Wärtsilä-CME Zhenjiang Propeller Co. Ltd, the joint venture company set up by Wärtsilä and CSSC (China State Shipbuilding Corporation) in China to design, manufacture and deliver Fixed Pitch Propeller (FPP) packages, has officially started operating at the beginning of June 2004.
“This joint venture company brings Wärtsilä close to Asian customers, which will help us to serve them better. As the focus of the world’s shipbuilding industry shifts heavily to Asia, Wärtsilä has the opportunity to increase its market share. In 2003, for example, Asian shipyards attracted orders for 1400 new vessels compared with 400 in Europe,” says Mikael Mäkinen, Group Vice President, Ship Power.
The company will produce LIPS and Kaida brand propellers. The joint venture’s market area initially be China and Asian market, and later the whole world. The bulk of the world’s propeller market, 75-80% consist of FPPs. Typical applications for FPPs are bulk carriers, container vessels and tankers.
Wärtsilä owns 55% of the joint venture company and Zhenjiang CME Co. Ltd (CME) 45%. CME is a wholly owned subsidiary of the CSSC. The joint venture will commence operations in CME´s premises in Zhenjiang some 220 km west of Shanghai. The Chinese party will provide the plant’s production equipment and personnel, while Wärtsilä’s contribution will be the design and manufacturing expertise. The new company will have approximately 260 employees.
The contract to establish a joint venture company was signed in December 2003. Mr Richard Wiefelspuett has been appointed Managing Director by Wärtsilä.