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ARGO-HYTOS GMBH steps into the future with “Smart L.E.A.F”!

The ground-breaking ceremony for the new filter element plant has taken place in Kraichtal, Germany.

On 29.05.2019 the ARGO-HYTOS GMBH, together with invited guests and its own employees, turned the first sod for the extension in Kraichtal. The ARGO-HYTOS filter element factory "SMART L.E.A.F." will be completed by summer 2020.  

SMART LEAF stands for a smart digital filter element factory built according to lean production methods. The name says it all. The transformation of today's manufacturing into SMART L.E.A.F. is carried out in three stages.

  1. Digitization of processes and technologies
  2. Physical digitization of manufacturing facilities
  3. Full integration of the entire value chain

Statements of the management:

  • Jörg Stech, Managing Director at ARGO-HYTOS GMBH: "ARGO-HYTOS GMBH has a long history in Kraichtal and we are pleased to be able to strengthen Germany as a production location. We really appreciate what we have here and thank all the parties who have made the expansion possible for us. We are particularly proud that with SMART L.E.A.F. we digitize the entire value chain and open up new exciting fields of activity for our employees. With this step, we assert our claim to innovation not only in our products, but also in our processes.”
  • Dr. Marcus Fischer, COO of the ARGO-HYTOS Group: "Our production workshops set the pace for our company and I am delighted that we are expanding the orchestra here and now. The location in Germany stands for high competence in innovation and production technology.”

  • Christian H. Kienzle, CEO of the ARGO-HYTOS Group: "ARGO-HYTOS GMBH is pursuing ambitious growth targets and I am sure that we will achieve these goals, among other things, by strengthening the Kraichtal site. Being anchored in Germany is important not only because of our long association with Kraichtal, but also because of our employees, who help us every day with their work and their know-how.” 

This investment allows ARGO-HYTOS GMBH to increase its capacity for production, assembly and logistics by approx. 50% and to affirm its commitment to Germany as a manufacturing and development location. The current plant employs around 500 people and generates a turnover of 100 million euros.

  • From left to right: Benjamin Faulhaber ARGO-HYTOS Project Manager Smart L.E.A.F., Jörg Stech Managing Director ARGO-HYTOS GMBH, Christian H. Kienzle CEO ARGO-HYTOS Group, Ulrich Hintermayer Mayor of Kraichtal, Martin Schilling Branch Manager GOLDBECK Südwest GmbH
  • Ground-breaking ceremony ARGO-HYTOS GMBH

With Smart Production into the future!

ARGO-HYTOS invests in new filter element plant in Kraichtal

In recent years, the ARGO-HYTOS Group has invested heavily in the internationalization of the company. The main reason to add a new building is the ambition to follow our customers into all the markets that are important to them and to support them there locally, in their traditional business areas, in the same comprehensive manner they have been accustomed to by our parent companies in Europe for decades. In accordance with our motto "Follow Our Customers,” additional plants and sales companies in many parts of the world were created over the past ten years. New companies in China, India, Brazil, Russia, Turkey and Poland were added.

The European market remains very promising for the ARGO-HYTOS Group, as well. During the time when the market for mobile hydraulics applications saw a sideways trend and there was no significant growth, market share was gained through relevant new products, smart applications and consistent marketing strategies. Having thus secured a strong position, it was possible to enjoy above-average benefits from the increase in demand starting in 2017. The resurgence of our core markets – construction and agricultural machinery, as well as general mechanical engineering – contributed to double-digit growth rates.

Strong international and European growth, excellent business development and a positive outlook are the main reasons for the necessary expansion of the parent company ARGO-HYTOS GMBH in Kraichtal, Germany. The capacities for production, assembly and logistics will be increased by about 40%. A new filter element plant will be part of the new facility. In line with the digitization strategy, this plant is designed and operated using the latest technologies for data exchange within the value chain "Smart Production". The internally developed and networked Industry 4.0 process plants and machines already in use today will be able to fully exploit their potential with the new building. The aim is to take the current status of the plant as a benchmark for the efficient production of filter elements and systems in Europe to the next level.

In addition to the commitment of the company to the manufacturing and development location in Germany, the support of and smooth cooperation with the municipality Kraichtal must also be emphasized. The construction of a bypass and local relief road will significantly improve the transport infrastructure, thus relieving local residents of noise and traffic. The construction phases of the two major projects will be coordinated. Construction of the road began in May of this year. Once it is completed later this year, construction of the new building at ARGO-HYTOS will start. Completion is expected in the 4th quarter of 2019.

The cornerstones for the positive development of the company are a future- and - above all - customer-oriented approach, sustainable and long-term goal-oriented investments in the ARGO-HYTOS Group, as well as the outstanding, creative and motivated workforce.

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