Freudenberg invests in Russia

Weinheim/ Zavolzhye. September 28, 2012. Freudenberg Politex, a Business Group of the Freudenberg Group and the world market leader for polyester nonwovens for the roofing industry, is opening a new production line for spunbond nonwovens in Russia. Total investment in the expansion of the plant, at Zavolzhye in the region of Nizhniy Novgorod, is about €20 million. "This step underlines our strategy of further expanding our commitment to growing markets," said Dr. Mohsen Sohi, Speaker of the Freudenberg Management Board, at the press conference. "Russia is a key region. Since the start of our activities about six years ago, our sales have increased more than tenfold. Depending on future developments and market opportunities, we intend to continuously expand our activities."

Freudenberg's trading relations with Russia date back to 1855, when the company started to purchase hides and sell leather in the country. During the inauguration ceremony, Dr. Riccardo Sollini, Regional Representative for Russia of the Freudenberg Group, explained in his presentation to an audience of prominent guests that the Zavolzhye industrial park had been acquired in 2004 and had since been successively renovated. Production by Freudenberg Politex started two years later. The new facility has state of the art technology for the production of both staple and spunbond polyester nonwovens. 

"The new production line reinforces the position of Freudenberg Politex as the leading manufacturer of polyester nonwovens for the roofing industry in Russia," said Richard Shaw, President & CEO of Freudenberg Politex. This investment will add to the staple capacity 7,000 more tonnes of spunbond polyester, thus completing also the product portfolio for the construction sector in Russia. The main application of these nonwovens is the reinforcement of bituminous waterproofing membranes. Together with staple nonwovens, annual production will be boosted to 20,000 tonnes. Every day, the plant produces about 200 rolls of spunbond and staple nonwovens, enough to cover around 60 football pitches.

In addition to Freudenberg Politex, the two Business Groups EagleBurgmann and Freudenberg Household Products are present at Zavolzhye premises. The EagleBurgmann production and service center supplies customers from the oil & gas, paper, food and chemical industries. One of the projects in which EagleBurgmann is involved is the ESPO (East Siberia Pacific Ocean) pipeline. The pipeline in Eastern Russia, which will be almost 5,000 kilometers long, is being built by Russian state organization TransNeft. EagleBurgmann is supplying special seals for many of the pumping stations on the pipeline. Freudenberg Household Products has been producing plastics components for its Vileda household products developed especially for the Russian market since 2011. "The positive development of our three Business Groups in Zavolzhye is largely due to the commitment and flexibility of our regional management and our employees," said Sollini.

In total, six Freudenberg Business Groups are represented in Russia. Apart from Zavolzhye, they are located mainly in Moscow and St. Petersburg: Freudenberg Household Products (consumer and industrial cleaning), Freudenberg Chemical Specialities with Klüber Lubrication (specialty lubricants used by OEMS), Chem-Trend (release agents and special process chemicals), OKS (lubricants and chemo-technical repair products) and SurTec (chemical cleaning products and processes for industry and electroplating), Freudenberg Sealing Technologies (sealing and vibration control products for the automobile industry) with Simrit as well as Corteco and the TrelleborgVibracoustic joint venture (vibration control products for passenger cars and commercial vehicles).