Business Minister Anna Soubry today visited Birmingham to hear how Dunlop Aircraft Tyres plans further investment in new production equipment to help it expand its product range and increase international sales.

Dunlop Aircraft Tyres, the world’s only specialist manufacturer and retreader of aircraft tyres, was one of four companies in the West Midlands that the minister visited during a fact-finding day in the region.

She met with Dunlop’s sales and marketing director, David Skepper, finance director, Stephen Ray, and director of OE business development, Martin Pye, before speaking with other employees during a factory tour.

During the visit, Soubry heard about Dunlop’s continued investment in the Erdington factory, including plans to enhance its testing capabilities so that it can develop a wider range of tyres.

Business Minister Anna Soubry said: “The Midlands is a hub of modern, high-tech firms driving things forward and creating high skilled jobs. For example, Dunlop is the only dedicated aircraft tyre manufacturer and retreader in the world – its products are exported to more than 80 countries. We have a long term plan for this region to become an Engine for Growth and companies like this will help the Midlands to lead the way.”

David Skepper, Dunlop Aircraft Tyres’ sales and marketing director, said “We are firmly committed to maintaining our manufacturing in Birmingham and have made a significant investment in new production equipment over the last two years,”

“During our meeting with the Business Minister we discussed Government initiatives that could help companies like Dunlop to accelerate their growth.”

Exports now account for more than 80 per cent of Dunlop’s sales, with tyres made in Birmingham being shipped to commercial and military aircraft operators around the world.

To help fuel further international growth, Dunlop opened a distribution and retreading facility in China that supports the Asia Pacific region. And later this year the company will open its first retreading centre in North America. All tyres distributed through the facilities in China and America are made by Dunlop in Birmingham.