SHANGHAI – German automotive supplier Freudenberg Group expects annual sales in China will jump 33 percent to 3 billion yuan ($452 million) this year, says a senior company executive.
"We see no slowdown of customer demand," said Hanno D. Wentzler, CEO of company susidiary Freudenberg Chemical Specialties KG. "Many of our factories are running at full capacity."
Automotive sales account for half of Freudenberg's total sales in China. Last year, China generated 5.6 percent of Freudenberg's global revenue -- both automotive and non-automotive -- more than twice the share it generated in 2000.
Wentzler says the company's chemicals division is aggressively expanding capacity in China. Freudenberg's factory in the Qingpu district of Shanghai can produce up to 12,000 metric tons of lubricants a year. The company is spending $10 million to expand the plant's production capacity by 50 percent. A second plant in Wuxi, located in east China's Jiangsu province, makes automotive seals. Freudenberg plans to relocate those operations to a larger plant in Wuxi. Earlier this year, Freudenberg opened its 22nd manufacturing facility in China, Vibracoustic Yantai Co.