Alcoa (NYSE: AA) today announced that its Alcoa Wheel and Transportation (AWTP) business is opening a production facility in Suzhou, China, marking an expansion that creates a full wheel manufacturing, distribution, sales and service network in China. This facility brings to China Alcoa’s industry-leading forged aluminum wheel technology that manufactures lighter, stronger and more fuel efficient commercial truck, trailer and bus wheels. This is the first wheel manufacturing facility Alcoa has opened in China, adding to the list of existing wheel facilities in North America, Europe and Japan. “With the growth of China’s infrastructure and the success Alcoa’s wheel products have seen in the Chinese market over the past several years, it was a natural choice to further expand our global manufacturing footprint by building a facility that could manufacture our products locally,” said Tim Myers, President, Alcoa Wheel and Transportation Products. The plant, which is currently up and running with a trained work force, machines and finishes forged aluminum wheels for commercial vehicles. Forged wheels are made from solid metal providing an aligned grain structure with four times the strength of cast wheels. Cast wheels are made from molten metal and subject to porosity or tiny air bubbles in the wheel. AWTP has had a presence in China since 2004, when it began selling wheels out of Shanghai. Since then, the business has grown to include an employee base in Guangzhou, Beijing, Jinan and Suzhou. Through additions to our distribution network earlier this year, Alcoa has built a robust sales and service presence capable of supporting all of China. “We are thrilled that our new facility is located in Wuzhong, part of the Suzhou municipal district, a city currently seeing enormous growth,” Myers said. “We have received tremendous support from the Suzhou Wuzhong Economic Development Zone and local governments. Their professionalism and guidance greatly facilitated the establishment of the business and allowed Alcoa to commence operations ahead of schedule.”
To commemorate this milestone for AWTP, a grand opening ceremony is set for today to be attended by customers, distributors and other honored guests. For additional details on this event, please contact Shauna Huang at Shauna.Huang@alcoa.com.About Alcoa Wheel and Transportation Products Alcoa Wheel & Transportation Products, headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio, serves the commercial vehicle, automotive, and defense markets with products used in a range of applications including forged aluminum wheels, premium products such as Dura-Bright®, Dura-Flange®, LvL ONE® and M-Series™ medium truck wheels, as well as a variety of other aluminum components for these markets. AWTP is composed of three divisions: Commercial Vehicle Wheels, Forged Specialty Wheels and Transportation Products. It employs 1,500 people at 13 locations worldwide. More information can be found at www.alcoawheels.com. About Alcoa Alcoa is the world’s leading producer of primary and fabricated aluminum, as well as the world’s largest miner of bauxite and refiner of alumina. In addition to inventing the modern-day aluminum industry, Alcoa innovation has been behind major milestones in the aerospace, automotive, packaging, building and construction, commercial transportation, consumer electronics and industrial markets over the past 120 years. Among the solutions Alcoa markets are flat-rolled products, hard alloy extrusions, and forgings, as well as Alcoa® wheels, fastening systems, precision and investment castings, and building systems in addition to its expertise in other light metals such as titanium and nickel-based super alloys. Sustainability is an integral part of Alcoa’s operating practices and the product design and engineering it provides to customers. Alcoa has been a member of the Dow Jones Sustainability Index for 11 consecutive years and approximately 75 percent of all of the aluminum ever produced since 1888 is still in active use today. Alcoa employs approximately 61,000 people in 31 countries across the world. More information can be found at www.alcoa.com.