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Benecke-Kaliko Commences Construction on New Production Building in San Luis Potosi, Mexico

Benecke-Kaliko has started work on the construction of a new 7,000 m2 production building immediately adjacent to the existing plant in San Luis Potosi, Mexico. Beginning with the third quarter of next year, Tepeo and Tepeo 2 foils will be produced here for the North American market. The expansion, in which Benecke-Kaliko is investing around 11.4 million euros, will create approximately 100 new jobs.

A foundation stone was placed at the expansion site at Benecke-Kaliko's San Luis Potosi manufacturing facility during the groundbreaking ceremony.

Benecke-Kaliko has already been manufacturing Acella, Yorn, Tepeo and Tepeo 2 foils at the site since 2009 where it currently has more than 200 employees. The Tepeo and Tepeo 2 production operation is now going to be moved to a dedicated hall where manufacturing facilities will include an extruder, painting line and printing machine plus ancillary equipment, numerous adjoining rooms and additional warehouse space. This will enable production of the Tepeo and Tepeo 2 materials to match Acella and Yorn production while both areas continue to grow. The long-term plan is to increase the annual output from this year's 7 million m2 of sheet goods to 11.5 million by 2019.

"All of our customers in the NAFTA region will benefit from the new production line," declared Dr. Dirk Leiss, Benecke-Kaliko's CEO, at the laying of the foundation stone for the expansion in San Luis Potosi. "This is our response to the continued growth in demand for high-quality soft-touch surface materials for the automotive industry in this region." That is because Benecke-Kaliko is one of the world's leading premium suppliers of automotive interior foils and this expertise is becoming more and more in demand as greater emphasis is being put on vehicle interior quality as a differentiator.

Sustainable products

The material enables complex component geometries which previously were only possible with alternative technologies. In addition, the foils combine environment-friendly lightweight construction with exclusive interior design. Tepeo and Tepeo 2 are based on polyolefins and have a lower density than standard cover materials, resulting in a weight savings of up to 50%. They also feature high aging resistance to light, heat and chemical and mechanical influences and have an excellent look and feel.

Thanks to their outstanding environmental life cycle – from harvesting of the raw material to production and use and on to disposal – the foils are especially suitable for manufacturers whose focus is on sustainable vehicles. A study by Benecke-Kaliko has shown that the lightweight Tepeo foil has a 48 percent better CO2 footprint than standard foils.

However, the Acella products also have valuable benefits in terms of: Only water-based paints are used in the production of Acella Eco surface material. This reduces emissions by the material to a minimum and guarantees environment-friendly production. Acella Eco is suitable for long-term, direct contact with the skin. Its applications include vehicle seats and door trims.

Benecke-Kaliko's surface materials are manufactured to the same high environmental and quality standards worldwide. Local production in the world's major automotive markets ensures savings on transport distances and thus contributing in this way too to environmental conservation.

Continental develops intelligent technologies for transporting people and their goods. As a reliable partner, the international automotive supplier, tire manufacturer, and industrial partner offers sustainable, safe, comfortable, customized, and affordable solutions. The corporation with its five divisions Chassis & Safety, Interior, Powertrain, Tire und ContiTech generated sales of approximately €34.5 billion in 2014 and currently employs around 200,000 people in 53 countries.

The ContiTech division is one of the leading suppliers of technical rubber products and is a specialist for plastics technology. It develops and produces functional parts, components and systems for mechanical and plant engineering, the mining and automotive industries, and other major industries. In 2014 ContiTech and US company Veyance Technologies Inc., which it acquired at the start of 2015, recorded pro forma sales of around 5.4 billion euros and now employ around 41,000 staff in 34 countries worldwide.


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