Japanese suppliers in Europe: Buyouts, alliances and joint ventures expand sales

New facilities and production capacity enhancements in Eastern Europe and Russia



 In the January to June period of 2014, new passenger car registrations in 17 Western European countries increased by 5.4% year-over-year (y/y) to 6.38 million units, according to LMC Automotive. Under such circumstances, many Japanese auto parts suppliers in Europe are trying to increase their supplies to European automakers and auto parts suppliers.

Germany: Aiming to increase sales to German OEMs

 In Germany, multiple suppliers are acting to expand their sales channels to German and other OEMs. These actions include joint venture (JV) setup with local parts manufacturers (by Fuji Kiko and Nagano Keiki), acquisition (by Toyoda Gosei and Nifco), alliance (by Seiren), and establishment of own sales bases and liaison offices (by Mitsubishi Rayon, F-Tech, Showa, Toyo Tire & Rubber, and others). In the field of preventive safety technology development, Denso has acquired shares of a local parts supplier.

Eastern Europe: Continuing to expand plants and facilities

 In Eastern Europe, many suppliers, including Kayaba Industry (KYB), Taiho Kogyo, and Daido Metal, are expanding their plants and facilities to meet increasing orders from European OEMs. Other activities include newly started production of parts designed to comply with Euro 6, to improve fuel efficiency, or for weight reduction. Some examples are new common rail systems by Denso, exhaust gas purifier ceramics by NGK Insulators, turbo charger bearings by Daido Metal, and seats by Toyota Boshoku, as well as in-house production of plastic parts by Tokai Rubber Industries. Meanwhile, Akebono Brake Industry, Advics, Takata, and other suppliers are building their plants to newly start operations in this region.

Western Europe and others: Some expanding production capacity while others consolidating operations

 In countries such as the U.K., France, the Netherlands, and Sweden, several suppliers are expanding their operations. For example, NHK Spring has established a holding company to newly start operations in this region, while Nippon Sheet Glass has started producing high-performance products. In addition, Akebono Brake Industry, G-Tekt, Press Kogyo, and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries are expanding their production capacities to meet increasing orders. On the other hand, some companies are consolidating their plants, including Keihin, JTEKT, and U-Shin.

Russia and Turkey: Sales of new cars continue to drop in Russia despite successive entries by suppliers

 Vehicle sales in Russia decreased by 7.6% y/y to 1.23 million units in the January to June 2014 period. The sales have declined for the sixth consecutive month since January 2014. Following May 2014, a double-digit drop was marked again in June 2014. The production volume between January and May 2014 also remained low at 840,000 units (down 3.8% y/y).

 Even under these circumstances, active movements are being made by some suppliers in 2014 through 2015. For example, Unipres, GMB, Atsumitec (with Toyota Tsusho), Sumitomo Electric Industries (with Sumitomo Wiring Systems), and Bridgestone are constructing or starting operations at new plants, while Daido Metal and The Yokohama Rubber are expanding their production capacities. On another front, Kasai Kogyo, Sumitomo Rubber Industries, Koito Manufacturing and other companies are considering making investments in Russia.

 In Turkey, Furukawa Electric is enhancing its sales functions by establishing a new liaison office, while TPR and Bridgestone are expanding their production capacities to meet expected increases in orders and demands.

Related Japanese Supplier Reports:

* Indonesia (Jun. 2014), Vietnam, Malaysia, Laos, and Myanmar (Jun. 2014), the US (Apr. 2014)
* China (part 2): Northern, Northeastern & Southern regions (Mar. 2014), China (part 1): Eastern and Central China (Mar. 2014)
* Latin America (Part 2): Trends in Brazil and Mexico (Mar. 2014), Latin America (part 1): New plants in Mexico (Mar. 2014),
* Thailand (Part 1) (Jan. 2014), Thailand (Part 2) (Jan. 2014), ASEAN (Nov. 2013)
* Russia and Eastern Europe (Oct. 2013), India (Sep. 2013)

