Cooper Tire and Rubber Company is a U.S.-based tire manufacturer with a global presence. Its focus is the replacement tire market for cars, light trucks and SUVs. The company has several plants in the U.S. as well as in Europe and Asia.
Cooper Tire is the fourth largest tire manufacturing company in North America and the ninth largest in the world. The company manufacturers tires under its own name and for private label brands. In 2008 Cooper Tire had about 15 percent of the U.S. replacement tire market. The company is headquartered in Findley, Ohio with approximately 13,000 employees.
In 2009 Cooper Tire and Rubber had eight tire manufacturing plants with four of those in the United States. The U.S. plants were in Albany, Georgia; Findley, Ohio; Texarkana, Arkansas and Tupelo, Mississippi. Non-U.S. plants are located in England, China and Mexico. The plants at Kunshan and Rongchen, China are joint ventures and Cooper has a minority ownership interest in the Guadalajara, Mexico operation. The Melksham, England facility is owned by Cooper Tire and Rubber.
In December 2008, Cooper Tire announced the closure of the Albany, Georgia manufacturing plant. The closure would be completed by October 2009. The plant employed approximately 1,400 workers before the shutdown. The plant's production will be moved to the other Cooper facilities.
Cooper Tire has a long history, but became a leading U.S. tire manufacturer in the 1980s. During that period many manufacturers were shutting down tire plants due to over capacity. Cooper elected to modernize and expand its production facilities on the premise that American drivers would keep their cars longer and buy more replacement tires. The result is that Cooper is now one of only two U.S.-based producers of U.S. manufactured tires.
Workers at the U.S. Cooper Tire and Rubber manufacturing plants at Findley and Texarkana are members and represented by the union local of the United Steelworkers of America. The Tupelo plant is non-unionized.