In the Pit Lane With: Mr. Frank Lim, Vee Rubber Group

Vee Rubber Group was formed in 1977 by CEO Vitorn Sukanjanapong as a manufacturer of bicycle and motorcycle tires and tubes. Today, it has emerged into not just an ordinary automotive tire-maker, but also a key Thai manufacturer of a wide variety of tires ranging from small go-cart to large agricultural tires. Mr. Frank Lim, Chief Marketing Officer of Vee Rubber Group, shares With Tyrexpo Series the rich history and what’s next in the horizon for the Group.

Mr. Frank Lim, Chief Marketing Officer
Vee Rubber Group

Tyrexpo Series: Thank you for taking your time out of your very busy schedule to come and speak to us. Speaking on behalf of Vee Rubber, a company with over four decades of history. May be before we start about the company and products, could you can share a little about you, your role and what you are?

Mr. Frank Lim: Ok. Personally, I am the vice president of Vee Rubber Corporation. Having been in the industry for the past 25 years. I have been in the management role in other tyre companies so for this 1 year that I just joined Vee Rubber and I am trying to support the founder and the owner of Vee Rubber to expand their operation.

Tyrexpo Series: Is very obvious from what you just shared that you have a rubber in your blood.

Mr. Frank Lim: Yes.

Tyrexpo Series: That’s for certain. Vee Rubber is also a very interesting company that has gone through many milestones and its history. Could you share a little bit with us on its history and milestones based in Thailand?

Mr. Frank Lim: Yes, precisely. The founder and the owner of Vee Rubber Group are actually come from the southern part of Thailand and he is just like me. We have the rubber or tyre in our blood which we had been in the tyre industry for so long, so we want to do well and do good. He actually started the business in 1977. From a bicycle tyre maker and after 10years he grew his business and starts the motorcycle tyre and he did very well for his motorcycle especially because he was supplying to OEM. Reputable OEMs like Yamaha, Suzuki, all the Kawasaki, Japanese motorcycle maker approach Mr. Viton who is the owner so I would say that the company grew every 10 years. In 1997, Mr Viton started to sell scooter tyres and he did very well and he managed to do very well and do very good business with Belgium and Italy. They branch out and together with Mr Viton and Mr Viton tap on their network and supply to countries like Vietnam and eventually he even set up a factory in Vietnam just to support the operations and also with Honda later on, and the business grows. In 2005, the company started passenger car tyres and that is where Vee Rubber got its popularity, because it’s able to expand and export the business and the tire to America market. And today, Vee Rubber has a factory in India which started in 2016. From my understanding of Mr Viton’s vision, he hoped to expand his business further but in the tyre field. He is very focus in the business.

Tyrexpo Series: Before we talk about the products. I understand that Vee Rubber is an award winning company that has won many awards in Thailand. Could you share a little bit more?

Mr. Frank Lim: Yes, precisely. During the peak period in the last 20 years, Vee Rubber has been the top exporter of the tyres and Thailand been the top rubber producing country. Mr Viton has contributed significantly to the country in the way that he is able to produce more tyres to be able to export overseas.

Tyrexpo Series: So, it is a very interesting history, very rich in every pitch. So let’s talk a bit about the product line-up now. So you mentioned about the fact that you origins were in motorcycle and bicycle side expand into PCR and now you’re going to look towards the TBR side of it. Could you share with our viewer, what USP would you give/say that is attributable in the different ranges?

Mr. Frank Lim: Ok, I would say that from the humble beginning of this setup of the Vee Rubber Group. From a basic bicycle tyre maker all the way to motorcycle tyre and then from motorcycle to PCR and to latest stage would be TBR. That is accumulation of past experiences. Not many factories in the world that I have encountered had this kind of experience. Some factories they may had just started only 4 years or 7 years. But they do not have a solid foundation whereas the founder had actually started this from the beginning. From the small tyres and it makes a bigger tyres along the way and until we are going to make even earthmover tyres. So you can see that the growth and also moreover the rubber that we used in Thailand is fresh. Is just the rubber plantation is just behind your backyard. So this give us an added advantage, I would said that unlike other factories they might had to import the rubber and to reached them. For 2 months then they get to see the rubber but for us we can get the rubber instantly and is very important. Fresh and good consistency. As the years goes the rubber will get harder, so for us we got the advantage, because we are close to the supply of rubber. We are in the world top rubber producing country so that is our advantage. And I would say that we are able to give customer the fresh delivery on our product.

Tyrexpo Series: So, before we conclude could you summarise what is next for the horizon? What is the next big venture for you?

Mr. Frank Lim: Ok our next big venture would be our overseas operations. Right now we have got 3 factories in bicycle, motorcycle, tire factories in Thailand, one passenger car tyre and buyer tyres factory in Thailand and that makes up to 4 factories in Thailand and 1 in Vietnam and another one in India. So our next challenge would be to expand our operation even further not just expand but to these Asia Pacific. We are looking beyond Asia. We may be looking at Europe and even US and further. Even today, we have the Atlanta office and warehouse so hopefully the founder may even considered to do something even better or bigger. This is what we want.

Tyrexpo Series: So, we thank you for speaking with us, and we wish Mr Viton and yourself all the best in your future.

Interviewer:
Mr. Ian Wu, Director (Health-Tech), Events Business
SingEx Exhibitions Pte Ltd