Germany: Acquisitions of local companies; new liaison offices


Company Activities
To open liaison office in FY 2014
F-Tech will open a representative office in Germany within the fiscal year ending in March 2015 (FY 2014). The establishment was decided because GM, its customer, has been engaged in development in Germany. With the new office, F-tech aims to grasp customer needs promptly and to investigate technical trends in Europe. The company is a supplier of suspension parts including sub-frames. (Source: Press release in April 2014)
Establishes sales and development center near Frankfurt in April 2014
In April 2014, Showa opened a sales and development office for shock absorbers and other products in the suburb of Frankfurt. The new center was established as a branch office of its U.K subsidiary, Showa UK Ltd. The company had judged it necessary to build a local office to develop a full-scale business relationship with European automakers.
To form business alliance with Schmitz of Germany for automotive interior materials
In July 2014, Seiren announced that it had signed a business alliance agreement with a production and sales company for automotive interior materials, Tuchfabrik Willy Schmitz GmbH & Co. KG ("Schmitz"). The alliance covers interior material business for all automakers. The agreement will be effective for five years. Japanese OEMs are Seiren's  major customers. Seiren has manufactured products outside Japan, including the U.S., China, ASEAN, Brazil, and India, but has had no plants in Europe. On the other hand, Schmitz has plants only in Germany, and deals with major European OEMs as its core customers. Through the new alliance, the two companies will establish a cooperative relationship in joint marketing, technical assistance for development and production, as well as global support for production and sales.
Acquires shares of Adasens of Germany for developing preventive safety technologies
In September 2013, Denso announced its investment in Adasens Automotive GmbH of Germany ("Adasens") to strengthen its development of safety technologies. By the end of 2013, Denso acquired a 50% stake in Adasens. Adasens develops advanced driver assistance systems and has special expertise in image recognition technologies using cameras to detect obstacles around vehicles.
Tokai Rubber Industries
To enhance development and sales networks in Poland and Germany
Tokai Rubber Industries aims to start supplying anti-vibration rubber to Volkswagen (VW) at its global facilities from FY 2016 to FY 2018. To this aim, the company will start development activities for VW at two locations: TRI (Poland) Sp. z o. o., its Polish subsidiary in Wolbrom, and Anvis Group GmbH, a German anti-vibration rubber supplier in Hessen that Tokai Rubber acquired in 2013. Tokai Rubber is also considering integrating its research and development functions into this Polish subsidiary. (Source: Press release in February 2014)
Toyo Tire & Rubber
Establishes tire sales subsidiary in May 2014 for German and Austrian markets
In May 2014, Toyo Tire & Rubber established a tire sales subsidiary, Toyo Tire Deutschland GmbH ("TTD") in Willich, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. The subsidiary was capitalized at EUR 5 million and is in charge of sales for the German and Austrian markets. TTD was spun off from the sales division of Toyo Tire Europe GmbH, another subsidiary headquartered in Willich. Toyo Tire Europe oversees Toyo Rubber's sales operations in Europe. After the spin-off, Toyo Tire Europe will strengthen its management functions and develop a more agile management structure through consistent price policies, integrated marketing, and optimal distribution network in Europe.
Toyoda Gosei
Operations transferred from acquired German rubber product supplier to local subsidiary established in January 2014
In April 2014, Toyoda Gosei completed the acquisition of a German automotive rubber product manufacturer, Meteor Gummiwerke K. H. Baedje GmbH & Co., KG (Meteor). The amount paid for this acquisition is yet to be released. The acquired assets were transferred to Toyoda Gosei Meteor GmbH, which had been established in Niedersachsen in January 2014 to produce weatherstrips and other automotive sealing products. Meteor supplies its products to customers including Daimler, BMW, and Audi. The acquisition has enabled Toyoda Gosei to newly start business with these companies. The FY 2014 sales are expected to reach EUR 140 million. In the medium term, Toyota Gosei aims to expand sales of its products to European automakers.
Toyota Boshoku
