By: Richard Higgs
EUROPEAN PLASTICS NEWS
January 16, 2014
Spanish auto parts maker Grupo Antolin is expanding its vehicle lighting product operations in Romania with the launch of a major new plant in 2014.
The global group's Grupo Antolin-CML lighting division, which last year began integrating production at its existing leased unit in Sibiu, Romania, expects the 13,000-square-meter facility to be fully operational by the year's end.
As part of the integration process, Antolin-CML introduced injection molding within the the existing Romanian assembly unit in 2013 with 10 machines ranging from 150 – 300 metric tons in clamping force.
Construction of the new molding and assembly plant is already underway in the same industrial area as the existing site, close to Sibiu's airport.
Antolin-CML plans to relocate its existing presses to the new site and install 10 more injection molding machines – ranging from 200 to 470 tonnes – by March 2014.
During the year, the firm will gradually switch its current lighting product assembly lines to the new facility, boosting overall capacity progressively with a further 13 lines.
"The end of 2014 should see a fully operational new site with a floor capacity estimated at 100 assembly lines," predicted Grupo Antolin.
Significant investment in the existing molding shop last year included the installation of a new 1,600 Kva transformer, a new chiller for the machines an overhead crane and a centralized drying system with 20 drying tanks, allowing the unit to dedicate raw materials to each mold.
The Sibiu plant currently employs 357 and has 54 assembly lines serving a string of global automotive manufacturers with a range of vehicle lighting such as dome, glove box, door, trunk and license plate lamps.
Burgos, Spain-based Grupo Antolin acquired the Sibiu plant in 2011 when it took over the French interior lighting supplier CML Innovative Technologies.