CEAT Kelani maximises foreign exchange savings by producing 50% of Sri Lanka’s tyre requirements

Wednesday, 23 October 2013 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

CEAT Kelani Holdings has announced that sales for the domestic market crossed 2,900 tons in the second quarter of 2013-14, accounting for half of Sri Lanka’s tyre requirements for the period. “This is a huge achievement for us and is the result of the substantial investments made by the company over the last two years to expand production capacity,” CEAT Kelani Managing Director Raman Rajagopalan said. He disclosed that sales of truck, light truck, 3-wheeler motorcycle and agricultural tyres as well as radials for passenger cars and vans in the domestic market had recorded an average of 950 tons per month in Q2, which, while representing 50% of the country’s requirement, also translates to a massive saving of foreign exchange for Sri Lanka through import substitution. CEAT Kelani Holdings is a dominant player in the domestic market with market shares of 57% in the Truck/Light Truck category, 32% in radials, 46% in 3-Wheeler, 19% in motorcycle and 73% in the agricultural segments. CEAT Kelani has invested Rs. 950 million in the current financial year to aggressively expand further in growing segments which includes the radial, 2-wheeler and 3-wheeler categories to stay ahead of country’s demand curve. In the radial tyre segment, which caters to passenger cars and vans, CEAT’s success has been driven by continuous investment in upgrading quality, expanding the range of sizes available and offering a value for money proposition, Rajagopalan said. “We have already increased capacity by 30% by commissioning three new curing presses and will complete further expansion and augmentation by December 2013. With this, we will have 25-30 sizes including SUV and premium range passenger car radials catering to a majority of Sri Lanka’s radial tyre requirements. We always look for opportunities to locally manufacture new sizes and expand the range depending on the requirements of the domestic and international market,” he said. “We are also happy to note that in segments where other local manufacturers are present, such as 3-wheeler and motorcycle tyres, domestic production now accounts for as much as 80% and 70% respectively, of Sri Lanka’s tyre requirements. The support from policymakers for domestic manufacturing has been the key for growth of industries in Sri Lanka,” Rajagopalan added. Out of CEAT’s total monthly production of 1450 tons, the balance 500 tons is currently exported to markets in South Asia, the Middle East, the African continent and many other countries. A global tyre brand present in 110 countries and now headquartered in India, CEAT is an acronym that stands for Cavi Electrici Affini Torino, or Electrical Cables & Allied Products of Turin, with origins that date back to 1924 in Italy. A National Business Excellence Award winner in 2010, 2011, and 2012 and a National Quality Award winner in the ‘Manufacturing – Large’ category in 2013, CEAT – Kelani Holdings is a successful Indo-Sri Lanka joint venture between the RPG Group of India and Kelani Tyre – Sri Lanka. The company operates three manufacturing units manufacturing truck, light truck, radial, motorcycle, 3-wheeler and agricultural tyres and employs a workforce of 1,000 people.