Groundbreaking Ceremony in Yangzhou, China
On October 27, 2012 ARGO-HYTOS celebrated the Groundbreaking Ceremony for the new company in Yangzhou. It was a very impressive and very spectacular event.
China is becoming one of the largest hydraulic markets in the world – and ARGO-HYTOS is part of that.
After opening the subsidiary in Hong Kong in 2005 ARGO-HYTOS was able to open an office in Beijing in 2008. In 2012 ARGO-HYTOS starts building the new Chinese headquarter with a maximum size of 10,000 m². It is expected that the Chinese market will contribute 20% to the total sales of ARGO-HYTOS.
Christian Kienzle, CEO of ARGO-HYTOS, gave a press conference before the official opening and emphasized the importance of the international growth, especially in China:
“The worldwide expansion next to innovation and quality has always been my main focus in the development of ARGO-HYTOS to be closer to the customer and faster in the response!
Today ARGO-HYTOS is stronger than ever. With about 1,200 employees worldwide it is one of the globally leading companies in the field of hydraulic systems and applications.
The main focus of ARGO-HYTOS Fluid Power Systems Yangzhou Co., Ltd. will be the Chinese market. We especially want to help our Chinese customers to make their products better. Better means more energy efficient, economical and sustainable.
Additionally we will export products to other markets, because we believe in the capability of manufacturing high quality products here in Yangzhou in our new and modern factory.”
Andreas Briegel, Project Manager, is giving us an overview about some interesting details.
Andy, please explain us why ARGO-HYTOS has chosen Yangzhou for the new company location?
Over the past one and a half years we did some extensive location analysis for a possible new location here in China. We looked at more than 10 business parks in different parts of China. Early in the discussion we realized that we would have to focus on the greater Shanghai area since it is the location that best serves our customers.
From the final remaining business parks, Guangling Industrial Park in Yangzhou clearly finished first in our ranking.
What is exactly planned? Office and as well manufacturing?
We are planning our headquarters for the Chinese market here. Hence we will have an office as well as a manufacturing site. The office building will be around 800 m² and the production in a first step around 3.500 m². It was very important for us to have the possibility to expand the production space along with our business growth here in China. Therefore we planned the building with a possible expansion of up to 9.000 m² production space.
If manufacturing is planned – which products will be produced?
For the Chinese market we need to focus on serving the customers with special solutions on the Fluid Motion sector. On the one hand we will be manufacturing valves according to the market’s needs. On the other hand we see the demand for customer specific solutions when it comes to manifolds and complete systems.
How many employees are supposed to work in this facility?
In the beginning we will start with around 30 people, but I am sure that we will have to enlarge this number fairly quick.
What was the special challenge for you to fulfill this project?
The challenge has just started. It has been quite a bit of work until now, but the real challenge lies ahead of us. We will have to transfer our production technology and processes form our companies in the Czech Republic and Germany.
The name ARGO-HYTOS is known for its outstanding quality. A product made in China for our Chinese customers needs to fulfill the same quality standards as our products form any other plant. The focus on quality will be a challenge for sure.
What will be the next steps?
We finished the design for the building. Now we need to plan the manufacturing processes in detail.
When will the building be finished?
We expect the building to be finished within the next 7 months and the start of production is planned two months after that. It is an ambitions time line, but with the local support of the Guangling Industrial Park we will make it happen.
Thank you very much, Andy, for this really interesting interview.
Enjoy your experiences in China.