Gadsden Goodyear manager says company won’t rest on its laurels


By Tamara Tellis/Staff Writer

At the June 27 Gadsden Civitan Club meeting, Gadsden Goodyear plant manager Jim Davis spoke on the performance of the local plant and the company’s plans for it’s future.

  “I am going to talk about Goodyear as a company, and then the North American tire division and then about our plan,” said Davis on the campus of Gadsden State.

According to Davis, the Goodyear company has four distinct businesses in North America: Latin America, North American tires, a group in Asia and a group in Europe, Middle East and Africa. 

“Most recently, we were in the news because we purchased the remaining shares of the joint venture we had in Japan,” said Davis. “Goodyear is a global company. We make tires in 22 different countries around the world. We are in a joint venture in Japan with Toyota and Mitsubishi to make large earthmover tires. So what we did was we went in a bought the outstanding shares from our partners so we own that business and we see a market opportunity there as we become the sole owners of that business.”

Along with some financial successes, Goodyear recently received a couple of honors. 

Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co. of Gadsden recently was finalist for the 2012 Manufacturer of the Year by the Business Council of Alabama and the Alabama Technology Network. The Chamber of Gadsden and Etowah County nominated the plant. 

Goodyear is one of 14 Alabama companies to be named finalist for the annual award. It was named a finalist in the large manufacturer division with least 400 employees. 

“Our CEO was honored with the 2012 Manny Award for Inside Business,” said Davis. Inside Business is a biweekly publication from Northeast Ohio. We won that award, its called a Green initiative category, and we are that as a company and I am proud of my team here in Gadsden for what we have been able to do since 2008, not taking anything at all to the land field.”

In addition, Goodyear was placed number 26 on the Forbes list for Most Reputable Companies in America.

“If you read the article, it says Goodyear improved form 38 to 26,” said Davis. “We are pleased to be on that list. Now we don’t run a campaign, we use no advertising for this. This is a truly market back research where people talk about our product, our services, the governments of our company, and the leadership that we have. So this is truly our customers speaking on our behalf and we are very proud of that. “

  Davis noted that he didn’t see any danger in the future of the Gadsden Goodyear plant.  

“Here is the constant message I give the members of our plant: Everyday that we come to work, we are working to improve the value of Gadsden, Alabama. That’s what we are working for and I reinforce to them that companies don’t close profitable businesses. That’s the key message in every conversation.” 

Davis said that the plant will continue to provide a safe work environment, meet customer demands for their products with on time delivery, provide the right quantity and the service that product is expected to deliver and reduce costs. 

“Many of you today ride on Goodyear tires,” said Davis. “I want you to know how much I appreciate that. Our business motto is simple- we make and sell tires. That’s it. For those of you who don’t ride on Goodyear tires, we want to earn your business. We feel we’ve got a great tire at a great price that will serve you well. So we want to be your tire supplier of choice.”  

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