FUCHS LUBRITECH on the Rise
FUCHS LUBRITECH: Expansion in Kaiserslautern almost finished.
One new high bay warehouse, two new production halls and modern offices for 70 employees: after the new building in 2002 and the first expansion in 2009, FUCHS LUBRITECH in Kaiserslautern continues to grow and the next expansion stage is already in the pipeline.
The new fully automated high bay warehouse doubles its previous capacities to enough room for 10,000 pallets thus representing state-of-the-art logistics. “A highlight is the energy-saving oxygen reduction facility which significantly reduces fire hazards and allows storage of mixed materials such as cardboards and chemicals, which would otherwise not be possible,” Markus Heck, Managing Director of FUCHS LUBRITECH explains. “Nevertheless, staff can still work in the warehouse but the air they breathe is thinner – like on the Matterhorn at an altitude of 4,500 meters.” A software program clears up the warehouse at night – almost as if done by an invisible hand. “Due to a lack of time, items not frequently used end up in the front section of the warehouse where they don’t really belong. The program straightens up such small errors at night or over the weekend,” says Mr. Heck. Two new production halls with a footprint of 1,000 and 1,300 square meters enable a significant expansion of production capacities.
The workforce in Kaiserslautern has grown from 180 to over 300 employees in the past nine years, and to stay abreast of this development, 70 new office spaces were created. “We want to be able to offer our existing but also future employees an attractive work environment representing various modern work amenities,” Mr. Heck emphasized, who managed this large project in cooperation with Plant Manager Matthias Pemsel.” On the one hand, a modern open office structure enhances vivid communication. The library, on the other hand, offers a quiet work environment uninterrupted by phone calls. We have also provided rooms for creativity, retreat and relaxation.” The header building, connecting the new high bay warehouse and the new production halls with the existing buildings, now houses the quality control laboratory. The footprint freed up by this move will be used for an expansion of the R & D labs. “It was a particular challenge to coordinate all the construction activities with the ongoing operation of the plant. In spite of the huge construction site, we managed to increase our production output by 13.7 percent,” the Managing Director reports with pride.
The total investment for this project is €16 million. After the acquisition of two neighboring plots with a surface area of 40,000 square meters in December 2017, FUCHS LUBRITECH now owns premises covering a footprint of 96,000 square meters.
“After construction is before construction,” refers Mr. Heck to the next project and the new plans already in the pipeline. By the end of 2019, another production facility shall launch activities on the newly acquired premises.” By then, Kaiserslautern will assume the entire production of polyurethane greases for the whole FUCHS GROUP,” Mr. Heck glances into the future.