Reforming profit structure by closing German plant and improving efficiency at production bases in Europe
Toyota Boshoku has started organizational restructuring to turn its European operations into the black on an operating profit basis by FY 2016. In 2014, the administrative functions were separated from Boshoku Automotive Europe GmbH (BAE) in Munich and integrated into its European regional headquarters to streamline its business structure. In FY 2015, BAE's plant in Geretsried will be closed and production of door trims and other interior parts for European OEMs will be transferred from this plant to other plant. Toyota Boshoku also intends to enhance production efficiency and capacity by improving manufacturing processes at all plants in Europe, including those supply products for Toyota. At the same time, the company aims to win more orders to increase sales and become profitable.
Nagano Keiki
Establishing JV in July 2014 to produce in-vehicle pressure sensors
In July 2014, Nagano Keiki is establishing a JV, JaDe Sensortechnik GmbH, in Dresden, Sachsen with Intelligente Sensorsysteme Dresden GmbH of Germany. Anticipating a growing demand for in-vehicle pressure sensors from German OEMs and suppliers, Nagano Keiki has been developing a local production capacity to reinforce its business base and secure stable profits. In addition, its German liaison office will be converted into an independent sales subsidiary to enhance sales and services.
Nissin Kogyo
Opens local office in December 2013 to collect information on advanced safety technologies
In December 2013, Nissin Kogyo established Nissin R&D Europe, S.L.U., Niederlassung Deutschland in Frankfurt as a second office of its Spanish consolidated subsidiary, Nissin R&D Europe, S.L.U. The establishment was intended to effectively and promptly collect data related to advanced safety technologies as well as market and customer needs in Europe. Based on the collected information, the new office develops and sells automotive brake products for major European OEMs.
Acquires German plastic parts supplier
In February 2014, Nifco announced that it had bought all shares of a German automotive plastic parts supplier, KTW GmbH & Co. KG, and its group companies in Weissenburg. JPY 7 billion to JPY 10 billion is estimated to have been paid for this acquisition. KTW has excellent technologies in decorating parts such as instrument panels and door trims and supplies its products mainly to BMW. In April 2013, Nifco acquired another German parts manufacturer, KTS, which has VW as its major customer. Nifco's sales from European operations, however, have not expanded as expected and currently account for only 5% of the total. With the acquisition of KTW, Nifco aims to increase the ratio to 10% as early as possible. The company also plans to expand sales of its products to European OEMs outside Europe.
Fuji Kiko
Establishes seat parts JV with U.S. company
In January 2014, Fuji Kiko announced that it had established a JV, Fuji Kiko Fisher Dynamics Automotive Europe GmbH, with Fisher Dynamics Germany GmbH of the U.S. ("Fisher"). The new JV was established in Wuppertal to develop, produce, and sell mechanical and structural components of automotive seats. It was capitalized at EUR 2 million, with 51% owned by Fuji Kiko and 49% by Fisher. Through this JV, Fuji Kiko aims to expand its business to Europe and other regions.
Furukawa Electric
Opens sales office in Frankfurt in May 2014
In May 2014, Furukawa Electric newly established a representative office in Frankfurt. The new office is intended to accelerate activities to sell steering roll connectors (SRCs) to European OEMs. The SRC is a component designed to transmit electric signals for activating an airbag into the steering wheel. Furukawa Electric has several existing sales bases in Europe, but their customers are mainly Japanese OEMs. The new office was established to deal with European OEMs. (Source: a press release in April 2014)
Mitsubishi Rayon
Converts German liaison office into European subsidiary in November 2013
In November 2013, Mitsubishi Rayon converted its representative office in Dusseldorf into an European subsidiary, MRC Europe GmbH. The new subsidiary started operations in April 2014. In addition to conventional marketing activities, the office is engaged in full-scale promotion of carbon fibers designed for growing markets of automobiles and wind-power generation blades. Regarding carbon-fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) operations for automobiles, Mitsubishi Rayon is considering acquiring an European composite company to develop a direct supply network to European OEMs.



