June 26, 2006 -- Alcoa has established a new business in Johannesburg, South Africa, to manage sales and distribution of aluminum forged truck wheels for commercial transportation markets in South Africa and the sub-Saharan African market. The aluminum producer also appointed John Jewiss as managing director of Alcoa South Africa (Pty) Ltd.
Alcoa said Jewiss brings solid experience in sales and marketing and business consulting from several other industries.
Forged truck wheels will be imported from Alcoa's Wheel Products plant located in Szekesfehervar, Hungary, and shipped to a warehouse and logistics facility in Durban, South Africa for distribution. Alcoa indicated it expects to establish a tire and wheel assembly facility in Durban by the end of 2006.
Kevin Kramer, president of Alcoa Wheel Products, stated: "Alcoa wheels have seen an explosive growth in this territory over the past few years due in part to the rapid economic growth of South Africa. Increased payload, superior strength, as well as the positive contributions of Alcoa wheels to extended life of tires, disc break systems and suspension systems are the main drivers behind this growth."
Kramer added that the warehouse and logistics facility will increase Alcoa’s service to South African truck and trailer OEMs, and help to supply them with tire and wheel assemblies on a just-in-time basis.
Alcoa is now the forty-fourth country in which Alcoa has a presence.