Apollo gets a new global R&D centre
By Ammar Alvi
20th January 2013 12:00 AM
Indian automobile tyre giant Apollo recently inaugurated its global R&D centre for the development and testing of passenger vehicle tyres.
Apollo’s state-of-the art facility in Netherlands will serve as a hub for the development and testing of car and van tyres for all product brands—Apollo, Vredestein and Dunlop (32 countries in Africa)—of the company. Apollo Tyres Global R&D BV will start operations with more than 100 R&D specialists from various parts of the world, including 20 car tyre specialists from India and South Africa, and will later be scaled up to nearly 150 people.
According to Onkar S Kanwar, Chairman, Apollo Tyres Ltd, “The Global R&D Centre is an important milestone in our journey to become a $6 billion tyre company by 2016. This world-class centre will play a key role in bringing cutting‐edge technology and innovation in the development of car and van tyres of the future.”
Recently, Apollo Tyres restructured its R&D team, across its three key geographies. The new structure connects the entire organisation via two major R&D centres—for commercial purposes and car tyres. In line with this strategy, the company is bringing together its R&D resources, comprising almost 250 people in Africa, Europe and India to create two global R&D hubs—Enschede, the Netherlands, for car and van tyres; and Chennai, India, for commercial vehicle tyres. The locations were chosen based on current and potential markets. West Asia and Asia form nearly 59 per cent of the global market for commercial vehicle tyres, while Europe and North America represent 51 per cent of the car tyre market.
According to Neeraj Kanwar, Vice Chairman and Managing Director, Apollo Tyres Ltd, “While we have merged our R&D resources, smaller teams across key markets will work on customising each global product to market requirements and testing under local conditions. R&D will continue to be the cornerstone of our vision."
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