Balluff Expands Capacities in China

Ceremonial opening of the new premises on July 7, 2023. (Image: Balluff)

Balluff Expands Capacities in China

Production Expansion Chengdu

Balluff has increased the footprint of its production facilities at the Chengdu site by 75 percent with a new 6,000 square-meter building, doubling its total production volume. Thanks to the universal design of the facilities, the sensor and automation specialist is flexible as to which product lines and products will be manufactured here in the future. Balluff is thus creating the conditions to continue to serve the APAC market with the best availability and delivery performance. The new premises were officially opened on 7 July.

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When planning the new facility, it was important to Balluff to ensure a consistent visual appearance of the entire site and compliance with global Balluff standards for optimal working conditions. Consequently, the previous building complex was also modernized. Particular attention was paid to using sustainable, energy-efficient solutions, especially in the technical infrastructure.

Balluff placed a special focus on the logistics area in the building project: The previous and new production facilities are directly connected for short internal transport routes. digital assistance system will make processes in the high-bay warehouse smarter and faster. In total, Balluff has invested 50 million RMB (approximately 6.5 million euros / 6.9 million USD) in the project and created 300 new jobs. Accordingly, an expansion of the infrastructure for the employees was also considered in the new building, adding locker rooms, training facilities, and parking spaces.

Long Term Relationship

Balluff put out its feelers from Stuttgart in the south of Germany to China early on: As early as 1994, the company established its first service branch in Shanghai and, starting in 1996, manufactured its first sensors in Chengdu with the support of an external partner. In 2004, Balluff consequently founded its subsidiary in Chengdu and opened its own plant three years later. "We were pioneers. At the time, we were the first German production company here," says Frank Nonnenmann, Managing Director at Balluff, who is responsible for setting up the global production and logistics network.

With the new building, Balluff is committing to its China strategy: "In the long term, China will be the world's largest market for production automation with a demand that we believe will continue to steadily grow for a long time to come. In such a market, we must and want to be present with our philosophy of literally being close to our customers," explains Nonnenmann. As an employer, Balluff has earned very good reputation in Chengdu. "We have many long-standing employees," says Erik Oortwijn, Managing Director of Balluff Sensors (Chengdu). "This low turnover is exceptional for the Chinese labor market and shows the great trust Balluff has earned as an employer here."

Balluff's Second Largest Production Site

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The plant in Chengdu is one of Balluff's three major production sites, along with the two plants in Veszprém (Hungary) and Aguascalientes (Mexico).

Balluff manufactures more than 3,700,000 inductive and mechanical sensors per year in western China alone, as well as linear position measuring systems for industrial automation and other products. In the production and logistics network, Chengdu serves as a regional supplier for the APAC region and lead factory for inductive sensors.

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