Press archive 2013

07 May 2013

Minister of Economic Affairs Nils Schmid visits the ebm-papst location in Herbolzheim

The Minister of Financial and Economic Affairs Nils Schmid visited ebm-papst, the global market leader for fans and motors, at the Herbolzheim location. There he was impressed by the upgrading of the factory to a high-technology centre for automotive engineering products.

The Minister of Financial and Economic Affairs Nils Schmid (centre) visited ebm-papst, the global market leader for fans and motors, at the Herbolzheim location.
The Minister of Financial and Economic Affairs Nils Schmid (centre) visited ebm-papst, the global market leader for fans and motors, at the Herbolzheim location.

In addition to a guided tour of the company, the Minister exchanged ideas with Rainer Hundsdörfer, Chairman of the Managing Directors of the ebm-papst Group, Hans Peter Fuchs, ebm-papst Group Financial Managing Director, Works Council member Ralf Obergföll, and Dirk Schallock, Managing Director of ebm-papst St. Georgen.

The Minister of Financial and Economic Affairs Nils Schmid stated: "I am delighted that ebm-papst is making substantial investments to upgrade the Herbolzheim location to a high-technology centre for automotive engineering and thus ensuring its long-term future."

The location faced the purely Asian competition for many years as the last manufacturer of compact fans in the Western world. However the latter is already preparing to relocate a share of production from China to considerably cheaper south Asian countries such as Vietnam and Cambodia. What does this mean? ebm-papst reacted to this development at the end of last year and concentrated the compact and power fan business at its Hungarian location in Veces. Since then the factory in Herbolzheim has been undergone a process of conversion to a high-technology centre for sophisticated automotive products with a high degree of automation.

"We are investing over €35 million in this upgrade," explained Rainer Hundsdörfer, Chairman of the Managing Directors of the ebm-papst Group during his conversation with the Minister. "This means we will secure the future of the Herbolzheim factory for the long term," continued the head of ebm-papst.

117 employees were affected by the reorganisation at the beginning of the year. Two thirds took advantage of the company's offers, which included suitable jobs in St. Georgen, partial retirement plans, part-time solutions, insourcing services and further training possibilities such as dual higher education options. 45 employees carried over into a transfer company, which meant that it was not necessary to announce any redundancies for operational reasons.

Dirk Schallock, Managing Director of ebm-papst St. Georgen said: "We have recently been able to win significant projects in the automotive industry. For these projects and the subsequent large-scale production we require this conversion to a high-tech centre with highly automated production facilities and well-trained employees."

Another positive aspect for the strengthening of Germany as a production location was the acquisition at the beginning of the year of the gearbox manufacturer Zeitlauf. This means that in the future ebm-papst will be in a position to offer optimised drive solutions, consisting of motor, gearbox and software-supported control technology. Rainer Hundsdörfer explains, "The investment is strategically important to ensure the expansion of the system expertise when it comes to drive engineering."

Hauke Hannig
Head of Corporate Communication / Press Spokesperson ebm-papst Group
Phone: +49 7938 81-7105
Fax: +49 7938 81-97105
hauke.hannig@de.ebmpapst.com

ebm-papst Mulfingen GmbH & Co. KG
Germany
Bachmühle 2
74673 Mulfingen