Tire Review is showcasing 2019 “Newsmakers” — companies that have made headlines in the past year with tire-related news about new technology, plant openings, marketing initiatives, dealer program updates, product launches and more — that made the list as determined by top engagement on tirereview.com. After a brief overview of each Newsmakers’ newsworthy item(s), you’ll find a company executive’s answer to this question: What can dealers expect from your company in 2020, highlighting key dealer-focused initiatives, programs and events?
News in 2019
Bridgestone launched new products and updated existing lines in 2019, releasing the Turanza QuietTrack touring tire and the Blizzak WS90 for sedans and minivans. In fact, nearly all products in the Firestone family of tires have been upgraded over the past three years, and Bridgestone is on track to have all of its consumer tire portfolio across both the Bridgestone and Firestone brands either upgraded or replaced by the end of 2020. Bridgestone also made management changes, naming TJ Higgins group president of Americas tire business for Bridgestone Americas and Scott Damon group president of operations for Bridgestone Americas. At the end of the year, Bridgestone Americas President, CEO and COO Gordon Knapp announced his retirement.
Eric Higgs, President, Truck, Bus and Retread Tires, U.S. and Canada:
“Next year, Bridgestone and the commercial tire business is focusing on expanding its portfolio of intelligent products, integrated technologies and best-in-class service offerings to equip its extensive dealer network with the tools needed for success in an increasingly sophisticated and technology-driven landscape.
“The transportation industry continues to evolve, moving toward a connected vehicle ecosystem, and fleets are demanding more from their trusted dealer partners. Fleets are expressing a desire to understand the performance of their entire vehicle – including tires – to predict maintenance needs, avoid downtime and operate as efficiently as possible. To meet this changing need, Bridgestone is focused on providing complete tire management solutions to help customers manage their tire assets across the full lifecycle.
“From advances in emergency roadside response to smarter and more integrated tire maintenance and management platforms, Bridgestone is working toward new solutions that help fleets and dealers get the job done today, while also anticipating future operational needs. Bridgestone is committed to making mobility more efficient for fleets and enabling our dealers continued success – and in 2020, we plan to bring to market new and innovative solutions that deliver on this promise.”
Check out the rest of the December digital edition of Tire Review here.