Today the VDL Groep of Eindhoven announced that the agreement with Mitsubishi Motors
Corporation of Tokyo concerning the takeover of NedCar in Born has been signed. The actual transfer of the shares from Mitsubishi to VDL will take place on 14 December 2012. With this takeover the VDL Groep intends to further strengthen their position in the international automotive market. From 1 January 2013 the company will become an independent car manufacturer for third parties under the name VDL Nedcar. VDL Nedcar’s first customer will be the BMW Group, with which the contracts have also been signed. Following conversion of the production lines, MINI will be built for the BMW Group in Born
starting in the second half of 2014.
The activities of NedCar are a good match with the other activities of the VDL Groep in the automotive industry. As a subcontractor, VDL has supplied the passenger vehicle and truck industry with a wide range of parts, complex assemblies and complete systems for many years. The group also produces automated production lines for many car manufacturers around the world. VDL is also the Netherlands’ only bus manufacturer and one of Europe’s biggest players in the bus and coach market. The automotive industry is therefore an important market for the VDL Groep.
The production lines at VDL Nedcar will be converted and prepared for manufacturing MINI between 1 January 2013 and the second half of 2014. All 1,500 employees will therefore first receive unemployment benefits for a period starting on 1 January 2013. As the company ramps up its operating activities employees will return to work in phases (not later than 1 January 2015). The unemployment benefits will be supplemented by VDL Nedcar so that employees continue receiving 100% of their wages. All employees are therefore guaranteed full retention of their job and pay. In addition to the employees that will be needed for conversion of the factory and installation of equipment for the new production processes, some employees will also be seconded to other companies within the VDL Groep. Work will also be sought for the remaining employees at companies outside the VDL Groep.
NedCar of Born is the only large car manufacturing plant in the Netherlands. The factory has capacity for the production of around 200,000 cars per year, when operating in two shifts. NedCar, with over 300,000 m² of factory space, utilizes a highly automated production process (more than 700 industrial robots). Since it opened in 1967 more than 4.6 million cars (DAF, Volvo, Smart and Mitsubishi) have been built in Born. In 2001 NedCar became a 100% subsidiary company of Mitsubishi Motors Corporation. At the beginning of 2012 Mitsubishi announced it would stop production in Born at the end of 2012.