Mt. Vernon, IL (February 17, 2006) -- As part of its plan to become globally cost competitive and upgrade its manufacturing operations in North America, Continental Tire North America, Inc. (CTNA) today broke ground for a $17.8 million, state-of-the art tandem mixer at its Mt. Vernon plant and announced that construction will begin in the coming months. The installation of the tandem mixer is part of a larger $60 to $70 million capital investment program announced earlier this year to modernize the Mt. Vernon tire-manufacturing facility.
“Last month we announced a significant investment in the Mt. Vernon facility, and with today’s groundbreaking we’ve taken the first step in building a brighter future here,” said Dr. Alan Hippe, President and CEO of CTNA. “While many U.S. manufacturers are focusing their capital investment dollars overseas, CTNA is making a substantial investment in this innovative technology to assure the long-term success of the Mt. Vernon facility.”
The tandem mixer will increase efficiency and productivity by conserving manpower, saving time, and doubling production through its high-quality technology and performance. It is Continental-patented technology and the only one of its kind in the nation. The mixer will be able to mix approximately one-million pounds of rubber per day – far surpassing existing capabilities. This superior technology produces premium quality rubber through a more intense mixing process.
CTNA will also construct a new addition to the Mt. Vernon plant to house the tandem mixer. The location of this site will be adjacent to the existing mixing building.
“Last month CTNA promised they’d invest in Mt. Vernon, and today they’ve made good on their promise,” said City Councilman John Howard. “On behalf of our city, I want to thank CTNA for bringing this exciting new technology to Mt. Vernon. This investment reflects CTNA’s commitment to our community and all of the employees who work at the Mt. Vernon plant, and I look forward to continuing our partnership with CTNA for many years to come.”
Today’s ground breaking in Mt. Vernon follows an announcement by CTNA last month of its decision to implement a restructuring plan at Mt. Vernon in order to become more cost competitive. The restructuring plan will achieve significant improvements in manufacturing costs through a combination of cost reduction initiatives and a capital investment in the Mt. Vernon facility of between $60 and $70 million.
About Continental Tire North America
Continental Tire North America, Inc. (www.continentaltire.com), based in Charlotte, North Carolina, is a group company of Germany-based Continental Corporation, a leading supplier of brake systems, chassis components, vehicle electronics, tires and technical elastomers. In 2004 the corporation realized sales of EUR 12.6 billion (USD 16 billion). At present it has a worldwide workforce of more than 81,000.