Global innovative systems partner Webasto Group will invest 600 million euros in the strategic development in three years. “This will advance our dual strategy of strengthening & participating, and will allow us to strengthen our core fields of business and open up a new segment. The investments are flowing into new products and features for our core business and into the development of capacities and structures,” said Dr Holger Engelmann, Chairman of the Management Board, Webasto.
Webasto Group sales achieved double-digit growth in 2017 for the fourth time in succession and amounted to some 3.5 billion euros. In China, the largest single market, Webasto generated sales of over one billion euros – amounting to 34 percent of total sales – for the first time. The automotive supplier increased its profit margin to 7.1 percent in 2017 compared with 6.5 percent for the previous year. The number of employees grew over the same period by a moderate 4 percent to almost 13,000.
Recently, Webasto and Samsung SDI have signed an agreement covering the development and supply of a battery module for the Webasto standard battery system for commercial vehicles. Webasto recently gained its first build-to-print order for a battery system from a manufacturer of buses. Webasto brought to market its first charging solutions in 2017.
The company is benefitting from the growing demand for high-voltage heaters for hybrid and electric vehicles.
“We now have more than 60 orders for these devices from manufacturers worldwide – interest is particularly high in China. Production is, therefore, being expanded at our Neubrandenburg site and a new production facility will be created in the Chinese City of Wuhan by the end of 2019,” Engelmann says.