Fuchs goes big in at Beresfield 

German lubricants company Fuchs Lubricants has opened a $33 million manufacturing plant in Beresfield, New South Wales as a result of increased business in Australia – one of its top five markets. 

The state-of-the-art facility, which was built over a period of 18 months, will replace the Fuchs plant in Wickham, Newcastle, which has been operating since 1979.

The 25,000sqm plant will serve the mining, agricultural and transportation markets of Australia and New Zealand.

Fuchs Chief Executive Stefan Fuchs flew from Germany to officiate the opening ceremony of the facility in late  February.

“Australia is a key market for Fuchs, which is why we have invested in the new plant in Beresfield,” he said.

“It’s at the end of the freeway from Sydney, so we can move materials from north and south and we are closer to our customer base.”

The company said the new plant met the highest quality, safety and environmental standards.

It features a high degree of digitalisation, automatic highspeed filling and corrosion-resistant piping and tanks.

In addition, solar panels have been installed that generate up to 155 kilowatts of electricity and can cover more than 30 per cent of the plant’s electricity requirements.

Overall, Fuchs produces around 10,000 lubricant products for industries ranging from mining and automotive to transport and food.

While mining is the company’s biggest business unit, Fuchs Deputy Managing Director Stewart Knight said it had a balanced portfolio and five sales divisions which had allowed it to weather mining troughs.

“Mining has lots of opportunities given the size of the market and the automotive sector, and from our perspective our market share is one where we continue to grow,” he said.

“Almost all of the products for the local market were made at the Beresfield plant and a second plant in Melbourne.”

Mr Fuchs said the company’s business model focused on placing local people on the ground to manufacture locally in every country it operates in.

Fuchs racked up almost $3.9 billion in global sales last year, 30 per cent of which comes from Asia, where China is its largest business, followed by Australia.

Mr Fuchs said the company was enjoying renewed organic growth in Australia, China and the US.

“We see a robust economy, but due to the issues with national protection and tension in some countries I’m curious to know how long it will last. From an economic standpoint, though, it’s positive,” he said.

Mr Knight said staff levels remained the same at Beresfield, but there was more focus on  continuous improvement, maintenance and systems.

 

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