Heiligenhaus, February 15, 2022
On Tuesday, February 15, 2022, Mr. Beck, mayor of Heiligenhaus and Mr. Parnow, visited Kiekert AG. This was the first such visit in years that local authorities visited Kiekert. This allowed Kiekert’s top management to present the current situation of the Group and to discuss the future of a key automotive supplier.
CEO Debreu, the Chairman of the worker’s council, Uwe Höhndorf, the entire team of executive vice-presidents and other major managers of the Group greeted the mayor and introduced him to the brilliant past of a 165-year-old company and its recent history. The difficulties which the automotive industry and its suppliers are facing as a result of the pandemic have been presented. Also highlighted were the benefits of a regular relationship between local authorities and Kiekert. Despite current adverse circumstances stemming from the market downturn, shortages of materials and increasing inflation, the Group has succeeded in controlling its finance and in fostering an ambitiously tailored restructuring plan.
A visit of the Heiligenhaus plant was the focal moment of the meeting. It allowed the distinguished visitors to witness the dedication and determination of Kiekert’s workforce which maintains the high reputation and skills of the Group. Innovation and new products were presented and duly discussed, allowing the visitors to make contact with some of the key features of future locking systems.
Mr. Debreu and Mr. Höhndorf are working closely together. Both detailed the change of policy enacted since Mr Debreu took office last July, which led to the decision to preserve and develop the Heiligenhaus plant. All plans to transfer business away from the headquarters facilities were stopped. Instead, an increase of production volume over the next two years by a regrouping of production lines is under way. An extra of 40 million Euros of sales will be located in Heiligenhaus and 150 new members of staff will be recruited. In addition, management will promote an active policy of training and targeted recruiting once Kiekert will re-achieve the pre-crisis sales level of 2019.
Kiekert’s German presence will as a result be notably enhanced and consolidated. Mr. Debreu clearly stated that as a German and European group serving customers worldwide, Kiekert AG must extend its activities in its home country, duly relate and contribute to the German and European business environments. At the same time, it retains the advantages of its long-term experience and settlement in Asia and the Americas, where Kiekert supports key German and other manufacturers.
The managing director of the Industrial Union Metal in Velbert, Mr. Civelek, was also part of the visit and voiced his support for a policy aimed at reinforcing employment, presence, research and development in Heiligenhaus.
Kiekert wishes to thank Mr. Beck and his delegation for their visit, interest and expressed support for a company proud to be located in Heiligenhaus and to be its biggest employer.
Kiekert is the world leader in Intelligent Safety Closure Systems with an estimated 21% market share. The Group and its controlled joint ventures employ 5,300 people who work in ten locations in ten countries which include eight R&D centres. Kiekert supplies more than 100 automotive brands worldwide. Kiekert owns 3,000 patents and 35% of the registered patents worldwide which accelerates innovation and digitalization. Kiekert is an independent and self-financed German AG headquartered in Heiligenhaus (Germany).