Auto Service World
News   May 2, 2003   by Auto Service World

Bridgestone Europe to Invest in Finnish Tire Manufacturer

Bridgestone Corporation has announced that its European subsidiary, Bridgestone Europe N.V./S.A., will purchase 18.9% of the Finnish tire manufacturer Nokian Tyres PLC for 78.34 million euros. Bridgestone Europe will purchase the shares from Nokia Corporation, a leading manufacturer of telecommunications equipment. It will acquire Nokia’s holding of Nokian stock, 2 million shares, and thus become Nokian’s largest shareholder.
Nokian Tyres is the largest tire manufacturer in the Nordic region and ranks among the most profitable companies in the world tire industry in terms of return on sales. It manufactures and markets tires for automobiles, for logging equipment and for bicycles. Nokian enjoys an especially high reputation for winter tires and a large market share in that product category. It has an extensive network of company-owned retail outlets, mainly in the Nordic nations.
Management at Bridgestone Europe has pledged to honor Nokian’s autonomy while building a strong partnership. The two companies will undertake a full range of mutually beneficial cooperation, from product development to marketing.

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