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Yokohama Acquires Trelleborg’s Wheel Systems Business

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Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd. entered into a share purchase agreement with the Swedish-based Trelleborg AB to acquire all outstanding shares of Trelleborg Wheel Systems Holding AB, a company engaged in the manufacture and sale of off-highway tires (OHT) for agricultural and industrial machinery. The acquisition is valued at over $2 billion and is scheduled to be completed in the latter half of 2022, after the complecting mandatory procedures required by the competition laws of the European Union and other countries.

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Yokohama says its acquisition of Trelleborg Wheel Systems (TWS) will provide it with a more complete product brand structure, strengthen its service network, broaden its regional sales network and boost its sales of OE tires. It will also allow the company to cover different market needs in the agricultural, construction, material handling, mining and two-wheels market segments with the addition of Trelleborg, Mitas, Maximo, Cultor and Interfit brands to its portfolio.

Yokohama says its service network will be strengthened by TWS’ proprietary tire maintenance service that provides after-sales service for industrial-use tires at 82 locations in 21 countries. Yokohama plans to expand that service to agricultural tires. TWS has also been developing a remote system for monitoring tire air pressure and temperature, which the two companies will be able to collaborate on, Yokohama says.

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Under Trelleborg’s ownership, TWS has more than doubled in size and substantially increased its profitability, growing its business through important acquisitions and strategic investments over the past few years, Trelleborg says.

Yokohama says the addition of TWS’s strong sales network in Europe will complement its strengths in Japan, North America and Asia. The addition of TWS will also open the door to new customers for Yokohama’s OE tires, with TWS supplying upwards of 30 OEMs.

“Personally, I am extremely grateful to Trelleborg, which has over more than 100 years created one of the most successful off-highway businesses in the world, and which continuously invested in our growth and technological leadership,” says Paolo Pompei, president of Trelleborg Wheel Systems. “At the same time, I am really excited to join a leading rubber company that will keep investing in our future and support our successful onward journey. I am confident that we will continue to flourish with The Yokohama Rubber Co., Ltd. as a strong owner.”

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Until completion of the transaction, Trelleborg Group’s and Trelleborg Wheel Systems transaction teams will continue to manage the activities up until closing.

TWS has 14 manufacturing plants in nine countries—seven in Europe (Italy, Latvia, Serbia, Slovenia, and three in the Czech Republic), two in the United States, one in Brazil, and four in Asia (two in China and two in Sri Lanka). About 70% of Trelleborg’s sales are in Europe, Yokohama says. Like Yokohama, TWS is actively promoting ESG activities, including setting high targets for its shift to renewable raw materials. Over the next five years, it plans to increase the ratios of biomaterials used in its products by 10%.

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