Germany-based manufacturers Continental and Osram announced they have successfully concluded negotiations to create the Osram Continental GmbH joint venture, a company in which each of the partners has a 50% stake, aimed to combine Continental’s and Osram’s respective expertise in lighting, light control and electronics. The joint venture is scheduled to start in the second half of 2018, once all the necessary merger control approvals have been granted.
The joint venture will be based in Munich, but it will operate globally to ensure rapid development cycles with customers in their local areas. The product portfolio will feature semiconductor-based lighting modules such as LED modules for front and rear headlights, laser modules and light control units.
Continental currently operates in Mexico 19 plants, a finance center, a sales office and two R&D centers, which employ more than 24,000 workers. The extensive portfolio of products from Mexico ranges from high-quality surface materials for vehicle interiors, brake systems and turbochargers to instrumentation and passive safety solutions right through to control units and chassis control systems for cars, trucks and specialist vehicles.
Aside from the auto industry, at its San Luis Potosi site, Continental also manufactures textile conveyor belt systems for mining and other industrial applications, for example for conveying cement, aggregates and copper ore.
Osram has three manufacturing plants Mexico, located in Tepotzotlan, State of Mexico; Monterrey, Nuevo Leon and Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua. All three facilities boast ISO9001 and ISO14001 certification and together employ around 2,000 people to manufacture of incandescent, fluorescent energy-saving, low-voltage halogen, tension grid, mercury and sodium vapor, mixed, automotive and photo-optical lighting. The company also has trade offices in strategic locations throughout the country.
“We want to actively drive forward technological change in the lighting market within the automotive industry and develop even more innovative and intelligent lighting solutions. The joint venture will help us to establish the conditions for this since it combines our expertise in software and electronics with Osram’s automotive lighting expertise. As such, we will be able to offer our customers an unrivaled portfolio in the lighting market,” said Andreas Wolf, head of Continental’s Body & Security business unit.
“Digitalization is creating new potential applications in automotive lighting and, in turn, tremendous opportunities that we want to leverage with Continental. By joining forces, we will be in an even better position to drive forward innovations by working closely with the automotive industry to integrate lighting, sensor technology and electronics seamlessly in a single application. This will allow us to advance new intelligent light functions such as the combination of lighting and sensor technology in a module or light-based communication between the driver, other road users and the vehicle’s surroundings,” explained Hans-Joachim Schwabe, CEO of Osram’s Specialty Lighting division.