Innovation is one of the key pillars of our company.”

Persevering on the path of progress since its inception in 1997, Trident has been the specialist in design, development and distribution of industrial tyres and tracks. Shyam Gyanani, Co-Founder and Executive Director, Trident International, speaks on the current state of OTR tyre manufacturing industry in India. 

How do you perceive the current state of the OTR tyre manufacturing industry in India?

The OTR tyre manufacturing industry in India has undergone significant changes over the years. Earlier the OTR tyres were made by manufacturers that produced all types of tyres and it wasn’t a focus area. The market was characterised by few sizes mainly for tractors, mining equipment, etc. Today, it is the specialist OTR tyre manufacturers both home grown as well as Indian subsidiaries of international players who cater to both the domestic and overseas market. 

The demand profile has also witnessed a significant change that has been driven by expansion in manufacturing, construction and infrastructure. At the same time, machines have become more specialised and require more specialised tyres resulting in many sizes, patterns, grades, etc. 

What are the key challenges and opportunities that you see for the industry in the near future?

Challenges: As machines evolve, their capacity to bear heavier loads and operate at faster speeds places an increased demand on their tyres. This is particularly evident in sectors such as infrastructure development, where productivity expectations have soared. Compressed project timelines and rising labour costs have increased the urgency for a low cost of ownership, which in turn drives a shift in customer preferences towards more durable and cost-effective tyres. Differentiating products through features like durability, performance, and cost-efficiency is essential in such a competitive landscape. 

Opportunities:Volatile prices for key raw materials such as natural rubber and petroleum-based inputs such as carbon black, synthetic rubber and chemicals require manufacturers to constantly strive to reduce costs without compromising on quality and performance. The surge in Indian government investments into infrastructure, encompassing roads, ports, airports, and mining, has fuelled a heightened demand for OTR tyres. 

India’s rich reservoir of mineral resources drives substantial growth in its mining industry. OTR tyres play a pivotal role in the vehicles deployed for mining operations, thus presenting manufacturers with a lucrative market opportunity.

The landscape of tyre manufacturing in Europe and North America has undergone significant shifts, marked by the closure of numerous manufacturers. Indian OTR tyre manufacturers can capitalise on export opportunities by catering to the global demand for tyres. Electrification of construction equipment in due course will present both challenges and opportunities.

How does your company differentiate itself from competitors in terms of product quality, innovation, and market presence?

Trident’s focus has been to develop a deep understanding of customers application and tyre related problems and develop application specific tyres and services that reduce machine downtime by eliminating punctures, improve safety, increase tyre life and reduce tyre maintenance. 

Our offering includes ready to fit foam-filled tyres as well as solid tyres that deliver a low total cost of ownership coupled with peace of mind. Trident has taken a proactive long-term approach to drive business growth and is making substantial investments in design, engineering manufacturing and testing capabilities.

What role do technology and innovation play in the development and manufacturing process of OTR tyres in your company?

Innovation, be in in product or process is one of the key pillars of our company. Some noteworthy mentions include; development of a unique non directional tread pattern (that has been granted a patent in the US), which reduces wear and the need for a left and right fitment. A patented solid tyre performance monitoring system (SMARTIRE) that monitors various parameters critical to tyre safety and longevity. A reinforced foam filling compound that reduces the carbon footprint by over 35 per cent.  

What is the growth trend of radials in the OTR segment? How is your product mix in terms of radial and bias tyres? 

Certain categories of equipment such as high-speed cranes, long distance haul trucks lend themselves more easily to radicalisation than others. There is equipment such as port equipment, forklifts, skid steers, backhoes, where the use case of bias tyres is more compelling. Currently our product mix is predominantly solid and bias, but this is expected to evolve in times to come.

What is the current market size of OTR tyres in India? What is your outlook on the OTR tyre market beyond 2025? 

There are varying estimates of the size of the OTR tyre market so it is difficult to estimate size without specific context. What is certain is that the share of OTR tyres in the overall tyre market and importance will only increase as will India’s role as key global supplier of OTR tyres.

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