The first facility in the U.S. to be licensed as a “ContiLifeCycle” Continental Tire retread facility opened its doors last week.
King’s Tire in Bluefield, WV, earned the distinction, reopening its 25,000-sq.-ft. retread tire facility as a ContiLifeCycle dealer network. An event attended by regional fleet customers celebrated the occasion.
Continental’s executive vice president for truck tires in the Americas, Paul Williams, said that King’s Tire decision to become a licensee represents an important milestone in Continental’s effort to sell premium retreaded truck tires that match its portfolio of new products across the U.S.
“King’s Tire is recognized by its customers as a premier provider of commercial truck tires, both new and retreads, along this important highway corridor,” Williams noted. “Over 40 years they have built a fantastic reputation for both consumer and fleet tire sales and service. Today we are happy to welcome them as the first U.S. licensee in our ContiLifeCycle network.”
King’s Tire Service will be supplied with flat, precure ContiTread products from Continental’s tread production facility in Morelia, Mexico. The retreaded ContiLifeCycle tires sold at King’s Tire will be the first produced in the U.S. from flat, precure treads featuring the same pattern designs, rubber compounding and tread technology that are included in new Continental brand truck tires.
The opening of the facility represents the official kickoff of the ContiLifeCycle network of servicing dealers in the U.S. and the official start of its premium solution for trucking fleets looking for a lifetime tire product – and dealers looking for an attractive method to provide it, Williams explained.
“Continental is actively recruiting dealers in North America as licensees in the ContiLifeCycle network to service these national and regional fleet customers who want to extend the performance of their Continental truck tires into the second, third or even fourth lifetime,” he said. “With our turnkey solution including these premium products, marketing support and competitive pricing, we are also confident that we have an attractive package for dealers looking for a manufacturer to be their business partner in retreading – not their competitor.”
According to Williams, Continental is currently in talks with selected additional truck tire dealers across the U.S. and eastern Canada to expand the ContiLifeCycle network, and expects to complete several additional licensing agreements before the end of 2011.
ContiLifeCycle, Continental’s umbrella for retreading operations, already has a strong foothold in the Americas, according to the company. It supplies precure products from the facility in Mexico to eight ContiLifeCycle dealers throughout Mexico. Two additional plants are also operating in the Andean region.
In the U.S., King’s Tire chain, owned by Sam King, employs 150 experienced tire personnel at eight locations and sells both commercial and passenger/light truck tires including the Continental and General brands. Its retread facility in Bluefield employs 16 personnel and is capable of producing up to 60,000 ContiTread truck tires annually.
We chose to become a ContiLifeCycle licensee so that we could offer something very important to our customers – performance. Continental is the first to offer a product that we feel performs the same from the new tire manufacturing all the way through the useful lifetime of the casing,” said King. “This high level of technology, along with Continental’s great customer service and support, is exactly what we’ve been looking for, and we think our fleet customers will feel the same way.”