Hankook Aiming for Doubled Euro Sales by 2010 - Tire Review Magazine

Hankook Aiming for Doubled Euro Sales by 2010

(Staffordshire, U.K./Tyres & Accessories) With the opening of Hankook Tire’s ≤340 million facility in Dunaujvaros, Hungary, scheduled for June, the South Korean manufacturer’s goal of doubling its European marketshare to 8% by 2010 looks on track.

By the end of this three-year timeframe, the new factory will have an expected capacity of 10 million units. During this same period Hankook plans to increase global output from 69 million to 80 million units, and the company has previously stated that its longer-term goal is 100 million units a year.

Hankook is the fastest growing of the world’s top 11 tyremakers, with sales increasing by 20 per cent annually. Furthermore, it reportedly enjoys the industry’s highest profitability, with average operating profit margins exceeding 10 per cent. And as Hankook’s largest export market, Europe is naturally very important to the tyremaker – a fact confirmed when the company referred to Europe as their “second domestic market” earlier in the year. A total of 35 per cent of the company’s export revenue (which in turn is 70 per cent of total revenue) comes from European sales.

The company’s new CEO, Suh Seung-hwa, is reported to have told South Korean media that it will not be difficult for Hankook to overtake Sumitomo Rubber within the next couple of years and Pirelli in four to five years if capacity keeps expanding. Becoming a global leader in the tyre industry is one of the company’s stated goals, one it aims to achieve through investment in research and development and “aggressive” marketing activities.

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