ZHENJIANG, Jiangsu – HELLA BHAP Electronics (Jiangsu) Co., Ltd., the joint venture established in 2018 between the German supplier and Beijing Hainachuan Automotive Parts (BHAP), the components unit of BAIC Group, celebrated its opening here on January 9.
On a production area of 7,000 square meters, the series production of control units for sunroofs was initially started here at the end of last year. The production of components for lighting electronics will follow in just a few months. Subsequently, the production portfolio is to be gradually expanded to include additional products from the areas of energy management and driver assistance. The corresponding expertise is already being developed.
Initially, the customers of HELLA BHAP Electronics are mainly subsidiaries of the BAIC Group. Subsequently, the customer base shall be expanded to both the Chinese and global market. The JV currently has around 65 employees, to be continuously increased in the course of further expansion stages.
“Against the backdrop of industry change, innovative thinking and a sincere cooperation with partners are key levers for the successful further development of automotive companies. BHAP will therefore continue to deepen its cooperation with HELLA and bring the resulting synergies into the joint electronics joint venture,” said Xu Xiaojiang, executive vice president of BHAP. “In this way, we will strengthen its performance both in the Chinese and the global market for mutual benefit and jointly shape the mobility of the future.”
“The strength of the HELLA BHAP Electronics joint venture is not least rooted in the combination of technological expertise and direct market access,” said Jörg Brandscheid, who was recently appointed head of HELLA’s electronics business in China. “This results in a win-win situation for all partners involved. As HELLA, we are thus strengthening our presence in the Chinese market, in accordance with our strategy: in China, for China.”
HELLA has been present in China for almost three decades. The company is currently represented in the country with 16 companies (including five JVs) and employs over 5,500 people. In the fiscal year 2018/2019, HELLA generated sales of over €800 million in China.
Xu told China Automotive Review in an interview that even though he expects China’s auto sales in 2020 to continue to fall, it also represents an opportunity. BHAP has restructured its product mix over the last two years to adapt to the market and hopes to turn challenges into opportunities.
Brandscheid, on the other hand, said in an interview that times of crisis help to reduce investment cost and the best way to tackle the current crisis in the market is to develop new products catered to new electrification trends and localize products and control cost with help from local partners.