Europe's Market Leader Continues to Grow

In the 2011 / 2012 business year turnover increased by 29 percent to 1.638 billion €

Horstmar, (PresseBox) - Despite an especially volatile market, Schmitz Cargobull AG has increased its vehicle production by more than 19 percent to 43,169 vehicles. In the 2011 / 2012 business year (1 April 2011 to 31 March 2012) turnover actually increased by 29 percent to 1,638 billion €. "We have expanded our market leadership in an environment that is still characterised by its economic difficulties", sums up Ulrich Schümer, Chairman of the Board of Directors at Schmitz Cargobull. At the same time, the management of the leading European trailer manufacturer also wants to open the "Gateway to Asia". In cooperation with the leading Chinese HGV manufacturer Dongfeng, production of vehicles for the Chinese market should start in the Wuhan region as of 2014.

In view of the turbulent economic development in Europe, Schmitz Cargobull has increased flexibility in all of its seven factories over the course of the business year. Temporary increases in demand were followed by sudden declines in orders, which were then balanced out again by boom months: At times, the box vehicle factory at Vreden ran a three shift operation with up to 20 shifts per week. "On balance, the box vehicle factory achieved the highest output in the history of the company this business year, with 16,230 vehicles", reports Ulrich Schümer. Production at the main factory in Altenberge increased by 21.9% to 16,275 flatbed vehicles (previous year 13,351). By the end of the business year the factory had 4,416 employees. Moreover, 1,069 temporary employees were also employed at the locations.

Within the scope of Strategy 2016 Schmitz Cargobull will focusing more strongly on the growth market of Asia. The Letter of Intent already signed with Dongfeng Motor Company Ltd., the leading Chinese commercial vehicle manufacturer, back in April 2011, with the aim of establishing a joint venture for the shared sale and production of semitrailers, represents one major milestone for the future. The target is for an assembly factory in the Wuhan region to commence production in the year 2014. "China has the fastest-growing commercial vehicle market in the world", explains the chairman.

Over the coming years, significant growth rates are predicted for the international transport industry. "Moreover, many markets are currently experiencing a period of transition. New long-distance road networks and the effective use of urban areas are the trendsetter for tractor-semitrailer combinations and truck bodies", states Mr. Schümer.

Slight decrease in the current business year

"Due to the continuing economic volatility of the European market, we are expecting to take a small sideways step to about 41,000 vehicles for the current business year", explains Ulrich Schümer. There are then signs that growth will continue again in the following years. The investment volume in machines, development and further training will increase considerably in 2012 / 2013 and should remain at a similar level in the following years. The chairman predicts a turnover of approximately € 1.6 billion € for the business year 2012 / 2013.

The service companies have emerged as an important pillar of the business strategy and also as a sales driver. Spare parts supplies, Full Service and maintenance, trailer telematics, used vehicle trade as well as financing from one source all contribute to the positive overall result of the group, with solid revenues. Furthermore, the reliable service offers strengthen the Schmitz Cargobull image throughout the entire life cycle. The readers| choice as the "Best Brand 2012" in the trailer category underlines this successful path.

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