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Commitment to the Chinese Market: The Schaeffler Group Expands Production Network in China with New Plant in Taicang.

TAICANG, China, June 4 /PRNewswire/ -- The Schaeffler Group, a family- owned, globally-leading bearing and automotive supplier, recently unveiled its new factory in Taicang, Jiangsu province, the latest in a series of steps to expand its production capacity in China. In the presence of Maria-Elisabeth Schaeffler and her son, Georg F.W. Schaeffler, partners of the Schaeffler Group, and Dr. Jurgen M. Geissinger, CEO and president of the Schaeffler Group, a large number of representatives from the cities of Suzhou and Taicang, as well as business partners -- a total of close to 400 guests -- celebrated the inauguration of the largest Schaeffler plant in China.

"We are fully aware of China's future role among the leading economies of the world and strengthen our R&D and production network in China in order to support international and Chinese customers and supply them with state-of-the- art products from the region," said Dr. Jurgen M. Geissinger, highlighting the company's commitment to the market. "We have often stressed that production has to follow the market. This statement holds true today for China and for other countries in Asia."

Being among the largest Schaeffler production facilities in the world, the new 110,000 square meter facility introduces the newest production technologies. Production focus is on needle bearings, wheel bearings, as well as other components for transmission and engine applications. The setup of the new plant will ensure that the vast demand for bearings for industrial applications and sophisticated systems for the automotive industry in the Chinese market can be met.

The new plant, launched with an investment of close to euros 180 million and employing a total staff of close to 1,500, is still gearing up for expansion -- with 90,000 square meters of additional space to ensure that future expansion is possible.

Active in the Chinese market for more than 25 years, Schaeffler added another piece to its production network in China in 1998 with a 41,000 square meter plant in Taicang, approximately one kilometer from the newly inaugurated plant II. Close to 1,000 employees in plant I manufacture bearings for industrial applications and engine elements, which contribute to reducing fuel consumption and emissions in modern vehicles.

Also based in Taicang is the Schaeffler Training Center, offering dedicated training in order to further qualify workers.

Another Schaeffler production base in China for the company's FAG brand is located in Yinchuan, Ningxia province, and primarily manufactures parts for the railway industry.

All Schaeffler plants worldwide are working according to uniform production and quality standards. "We are committed to supplying premium quality, innovative products with market-relevant application specifications and offering the best customer service," said Dr. Jurgen M. Geissinger, outlining the three pillars of success of the Schaeffler Group.

Also, the Germany-based Schaeffler Group recently inaugurated the new Schaeffler R&D center in Anting, Shanghai, which includes laboratories, workshops, administration, a center of competence and a modern product showroom, featuring products in a range of applications for the automotive, industry and aerospace sectors.

About Schaeffler Group

With approx. 63,000 employees at more than 180 locations worldwide and consolidated sales of euros 8.3bn (2006), the Schaeffler Group is a leading global bearing manufacturer and automotive component supplier. Group members are Schaeffler KG with its brands INA and FAG and LuK.

At Schaeffler China, a total of 3,300 staff is employed at three plants (Taicang and Ningxia) and 11 sales offices throughout the country.

To serve the North American automotive market, the Schaeffler Group operates a 78,000-square-foot North American Automotive Center in Troy, Mich. This facility employs 165 engineers and technicians, and houses a 30,000- square-foot, state-of-the-art test lab, outfitted with multiple test cells capable of performing test simulations for engine and engine components. Schaeffler Group Automotive also has North American facilities in Cheraw and Spartanburg, S.C; Joplin, Mo.; Wooster, Ohio; Stratford, Ont., Canada and Fort Mill, S.C. (which also serves as the corporate headquarters for the Schaeffler Group USA Inc.). For more information, please visit http://www.schaeffler.com/.

CONTACT: Jim Bianchi, Bianchi Public Relations, +1-248-269-1122, jbianchi@bianchipr.com; Richard Neilson, The Schaeffler Group, +1-248-528- 4822, richard.neilson@schaeffler.com

Web site: http://www.schaeffler.com/
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Publication:PR Newswire
Geographic Code:9CHIN
Date:Jun 4, 2007
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