Eastern Europe: Production capacity enhancement and new entries


Company Activities
Akebono Brake Industry
Establishes brake caliper manufacturing subsidiary in Slovakia in April 2014
In April 2014, Akebono Brake Industry established a brake caliper manufacturing subsidiary, Akebono Brake Slovakia s.r.o. in Trencin. The subsidiary was established as part of Akebono's initiative for "acceleration of globalization from Japan & North America to Japan, North America, Europe, and Asia." The initiative is one of the company's main policies in its new mid-term management plan. The subsidiary will begin production in August 2015. First, the plant will start with assembly of cast-iron brake calipers. Then, its operations will be expanded to assembly of aluminum brake calipers, and eventually to integrated production from aluminum casting and processing to assembly. In 2017, Akebono Brake expects sales of EUR 58 million from automakers in Europe.
Establishes brake parts manufacturing subsidiary in Czech in March 2014
In March 2014, Advics established a brake parts manufacturing subsidiary, Advics Manufacturing Czech s.r.o. in Pisek. The subsidiary, capitalized at JPY 950 million, is the company's first production base in Europe. Advics received the first order for disk brake calipers from Daimler of Germany. Therefore, the company will rent part of a plant of Aisin Seiki's local subsidiary, Aisin Europe Manufacturing Czech s.r.o. in Pisek, to start production in May 2015. The initial production volume is not determined yet, but the future production is expected to be several ten thousand units per month. In the long run, the company intends to strengthen sales activities to European OEMs other than Daimler as well as to Japanese OEMs.
Kayaba Industry (KYB)
Expanding shock absorber plant in Czech to produce 6.5 million units in 2015
Kayaba Industry (KYB) has been investing JPY 3 billion in production line expansion at a plant of its Czech subsidiary, KYB Manufacturing Czech, s.r.o. in Pardubice. The expansion will increase the plant's annual capacity to produce shock absorbers from 4.5 million units in 2012 to 6.5 million units by January 2015. As KYB has received orders in large volume from European OEMs including PSA, Renault, and Daimler, the company concluded that there would also be stable demand from local automakers in the future. KYB plans to increase the ratio of non-Japanese customers from 18% in FY 2012 to 34% in FY 2020. The company is also considering building a new plant for in-house production of springs that compose shock absorbers.
Establishes sub-subsidiary in Rumania to start assembling water pumps in April 2015
In June 2014, GMB's Korean subsidiary, GMB Korea, established Romania GMB Automotive S.R.L. in Arges. It was capitalized at USD 7 million. The new plant will process and assemble water pumps as a production base of parts for new vehicles designed for the European market. Production is expected to start in April 2015.
Taiho Kogyo
Enhancing bearing production capacity at existing plant in Hungary; to build new plant for diesel engine parts
Taiho Kogyo is enhancing the production capacity at its Hungarian manufacturing subsidiary, Taiho Corporation of Europe Kft. in Ujhartyan, a suburb of Budapest. The company plans to more than triple the subsidiary's monthly production of engine bearings to 2.5 million units in FY 2015 from the FY 2011 level. In addition, a new plant will be built to double the production space to ensure sufficient production capacity in 2016 and later. JPY 1.5 billion to JPY 2 billion will be invested in this project. Initially, Taiho Kogyo plans to increase production of ring cam outers used in fuel injection systems of diesel engines. Later, the company intends to enhance its production capacity for engine bearings and to introduce new processes for resin coating.
Daido Metal
Establishing compact production line for bearings and new technical center in Czech; expanding production line in Montenegro
Daido Metal has been enhancing the production capacity at Daido Metal Czech s.r.o. in Brno, the Czech Republic. Under this project, one compact line for low-end and small cars will go into production within 2014. The company will also start producing bearings for turbo chargers, whose demand is increasing, in mid 2014. In March 2014, a new technical center was established in the Czech Republic to accelerate technology development for European OEMs as well as to expand sales.
