Steve Rogers

About Steve Rogers

Assistant News Director/Assignment Editor; degree in finance and administration from Yale University; 35 years experience in journalism.

Video: Japanese Firm Coming to Clay County

CLAY COUNTY, Miss. (Tire Review)–In the end, Yokohama Rubber Co. was the unnamed mystery “Japanese tire company” looking to build a plant in Mississippi.

The Tokyo-based YRC announced this morning that it would build a radial truck and bus tire plant on a 500-acre site near West Point, Miss., pending legislative approval of a host of financial incentives.

That approval is expected later today.

Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant called the state Legislature into a special session to consider those economic incentives. “This is an exciting project and a great testament to the quality of our workforce.”

YRC’s proposed $300 million tire plant will have an annual capacity of one million tires. This will be “Phase I of Yokohama’s overall plan for the site. Potential expansions could increase the original business size up to four times or so in scale in accordance with future business growth.”

YRC said it expects to begin construction this September, with production beginning in October 2015.

Currently, Yokohama Tire Corp.’s truck/bus tire needs have been serviced by YRC plants in Japan and Thailand, as well as its allocation from GTY Tire Co., the joint venture truck tire plant located at Continental Tire the America’s plant in Mt. Vernon, Ill.

Yokohama made no mention of its future plans regarding GTY Tire, but “considered it necessary to build the new plant so as to accommodate the increasingly growing demand for its brand and further strengthen a system aimed at ‘local production for local consumption.’”

YTC owns and operates one U.S. plant, a passenger/light truck tire facility located in Salem, Va., which it acquired as part of its purchased of the former Mohawk Tire Co.