LG Hausys, a subsidiary company of the Korean LG Group, has signed an agreement to purchase 50.1% of shares in the Slovak company c2i, which produces composites components. The transaction is expected to be closed at the end of March 2017.
“I am excited to join forces with LG Hausys and the LG Group as a strategic partner as it provides a great platform for its development into a global leader of automotive and aerospace composites components. c2i will be benefit from the infrastructure, systems and global reach of a large industrial conglomerate whilst also keeping its agility intact. LG Hausys will access c2i’s carbon-fibre technologies for geometrically complex, ultra light-weight structures“, said Patrick Hessel, founder and CEO of c2i who will remain as company CEO post deal completion.
c2i engineers and manufactures ultralight carbon-fibre components for automotive and aerospace industry. Thanks to their qualities, they are valued especially in the segment of luxurious cars. The Slovak company supplies components for automotive OEMs and aerospace Tier 1s such as BMW, Porsche, Jaguar Land Rover and B/E Aerospace. c2i employs 450 people and has had a 64% CAGR over the last five years.
LG Hausys supplies plastic automotive parts and skin materials including various glass fibre thermoplastics to numerous automotive OEMs from its production facilities in Korea, China and the US. c2i is able to leverage the deep R&D capabilities of LG Hausys where over 30 top-level engineers pursue in-house development of novel composites materials and product applications, with a focus on structural design, simulation and component testing. Moreover, in cooperation with LG Electronics, LG Hausys has designed and manufactured a fully automated continuous fibre production line for complex structural glass-fibre components. The line is suitable for carbon-fibre components as well.
c2i shall use part of the investment proceeds from the transaction to set-up a dedicated R&D centre focusing on automated high-volume production technology development, aiming at minimizing material costs, scrap and labour content. „We aim to develop c2i into our Global Centre of Excellence for Carbon-fibre Composites,“ says LG Hausys Executive Vice President Dr. Kyung-Jip Min and adds „We also plan to expand on c2i’s aerospace capabilities by building another production facility for aerostructures within c2i´s industrial park.“
The deal is part of LG’s strategy for the auto-parts industry which LG Group’s top management identified as its next key growth area. The 130 billion USD turnover company aims to offer a bundled solution for next generation vehicles and have a unique product offering of critical systems such as electronics, audio, video, in-vehicle displays, automotive skin, EV motors and components, EV batteries and composites structures.