Daido Metal has received orders from Volvo of Sweden for slide bearings for 400,000 units of new engines per year. The supply will begin in April 2015. The bearings will be manufactured at its plants in Montenegro, the Czech Republic, and Japan. As a preparation, JPY 200 million has been invested in Daido Metal Kotor AD in Koto, Montenegro for production line expansion.
Establishes new airbag manufacturing subsidiary in Hungary to start production in October 2014
In October 2013, Takata established Takata Safety Systems Hungary Kft. in Miskolc, Hungary to produce airbags and their components. The subsidiary will start operations in October 2014 and supply products to European OEMs. A total investment is EUR 68.3 million. The new plant will be provided with state-of-the-art systems for product development, product testing, quality control, and customer service.
To start producing new common rail systems in Hungary
Denso will start producing new common rail systems with an injection pressure of 2,500 bar from 2015 to 2016 in Hungary and Thailand. In Hungary, the products will be produced at Denso Manufacturing Hungary Ltd. in Szekesfehervar. The company intends to strengthen sales activities to major OEMs through compliance with stricter regulations on diesel passenger cars under "Euro 6". (Source: Press release in September 2013)
Tensho Electric Industries
Sells part of shares in Polish subsidiary
In April 2014, Tensho Electric Industries sold a part of its shares in its subsidiary, Tensho Poland Corporation Sp. z o.o. in Lysomice, Poland to Boryszew ("BRS") in Warsaw. Tensho Electric previously had held 20.1% of the shares in the subsidiary, which manufactures and sells television and automotive parts. BRS is one of major tier 1 suppliers for VW. Through the stock sales, Tensho Electric aims to reinforce its automotive parts business and to convert its business model from the conventional television-oriented one. After the sales, BRS holds 80% of shares, followed by Sanko's 13.7% and Tensho Electric's 6.3%.
Tokai Rubber Industries
Aiming to increase sales by expanding in-house production of plastic parts at Polish subsidiary
Tokai Rubber Industries plans to increase the sales to German automakers from its Polish subsidiary, TRI (Poland) Sp. z o. o. in Wolbrom, to 10% in FY 2015 from the FY 2013 level of 1 to 2%. To achieve this goal, the company will strengthen sales activities of anti-vibration rubber products combined with plastic parts for Audi and other customers. Additional plastic molding equipment will be introduced to the plant to increase the in-house production ratio of plastic parts. Including other equipment, the company is expected to make a capital investment of JPY 600 million to JPY 700 million in FY 2014. (Source: Press release in February 2014)
Toyota Boshoku
Starts producing seat products ordered first time by BMW at Polish subsidiary
In 2013, Toyota Boshoku received the first order from BMW for its seat products. Based on BMW's quality control approach, a new assembly line was installed at a plant of Tbai Poland Sp. Z O.O. in Nowogrodziec, Poland, prior to starting production for the i3 electric vehicles and the i8 plug-in hybrid vehicles. As a frame material of the seat, glass-fiber reinforced nylon resin is used, instead of conventional iron, to make the whole seat lighter and thinner. Previously, the company had supplied door trims and seat components to BMW.
NGK Insulators
To expand production facilities for exhaust gas purifier ceramics in Poland
In April 2014, NGK Insulators announced that the company will expand production facilities at its Polish manufacturing subsidiary, NGK Ceramics Polska Sp. z.o.o in Gliwice. The expansion will be made to increase production of cordierite ceramics for purifying automotive exhaust gas. A new plant will be built on the same premises to increase the annual production of exhaust gas purifying catalytic carriers for diesel vehicles from 8 million units in FY 2013 to 15 million units. Meanwhile, the company will start producing diesel particulate filters. NGK will also start mass production of its first gasoline particulate filters for reducing particulate matter from the exhaust gas of direct-injection gasoline vehicles. These movements are intended to meet growing demand after Euro 6 is implemented in Europe.



