Behr-Hella expects India to grow at double the pace of its global business

Source: Economic Times, 22 June 2022

European Auto component major Behr-Hella Thermocontrol GmbH (BHTC), a leading player in the climate control and thermal management solution, expects India to grow at double the pace of its global businesses. The company plans to tap into the growing domestic market and use it as a critical sourcing base for EVs.

The global board had visited the country to inaugurate the new manufacturing facility in Pune. In an exclusive interview with ET, Michael Jaeger, CEO of BHTC Group, stated that India will be amongst the fastest growing market for BHTC globally.

“We expect India to grow at a CAGR of 15% in the next five years, as against a plan of 7% growth we expect globally. The new facility will cater to the growing demand in the country but will also be a key strategic export hub for our thermal management system and automotive displays or Human Machine Interface solutions,” said Jaeger.

The company has committed Rs 100 crore to expand a new facility in Pune.

The German auto component maker expects the share of Indian business to double to about 10% of its total revenues and profits in the next five years. BHTC believes that the shift towards electrification only adds to the opportunities for the company to grow, and its content per car is only set to grow in the coming years. The share of exports which is merely 5% of its total business at present is likely to shoot up to 25% by 2025.

This location will grow on the manufacturing side and R&D side. The company will be hiring about 150-200 engineers to participate in global development of projects, “The big growth plan for the global development from India. The centre of competency here will also work on software development for global projects,” added Jaeger.

BHTC’s engineers in India are already working on the latest technologies and innovations for our local and global customers. With the expansion, BHTC aims to accelerate the global development activities in the coming months and ramp up our R&D strength to about 300 very soon.

As a global centre of competency for advanced climate control and HMI solutions, BHTC continues to leverage their local expertise to provide end-to-end, innovative and cost-effective solutions to their global and local customers.

The head of BHTC believes that the change in the interiors is becoming a “key differentiator or USP” in the automotive industry, which puts BHTC in a very good position given its products that are very well integrated into functionalities of the future cars.

“We sincerely believe that the Indian automotive industry can play a key role in the global industry. Having a strong presence in India will play a key role in the future of BHTC,” added Jaeger.

The facility in Pune already specializes in end-to-end product development and manufacturing of advanced HMI and Climate Control Panels for leading automotive OEMs in India and across the Globe. The facility houses an advanced testing and validation centre, global R&D centre, global IT and shared services under one roof.

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