With a new plant near Bengaluru, the HÜBNER Group is strengthening its presence in India and significantly expanding its production capacities for the mobility markets in the Asia-Pacific region. Together with business partners and other guests of honor, company owner Reinhard Hübner, Managing Director Kai Mentel and Site Manager Uwe Sperber took part in the official inauguration ceremonies for the “Namma Factory”.
“The new ‘Namma Factory’ makes it possible for HÜBNER to operate more effectively, more flexibly and with shorter delivery routes in India’s growing market,” says Kai Mentel, Managing Director of the HÜBNER Group. “With local production at the new location, we are not only meeting localization requirements and reliably serving the needs of our customers, we are also strengthening the entire global production network of the HÜBNER Group.”
A production location with great prospects
For HÜBNER, India is a location with great manufacturing potential for the mobility markets in India itself as well as in the Asia-Pacific region as a whole. “In line with our strategy, we are also focusing on proximity to our customers in India,” emphasizes Kai Mentel. “We want to manufacture in India for India. And, as the HÜBNER Group, we aim to strengthen local know-how and to expand local engineering expertise.”
HÜBNER’s Indian subsidiary HUBNER Interface Systems India Pvt. Ltd. (HIN) moved from its previous location in Dabaspete and commenced operations at the new plant in Malonagathihalli, Nelamangala Taluk near Bengaluru with approximately 125 employees at the end of 2022. By the end of 2023, the number of employees is expected to grow to around 175.
Flexibly adapting capacities flexibly to meet customer needs
The new plant is part of the “Namma Factory” project (English: Our Factory) which was launched in 2020. The facility has been designed as a “green” factory. “We are very pleased that ‘Namma Factory’ will really become ‘our factory’ with its official inauguration – in the fullest sense of the word,” emphasizes Uwe Sperber, Site Manager of HUBNER India.“With a plant that has been precisely tailored to our needs, we can now run production more independently of supplies from other HÜBNER Group sites and flexibly adjust capacities for our local customers as required.” In addition to sewing and assembly steps, complex metalwork is now also possible, including CNC milling, bending and welding.
Including the property acquired in 2016, HÜBNER Group has invested a total of approximately eleven million euros in the new plant. The plant previously used in Dabaspete were leased and had become too small.
Production for rail projects in India and Oceania
In “Namma Factory”, HÜBNER will primarily produce gangway systems for rail vehicles. With its products, HÜBNER is represented in renowned projects throughout the subcontinent. Ongoing major projects include the metros in the Indian capital Delhi and in the financial metropolis of Mumbai, as well as the metro in the Australian city of Sydney.
In addition, a total of 540 gangway systems will be delivered to Indian Railways for the Vande Bharat Express (Train 18) by autumn 2023. Train manufacturer Alstom has also ordered a total of around 400 gangway systems from HUBNER India for the new RRTS regional express train and the metro projects Pune, Kanpur & Agra and Bhopal & Indore.
Supplier for Indian Railways, Alstom, BEML and CRRC
Another HUBNER India customer is the local manufacturer BEML, which will purchase a total of 800 gangway systems for metro lines 2 and 7 in Mumbai by 2025. For the metro in Bengaluru, whose trains are being built by the world’s largest manufacturer CRRC, HÜBNER is producing 135 gangway systems, plus 70 gangway halves.
HÜBNER’s new capabilities become clear when comparing the size of the previous and the new locations. In 2016, HÜBNER had acquired a 38,000 square meter plot of land for the new plant in Malonagathihalli, Nelamangala Taluk near Bengaluru. The new building now has a total area of 8,500 square meters, of which 6,500 will be used for production. At the old location, there were only 3,000 square meters to handle all of the company’s processes, and this space was distributed among three locations, which were several kilometers apart from each other.
Local companies build with sustainable materials
For the construction of the new plant, HÜBNER relied on the expertise of a consulting company for resource-savingconstruction and is now the proud holder of a Green Building certificate in Platinum. As little soil as possible was moved at the construction site. After completing the work, the building was handed over to HUBNER India on schedule in November 2022 by the contracted construction company CICON Engineers Pvt. Ltd.
“When building the ‘Namma Factory’, it was important to us from the outset to use sustainable materials and local companies and suppliers whenever it was possible and made sense,” says Bettina Kraft, HÜBNER project manager of “Namma Factory”. “It was equally important to us that with the new plant we offer our employees a workplace where they can feel comfortable thanks to optimal ventilation and plenty of daylight.”
The focus was also on sustainability in regard to building services. The new factory features with solar panels, an in-house wastewater treatment plant, a passive ventilation system (wind and thermal buoyancy) for the production hall and rainwater harvesting. In addition, as few areas as possible have been sealed on the factory premises, with large areas devoted to vegetation and an on-site pond.