Mary has over 20 years experience as the editor of our Malaysian sister magazine, The Tyreman. Based in Kuala Lumpur, she writes articles for us on the Malaysian and other South East Asian markets.
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“It was through one of our business partners who sold Casumina tyres in Malaysia that we got to know them and their products more in depth. We started selling their Truck and Bus Radial (TBR) tyres last year and the market response was very encouraging,” said Chief Executive Officer Andrew Sia.
The company brought in a few patterns. The main model, he said, 295/80R 22.5 GS 621 was an all-position TBR tyre that was targeted at the regional logistics application. Featuring a rib pattern design with three equal ribs in the middle, it provides good driving and strong casing durability. Its staggered jagged grooves with multiple sipes and stone rejection offer quick heat dissipation and prevent stone capture. It has a large footprint and seamless shoulder for good traction, while reducing irregular wear and increasing durability and life time. Another pattern that has similar features is the GS 851 drive axle TBR tyre in size 295/80R22.5.
Also available is the GS 623 all-position TBR tyre, size 215/70R17.5 and the GS 621 tubeless truck tyre, available in 700R16. The GS 621 tubeless tyre has a rib pattern design with three equal ribs in the middle, it provides good mileage, comfortable ride and strong casing durability. Good drainage and traction in all terrain are achieved through multiple sipes on the tread and shoulder. Its large tread and seamless shoulder reduce irregular wear, enhance heat dissipation, improve durability and tread life.
“We are committed to grow the brand in Malaysia. Casumina is an established brand in its home market as well as globally. They have four factories, including the TBR tyre plant that we just visited. The USA is their biggest Passenger Car Radial (PCR) tyre market. To enter the US market, Casumina radial products had to meet the stricter requirements set by the Department of Transportation and that is proof of their consistent product quality.”
In positioning, Sia said Casumina TBR tyres were above the Chinese tyres that were imported into Malaysia and the company was targeting the medium market segment. The pricing of the Casumina TBR tyres was slightly higher than the Chinese brands. However, the Casumina’s TBR casing was more durable; it could be retreaded several times depending on the application and how well the fleet operator had maintained the tyre pressure.
At present, Casumina Tyre Malaysia has 5 regional dealers, including one in Sarawak. He revealed that the company was currently looking for dealers to cover the Sabah market.
“We are serious and willing to spend to grow the Casumina brand in the country. We are now working closely with them to develop patterns for the Malaysian market, taking the road conditions, load, applications and speed into consideration.”
To support its dealers, marketing activities and product and technical training are in the company’s pipeline. This is besides partnering with a third party to provide retreading service to support Multilife approach.
“Our Group of Companies has big ambitions of having our own retreading plant that would enable us to control the quality of the retreads. Ultimately, what we would like to do is to work hand-in-hand with Casumina to continue developing better tyres for even better mileage and stronger casing durability that suits Malaysia. We believe that Casumina tyre clocked good cost per km (CPK) while providing durable casing to achieve best performance.”
Sia added that the company intended to expand its product range to include Off-the Road (OTR) tyres, PCR tyres and agricultural tyres in the by end of year 2018.
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