AI-based production further expands in Bridgestone’s unit in Tatabánya - VIDEO REPORT

AI-based production further expands in Bridgestone’s unit in Tatabánya - VIDEO REPORT

Melinda Topolcsik, Managing Director of Bridgestone, Péter szijjártó, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade

As the result of Bridgestone's latest Hungarian investments, every second premium tire is now produced in Hungary with AI-based, digital production technology, therefore the production capacity from 2020 will reach the quantity of 7.2 million tires/year. In order to serve the increasing capacity, as a second step of the EUR 29.5 million investment, the Japanese company raised the warehouse capacity of its factory in Tatabánya to one and a half times, now exceeding 600,000 tires.

Bridgestone with its headquarters in Tokyo is the world's leading tire manufacturing company. 80% of the product portfolio of the Japanese company group consists of the production of tires, while the rest is rubber parts of vehicles, industrial rubber products, chemicals, and sports products. Bridgestone has more than 180 factories and R&D centres in 26 countries, and its tires are sold in 150 countries. According to 2018 figures, the company employs more than 143,000 people globally.

Bridgestone Tatabánya Production Ltd. Started its operations in 2006 and by now has become one of the largest tire factories in Hungary. Since its foundation the company's headcount has more than doubled: production was launched with 361 employees and today some 1,200 people are working in tire production for premium category vehicles with large velocity index built in 230 different sizes for passenger cars, SUVs and vans. Bridgestone has been the strategic partner of the Hungarian government since 2013, accordingly, its supplier network consists of some 750, mostly Hungarian small and medium-size enterprises, which in 2018 generated HUF 4.6 billion in sales of products and services.

In the past decade, the Japanese company invested about EUR 430 million in the construction and technological development of its factories in Tatabánya, thus being one of the most modern plants internationally. In the framework of the recently concluded project worth HUF 9.2 billion, the production capacity of the machinery using Artificial Intelligence-based EXAMATION digital production technology, which outside Japan is only used in Hungary, was increased, therefore 60% of products of the factory in Tatabánya is now produced with this technology, and production volume will reach 7.2 million parts per year by 2020.

As the second element of the project and to ensure more efficient management of the larger volume, a new 10,000 square meter warehouse was built, suitable of storing 180,000 tires, which raises the overall storage capacity by one and a half times to 600,000 pieces in Tatabánya. Thanks to the investments, new training and dressing rooms were also constructed to serve the increased 1,200 employee headcount.