The STIHL Group is expanding its chain production capacity in Bronschhofen in the Swiss canton of St. Gallen. A symbolic groundbreaking ceremony for the new building project took place on May 29, 2015. The extension represents an investment of 40 million Swiss francs and will provide 10,000 square meters of extra floor space for production and engineering. This will eventually create 50 new jobs. Construction work is due to be completed by summer next year so that production can commence in the autumn of 2016. A total of about 6,000 cubic meters of concrete, 900 metric tons of reinforcing steel and 470 metric tons of structural steelwork will be used for the extension.
Confidence in STIHL and Swiss location
"The building project reflects our confidence in the continuing successful development of our saw chain business," said Dr. Nikolas Stihl, chairman of the STIHL advisory and supervisory boards, at the groundbreaking ceremony. "STIHL pursues long-term strategies and continues to puts its faith in Switzerland as a business location – in spite of the strong franc." He welcomed the level-headedness of the Swiss government in not reacting to the strong franc with ineffectual economic stimulus plans. Councillor Benedikt Würth said, "STIHL stands for dependability and sustainability. The canton of St. Gallen looks back with pride and gratification at the positive growth over the past few decades, and we are happy to cooperate in the planning of future projects." Mayoress Susanne Hartmann praised the company's loyalty to its Swiss base, "This loyalty cannot be taken for granted in the face of increasing globalization. We will continue our efforts to provide a positive und supportive business environment in the region."
Efficient environmental protection
STIHL‘s executive board chairman, Dr. Bertram Kandziora, pointed out the environmental protection measures in the new building, "The environment also profits from this investment. The new part of the building will be heated exclusively by the waste heat from the production machinery and from compressors. It has thus been possible to completely eliminate the need for fossil fuels and geothermal boreholes."
Swiss saw chains in 160 countries
Speaking on behalf of all employees at the STIHL chain plants in Wil and Bronschhofen, general manager Joachim Zappe thanked the partners and the board of the STIHL Group for their investment decision and the trust they place in saw chain production in Switzerland. STIHL produces all its saw chains exclusively in Switzerland and exports them to 160 countries around the globe. Chain production has seen strong growth in recent years and has been steadily expanded. The STIHL chain production plants now employ about 900 men and women and this makes STIHL the largest industrial employer in Wil.