Schaeffler begins downsizing combustion departments
The accelerated transformation of vehicle drives towards electromobility is leading to overcapacities at Schaeffler for products for combustion vehicles. For this reason and to reduce fixed costs, the automotive supplier is now announcing the elimination of a total of 1,300 jobs by the end of 2026.
The job cuts will primarily affect the Engine/Transmission Systems and Wheel Bearings divisions of the Automotive Technologies division as well as “central functions” of the company. 1,000 of the 1,300 jobs will be cut at German locations. Schaeffler further specifies that just under three quarters of the capacity reduction will be accounted for by jobs in administration and central functions in the area of research and development for internal combustion engines, the rest by jobs in production.
In Germany, the Herzogenaurach, Bühl and Homburg locations are mainly affected. According to the company, the measures are expected to lead to annual savings of up to 100 million euros. “The measures will generate transformation expenditures of about 130 million euros, most of which is expected to be recognized as a provision in the financial statements for Q4 2022,” Schaeffler writes.
This is because, in parallel, the supplier intends to strengthen the German locations affected by the capacity reduction by investing in new technologies. In Herzogenaurach and Bühl, this will be accompanied by an expansion of eMobility activities: In addition to the central laboratory already under construction, hydrogen activities are to be expanded in Herzogenaurach and the corresponding centre of excellence further developed. In addition, Schaeffler intends to increasingly develop components and systems for e-mobility there.
At the Bühl location, Schaeffler is expanding its development and manufacturing campus for electric mobility and converting the plant into the global lead plant for electric motor production. At both locations – Bühl and Herzogenaurach – efficiency in electric vehicle prototype construction is also to be further improved.
Matthias Zink, CEO of the Automotive Technologies division, comments on the announced job cuts as follows: “We are moving into an environment where being the technology leader is no longer enough. The critical factor now is to have in place the competitive cost structures needed to further accelerate the transformation process and ensure that Schaeffler is fully geared for powertrain electrification. And that in turn requires us to reduce our cost base and cut overcapacity.”