By Zhou Xiaotian, Claudio Tamisari
MILAN, Italy, May 11 (Xinhua) -- China is a major end-market for the Italian tire maker Pirelli's leading edge products, Marco Tronchetti Provera, the company's chief executive officer (CEO) told Xinhua in a recent exclusive interview.
According to Tronchetti Provera, after cementing its position on the Chinese market and spinning off its industrial tire business, Pirelli was able to accelerate growth and focus on high-tech and green consumer products, including tires for electric and autonomous driving vehicles.
"We were able to accelerate our growth in China, focusing more on the consumer side. We have the most advanced factories there dedicated to high-tech and environment-friendly products," said Tronchetti Provera, also Pirelli's executive vice chairman, on the occasion of the company's 150th anniversary.
The company's value significantly increased after China National Chemical Corporation (ChemChina), a Chinese state-owned chemical company now part of Sinochem Holdings, invested heavily in the Italian tire maker in 2015, leading to Pirelli's delisting and reorganization.
"It was a great move that created a very competitive company globally ... I think this also creates a better understanding and visibility for the entire group, not only in China," Tronchetti Provera said.
He spoke highly of his company's partnership with ChemChina, describing their cooperation as "always supportive," constructive and professional.
Currently, Pirelli owns three high tech-factories and one Asia-Pacific R&D (research and development) and innovation center in China -- focusing on cutting-edge green products and implementing sustainable production policies -- along with almost 4,000 retail shops. ■