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Pirelli Australia Enjoys Period of Strong Growth

Pirelli Tyres Australia is enjoying its strongest growth since its Australian operations began in 1979.

Speaking at the national launch of Pirelli's new P Zero UHP tyre, Managing Director of Pirelli Tyres Australia Roberto Righi said that the company's bottom line continues to improve.

"Over the last 18 months we have produced our strongest sales results in decades," Managing Director Pirelli Tyres Australia, Roberto Righi, said.

"Pirelli has enjoyed a double digit growth in both units and revenues, and we expect to continue to keep outperforming the market growth, which is estimated at around 2-3 percent."

With a head office of over 30 employees based in Sydney, Righi said that Pirelli Australia's strong product and solid dealer network both helped to consolidate its position as market leader of the high end tyre market.

"The P Zero collection is the flagship of our product line-up here in Australia, and our HP and UHP sales are a significant part of our business.

"We currently have 274 Pirelli Approved Dealers (PAD) located across six states. Our goal in the short term is to work with our existing dealers and strengthen their customer base, rather than expand the PAD network."

While the focus at a local level is on continuing to achieve strong sales results, Pirelli Australia is also closely aligning itself with the company's global brand positioning and marketing activities.

The iconic Pirelli Calendar is one of the company's most powerful marketing tools and has become famous for its artistic portraits of female celebrities and models.

Australian-born model Catherine McNeil graced the cover of the 2008 Calendar, and was the guest of honour at the calendar's Australian launch in January.

McNeil was joined at the launch by CEO and Managing Director of Pirelli Tyre S.p.A, Mr Francesco Gori, who spent several days in Australia with Pirelli senior management.<

"It was a great accomplishment for Catherine to be chosen as the cover girl, and having a local girl involved in the calendar certainly directed plenty of attention to the Pirelli brand in Australia."

Pirelli Australia is also supporting the company's global commitment to motorsport. Pirelli has recently been announced as the official tyre supplier to the new Gran Turisimo Championship, a nine round series across the Australian eastern seaboard for exotic sports cars and GT cars such as Maserati, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Porsche, Lotus and others.

"Globally Pirelli has had a broad and varied commitment to motorsport for over 100 years and our local ventures draw on Pirelli's great motorsport experience, its research and development activity, and the technologies that Pirelli use to produce all its production and competition tyres."

The Pirelli Group

The Pirelli Tyre (Pirelli) brand was born in 1872, with Pirelli starting production of tyres from the late nineteenth century. Today Pirelli is the world's fifth largest operator in terms of turnover in the tyre market, with levels of profitability among the highest in the sector.

Pirelli's production capability is divided among 24 factories around the world. The company's commercial structure covers all the principal geographic markets and reaches over 160 countries with a network of around 10,000 distributors and retailers. Pirelli Tyre is today the operational holding company for a group involved in the design, development, production and marketing of tyres destined for various types of vehicles: cars, light vehicles and motorcycles (Consumer segment, 70% of revenue), buses, trucks, agricultural and earth moving machinery, and the production and marketing of steelcord (Industrial segment, 30% of revenue).

Pirelli has established itself as a market leader in both car and motorcycle tyres, focusing on the high-end segment of each market which are characterised by high performance and elevated technological contents.

Pirelli tyres are today seen as synonymous with quality, emotion and ultimate performance.

April 2008