Schaeffler sells fine blanking business to Swiss tool maker

German automotive and industrial bearings supplier Schaeffler is selling its fine blanking business to Swiss tool maker Güntensperger in order to streamline its activities, the company said.

Schaeffler’s blanking business based in Romanshorn, Switzerland, part of the company’s industrial division, has 20 fine blanking lines and processes strip steel and non-ferrous metals. The business generated CHF 50 million (€46.6 million) of revenue in the previous business year. The details of the transaction were not disclosed, but the takeover is scheduled for finalisation in the first half of 2017.

The move is part of its cost savings measures through consolidation of plants in Europe and Americas. “The sale of the fine blanking activities is an important first step towards a concentration on our core competencies and portfolio optimization,” said Klaus Rosenfeld, CEO of Schaeffler.

While Schaeffler was able to continue its growth trend in Q3 (ending 30 September 2016), it was hampered by its industrial division. Whereas revenue in the automotive division grew by 2.6% year-on-year to €7.7 billion in the first nine months of the year, the industrial division saw a revenue drop of 7.1% y-o-y to €2.3 billion, hit by a weak industrial market in all regions. The industrial division accounts for 22.8% of Schaeffler’s revenue. Nevertheless, the company expects positive effects from steel price increases.

Laura Varriale, PLATTS