National distributors sought for Membat brand
Membat describes itself as a young brand, but behind this newcomer to the tyre world stands Spanish fast fitting chain Auto Equip. “We’ve been in the tyre business for 25 years and now we’re taking advantage of the industry knowledge we’ve gained and produced the Membat private brand,” shares Natan Banyeres, international trade manager at Membat. Banyeres told Tyres & Accessories that the Auto Equip network consists of 21 outlets, and the company also distributes tyres. “We are proud of our Spanish heritage but now want to export this and develop a global vision,” he adds.
The new Membat private brand contains four initial ranges – Passion, Enjoy, Flake and Icebreaker. Passion is an asymmetric tread UHP summer pattern available in 24 sizes for 15 to 18-inch rim diameters, while Enjoy is a high performance summer pattern, also with an asymmetric tread design and available in 23 sizes for 13 to 16-inch rim diameters. Flake is Membat’s passenger car winter range, a directional tread pattern available in 16 sizes for 14 to 17-inch rim diameters. Icebreaker is intended for light commercial vehicles and the range consists of nine sizes for 15 and 16-inch rim diameters.
“Our aim is to distribute the Membat brand worldwide and we’re looking for distributors in each country. At the moment we are being certified for the European market,” comments Banyeres. “We started looking for distributors at the Reifen show in Germany and we were also at the Latin American & Caribbean Tyre Expo in Panama. We have spoken with a lot of potential partners here at CITExpo, mainly from Southeast Asia but also from Germany and the Middle East.”
Bayeres concedes that right now is not the optimal time to introduce a new brand into the European market. He notes that although the budget tyre segment is growing within the region, it is hard to enter the market, and exchange rates between China and the Euro zone aren’t helping matters. “However we believe in our products,” he adds. “We are starting in the budget segment but are concerned about product quality. This will be a focus for us.”