IAC Group Expands Manufacturing Footprint With Vehicle Interiors Facility In Romania

KREFELD, Germany (January 24, 2011) – IAC Group announced today it will invest 58 million Euros to build a new greenfield manufacturing facility in Bals, Romania, in the southwest Oltenia region. The state-of-the-art facility will produce instrument panels, door panels, headliners and various other interior trim components to support Ford Motor Company’s production of two new passenger cars at its plant in Craiova, Romania.

IAC is the first automotive supplier to set up a greenfield facility in Romania to support Ford’s operations in Craiova. IAC intends to employ approximately 400 personnel at the Bals facility when fully operational.

“I am very proud to announce this key investment for IAC in Romania,” said Jens Höhnel, IAC Group President and CEO of Europe. “This strategic expansion allows IAC to support one of its important global customers, Ford Motor Company, as it continues to expand globally. Furthermore, it strategically positions IAC to support other automotive customers in the region.”

The Romanian Government supported this investment project with state aid worth 17 million Euros. This state aid will be granted in various installments and will add to the 58 million Euros IAC plans to invest in Romania. This investment will have a multiplying effect by developing other related industries in Romania.

“We hope the IAC Group investment in Bals will become, in time, an important factor for the economic development of the southwest Region of Romania,” stated the Romanian Minister of Public Finance, Gheorghe Ialomitianu. “Many new jobs will be created and state-of-the-art technologies will be transferred to our country. This is a major contribution to the development of our automotive industry. At the same time, with IAC’s support and the overall contribution of the Ford project, we expect to see major investments in human resource training, as well as research and development programs in partnership with regional universities.”

“We would like to express our appreciation to the Romanian government for all their support and the opportunity to develop our investment project in Bals,’’ added Höhnel.

The 15,000 square-meter facility that IAC will establish in Romania will be a manufacturing center of competence for IAC. In this capacity, the company will work with regional universities and technical schools to jointly develop curriculum and training programs to help educate the workforce and develop commercial and technical talent for the region. The plant will include injection molding equipment ranging from 500 to 3200 tons and new skin and foaming technologies.