China’s Dongfeng Motor has established its first overseas research and development center after buying a 70 percent stake in a Swedish engineering firm, the Chinese newspaper New Express reported.
Sweden’s T Engineering AB, formerly a unit of the bankrupt car manufacturer Saab Automobile AB, has 32 employees researching technologies related to internal combustion engines, hybrid vehicles, electric cars and chassis control systems, among other products.
Dongfeng Motor’s first operation dedicated to overseas research and development, the center is expected to provide technical support to the company’s passenger and commercial vehicle business. With help from Saab’s experience in developing automotive software and electronics products, T Engineering’s business may expand into electronic architecture.
Full statement from Dongfeng:[statement]
DFMs first international R&D base has settled in Sweden
Dongfeng Motor Corporation and T Engineering AB (T Engineering AB, hereinafter referred to as “T”) in Sweden signed an agreement. DFM has acquired 70% shares of T. This means the first international R & D base of Dongfeng is now officially settled in Sweden. T Company as the first Dongfengs overseas R & D team, will further enrich the R & D resources, and provide electronic control technology support and services for home developed passenger utilities and commercial vehicles industry, and further accelerate and promote Dongfeng internationalization process.
Before the agreement was signed, Mr Zhu Fushou, Dongfengs CEO and deputy party secretary, had a friendly meeting with the T shareholders, management and all employees. On the behalf of Dongfeng Company, the Strategic&Planning department manager Mr Liao Zhenbo signed the agreement with T shareholders about acquiring 70% shares of the company. Later, the director of DFTC, Mr Fang Chi, on behalf of Dongfeng Technology Center signed a project cooperation agreement with T.
T Engineering is located in Innovatum Science Park in Trollhattan, Sweden, currently has a total of 32 employees, has been focused on the technology development project. Their main areas of researches include combustion engine controls, hybrid and electric cars, as well as the transmission and chassis control system. It has many years of experience in automotive software and development of electronic products for production. In the future , the company will also expand to the field of electrical architecture, mechanical integration and so on.
T engineering used to provide service for internationally renowned automobile companies. After joining Dongfeng, it will run as an oversea R&D institute affiliated to DFM, and take corresponding development tasks. But T Engineering will retain its independence and do projects-oriented research and development activities for all of DFM as well as other companies.
The acquisition of T Company, is a strategic choice for Dongfeng to meet international demands, and improve in-house development. It is also an important measure to enhance Dongfengs in-house development capacity fast and effectively. In automotive research and development, software and electronic control units play a crucial role, but it is also the technical bottleneck that make it difficult for Chinese own brand manufacturers in to break through.
Through the successful acquisition of T Company, Dongfeng has a complete world-class electronic control team to fill the blank of vehicle and powertrain electronic controls development in DFM, which help DFM to become a world class company in this area.
According to Share purchase agreement signed 23 September 2012 the acquisition will be finished in two phases. The first phase is to purchase 70% of the shares, and then the purchase of the remaining 30% will be completed within two years.
In order to accelerate and upgrade DFM R & D capabilities and build team work, as early as the beginning of this year, DFTC has started three projects cooperation’s with T.
In the Future, DFM will further expand overseas research and development business on the base of T engineering; extend from electronic controls to transmission system and vehicle platforms and further to build an international center that broadly utilize European automotive technical personnel. [/statement]