Western Europe: Production capacity enhancement and plant consolidation


Company Activities
Akebono Brake Industry
Expanding brake friction material plant in France by 2015; also plans to open caliper development center
Akebono Brake Industry is expanding the existing plant at Akebono Europe S.A.S. in Arras, France to add production lines. The expansion will increase its monthly production capacity of disk brake pads from 600,000 units in 2013 and to 800,000 units by summer 2015. The decision was made to support an increase in sales for both new vehicles and aftermarket services. The company also established a new brake caliper plant at Akebono Brake Slovakia s.r.o. in Trencin, Slovakia. In combination with this plant, the company will develop an integrated production system from pads to calipers in Europe to increase its business with European automakers. In 2015, Akebono also plans to open a development center for calipers in France. (Source: a press release in January 2014)
Kasai Kogyo
To start supply from U.K. plant to Jaguar Land Rover in 2015; dissolves global partnership with Antolin
In mid-2015, Kasai Kogyo will start a new business with Jaguar Land Rover at the Merthyr Tydfil plant of R-TEK Ltd. in the U.K. On the other hand, Kasai Kogyo agreed with Spanish interior parts supplier, Grupo Antolin, to dissolve their global partnership in January 2014. They found gaps in their business styles and concluded that it would be difficult to establish a business model that can quickly meet their customers' requirements. Following the dissolution, Kasai Kogyo will review each of its JVs in Japan and India for its style of investment and operations. However, the company still intends to maintain cooperative relationship in each region.
To discontinue production of ECUs in U.K. in September 2014
In February 2014, Keihin announced that the company will discontinue production of electronically controlled units (ECUs) at its U.K manufacturing subsidiary, Keihin Europe Ltd. in Glasgow, in September 2014. Expecting a significant decrease of production items in the U.K., the company came to conclusion that it would be difficult to maintain production activities. After the discontinuation, products will be supplied by using its global network. The U.K subsidiary will be engaged in sales and distribution activities.
Consolidating parts processing bases in Europe; to raise local parts procurement ratio to 90%
In FY 2013, JTEKT earned profits from its automotive parts business in Europe for the first time in five years. The company's European headquarters is located at JTEKT Automotive Lyon S.A.S. in Irigny and the plant there has been positioned as the mother plant. From this plant, the company has expanded productivity improvement activities to other plants. In order to further strengthen its competitiveness, JTEKT will continue on-going KAIZEN (improvement) activities at each plant. Meanwhile, the company intends to consolidate parts processing plants dispersed in several countries into a single location in Western and Eastern Europe, respectively. In the medium term, JTEKT intends to increase the local parts procurement ratio from 80% in FY 2013 to 90%.
Receives orders for stamping parts for high-end sedans from Jaguar
In 2013, G-Tekt received orders for stamping parts for 40,000 units of high-end sedans per year from Jaguar of the U.K. The company also received new orders from Toyota for the Avensis and from BMW for the Mini. In 2013, the company acquired G-Tekt Europe Manufacturing Ltd.'s third plant (G-TEM3) in Wales and introduced production facilities to the plant. Together with the existing plants, G-Tekt aims to improve production efficiency with the three-plant system for large, medium, and small parts.
Tsubakimoto Chain
Considering expanding local supply capacity to increase sales to European OEMs
Tsubakimoto Chain's U.K. subsidiary, Tsubakimoto U.K. Ltd. in Nottingham, produces timing chains and other parts, mainly for Japanese OEMs. The plant, however, is limited in size and continues to operate at full capacity. In its long-term vision, the company aims to achieve global sales of JPY 100 billion in FY 2020. To make this vision into a reality, Tsubakimoto needs to increase sales to European OEMs and thus will consider expanding its supply capacity in Europe. (Source: a press release in July 2014)
NHK Spring
Establishes holding company in Netherlands, followed by branch in Germany; also plans to make additional investment in Spanish subsidiary
In March 2014, NHK Spring established a holding company, NHK Spring Europe B.V., in Amsterdam, the Netherlands as its European headquarters. The company also plans to open a German branch in Wolfburg. It will be capitalized at EUR 350,000. The new branch will be set up to start operations in Europe. Its location will be decided in view of trends in demand and suitability as a plant site. In the future, NHK Spring intends to start producing seat-related parts, in addition to its main products of springs. Moreover, the company plans to increase its shares in its Spanish spring manufacturing subsidiary in Alsasua, Iberica de Suspensiones S.L, from current 40.17% to expand its business scale.
Nippon Sheet Glass
Starts producing high-performance glass fiber reinforcements in U.K. in May 2014
Nippon Sheet Glass introduced a new high-tensile glass cord and fiber forming plant to NGF Europe in Merseyside, the U.K. to establish an integrated production system from glass fiber processing to cord processing. In April 2014, the plant started producing and supplying high-performance glass cord fiber used as timing belt reinforcements for engines. Previously, materials for the glass cord product had been exported from Japan, but the company decided to localize production for cost reduction. The product is made by twisting carbon fiber in addition to conventional glass fiber. The composition effectively improves belt strength and fuel efficiency while reducing noise and weight. The company intends to promote this product aggressively by emphasizing that it helps reduce the size of engines.
Press Kogyo
Introduces large press machine to Swedish plant
Press Kogyo introduced a new 1,250-ton large press machine to a plant of Press Kogyo Sweden AB in Oskarshamn. JPY 300 million was invested in this introduction. The equipment went into full-scale production in spring 2014 and has produced side members (suppression parts) mounted on buses made by Scania and Volvo. (Source: a press release in January 2014)
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
Increasing designers at basic development center in Netherlands
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries plans to increase designers at its turbocharger and engine business center in Europe, Mitsubishi Turbocharger and Engine Europe B.V. in Almere. The expansion will increase the number of designers in the basic development division from 70 people in 2012 to 120 people in 2015. The decision was made to reinforce its function to develop turbo chargers that will satisfy customers' requirements. (Source: a press release in March 2014)
Consolidating duplicate production bases in Europe with Valeo
After purchasing the business of access mechanism (such as key sets and door handles) from Valeo of France, U-Shin is consolidating duplicate production bases in Europe between the two companies. U-Shin also plans to reinforce its sales network by utilizing each other's sales channels. (Source: a press release in February 2014)



