On March 1, 1981, Bridgestone celebrated its 50th anniversary. At the same time, the company set its sights on strengthened its homes base and while continuing its strategy of overseas expansion with the goal of becoming one of the world's top three manufacturers of rubber products. As part of this strategy Bridgestone purchased a tire plant in Tennessee from the Firestone Tire & Rubber Company, which became the company's first manufacturing plant in North America. Bridgestone began production of truck and bus radial tires at the plant in 1983. In May 1988, Bridgestone acquired The Firestone Tire & Rubber Company which transformed Bridgestone into one of the world's largest tire and rubber companies. The acquisition of Firestone, gave Bridgestone a large number of production sites in North America, Central and South America, Europe, and other locations. Bridgestone also began operations in Turkey under a joint management agreement in 1988. To enhance the company's corporate identity, Bridgestone Tire Co., Ltd. was renamed to Bridgestone Corporation in 1984.