Issue: Jan 2008


HBPO Joins in Opening of Mexico Auto Supplier Industrial Park



by Steve Barclay

HBPO, a global leader in automotive front-end module engineering and production, participated in the opening of a new automotive supplier industrial park in Toluca, Mexico.

Among those taking part in the ceremony were Felipe Calderon, President of Mexico; Oscar Albin, director of Procurement & Supplier Quality for Chrysler de Mexico, and Holger Rapp, president of HBPO North America.

The event took place at Gestamp Automocion, a metal components and structural systems supplier to the automotive industry, within the industrial park. HBPO displayed its front-end modules, along with other key automotive parts and components suppliers.

Beginning in 2008, HBPO will supply built in-sequence front-end modules in complex variations for a future Chrysler vehicle. The front-end modules are a breakthrough automotive innovation that includes structural front-body carriers, cross members, engine cooling systems, electronics and accurately positioned headlamps.

"HBPO's third production facility in Mexico is a significant step forward in our operations," said Rapp. "The Toluca, Mexico plant will allow HBPO to supply Chrysler with a unique, cost-efficient and convenient product."

In 2007, HBPO North America opened production facilities in Windsor, Canada and Fenton, Missouri.

HBPO GmbH was founded at the beginning of 2004 as a joint venture between the automotive supplier companies Hella KGaA Hueck & Company, Behr Group GmbH and Plastic Omnium.

HBPO is the only company in the world to specialize in the design, development, assembly and logistics of complete front-end modules. These are complete assembly units, the main components of which are lighting engineering, engine-cooling, air-conditioning, assembly and cross members, crash boxes, electronics, locks, air routing parts and bumpers.

The three parent companies are currently world-wide innovation and market leaders for lighting and electronics (Hella), vehicle air conditioning and engine cooling (Behr), exterior body components, impact absorption and pedestrian protection systems (Plastic Omnium Auto Exterior).

With corporate headquarters in Lippstadt, Germany, global sales for 2007 have increased to approximately $1 billion USD. HBPO employs more than 1,300 people worldwide. It will assemble an estimated 2.7 million front-end modules this year at 16 plants in Europe, North America and Asia.

North America is the fastest-growing region for HBPO with North American headquarters and a pilot production facility in Troy, Michigan, USA. Production facilities are in St. Louis, Missouri, USA; Windsor, Canada; and Puebla, Hermosillo and Toluca, Mexico

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