This distinction is based upon data supplied by Poland’s Ministry of Economy, which reveals that the total value of Bridgestone’s investment in Poland during the year exceeded that of all other overseas companies, including leading investors such as Dell, Sharp and Toyota. Following a recent award as 'Best investor in Poland' from the Rzeczpospolita newspaper, Forbes Poland, the country’s leading monthly business magazine, has also ranked Bridgestone top investor for 2006. These findings were officially announced at the Forbes Executive Forum held at Warsaw’s Olympic Centre on February 14. Hiroyoshi Takigawa, managing director at Bridgestone Poznan, accepted the Forbes Poland 'Biggest Foreign Investor 2006' award on behalf of the tyremaker.
Last year, Bridgestone commenced construction work on a new €200 million radial truck & bus tyre plant at Stargard Szczecinski, in north-west Poland, scheduled for completion in 2009. The 100-hectare site will employ 750 and have a daily capacity of 5000 tyres by 2011. Production at this new facility will supplement output from Bridgestone’s existing Spanish truck and bus tyre plant and help meet growing European demand for Bridgestone commercial vehicle tyres. It will also enhance the company’s degree of self-sufficiency in the region and contribute to the creation of a strategic product supply system.
Bridgestone employs a total of 1,600 people in Poland. The company’s facilities include a high-tech plant at Poznan manufacturing up to 20,000 high-performance passenger car tyres daily; a rubber tracks plant opened in ZarÓw in 2006, producing 26,000 tracks a year for the European construction industry; a Firestone industrial products plant at Wolsztyn supplying commercial vehicle manufacturers with advanced air springs; and a national sales and distribution company in Warsaw.