Sumitomo Rubber South Africa (Pty) Ltd (SRSA) played host to 195 Dunlop Zone dealers and their partners for an action-packed four-day agenda that included a full day conference promoting brand, product and sales strategy, an unforgettable Gala Awards Dinner, with Mango Groove as the feature act and a well-deserved day of leisure for the delegates to relax and recuperate after much brainstorming and networking.
Celebrity MC, Darren Maule, was the host at evening event, bringing much entertainment and cheer to the festivities while guest speaker, Gavin Sharples stole the show with his excellent presentation on Change Management and Brand Promotion.
A highlight of the conference, facilitated by CEO Riaz Haffejee, was a grand prize draw when two Dunlop Zone branded Chevrolet 1.4 utility bakkies were the prizes. These were won by Sagie Govender of Tyre Track and Richard Sharwood of Neptune Tyres.
SRSA would like to thank all the delegates for their attendance and contribution at the conference. A heartfelt congratulations to all our winners in the categories of: 20 Year Anniversaries, Passion Awards and Dunlop Zone Regional Award Winners and especially to our National Dunlop Zone Store of the Year Winner – Niezaar Jainoodien of Goodhope Tyres.
Dunlop Zones, countrywide, are proud to be celebrating 20 years in the marketplace. The Dunlop Zone store concept was created to offer a modern environment to customers that matches the high performance of Dunlop Tyres’ image. With elegant receptions and hospitality areas and high-impact branding, the Dunlop Zone is designed for comfort and convenience, providing motorists with a world-class tyre buying experience.
The concept of an independent network of tyre dealers was first initiated in 1995 as Dunlop Accredited Dealers (DAD) and then rebranded as Dunlop Zones in 2009. The fitment centres have since grown substantially over the past 20 years, developing into one of the largest and most successful independent dealerships in southern Africa. Dunlop Zones have the advantage of receiving the full support and backing from a major corporate brand and great pricing; as a member of this exclusive network.
Sumitomo Rubber South Africa (Pty) Ltd (SRSA) owns the rights to the Dunlop brand in Africa and is part of global tyre manufacturer – Sumitomo Rubber Industries, Ltd (SRI). The company, which has a Head Office in Durban and factory in Ladysmith, is proud to be celebrating this 20 year milestone with its dealers and is confident that we will be celebrating a further successful 20 years in the market.
SRI has a long relationship with the Dunlop brand having its first association in 1909 when the Sumitomo Group made an investment in Dunlop Japan, which was the newly formed subsidiary of the British company – Dunlop Rubber. Since then, SRI and the Dunlop brand have gone from strength to strength. Today SRSA produces tyres in passenger, SUV/4x4 and light truck from its South African factory and imports a premium truck brand from SRI’s global operations.
The Dunlop brand has a strong consumer loyalty base in South Africa, and is instantly recognisable throughout Africa. First introduced into the country in 1935, when Dunlop International opened its Durban factory and subsequently the Ladysmith factory in 1973, Dunlop has since gone on to build an impressive track record of achievements in the country. Today there are over 180 Dunlop Zones located at strategically selected positions throughout southern Africa with plans of further increasing their footprint in the future.
Coupled with the existing status and authority of the Dunlop brand in the country, a 20 year strong track record for service excellence and the strength of SRI as a global leader in high performance tyre manufacture, Sumitomo Rubber South Africa is confident of Dunlop Zones’ success in the market place and offers their heartfelt congratulations on this auspicious milestone as well as their thanks for all their support over the last 20 years. We look forward to celebrating another 20 years in the near future.
Sumitomo Rubber Industries (SRI) officially acquired Apollo Tyres South Africa (ATSA) and then registered a new company, Sumitomo Rubber South Africa (Pty) Ltd (SRSA) in December 2013. ATSA was previously owned by the India based, Apollo Tyres Limited (ATL.)
The newly formed SRSA, under the leadership of Riaz Haffejee as CEO, includes ownership of the Ladysmith passenger and light truck tyre plant, all associated employees as well as employees based in Durban. The company that remained after the transaction and the factory in Durban which had been renamed Apollo Durban (Pty) Ltd (ADPL) was then renamed Apollo Tyres Africa (ATA) and, along with its associated staff, remained under the ownership of Apollo Tyres Limited. ATA entered a business rescue process in September of 2014 and this ultimately led to the subsequent closure of the factory in Durban. After this closure by ATL, severance packages were negotiated between this company and the workforce, in consultation with the relevant union. SRSA was not and continues not to be involved in any of these consultations and subsequent disputes. SRSA would therefore like to distance the company name and the brand name, Dunlop from any protest action that may arise as this is inaccurate and misleading.
SRI is the world’s fifth largest tyre manufacturing company, with plants in Japan, China, Thailand, Indonesia and Africa as well as new plants under construction in Brazil and Turkey. The company has offices in Europe, the USA, Asia, Africa and the Middle East. As a result of the acquisition, the brand name Dunlop now belongs to SRSA for South Africa and the rest of the African continent.
This acquisition by SRI is a strategic move as part of its global expansion and development plans, thereby facilitating the procurement of an established manufacturing location on the African continent and control of the Dunlop brand rights for the whole of Africa. Furthermore SRI remains committed to investing in SRSA and to this end has committed over R1,1 Billion to an expansion plan for the Ladysmith plant.
SRI has a long history of working with the Dunlop brand – both in manufacturing and sales, so this acquisition will serve to fortify the brand’s credibility and sustainability in the market and further support the company’s distribution network and Dunlop Zone programme throughout Africa.