Sameer Africa Limited, formerly under the name Firestone East Africa 1969 Ltd, was established in Kenya in 1969 as a joint venture between Firestone Tyre and Rubber Company of the USA and the Government of Kenya with the aim of producing tyres for the Kenyan and the East African market. The initial production capacity in 1971 was only 400 tyres per day. In 1985 Firestone Tyre & Rubber Company sold a significant part of their shareholding to Sameer Investments Limited, a Kenyan company. In 1988 when Bridgestone Corporation purchased Firestone Tyre & Rubber Company worldwide, Sameer Investments retained its shareholding in the local outfit. The company got listed in the Nairobi Stock Exchange in 1995, enabling other local investors to buy equity in the company.
The corporate identity changed to Sameer Africa Limited in April 2005 after a successful renegotiation of the technical and management contract with Bridgestone Corporation Japan. This change created an independent tyre producer based in Kenya and aiming to supply the East African and the COMESA markets. The current focus is on growing the export business to take advantage of the favourable tariffs within the region.
The production capacity has grown over the years to the current level of approximately 2,500 tyres per day, with an actual production of more than 500,000 tyres per year consistently over the last few years. This capacity is already being increased further to 4,000 tyres per day over the next one year. This production, which has been technologically backed by Bridgestone & Firestone Corporation over the years has enabled Kenyan local engineers acquire cutting-edge comprehensive tyre making skills and techniques of global repute.