Contintental: the story of the most advanced factory in Lithuania

2021-08-04
Contintental: the story of the most advanced factory in Lithuania

Lithuania has long been a valued partner of Germany. The Baltic country has attracted numerous German companies, such as Hella, Rehau and Schmitz Cargobull. Probably the most famous case of cooperation between countries, however, is Continental’s plant in Lithuania. After all, the German automotive parts manufacturer brought the largest ever greenfield investment to Lithuania, while creating an innovative Industry 4.0 plant.

Already Continental employs over 350 people in its plant in Kaunas, Lithuania, which opened its doors back in October of 2019. Nevertheless, although that number is impressive, other milestones reached due to the close cooperation between Lithuanian and Germany are even more significant.

Continental managed to build its 22,000 square metre premises for production, administration, and storage in little over 15 months. As expected, the new plant in Kaunas meets all requirements of Industry 4.0, including automated equipment, environmental protection, and sustainability.

During its three years of operation, Continental has had such a successful start in Lithuania that the company is now planning to employ 500 more staff by 2025and double its manufacturing output. Meanwhile, plant size will be increased by 15,000 square meters.

According to Shayan Ali, General Manager of Continental Automotive Lithuania: “The positive experience and all kinds of support we received from the community, our partners and institutions in Lithuania allow us to believe that Kaunas’ plant is ready for even further development. We hope that our growth will continue to be as smooth as it has been so far. We see Kaunas as a car electronics hub and we are very happy to contribute to the growth of this sector in the region.”

Now such factories are popping up one after another due to Lithuania’s EU-leading higher education numbers diverse talent pool. It contains 41,500 engineers, r 31 500 IT specialists, alongside more than 40,000 students in both these specialties combined. Lithuania is also ranked 2nd globally by Bloomberg for ‘tertiary efficiency’.

Continental’s plant in Kaunas was awarded second place in the Emerging Europe Awards in the Best FDI project category. Indeed, it is one of the most attractive workplaces in Lithuania and Continental is working closely with local educational institutions, such as Kaunas University of Technology. Moreover, there is significant support from the municipal government, with free public transport routes being coordinated and kindergartens and bicycle lanes are planned for both Continental’s employees and the community.

Cases such as this demonstrate that Lithuania is a hidden champion among the EU member states and remains l a premium business and investment location. While economic relations between Germany and Lithuania have steadily intensified, the new industrial revolution is setting new standards for countries who want to maintain and increase their market share. These success stories prove that close cooperation between Germany and Lithuania, both in public and private sector, can create magnificent results – ones that would not be possible otherwise.

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