In the last three years, HBPO has opened four North American assembly plants, all located in Mexico: an injection molding facility in Puebla, and just-in-sequence assembly plants in San José Chiapa, Aguascalientes and Saltillo.
The company said in a July 17 news release that it has increased production of plastic components by 50 percent at the Puebla facility with the addition of a third injection molding press earlier this year.
Weis declined to say how much HBPO invested in the injection molding machine, but said all the presses at the Puebla molding facility are large-ton Engel machines.
Diana Mannino, president of HBPO North America, said in the release that HBPO has also added five new automotive customers, including two electric vehicle makers.
"The number of new vehicle models equipped with HBPO front-end modules in Canada, the U.S. and Mexico is expected to grow by 60 percent from 12 in 2017 to more than 19 in 2022," Mannino said in a statement. "Our annual sales in North America are expected to increase by 70 percent to more than $1 billion over the same period."
Mannino could not be reached for further comment.
At the end of 2017, HBPO's North American operations employed 650. Within the next four years, the company said it plans to more than double employment in North America.
HBPO North America is a part of parent company HBPO GmbH in Lippstadt, Germany. The joint venture, Hella Behr Plastic Omnium, was formed as an equal partnership in 2004 among automotive suppliers Hella GmbH & Co. KgaA, Plastic Omnium SA and Behr GmbH & Co. KG.
Globally, HBPO produces more than 5.7 million units annually, reporting sales of more than $2.3 billion in Europe, North America and the Asia Pacific region.
In March 2018, German supplier Mahle GmbH, which became a majority owner of the Behr Group in 2013, announced plans to sell its shares in the joint venture to French auto parts supplier Plastic Omnium. The sale was completed in June, handing majority ownership of HBPO to Plastics Omnium. Hella holds 33.33 percent of the shares.