriano Alfani said.
According to Alfani, the two sides will explore supply chain synergies in a "high-value technical and commercial collaboration."
"At Bridgestone, we know that ground-breaking innovation and sustainable mobility can't be achieved without collaboration," Emilio Tiberio, chief operating officer and chief technical officer of Bridgestone EMIA, said in a statement. "We are pleased to strengthen our existing partnership with Versalis and believe that the technology we co-create will be a differentiator for our future products."