IL: SKF Opening $30M Global Technical Center in U. S., Plans 200 Jobs
14 Aug, 2014
SKF continues its commitment to R&D and to North America by investing in a new Global Technical Center in the U.S. The center will initially employ approximately 80 engineers within the first four years of operation, with plans to expand to 200 in subsequent years.
SKF plans to build a new 130,000 sq.-ft. facility in the greater Chicago area. The Global Technical Center Americas (GTCA) reinforces SKF’s strategy to have these Centers near its important customers to focus on market-specific product innovations, leveraging all of SKF’s five platforms – bearings, seals, mechatronics, lubrication systems and services. It joins two centers recently opened in China and India, while the two new European centers are under construction, one in Holland and one in Sweden.
“One of SKF’s driving forces is to continue to deliver world-leading research and innovation and to develop products that deliver significant energy savings for our customers,” says Tom Johnstone, SKF president and CEO. “This newest center will strengthen our global network of technical centers that support each of our key regions. The Naperville, Illinois-based R&D center will complement our existing technical center in Plymouth, MI, and help drive our growth ambitions for the U.S. market. Over the past five years investments of over USD 2.5 billion (SEK 17 billion) have been made by SKF in the U.S. both by building new facilities and the acquisition of the lubrication company Lincoln Industrial and most recently Kaydon Corporation.”
“We have long been recognized as the world technical leader and innovator in our field,” states Poul Jeppesen, president of SKF USA Inc. “The GTCA will bring world-class SKF knowledge and experience closer to our customers in order to increase the speed of delivering new products and solutions to market. Our engineers will be working more closely with our customers in order to solve tomorrow’s engineering problems today, tackling challenges from energy efficiency to reliability and increased productivity. GTCA will also strengthen our connections to the excellent university search work in North America.”
SKF plans to initially invest approximately USD 30 million (SEK 200 million), including employing around 80 engineers, during Step 1, which should be completed within four years. Eventually the facility may house up to 200 employees. Construction begins this fall and operations are expected to begin by the end of 2015. Recruitment of the first wave of engineers and technical specialists will begin in September 2014.
SKF is a leading global supplier of bearings, seals, mechatronics, lubrication systems, and services which include technical support, maintenance and reliability services, engineering consulting and training. SKF is represented in more than 130 countries and has around 15,000 distributor locations worldwide. Annual sales in 2013 were SEK 63,597 million and the number of employees was 48,401. www.skf.com. ® SKF is a registered trademark of the SKF Group.