Hella KGaA Hueck & Co. Business Report FY2011

Business Highlights

Financial Overview

(in million euros)
  FY2010-11 FY2009-10 FY2008-09 Rate of
change (%)
Sales 4,371 3,550 3,285 8.0
Gross profit 164 819 754 8.6

Development Outside Germany

-The Companywill step up proposals of its fuel-saving and active safety technologies to Japanese automakers. Japanese car OEMs are striving to meet tightening emissions regulations not only in Japan but also in the U.S. and Europe. The company is going to introduce to the Japanese manufacturers next generation products, which will help them increase the powertrain efficiency of hybrids as well as vehicles mounted with an internal combustion engine. Hella intends to absorb new needs of automakers by proposing advanced drive assist solutions such as its new compact and high-performance steering angle sensor and a radar system, which is capable of detecting obstacles when the vehicle is moving slowly at about 15km/hour. Through these initiatives, Hella aims to double its global sales to Japanese automakers by 2015. (From an article in the Nikkan Jidosha Shimbun on June 22, 2011)

-Mando-Hella Electronics (MHE) held a ceremony to celebrate the completion of its new plant in Songdo, Incheon City, Korea. The facility will produce ECUs for brake, steering, and suspension systems as well as a variety of sensors for Mando. The new plant, which has the production capacity to produce three million ECUs and two million sensors per year, will also manufacture ultrasonic sensors, lasers, and cameras that are major components of driver-assist and automatic parking systems. MHE was established jointly between Mando (Korea) and Hella in November 2008. Since March 2010, it has been producing and supplying the MGH60 ECUs for anti-lock brake systems installed in vehicles produced by Hyundai and Kia. (From a press release on June 30, 2010)

-The Company is hiring engineers and other staff professionals in the United States to meet a growing demand for automotive electronic components. Hella expects to fill more than 20 positions at facilities in Plymouth, Michigan, and Flora, Illinois, through the third quarter of 2010. The company also plans to hire additional employees later in 2010. The company expects to grow its electronics business in the NAFTA trade region at an annual rate of 20 percent or more. Products based on 24GHz radar technology are expected to spark additional sales for the company and include systems that help drivers maintain a safe distance between vehicles, assist with lane changes, and provide blind-spot and rear cross-traffic alerts. (From a press release on June 23, 2010)


R&D Expenditure

(in million euros)
  FY2010-11 FY2009-10 FY2008-09
Lighting technology 128 111.0 120.3
Electronics 204 170.8 169.4
Aftermarket products 14 13.9 15.9
Total 346 295.7 305.6
as a % of sales 7.9% 8.3% 9.3%
Employees 3,882 3,517 3,262


Product Development

Next-generation power source management system
-The Company has embarked on development of the next-generation power source management system to meet needs of both high 48-60 volt and low 12-volt devices with the aim of improving fuel efficiency of gasoline and diesel engine vehicles. The system is based on generation and storage at high voltages ranging from 48 to 60-volt, which will lead to downsizing of units such as power steering and electric pump requiring high electric current without additional cost. Concurrently, a voltage converter to transform high voltages to a low 12-volt allows conventional low-cost electric devices to be used in areas that do not require high current. Hella aims to introduce the new device to the market by 2015 in a bid to satisfy needs of automakers struggling to clear stringent fuel efficiency standards. It has already become possible to convert electricity from high 100-300 volt batteries in a hybrid vehicle to under 60-volt for supply to EPS and other devices. When the new system is applied, state-of-the art electric devices installed in hybrids will be able to be used in conventional gasoline engine vehicles. As the number of electric devices installed in a vehicle increases, advantages of high voltage also increase. (From an article in the Nikkan Jidosha Shimbun on June 8, 2011)

Electrical vacuum pump
-The Company developed UP30 electrical vacuum pump for electric and hybrid systems. Hella's electrical vacuum pump offers either full-time or part-time vacuum support, depending on vehicle requirements. Compared to mechanically drive vacuum pumps Hella's electrical driven pumps offer on-demand vacuum support which enables reduction of CO2 emissions up to 4g/km. In Europe Volkswagen implements Hella's vacuum pump in its Touareg Hybrid and in Japan various customers are convinced by Hella's technology. Suzuki Swift Range Extender and Subaru Stella Electric vehicle are some of the vehicles that are equipped with Hella's electrical vacuum pump. Hella produces the vacuum pumps in Germany, Romania, USA, Mexico and China.(From a press release on February 4, 2011)

New voltage stabilizer and a DC/DC converter
-The Company developed a new voltage stabilizer and a DC/DC converter. Since 2002, Hella has produced more than nine million DC/DC converters and voltage stabilizers. The company introduced 200-watt voltage stabilizers in 2007 for use in BMW and Volkswagen vehicles. (From a press release on November 15, 2010)

New electric wastegate actuator
-The Company is currently developing a new electric wastegate actuator. Designed especially for direct-injection gasoline engines, the new actuator provides more precise control of the engine's turbocharger. Now in development, Hella's new actuators are expected to be in use on U.S. cars before the 2015 model year. (From a press release on November 1, 2010)

Light-weight rear-view camera
-The Company has partnered with Samsung Electro-Mechanics Co., Ltd. (SEMCO) of Korea to develop a small, light-weight rear-view camera for vehicles. SEMCO develops and manufactures products including optics components such as camera modules. The new camera, RVC3, can be installed on cars and trucks of all types. The camera allows drivers a view of the area directly behind the vehicle - a full 130 degrees. Hella plans to have the RVC3 in production by 2011. (From a press release on July 12, 2010)