Russia: Establishment of new plants and enhancement of production capacities


Company Activities
Starts producing shifter systems for AvtoVAZ in 2014
In 2014, Atsumitec starts producing transmission shifter systems for AvtoVAZ at a JV with Toyota Tsusho, Atsumitec Toyota Tsusho Rus LLC in Samara. The annual sales are expected to reach JPY 1.5 billion. The company also aims to win orders from Japanese, U.S., and European OEMs operating in Russia. (Source: Press release in November 2013).
Kasai Kogyo
Considering building production base
At the financial results briefing for FY 2013, Kasai Kogyo announced that the company is considering establishing a production base in Russia. Details are yet to be disclosed.
Koito Manufacturing
Considering capital participation in subsidiary of AvtoVAZ
Koito Manufacturing is considering expanding its business in Russia by utilizing a subsidiary of AvtoVAZ, to which the company is offering technical assistance. The company will start exploring possible options including capital participation.
Establishes engine parts manufacturing company through Korean subsidiary
In February 2014, GMB established Samara GMB Automotive, LLC., an engine parts manufacturing and sales company in Togliatti, Samara through its Korean subsidiary, GMB Korea Corp. The new company was capitalized at USD 3 million. The plant is expected to start operations in March 2016. The amount of investment is JPY 350 million. In 2018, the company plans to produce 500,000 units of engine cooling water pumps and the same number of oil pumps. GMB aims to supply its products to AvtoVAZ and Renault.
Sumitomo Electric Industries/ Sumitomo Wiring Systems
Starts operations at wire harness plant in June 2014
In June 2014, Sumitomo Electric Industries and Sumitomo Wiring Systems started operations at a plant of their affiliate company in Sverdlovsk, OOO Ural Wiring Systems. The plant supplies wire harnesses to Renault-Nissan Alliance's local plant. The plant is a wholly owned Russian subsidiary of Ural Wiring Systems B.V., which was established in the Netherlands jointly with a Russian manufacturer of communication devices and wires, OAO Zavod Radioapparatury in Sverdlovsk. (Source: Press release in February 2014)
Sumitomo Rubber Industries
Considering building new tire plant
Sumitomo Rubber Industries is considering constructing a new tire plant in Russia as part of its plan to increase its global market share of tires by 3 percentage points from the 2013 level to 9% in 2020. The company will make the final decision within 2014. (Source: Press release in December 2013)
Daido Metal
To enhance engine bearing production capacity
Daido Metal produces slide bearings for engines at a plant of its subsidiary in Nizhny Novgorod, Daido Metal Russia LLC. The company will increase the plant's annual capacity to produce the bearings for 2 million vehicles by 2017, up 40% from the 2013 level. To this end, one machining line will be added with an annual production capacity for 250,000 to 300,000 vehicles in 2014 or 2015, followed by another line by 2016. JPY 400 million will be invested in this expansion. The decision was made to satisfy expected demands from European and U.S. OEMs that have started or will start full-scale production in Russia as well as from the Russian truck market.
To start operations at new plant for passenger car radial tires in first half of 2016
Bridgestone will start producing radial tires for passenger cars at Bridgestone Tire Manufacturing C.I.S. LLC in Ulyanovsk in the first half of 2016. The plant will produce winter tires for the Russian and CIS markets. The daily production capacity will be 12,000 units in the second half of 2018. A total of JPY 37.5 billion will be invested in this project.
Establishes body stamping parts supplier in January 2014; to start operations at plant in June 2015
In January 2014, Unipres established a local subsidiary, Unipres Russia LLC in Saint Petersburg. It was capitalized at JPY 3 billion. The plant is scheduled to go into production in June 2015. The plant will assemble and supply body components for 70,000 units of sports utility vehicles produced at Nissan's St. Petersburg plant annually. Stamping parts will be transported from each plant in the U.K., China, and Japan. JPY 6 billion will be invested in this plant. Unipres aims to achieve sales of JPY 6 billion in FY 2016. Later, the company will also be engaged in sales activities for other OEMs.
The Yokohama Rubber
Expanding production capacity at passenger car tire plant; to start producing tires for new vehicles  in 2014
The Yokohama Rubber will increase the annual production capacity at its passenger car tire manufacturing and sales subsidiary in the Lipetsk special economic zone, Yokohama R.P.Z. Anticipating an increase in new vehicle sales in 2014 and later, the capacity will be increased from 1.4 million units in 2013 to 1.6 million units in 2014. Full-scale production is scheduled to begin in autumn 2014. The company is also expected to gradually start manufacturing tires for new cars, as early as summer 2014.



