ZKW integrates LG Electronics’ rear light business: New locations in Korea and China
On December 19, 2019, the ZKW Group established a branch in Incheon, Korea, near Seoul. The lighting systems manufacturer is integrating the rear light business of LG Electronics and the development center and sales office will eventually employ dozes of specialists in the fields of lighting technology, electronics, and design. The aim is to further expand business in the Korean automotive market and the Asia-Pacific region.
In the future, sensors for assistance systems for autonomous driving will also be installed in rear lights. In addition, ZKW is integrating the rear light production of LG Electronics in Ningbo, China. “The new locations supplement our portfolio with the strategically important area of rear lights. They are a further milestone towards our commitment to provide 360° service for the automotive industry,” explains Oliver Schubert, CEO of the ZKW Group.
ZKW is developing into an “Exterior Lighting for Automotive” competence center
At the time ZKW was acquired by LG in 2018, it was already agreed that the “Exterior Lighting for Automotive” business unit would be jointly developed from that point, and that ZKW’s core competence in headlights would be merged with LG’s rear light business. This makes ZKW the competence center for lighting in LG Electronics’ Vehicle Solution segment.
“The rear light business is a strategically valuable component for us because we have not been active in this segment in the past,” says Schubert. “ZKW Korea will be a key development office and by adding these specialists in Korea, we gain additional expertise and capacity. We are very pleased that we were able to bring the highly qualified LG Electronics employees on board.” Staffing of the Korean office will be increased to around 80 by the end of 2020. They develop lighting systems with a focus on rear lights.
Rear light production in China
The rear lights developed to date are manufactured in Ningbo, China. The production site in Ningbo was previously managed by LG Electronics’ Vehicle Solution and is now under the responsibility of ZKW. Ningbo is the extended workbench of the existing ZKW site in Dalian. Both production facilities are located close to strategically important trading hubs. “The acquisition of the Ningbo plant means ZKW is now a full-range supplier of headlights and rear lights. We are striving to achieve strong growth in the Asian market and intend to increasingly supply local customers locally. We benefit from LG’s strong network,” says Schubert.