The Volkswagen Crafter’s successor will be manufactured in Poland from 2016. For this purpose in Wrzesnia, Wielkopolska, a new plant will be constructed, in which manufacturing will be launched during the second half of 2016. Along with construction of the new Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles Plant, at least 2300 new jobs will be created.
„The decision to manufacture the Crafter in Poland means that we are charting a new direction in the strategic development of Volkswagen light commercial vehicles”, said Dr. Leif Östling, Management Board Member of Volkswagen SA, responsible for the commercial vehicles areas. At the same time he added: „The Crafter is ideally suited to all markets around the world, showing an upward trend and simultaneously causes the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicle brand to take a further step on the way to becoming a global manufacturer.”
The new plant in Wrzesnia, manufacturing on the basis of Modular Floor Platform Commercial Vehicles, will next to VW Poznan be the second Volkswagen Commercial Vehicle manufacturing centre in Poland. For 10 years the VW Caddy urban delivery vehicle has been manufactured there. Dr Eckhard Scholz, President of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, said „While manufacturing the Caddy in Poland we gained vast experience. Also the region around Wrzesnia offers us optimal framework conditions from the point of view of economy, infrastructure, and labour market”.
Along with the decision to open the new plant, as of 1 April 2014 Jens Ocksen (53), who served as the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles Management Board Member for Manufacturing and Logistics to date, will be responsible for realization of the Crafter project and will take on the role of CEO of Volkswagen Poznan Sp. z o.o. (Limited). He will remain a member of the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles Management. The Manufacturing and Logistics Division, for which he was responsible to date, will be assumed by Dr. Josef Baumert (48), previously the General Director for Technology at Volkswagen Group Russia and Plant Head in Kaluga.
Jens Ocksen emphasized: „The plant in Wrzesnia will in every aspect take advantage of its close proximity to VW Poznan – and both in terms of manufacturing, logistics, and suppliers, and, above all, experience.” In addition, Polish and foreign suppliers will locate around the plant. „This fact will result in an employment increase in the region. Moreover, we will broaden our manufacturing base in Poland basing on over twenty years of experience in the manufacturing of light commercial vehicles at Volkswagen Poznan. Regardless if it’s the Caddy, Transporter T5, or in the future the Crafter from Wrzesnia – commercial vehicles „manufactured by Volkswagen in Poland” is a historic success, which we will continue along with today’s decision on building our new plant”, continued his statement Jens Ocksen.
The future plant terrain covers 220 hectares, and will be composed of a vehicle body manufacturing, painting, and assembly departments. Construction is planned to begin at the end of 2014. Manufacturing is to begin during the fourth quarter of 2016.
Jens Ocksen, before he became the production manager at a former Joint Venture in Taipei (Taiwan) in 1993, was a manager at one of the vehicle production departments at Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles in Hanover.
In 1996, Jens Ocksen Msc Eng returned as the manager for the Assembly Department at Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles. In 2003 he was entrusted with managing the Quality Assurance Department for Vehicles and Engines at Volkswagen SA. In 2006, Jens Ocksen went to Volkswagen Poznan, where he was made the Production Manager, then in 2007 President of the Management Board for VW Poznan and at the same time Board Member for Technology. In 2010 he became a member of Management at Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles in Hanover responsible for production. In 2012 he was appointed to the position of Board Member for Volkswagen Commercial Vehicle Brands.
Dr Josef Baumert is a doctor of biological sciences and engineer in production organization and management. He began working for Volkswagen Group in 1995. At Volkswagen de Mexico he was responsible for, among others, the technical production department, and from 2001 in Wolfsburg at the vehicle body production department for the Golf wagon and Bora. In 2004 he was entrusted with planning production at the metal stamping and vehicle body department in Wolfsburg, in 2005 again the technical production department for the Golf, Golf Plus and Tiguan models.
Volkswagen Poznan Sp. z o.o. (Limited)
Volkswagen Poznan located in Poznan, Wielkopolska Voivodeship. The plant was opened in 1993 as a Joint Venture between Volkswagen SA and the Poznan „Tarpan” plant. In 1996 Volkswagen Poznan was assumed 100% by Volkswagen SA, and a year later merged into the structure of the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles brand. The total area of the plant, comprised of three areas, is 739 000m², of which 90% of the area is occupied by production halls and buildings. At the end of 2013, employment at VW Poznan amounted to 6500 people. Last year 170,900 light commercial vehicles were produced here.
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