hella xiamen 2012.automotiveIT

Hella hopes its new plant in Xiamen will help grow its Chinese business (Photo: Hella)

Hella is boosting its presence in China with the opening of a new production facility in Xiamen in the southeastern part of the country.

The Germany-based automotive lighting group said the new location, which will supply automakers building cars locally in China, will become a leading Asian production center for automotive relays.

"Intensive customer proximity is a key factor for long-term corporate success in China", said Hella CEO Rolf Breidenbach. "With the new electronics factory HELLA can now better address the needs of the local market and customers."

The new plant is part of the Hella Electronic Device (HED) subsidiary, which makes relays and other electronic products. The components are used in electronic applications such as vehicle control systems, door locking systems, seat controls, air conditioners and lighting systems.

The group already supplies major carmakers such as FAW-Volkswagen, Shanghai General Motors and Hyundai Motors.

Hella operates 10 locations in China with more than 3,800 employees. The company's Chinese operations had sales of 360 million euros in the fiscal year that ended May 31. That represented about 7 pc of Hella's global group sales.