SCHWEINFURT -- To reduce its dependence on the volatile auto industry, German transmissions manufacturer ZF Friedrichshafen AG is expanding into a growing area of green technology -- wind turbines.
ZF is building an international coordinating facility for the repair of wind turbines at Holzwickede in Germany.
Starting in 2012, more than 200 wind power transmissions a year from various manufacturers will be serviced at Holzwickede.
Within the next five years, Matthias Benz, the business manager responsible for the area, plans to take revenues to about 50 million euros ($74 million) with the repair of wind-power transmissions.
In the medium term, services to wind-power facilities are expected to contribute about 15 percent of ZF's non-automotive business in aftersales.
"We want to reduce our dependence on the automotive field, without neglecting automotive business," said Alois Ludwig, CEO of ZF Service.
ZF is repositioning its aftersales activities on Jan. 1, 2010, when ZF Trading, the ZF Sales and Service organization as well as customer services activities, will become part of ZF Services.
ZF Services will have 4,200 employees worldwide, with 2,000 in Germany.