The move is a further step to double Valeo's sales in China by the year 2015, said CEO Jacques Aschenbroich. The company also intends to increase the number of engineers in China from 1300 in 2010 to 3000 in 2015. According to Aschenbroich, Asia represented 19% of Valeo's total sales in 2010. This percentage is planned to grow to around 30% in 2015.
The Electronics Expertise Center, which will be staffed by a team of more than 100 engineers by the end of the year and 200 by 2015, will be dedicated to electronic hardware development and services for all Valeo Group entities. It will also play a major role in the future development of electronic components for electric vehicles.
According to Valeo, the center will provide electronics engineering services, CAD (computer-aided design) layout engineering and supplier quality support for all Valeo product lines. It is equipped with state-of-the-art hardware test benches, thermal chambers and EMC (electromagnetic compatibility) test equipment. It will ensure global around-the-clock engineering services to all Valeo entities, in order to satisfy the demand of the Group's customers worldwide.
The development center is located within Valeo's Shenzhen production plant which has just been extended by 5,000 square meters, enabling it to significantly increase its production of top column modules, switches and control panels, and ultrasonic systems.
The new wiper production plant covers an area of 15,600 sq.m., replacing the former plant opened in 1994, employs around 800 employees and allows the Group to significantly increase its production of wiper and washer systems for its customers in China and worldwide. This facility complements another Valeo wiper systems site in Shanghai (in partnership with SAIC – Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation).