New arrivals and expansions

SLOVAKIA has registered some new arrivals and extensions of existing companies, as well as a possible reduction of US companies from Slovakia over the past year.

GlobalLogic, a global IT player, opened a new engineering centre in Košice in early September.

“We’re expanding our business and continuing to grow the company in key markets around the world,” said CEO Shashank Samant, as cited on the company website. “The new centre in Slovakia is proof of our strategy to expand to central Europe and continue providing our customers with the best engineering talent across the world.”

The total investment is planned at $2 million with the plan to increase the labour force from currently 60 workers to around 500. It is concerns especially software developers, architects, project managers, technical leaders and IT experts with know-how in the field of health care, the automotive industry, telecom or Hi-Tech industries.

“Our long-term plan is to build a centre with 500 developers within a horizon of five years,” Ivan Hruška, who leads the centre, told the SITA newswire.

According to him, Slovakia belongs among the countries with the most quickly developing IT sectors in Europe.

“It is strong in science and research and innovations in the technological sector,” said Hruška highlighting the position of Košice, the second biggest city in Slovakia after Bratislava, as a Slovakia’s IT valley.

Johnson Controls, one significant US investor in Slovakia, has reported expansions of its automotive technology centre in Trenčín as well as its production plant in Námestovo in April, while its job opportunities in Lozorno might be endangered.

“The Johnson Controls technology centre in Trenčín is an important part of our global research and development network for automotive seating and interior products,” said Rainer Schaab, the vice president of European Johnson Controls Automotive Seating, as cited in the press release. “We have invested in this new facility in order to offer our employees a state-of-the-art working environment and to accommodate potential future growth.”

The new facility is 11,000 square metres in size. With approximately 480 employees, Johnson Controls operates in Trenčín, the largest technology centre for the automotive industry in Slovakia. Its team provides services in the areas of development, testing and benchmarking of complete seat systems and seating components for cars, as well as interior components such as instruments and door panels, floor consoles and overhead systems. The employees in Trenčín work for Johnson Controls as well as its customers, automakers around the world.

The centre was established in 2004 and is one of the company’s 14 technology centres worldwide for automotive seating and interior solutions.

According to Schaab, Slovakia is an important business location for Johnson Controls, which, with more than 5,500 people, is one of the largest employers in Slovakia.

The same month Johnson Controls announced that it is expanding its production of car components to Námestovo.

“We plan to extend the premises as a consequence of new orders, which the plant in Námestovo has obtained,” Astrid Schafmeister told the Hospodárske Noviny on April 1.

The investment, planned at €7 million, should bring in a new hall and work places for almost 570 people.

Johnson Controls wants to stay close to its clients, which include the Korean carmaker Kia Motors Slovakia near Žilina and its sister company Hyundai in Czech Nošovice in that region.

On the other hand, slimming orders from the side of German carmaker Volkswagen endangers Johnson Controls’ activities in Lozorno, Hospodárske Noviny informed in late April. The Johnson Controls plant manufactures car seats for VW there. The order will lapse in 2017 and it is questionable whether the company would succeed in a new tender, the daily wrote.

In total Johnson Controls has production plants in Slovakia in Lozorno, Žilina, Námestovo and Košťany nad Turcom.

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