Sumitomo (SHI) Demag China has started construction on a new 4,000 m2 production hall at its site in Ningbo.
A groundbreaking ceremony was held last week, after permission to start construction was obtained at the end of 2022. According to CEO Pietro Scattarreggia, the new facility is scheduled to open in autumn 2023 to coincide with the Group’s 25th production anniversary in China. The investment will create 50 new jobs and double the available production capacity, enabling the company to benefit more fully from the booming Asian market for mobility and electromobility, in particular. The year 2021 saw the strongest performance in the company’s history in 2021, said Scattarreggia, and with the subsequent economic slowdown last year as a result of coronavirus policy restrictions, ‘the future outlook remains very positive, he added.
The expansion is also driven by strategic considerations. As well as creating space to build more machines, the additional floor area opens the door for the production of the company’s larger tonnage Systec Servo machines.
“Until now, our production has been limited to machines with clamp forces up to 1,000 tons. Given the demand for larger precision components, being able to extend our product portfolio up to 1,500 tons means we can drastically reduce delivery times for customers in China and Asia,” Scattarreggia said.
To support the manufacturing of these larger and heavier machines, the Ningbo production hall is installing stronger cranes.
Moreover, the facility will run on solar power, a decision motivated by sustainability and practical concerns. A 7,000 m2 solar power system was installed last September, as a result of which the Ningbo facility is now virtually independent of the grid.
Numerous production sites in China have been impacted over the past years by power rationing. With a power source of its own, the Ningbo facility can sidestep the effects of any future rationing, greatly enhancing production stability at the site, Scattarreggia pointed out.