Integrating the European STARCO and Kenda technical teams

Mar 19, 2020 | Corporate news

In order to drive further technical improvements and leverage on synergies in the global technical setup, STARCO and Kenda are combining the two technical teams in Europe. This is a step in Kenda’s significant investments in research and development in technical setup in Europe and both companies’ European growth plans.

STARCO and Kenda are both experts in, and producers of wheels and tyres. This makes the company unique in the market. Since Kenda acquired STARCO in 2017, the level of collaboration between technical teams in Europe and the US has grown. Now the companies are joining forces and combine technical resources into one organisation.

Kenda has invested significantly in research and development over the last few years, mainly in the US.

“This follows in the successful strategy that Kenda has followed in the US by heavily investing in Kenda America Technical Centre in Akron,” explains Richard Todd, who visited the centre last week. He continues, “The set up in Europe will be integrated and reinforced, with significant investment in personnel and equipment planned over the coming years.”

The new European team will be 14 employees and in total. Kenda has over 250 technical team members globally and this is expected to grow to 300 before 2022.

STARCO’s technical Director, Mike Green, and his team will report to the Kenda Europe organisation led by Frits van der Steege, Kenda’s European Technical Director located in STARCO’s Winsen office.

“We have no plans to make any employees redundant. The plans are actually to recruit additional engineers to our team to improve capabilities and resources to support growing our business,” says Frits van der Steege, Technical Director, Kenda Europe.

STARCO is known for the unique insight into the use of applications and knowledge of tyre and wheel performance – this capability will be further strengthened when joining forces with the Kenda technical team.

Over the next few years, the company will build a new Kenda Europe Technical Centre and invest in the necessary equipment, personnel and capabilities to develop both tyres and wheels – not just rubber and steel, but also with polymers such as PU.

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