- Festive opening ceremony with many guests
- Construction completed smoothly
- Expansion of the plant already in planning due to very favorable order situation
Silao, Mexico, May 3, 2016..... The plastics specialist Röchling Automotive, an international partner for automobile manufacturers and system suppliers headquartered in Mannheim, Germany, officially opened its first production site in Mexico today. A large number of guests were present as the new spaces, warehouses, and production facilities in Silao, Mexico were commissioned.
At the opening ceremony, which was attended by Röchling executives as well as Röchling employees from several international locations, customers, and representatives from local politics and industry, Georg Duffner, Chief Executive Officer of the Röchling Group, outlined the main reasons for establishing a Röchling plant in Mexico. The country is becoming increasingly important in the global automotive market, he said. Mexico is now ranked seventh on the list of vehicle-manufacturing countries and is in fourth place among vehicle-exporting countries. Furthermore, Mexico has developed from a pure automotive producer into a driver of innovation, he added. “Any company that claims to be a global automotive supplier needs to have a presence here in Mexico. And that’s a claim which Röchling Automotive makes,” said Mr. Duffner. With its new location in Mexico, Röchling is systematically pursuing its corporate strategy of continuous internationalization and further growth abroad. Its express goal is to be a leading processor of engineering plastics globally, continued Mr. Duffner.
Röchling invested EUR 5.7 million in the construction of the new plant in Silao in the Central Mexican state of Guanajuato. The new location is in the industrial park of the city, which has a population of approximately 150,000. Silao boasts excellent infrastructure and is at most 200 kilometers from numerous locations of international automotive manufacturers. A 9,100-square-meter plant was built on a plot measuring nearly 26,000 square meters. 3,900 square meters are used for logistics space and 3,800 square meters for production. 18 people are employed at the location, and this number is set to increase quickly and sharply as production lines commence operations over the coming years.
“The high level commitment, the dedication and excellent collaboration with the local authorities, architects, property developers, general contractors and all other partners made it possible for us to keep to our ambitious timetable,” said Vincent Mauroit, President and General Manager of Röchling Automotive North America, at the opening ceremony. The new plant was built and the facilities and machinery installed within a period of 14 months, he added. The first production line was already tested and approved in March of this year. The first serial production of this line is an actively controllable air duct system (active grille shutter) for the customer Ford.
The mayor of Silao, Juan Antonio Morales Maciel, was excited about the new addition to the industrial park. “Röchling Automotive is a highly innovative and inter-nationally successful automotive supplier. This makes us all the more excited that the management has chosen our city for its location in Mexico.” Miguel Marquez, Governor of the state of Guanajuato, emphasized the excellent location, accessibility and infrastructure of the region. “The automotive industry and its suppliers are coming to us for a reason,” said Mr. Marquez. The local government is glad that these industrial settlements are creating new jobs for qualified workers, he added.
As the order situation for the plant in Mexico has developed considerably stronger than was forecast, the management of Röchling is already preparing an expansion of the plant on an adjoining 18,000-square-meter plot for the third quarter of this year. As well as the two-component injection molding machines, both of which are already operational and have a clamping force of 1,500 metric tons, a further 13 processing and ancillary systems will be installed. In addition to Ford, Nissan, Audi, and Volkswagen, the plant in Mexico recently acquired BMW, Mercedes, and GM as customers. “We want to expand our partnerships with these customers and also acquire new customers in the areas of underbody, aerodynamics and engine encap-sulation, fluid components, and air flow, water and engine management,” said Mr. Mauroit. Annual sales are expected to increase from EUR 14 million this year to approximately EUR 60 million in 2020.