Schmitz Cargobull, Europe’s largest trailer manufacturer, has signed a joint-venture contract with Chinese-based Dongfeng Motor Group to jointly produce semi-trailers for the Chinese market.
The signing ceremony took place in the Chinese city of Wuhan last week. It was attended by Xu Ping, Chairman of the Board at Dongfeng and Secretary of the DFM Party Committee; and Zhu Fushou, General Manager at Dongfeng and Vice Secretary of DFM Party Committe; along with Ulrich Schümer, CEO of Schmitz Cargobull and German board members, Andreas Schmitz and Ulrich Schöpker.
Reportedly, the two companies see the joint-venture as an opportunity to grow in the global transport market by providing a combined solution including both towing tuck and semi-trailer. Construction of a custom-designed 40,000 m2 manufacturing plant in Wuhan will commence soon. It will be able to produce some 40,000 semi-trailers a year, all specially designed for the Asian market.
While production in China is scheduled to begin in 2014, Schmitz Cargobull is already building prototypes in Germany. Dongfeng, meanwhile, will take care of both sales and after-sales saervice in China. Over the course of five years, Schmitz Cargobull and Dongfeng plan to invest approximately €100 million in the development of the site.
“We want to provide customers with comprehensive advice and offer them the optimal truck and trailer transport solution. This also includes service covering every aspect of the tractor-trailer. With Schmitz Cargobull, we have gained Europe's leading semitrailer manufacturer as a partner,” said Huang Gang, General Manager of Dongfeng Commercial Vehicles and future Chairman of the joint-venture.
Ulrich Schümer, CEO of Schmitz Cargobull AG, added: “Together with our new partner Dongfeng, Schmitz Cargobull will continue its globalisation strategy on the Chinese market. We see enormous potential for growth here and we intend to utilise this together, thanks to the expertise of both companies in truck and trailer production.”
“Dongfeng's knowledge of the local market, vehicles and customers represents a great opportunity to develop a successful market with the combination of the best truck with the best semi-trailer,” Andreas Schmitz, Schmitz Cargobull Board Member, said.