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 The petrol station where Vipal’s business first began lio expanded to position the company as the only one in the world with a complete range of products for the retreading and repairing of passenger, commercial, agricultural, and OTR (off-the-road) tyres. Another significant move was the commencement of interna- tional operations in 1992 with the opening of the branch in the United States, the world’s largest market for tyre retrea- ding. Today, Vipal operates in Spain, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, and Australia. In 1999, the first pre-cured treads with exclusive designs were introduced to ensure optimal performance for each type of tyre—a notable milestone in the company’s history. In 2009, the eco tread line was launched, offering a significant COMPANY REPORT advantage by providing up to 10% fuel savings through re- treaded tyres, reducing costs for transporters. In Europe, operations began in 2005, with the office opening in Spain. Today, there are three distribution centres: Valen- cia (Spain), Nova Gorica (Slovenia), and Felixstowe (United Kingdom), serving the entire Europe, the Middle East, and the African continent. Vipal’s history is based on research and development of te- chnologies in rubber products. These efforts culminated in the opening 2010 of the Research and Technology Centre in the city of Nova Prata (RS), with the objective of evaluating and approving 100% of raw materials and suppliers. Today, the Centre is one of the most modern in the world in the tyre retreading segment, with 13 laboratories carrying out more than 50 different types of tests, generating more than 28 thousand tests annually. In 2013, the company took another important step in its tra- ining programme for professionals in the segment. With the creation of a corporate university, Univipal also offers online courses in the technical, commercial and management areas, in addition to the face-to-face training that has already taken place at the Vipal Technical Centre since 1987. Today, Uni- vipal has more than 70 courses aimed at the rubber market and carries out almost 500 training sessions per year, training more than 5,000 students. Among the most recent achievements are constructing a new factory in Argentina and acquiring two others in the United States and Brazil. Today, there are seven factories and 15 dis- tribution centres on 5 continents. We also expanded our ope- Celebrations at Vipal’s factory in Feira de Santana    P.24 

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