Turkey: Enhancement of production capacities and establishment of representative office


Company Activities
Sumitomo Rubber Industries
To start operations at JV's new plant in July 2015
In July 2015, Sumitomo Rubber Industries plans to start producing tires for passenger cars and trucks at its JV with a Turkish company, Sumitomo Rubber AKO in Cankiri. A total of JPY 40 billion will be invested in this project. The plant will produce 30,000 units daily in 2019. In addition to sales for new cars and for the aftermarket within Turkey, the plant will export the products to emerging markets where an increase in sales is expected, including Middle East, North Africa, and Russia, as well as to the European market. Through supply from Turkey, which is closer to each market, Sumitomo Rubber expects great advantages in transportation cost and lead time. In the future, the company hopes to expand the daily production to 60,000 units.
Expanding production capacity for cylinder liners
TPR is expanding a plant of its cylinder liner manufacturing subsidiary in Istanbul, Federal-Mogul TP Liner Europe Otomotiv Ltd. Sti, to introduce processing equipment. The expansion will increase its monthly production capacity from 300,000 units in FY 2013 to 400,000 units in FY 2014. (Source: Press release in March 2014)
To construct second plant for passenger car radial tires to go into production in January 2018
In October 2013, Bridgestone decided to construct a plant for passenger car radial tires in the Aksaray industrial zone. This will be the second plant of its subsidiary in Istanbul, Brisa Bridgestone Sabanc? Lastik Sanayi ve Ticaret A.S. The decision was made to satisfy an expected further increase in demands for tires in Turkey. The plant is scheduled to start operations in January 2018. The plant is expected to produce 13,000 units per day in the second half of 2022. JPY 28 billion will be invested in total. The existing plant in Izumit currently produces 30,000 units daily.
Furukawa Electric
Opens new liaison office in Istanbul
In December 2013, Furukawa Electric's European sales subsidiary, Furukawa Electric Europe Ltd in London, the U.K., established a representative office in Turkey, Furukawa Electric Europe Ltd Istanbul Representative Office. The office is intended to enhance marketing activities and increase sales of high-performance materials in the automotive and electronics-related markets. With the new office, the company also intends to expand its infrastructure business including electricity and transportation. In addition to Turkey, Furukawa Electric plans to expand its trading zone to include Eastern Europe, Central Asia, Middle East, and North Africa. The company aims to achieve annual sales of JPY 2 billion in 2016.

(Source:Press releases by each supplier and newspapers)

<Automotive Industry Portal MarkLines>