Find out more about some of the companies headed to Hannover in March. Black Donuts Engineering’s VP and sales and marketing director, Tomi Pekkola, explains how his company continues to work with existing customers in the tire business, but how the team can also help guide industry newcomers on the path to success
Tell us a little about your company.
Black Donuts Engineering is the only one-stop shop for modern tire technology and the world’s number-one tire technology expert and leading independent R&D specialist. Our services span greenfield to brownfield tire plant technologies, tire development services, technical expertise, testing, certification, production optimization and supply chain improvement. From the blueprint stage to test drives, we’ve consolidated it all under one umbrella.
Most of our people here at Black Donuts have a history in the tire industry. I spent 17 years at Nokian Tires.
At the heart of our operations lies the promise of providing all-inclusive solutions. From drawing to testing, our professionals have the necessary skills to cover all areas of tire manufacture and technology, including processes, material selection and equipment. Our team can conceptualize and build a tire plant, initiate production and innovate products. We work hands-on with our clients throughout the process to ensure that every detail in the production aligns with their goals.
Our services include greenfield factories, encompassing factory planning, construction, installation and ramp-up; brownfield improvements, including the modernization and improvements of existing factories; and tire development, such as the turnkey development of new tire lines, optimizing and upgrading tire performance, developing tire compounds and materials, and conducting tire testing. We offer services for new and existing product development for PCR, TBR, OTR, EV and agriculture, and have expertise in specific areas such as stud technology and tread pattern development processes.
What will you be highlighting to visitors at Tire Technology Expo 2024?
We aim to show our services as being a one-stop shop for the entire industry: as a full-service provider, R&D and BD Testing. The latter is an innovative, independent company that specializes in tire testing. We have our own outdoor drivers to test the tires. They have long experience in objective and subjective evaluation of tire performance, both in summer and winter conditions. For example, for winter tires, specifically studded tires, we have wide experience in how to test the tires to find out if they will pass all regulations or what should be developed. We can test all kinds of tires here in Finland, in Sweden or elsewhere in Europe. Sustainability is one thing about winter tires that will be heavily developed in the next few years. There will be additional tests for studded tires as there is new legislation regarding the amount of road wear. We can test customers’ tires and tell them how much road wear they cause.
How is Black Donuts Engineering working with industry newcomers, as well as established tire makers, to optimize their operations in light of the prevailing trends affecting the industry?
Historically, there haven’t been many newcomers into the tire industry, but this has increased a lot over the past five years; we are currently working with several newcomers. There is a domestic market in those areas where there never used to be. The Tire Technology Expo Conference is very good for new companies, as they can get some knowledge about the tire and what is needed to become a tire manufacturer.
Black Donuts guides tire industry newcomers on the road to success as we are a full-service technology house offering turnkey solutions for designing, building, supervising and running a smart tire plant with maximized productivity and best-in-class products. All that’s needed by the customer are the financing and the site and we can bring everything else into the project. We combine energy efficiency, a smaller factory footprint and machines with the latest technology to deliver unparalleled sustainability in tire production. By choosing greenfield tire plant solutions, customers can be confident that they are contributing to a greener future without compromising on quality or productivity.
When we talk about the top companies in the world, the scope can be different from a turnkey, but we can, for example, design the factory, take care of equipment specifications and procurement, and training of employees. However, it’s not always a full-scale project with big manufacturers. Our scope can be negotiated project-to-project. The reason they come to Black Donuts is that they’re looking for an additional view and consultation on how this kind of project could be done. We work with 20 out of the world’s top 25 tire manufacturers, providing tire development services, technical expertise, testing, certification, production optimization and supply chain improvement.
How is the company innovating to meet sustainability goals and reduce its carbon footprint?
In R&D, we are solving the tire challenge by replacing fossil-based synthetic rubber and carbon black with natural rubber and nanocellulose. So, in terms of sustainability, our journey involves the development of bio-based raw materials and recycled materials without sacrificing tire performance. Our mission has two main objectives: protecting the environment and reducing carbon footprint and emissions.
Find out more by visiting Black Donuts Engineering at Booth 8038, Tire Technology Expo 2024, Deutsche Messe, March 19, 20 & 21, 2024