Bridgestone aims to be flexible friend

Published:  08 December, 2020

Bridgestone has promised to work more closely with its customers going forward to help businesses make the most of the opportunities available as they exit any local COVD-10 tier restrictions.

Commenting on the implications of  COVID-19 for the automotive sector, and the likelihood of volatility and promise ahead, Bridgestone’s North Region Vice President Andrea Manenti said: “The best way to support our customers is to work as closely with them as possible – more so than at any time before. So we will work with them to ensure a continuous supply of tyres and to help manage volatility within the marketplace, because there will be volatility.  

“Availability is fundamentally important. It is impossible to predict exactly how things will look in the weeks and months ahead, but we have two major issues in Brexit and the Coronavirus which we have never encountered before.”  

On market trends, including an ageing car parc as new car sales continue to be sluggish, changing driver behaviour, and particularly online ordering, Andrea said: “For sure if you are looking into online ordering for small and light delivery vehicles, there has been an increase in volume. At the same time, we agree that there is a decrease in private mobility mainly because of office closures and less use of cars during lockdown.  

“From an online perspective, people seem to be getting used to this way of ordering and the advent of COVID-19 has accelerated this trend. Mobile fitting is definitely a more popular choice too and will continue to rise.   “It is difficult to predict how it will all pan out as we sit here right now. A decrease in disposable income could have an impact on buying new cars but at the same time, we will see more second-hand cars with a longer life which could have a reflection in the replacement market.”  

Andrea also emphasised the importance of remaining innovative in a changing business landscape: “One such example can be seen in Bridgestone’s MOBOX tyre where new tyres, full warranty and other premium vehicle-related services are available to spread the cost, for as little as £7 per month.  

“The unique offering is an example of Bridgestone combining its industry expertise with the opportunities presented by macro-economic and societal trends in order to provide solutions to the real problems faced by drivers on the roads.”  

Andrea  added: “We must keep on innovating. From crisis brings new trends and possibilities that we have to be ready to capitalise upon.”  

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