KION Group Plans Expansion of Production at Reutlingen Site

We are strengthening our position in Reutlingen (Southern Germany). A double-digit million Euro amount will be invested in the project. “By expanding the production by some 60 percent, we are sending an important message about the future. We expect to see sustainable market growth in the field of narrow aisle trucks and vertical order pickers and have planned accordingly,” says Rob Smith, CEO of KION GROUP AG. “Expanding the site will help to further strengthen our excellent position as a global intralogistics provider.”

The subsidiary KION Warehouse Systems (KWS), which is based in the district of Mittelstadt, is the Group’s competence center for the development and production of system technology vehicles for the KION brands. Volker Bonk, Managing Director of KION Warehouse Systems, presented together with Thomas Keck, Mayor of the City of Reutlingen, Roland Wintzen, Deputy Mayor responsible for Finance and Economic Affairs, and Wilhelm Haug, District Mayor of Mittelstadt the current planning status at an on-site meeting.

The plan is to expand the existing production halls by moving the plant bypass road, with the aim to extend the production space to the south. KWS intends to buy the wooded area there, which is currently owned by the city of Reutlingen. This solution will enable internal production processes to be significantly improved using minimal additional space. Overall, the expansion will comprise at least 2600 square meters, 2200 of which are for the expansion of the production hall. Extensive investments are also planned for the existing facilities and machinery, as well as a general modernization of the processes on site. Once the relevant bodies have issued their approval, construction is planned to start in fall 2023, with the expanded production facilities in operation from 2025.

More Than 400 Jobs Safeguarded in Reutlingen

The increase in production capacity will also have an impact on employment at the site: The workforce has already grown from 250 employees in 2010 to over 400 today. Around 130 of these KWS employees currently come from the city of Reutlingen and 280 from the district of Reutlingen. The planned expansion will safeguard the 400 existing jobs and enable the creation of new ones.

In order to meet the legal planning requirements for the expansion to the south of the plant, a development plan process has to be completed and a change needs to be made to the land-use plan. KWS is already working in close consultation with the relevant bodies in the city. The planned expansion will also be carried out in strict compliance with nature conservation regulations. As part of this requirement, external areas to provide the necessary forestry and nature conservation compensation have to be found during the development plan process. Suitable reforestation areas have already been identified within the urban area of Reutlingen in preparation for this.

KION Warehouse Systems

KION Warehouse Systems can look back on a long history: Founded in 1893 as “Ernst Wagner Apparatebau,” the company started off as a body shop. Over the following decades, the company developed an extensive portfolio of logistics solutions and, by the 1980s/90s, had become one of the leading providers in the market for warehouse trucks. Linde AG took over the company in 1991, and it has been part of the KION Group since 2006. In 2010, it was renamed as KION Warehouse Systems. Besides development and production, KWS also offers technical support and service in Reutlingen, as well as sales support for challenging customer solutions. Technicians, service employees and sales employees from network partners are able to attend training at the company’s own training center.

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