Engel expands automation plant in Germany

Engel Automation is adding 1000-sq-m and staff to its Hagen, Germany plant in response to customer's desire for a single source of machinery and automation in integrated cells and strong demand for its viper linear robot series, including from customers who have purchased other brands of injection molding machines. The company told PlasticsToday that it will invest Euro 2 million in the expansion.

Of the 1000 sq m to be added, 750 sq m will be used for assembly of robots and automation cells with new office space occupying the remaining 250 sq m. Engel anticipates staffing to rise above 60 from its current 45. Jörg Fuhrmann, managing director of Engel Automatisierungstechnik Deutschland GmbH, said that Engel's market share within automation has grown and the company has reached its capacity.

Engel Automation, Hagen, Germany
Building contractors Jörg Fuhrmann (right) and Rolf Sass (left) with the architect Bernd Neuhaus, at the site of Engel's expanding automation facility in Hagen, Germany.

Nearly half of automated manufacturing cells sold by a European producer of injection molding machines now come from Engel, according to Rolf Sass, managing director of ENGEL Deutschland GmbH in Hagen. The Schwertberg, Austria headquartered supplier of injection molding machines and automation reported similar statistics in October 2010, when it released its financial results for that fiscal year.

At that time, the company said that one in four robots sold to the European injection molding industry was manufactured by Engel, adding that since the launch of the viper robot series, which was finalized at that year's K Fair, a growing number of robots were being sold onto machines of other manufacturers. 

Engel's primary automation manufacturing center is in Dietach, Austria. Its Hagen, Germany facility will celebrate its 10th anniversary in 2012 and add a new hall by next March. Engel also produces conveyor systems and some peripheral automation equipment at its site in Kaplice, Czech Republic.

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