With around 170 employees, fiber composite components for the automotive industry are produced in large series at SGL's Austrian site in Ort im Innkreis. Apart from structural vehicle components, the focus here is on composite leaf springs and battery box components. The customers are well-known: Leaf springs made of fiberglass-based composite material are produced at the site for car manufacturers such as Ford and Volvo.
This year, the site celebrates its 10th anniversary. To mark the occasion, the site looked back on one decade of SGL Carbon in Ort im Innkreis together with its employees and selected guests at a small anniversary celebration on Friday, September 23, 2022: from the construction of the modern plant and the grand opening to the present day.
A look back: joint venture with automotive supplier Benteler and construction of the plant
The new plant was built during the period of the joint venture with Benteler. Founded in 2008, Benteler-SGL GmbH & Co. KG was a joint venture between Benteler Automobiltechnik GmbH and the SGL Carbon. In early 2009, the joint venture additionally acquired the automotive division Fischer Composite Technology GmbH in Ried im Innkreis from Fischer-Sports. In 2018, Benteler-SGL then became SGL Composites GmbH with a total of more than 320 employees at the two sites.
Since there was not enough space to expand in Ried im Innkreis to accommodate projects that had already been booked, the decision was made to build a new plant in Ort im Innkreis, just under 20 km away. Decisive factors in the location decision included the economic policy of the state of Upper Austria, which promoted the settlement of technology-oriented companies, as well as the good infrastructural links, an existing plant construction area, the geographical proximity to the existing Ried site, and a large number of well-trained and highly motivated employees.
Construction of the plant then began in March 2012. Due to the increasing order situation in the first half of 2012, the originally planned plant size had to be enlarged during the construction phase. The first components rolled off the assembly line as early as the beginning of 2013, still during the completion work. The total area of the site is around 42,000 m².
The path to becoming a leading supplier in automotive high-volume production
In the modern plant in Ort, production runs mainly fully automatically. In the production facility, which was built from scratch, around 100 different, in many cases directly interlocking, automated individual processes run on a total of 10,000 m².
The growth path of the site seems to continue in the next few years with customer orders already received. New professionals are also constantly being sought for this purpose. In the past 10 years, the site has thus been able to establish itself as a leading supplier of automotive high-volume orders, especially in the field of large-scale production of glass fiber-reinforced plastics for chassis and structural components for battery boxes.
Production of own green electricity
As the site not only manufactures future-oriented products but is also keen to produce them in a CO2-reduced manner, a photovoltaic system was installed on the roof of the plant in 2021, so that the site now produces its own green electricity. The system, which has a capacity of almost 450 kWp, saves around 30 tons of CO2 per year. The self-consumption rate is over 95 %, which means that the electricity generated is consumed directly in the company's own operations.
Voices from the 10th anniversary celebration
The site celebrated its success to date last Friday with its 10-year anniversary celebration - with a soccer tournament, an SGL band and other live acts providing the musical background and atmosphere.
Robert Hütter, Managing Director and Head of the Ort site, is delighted about the anniversary: "We can all be very proud of the last 10 years and the great development of our site and are looking forward to many more years of success!"
"Our two sites in Ried and Ort perfectly complement each other, and the small and large series applications mesh smoothly. We act across sites to offer our customers the maximum benefit," adds Herwig Fischer, Managing Director and Head of the Ried site.
Johannes Pillichshammer, production employee from the very beginning at the Ort plant: "I am proud to have contributed to the success of the site. It's great to see how the plant has developed and is providing more and more jobs."