Lippstadt/Jiaxing (China), 3 May 2022.
HELLA MINTH Jiaxing Automotive Parts Co. Ltd, a joint venture of the internationally positioned automotive supplier HELLA and the MINTH Group, has put a second production plant into operation in the Chinese city of Jiaxing. With the new location, HELLA MINTH Jiaxing primarily serves the further increasing demand for radomes. These are permeable covers for radar systems that can be manufactured in special designs according to customer requirements and embedded, for example, in the radiator grille or in a customer logo. The plant started operations at the end of last year and will initially supply a Japanese automobile manufacturer. On the basis of further orders, series production for other regional and international customers is also currently being prepared.
"Radar and lidar covers as well as illuminated logos not only give vehicles a distinctive design. Above all, they also protect the sensor technology from the effects of the weather and are therefore relevant for ensuring automated driving functions," says Dr. Frank Huber, the HELLA Managing Director responsible for the Lighting business group. "The fact that the joint venture has been nominated for numerous customer projects within a very short time underlines our good positioning in this attractive and fast-growing market. We want to consistently tap into these opportunities moving forward with MINTH as a strong partner at our side."
On the occasion of the commissioning of the new plant, Ronghua Chin, founder of MINTH, adds: "The cooperation between HELLA and MINTH has proven to be a success story after only a few months. The extent to which the competencies of the two companies complement each other is underlined not least by the good response the joint venture has received on the market so far. Now we want to take the next step and reach the next level of our joint business development. Together we want to serve our customers even stronger and faster with sophisticated products at the highest level. The expansion of our production capacities in a new Chinese automotive cluster creates optimum basic conditions for this."
The new, highly automated plant in Jiaxing has an area of around 20,000 square meters and an annual production volume of initially around three million components; in further expansion stages, capacity is to be doubled to up to five million parts. The total investment in the new site, which also has a research and development center, is in the low to mid double-digit million euro range.
HELLA MINTH Jiaxing was established in January 2021 and combines HELLA's lighting and electronics expertise with MINTH's know-how in the field of exteriors. Both partners hold equal shares in the joint venture; it already has another production facility, also located in Jiaxing. A total of around 230 employees currently work for the joint venture; this number is expected to rise to over 300 by the end of the year. In addition to radomes, the joint venture also manufactures illuminated logos and covers for lidar sensors.