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Cold rolled steel strip is used, for example, in the automotive industry, toolmaking or manufacturing of industrial equipment. The German Waelzholz Gruppe, headquartered in Hagen, North-Rhine Westphalia, is one of the world's leading companies in the cold rolling industry. DEG - Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft mbH, is providing the Brazilian subsidiary Waelzholz Brasmetal with a long-term loan of several million US dollars for investments in expansion. These investments will be used to modernise facilities, increase capacity and further improve product quality.
With a staff of more than 2,000 worldwide, Waelzholz Group produces 650,000 tons of high-quality cold rolled steel strip and shaped wire annually at nine locations in Europe, North and South America and Asia. The Brazilian subsidiary was founded in 1973. In São Paulo approximately 350 employees produce cold rolled steel strip in different variations. Unique selling points of the Brazilian production site include special surface coatings and tempering processes. Its products are delivered to the local market but also to other parts of, for example, Latin America, North America, Europe and China.
"With our financing to Waelzholz we are supporting a German family business in its international expansion activities. Moreover, its Brazilian subsidiary plays a role in strengthening the local industry thanks to its own research activities," explains Klaus Helsper, head of Corporates Germany at DEG. "Continuous investment in state-of-the-art plant technologies is an important part of the Waelzholz Group's strategy. Only in this way can we ensure high-quality products. I am happy that the long-term loan provided by DEG will support us in putting this into practice at our Brazilian production site as well," adds Andreas Reil, president of Waelzholz Brasmetal.
Work processes at Waelzholz Brasmetal require intensive training of all employees. Apart from this, it is important to permanently adapt the expertise of the employees to technological developments. Therefore Waelzholz is continuously working on the further development of personnel qualification, for example in the field of leadership development. It is also in this context that DEG and Waelzholz are able to cooperate within the framework of DEG's Business Support Services, a newly developed advisory product for companies that wish to offer targeted staff training.
Providing finance and advice to German companies in developing and emerging-market countries is one of DEG's main areas of focus. In the past year alone, it extended EUR 253 million to German companies for investments in these markets - almost double the previous year.