Member Spotlight: Titan International
When a mining haul truck is carrying 400 tons of payload, a military vehicle is transporting U.S troops or a farm tractor is negotiating rigid rows of corn on a challenging terrain, quality tires and wheels are critical to keeping people safe, fed, and prosperous. Titan International makes sure that vehicles around the world keep moving.
“At Titan Wheel Inc, right here in Quincy, we reinvent the wheel every day.” says Dave Salen, president of Titan Wheel, a division of Titan International. “Our wheels and tires are built to meet the unique needs of our customers and they are built to be problem free. One example of this is the Titan Accelerated Change Technology (ACT) on our earth-moving product that allows our customers to safely change a tire in less than half the time of our competitors’ standard design.”
Local craftsmen have been making wheels at the 1.3 million-square-foot plant at 2701 Spruce for more than 120 years. The Wheel Division of Titan International has roots dating back to 1890 when Quincy’s Electric Wheel Company produced wagon wheels. Firestone operated the company from 1957-1982, prior to current CEO, Morry Taylor and Joe Tannenbaum acquiring the plant in 1983 and naming it Can-Am Industries. The Titan name emerged as the result of a reorganization of the company in 1990, and public trading of company stock began in 1993. While the Titan Wheel Division is headquartered along with Titan International (the parent company) in Quincy, Titan’s Tire Division is headquartered in Des Moines, Iowa.
Since Titan's entrance into the market, they have become a leading global supplier of complete wheel and tire assemblies for off-highway vehicles.
“Titan is unique in that we are the only company that designs and manufactures both the wheel and the tire. This is significant in that a Titan wheel and tire are designed as a system and thus maximizes performance and reduces maintenance cost over the life of the product to achieve a superior value for our customers,” Salen explains. Titan's primary markets include agriculture, earthmoving, construction and consumer applications. They sell to companies like John Deere, Case, New Holland, Caterpillar, Kubota and others.
Salen came to Quincy less than a year ago and says he quickly understood that Titan employees are at the core of Titan’s competitive advantage.
“My predecessor, Ron Schildt, and his team shaped the organization we have today. At every level we have well-trained, experienced, capable employees, from the craftsmen in the shop running presses, rim lines and finishing systems to, our talented engineers, support personnel, and management team,” he says. “We can do things to metal that our competitors just cannot figure out how to accomplish and we do it over a thousand times a day, every day. Further, our skilled tradesmen can build and renovate both tooling and equipment to achieve our product designs and do it in a cost effective manner. I would put these guys up against anybody! I am honored to become a part of this team.”
In December of last year, Taylor, who serves as Titan International Chairman and Chief Executive, projected sales of approximately $1 billion in 2011. The acquisition of Goodyear’s Sao Paulo, Brazil manufacturing plant, property, equipment and inventories and a licensing agreement that will allow Titan to sell Goodyear-brand farm tires in Latin America and North America, are signs that Taylor was right on track and Titan International is picking up steam.
“The Sao Paulo acquisition will ultimately mean more work for Quincy’s 900 employees,” says Salen. “Quincy will support part of the production requirements and export product to Brazil for assembly at that plant.”
To learn more about how “Titan Moves the World,” visit www.titan-intl.com.