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Resistance to the acquisition of Cooper Tire and Rubber, the American-owned manufacturers of Avon motorcycle tyres, by Apollo Tyres of India continues unabated, with workers at the Cooper Chengshan joint-venture factory in China's Shandong province locking out their US managers in protest against the deal. 

Workers say that the takeover will put their jobs at risk and, according to Yue Chunxue, director of the labour union at the plant, foreign managers could face the risk of "bodily injuries". He added: "Unless the deal is cancelled, we will continue to boycott it until the very end."

Apollo Tyres Ltd, founded in 1976, is the world's 17th biggest tyre manufacturer, with annual consolidated revenues of US$ 2.5bn in 2011. The company has four factories in India, one in South Africa, two in Zimbabwe and one in the Netherlands. It has a network of over 4000 dealerships in India.

In June it was announced that Apollo would buy Cooper for about $2.5bn in a deal that would make it the world's seventh-largest tyre maker.
The acquisition of Cooper, the world's 11th biggest tyre company by sales, will give Apollo access to the US market for replacement tyres for cars and light and medium trucks.

Avon Tyres headquarters are south of Melksham in Wiltshire.

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