Demand in the automotive industry declines

Author: Mario Schmidtgen
Date: 23.09.2019

Automobile manufacturers take drastic measures

Many have already suspected it, but now it has become reality. The automotive industry is struggling with constantly decreasing demand and now the employees of the car manufacturers are also affected.

An example is Brandl Maschinenbau GmbH. The employees there will also suffer as the plant in Pfeffenhausen, Lower Bavaria, will be closed at the end of 2020. As a result, 120 employees will lose their jobs. The managing director comments this official position as a “dramatic change in the automotive supplier industry”.

Brandl restructuring Chief Axel Dransfeld explains this with the statement that it would be the only possibility, since the company is subject to enormous pressure. Nevertheless, things still look good for the locations in the Czech Republic and Romania.

The paint system manufacturer Eisenmann and the supplier Weber Automotive are also hoisting the white flag. Other companies, such as Avir Gussmann, are still holding their ground. The company was previously known as Neue Halberg Guss and is now trying to move away from thin ice with a new price proposal between the Hastor family and VW, which was reported in the media. Whether this fight will be won or not will be announced in a few days.

Employees must continue to suffer

Currently 1500 employees of the company Avir Gussmann in Saarbrücken and Leipzig are waiting for their salary for several weeks. The same applies to 200 employees who have not yet received any severance payments agreed. Thorsten Dellmann, IG-Metall spokesman, does not have high hopes at an information event and states: “Let’s all pray that the money will come”.

Investors such as GM, Volkswagen and Deutz fear a major crisis. This has the effect that an inflow of money in the single-digit millions is missing. The severance payments alone amount to approximately four million euros.

The reason for the thousands of unemployed who will probably follow soon is above all the low car sales in China as well as the weak economy.

E-mobility forces suppliers to convert. This means that they must now decide whether to save money or continue to invest. A lot of money has to be planned for the conversion and not every company has enough capital.

Not only small companies are affected, but also large companies such as Continental and Schaeffler. Even Schaeffler, which ranks sixth among car suppliers, has to limit its working hours. Continental is now also checking its plants for cost savings. The company is trying to make savings even in its German plants. Working hours will be reduced and factories may be sold.