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BKT reaching up to ‘Next Level’ of global presence

BKT reaching up to ‘Next Level’ of global presence

With the inauguration of its new European Headquarters, BKT, the OTR tyre giants, is well on its way to a ‘Next Level’ of achievements by further strengthening its global presence. The company’s participation at the BAUMA trade fair in Munich in April made headlines when they displayed the Giant tyre – the 3.07 meter high, 33.00 R 51 EARTHMAX SR 46, the highlight of the show

Inaugurated in April, BKT’s new European headquarters will remain in Seregno at the outskirts of Milan, but within a building that has been completely renovated. In fact, one can even say ‘revolutionised.’ It is not just about design, BKT also wants to convey a powerful message to the market. The company’s goal is the coveted “Next Level,” the code name coined by BKT for its strategic project to conquer leadership.

“Creating our new headquarters is more than just an architectural project, for us it also has an underlying strategic meaning” explained Lucia Salmaso, Managing Director of BKT Europe. “We are constantly striving to increase our presence and market share in Europe and, above all, to get closer to our European OEM customers. Our goal is to permanently strengthen the presence of the BKT brand with Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM), and we know how to achieve it. We have already opened many doors with our Aftermarket references and continue forging ahead with new opportunities.

“Our new headquarters has a key role in this regard. We will now be much stronger than we ever have been in every area and every segment in Europe – agriculture, industry, earthmoving, mining, port handling activities, gardening and ATV. Now that we have one of the most complete ranges on the market and an increased production capacity thanks to our most recent Bhuj plant, we are ready to grow.”

The European market has proven to be essential for the company, representing 50% of BKT’s turnover, which surpassed $900 million at a global level last year.

The new offices span an extensive space of 5000 m2, optimised for the different areas of expertise: technical interventions, logistics, original equipment management, marketing and corporate management. An extremely rational and organised setup for the 15 individuals in our BKT Europe team. The new, larger warehouse, which was built to consolidate the decentralized ones previously located at other sites, is now in the same structure to refine the logistics flow.

The new structure also houses BKT Space, a unique information and technology center for specialized tires that has already proven itself to be a major competitive difference-maker. There is nowhere else in Europe with a similar center, equipped with an auditorium and training facilities for up to 50 people, perfect for organizing conferences, technical meetings and small events. With this incorporation, BKT has built an authentic Task Force Center to address the present and, above all, the future.

“We are at a watershed moment,” Rajiv Poddar, Joint Managing Director of BKT, said. “Here we can embrace market challenges and launch them all in turn. Our very first aim is to understand the priorities and needs of our customers. We will be able to do it best at this new space, a totally innovative and technological work environment that we will use to demonstrate that we are capable of measuring up and even more. We will prove that we are ready to reach the ‘Next Level’.”

This has been a swift evolution for BKT’s European subsidiary since it was founded in 2006 to oversee global strategic and operational marketing and communications functions for the entire BKT Group and manage OEM sales in Europe.

Professionals have been enriching the structure progressively every year and have achieved salient results in terms of brand awareness, authoritativeness and positioning, and also presence in Original Equipment segment and market share in the After Market.

BKT Europe also has a field-ready technical team capable of responding proactively with specific training on and for the optimal use of products, and reactively in case of any need for support and troubleshooting.

EARTHMAX SR 46 at BAUMA

The BAUMA trade fair in Munich is significant for OTR tyre makers, especially companies in the construction and earthmoving sectors, as it is an automatic reminder of how much one should consider the breakneck pace of changes in the marketplace, take full stock of the situation and analyse the future to always prepare new strategies. BKT’s participation in the event has been consistently well focused.

Three years ago in Munich, BKT launched EARTHMAX SR 45 PLUS, the very first Giant tyre (standing at 2.70 metres high), and, in doing so, made a powerful statement regarding the path the company intended to take for the future. In April, 2019, the bar was literally risen as EARTHMAX SR 46 and its 3.07 m diameter became the highlight at the event.

BKT launched its first EARTHMAX model in 2008 and even today, EARTHMAX is the symbol of a range of radial tyres designed to promote better distribution of heavy loads on the ground, such as dumpers, wheel loaders, bulldozers, graders and some multi-purpose vehicles.

Innovative raw materials

In line with global trends on environmental matters, BKT has undertaken new initiatives to contribute to a more sustainable future for every animate being. Based on a joint research agreement signed in 2018 with KULTEVAT Inc., and after a series of studies and test trials, BKT has developed new compounding methods in order to gradually replace natural rubber with TKS rubber.

According to that agreement with the US biotechnology company, leader in its sector and specialised in cultivating and processing TKS dandelion through sustainable processes, BKT will receive the supply of one ton of stabilised TKS rubber by October 2019. Presently, analyses, tests and trials are being carried out in order to gain knowledge on more specific performance criteria and developing suitable compounding methods above all for the OTR segment. The TKS dandelion produces a similar material to natural rubber. Yet, whereas the rubber gum tree requires a specific area and climate, TKS dandelion grows everywhere. Here again lies the importance of the United States having vast areas of land available that are favorable environments for the optimum growth of the plant.

Giant segment

Over the last decade, BKT has been able to develop several patterns and sizes in the OTR radial tyre segment, each of them suitable for a specific application and specific environmental conditions – starting from smaller dimensions for loaders, followed by tires for rigid dumpers, and entering finally the Giant segment.

Based on the construction tire range with EARTHMAX SR 46, BKT has actually developed and optimised the tread for the new 51’’ and 57’’ sizes. The launch of these patterns is planned for Quarter II 2019 and Quarter II 2020, respectively thanks to consistent investments in new machinery.

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