GREENVILLE, S.C. — Michelin North America Inc. has introduced a digital cloud-based platform, called Maestro, to help with service planning and scheduling for commercial fleets."Fleets frequently struggle with efficient ways to optimize planning and schedule service work to maximize uptime for their vehicles," Ralph Dimenna, global director of Michelin Services and Solutions, said. "Service providers often feel challenged by the cumbersome and complex daily administrative tasks they need to manage to run business operations effectively."The development of Maestro positions Michelin to become one of the leading brokers of service relationship management solutions to commercial fleets and service providers."Michelin's global Services and Solutions division was created in 2018 to address business challenges in and to provide innovative solutions for sustainable connected mobility, the company said.Available in the U.S., Maestro offers real-time digitization that reduces billing errors and improves timeliness and service turnaround time, Michelin said. Maestro's scheduling and real-time communication features maximize productivity for servicing vehicles and planning for future loads. The platform provides increased visibility and transparency by taking the guess work out of service event management — addressing common questions such as: "When will my vehicle be ready?" and "What is the final cost of servicing my vehicle?" Michelin said."This platform creates an ideal experience for customers while also driving simplification and efficiency within their internal business processes. Maestro's real-time capabilities are designed to deliver precise accuracy, enhanced efficiency and more insightful intelligence in all aspects of service event and sales order management," according to the company. "As a maestro leads an orchestra, our platform — Maestro — is designed to be the leader and conductor of our customers' tire and vehicle service operations lines of business," said Karen Schwartz, director, digital services platform, services & solutions business line for Michelin North America. "Our goal is to ensure our customers' operations are running smoothly so they can focus on their core business."
HYOGO, Japan — Toyo Tire Corp. posted 48.3% lower operating income for the six months ended June 30 on 15.7% lower sales, prompting management to project double-digit declines in sales and earnings for the full fiscal year. Operating income for the period fell to $73.4 million on sales of $1.39 billion, cutting the operating ratio to 5.3% from 8.6%. Net earnings fell 93.1% to $4.8 million. Toyo cited the negative effects of lower sales and higher production costs related to the reduced sales for the earnings decline. Toyo's tire segment reported a 39.6% drop in operating income for the period to $90.1 million on 13.6% lower sales of $1.24 billion. Toyo said aftermarket tire demand, after hitting bottom in April, has begun to recover in some regions, including North America, and the size of the demand drop in the OE sector has been shrinking as well, as vehicle makers have resumed production.In addition, Toyo said "a souring U.S.-China relationship" has increased the likelihood of anti-dumping duties being imposed.Toyo reported its second quarter results were measurably worse than in the first quarter. Overall, operating income in the second quarter fell 80.8% to $9.2 million on 22.5% lower sales of $634.2 million, while tire division income dropped 58.1% to $21.6 million on 19.2% lower sales of $575 million. Business in North America fell 15% in the second quarter to $368.5 million and 12.3% in the six months to $754.5 million, Toyo reported. Operating income attributed to North American operations increased in the quarter nearly six-fold to $24.5 million and 44.4% in the first half to $38.4 million. For the full fiscal year, Toyo is projecting sales in North America will be off by about 11% versus fiscal 2019, indicating a slight rebound from the first half. Toyo noted that its projects are premised on the assumption that economic activities will start to recover gradually from the third quarter of the fiscal year ending Dec. 31, 2020. Should the COVID-19 pandemic further spread or become prolonged — which would inevitably lead to continued restrictions by governments around the globe and to consumer behavior and economic activities by private enterprises likely remaining sluggish — the group's business performance would be affected, Toyo cautioned.