GEBZE, Turkey (Oct. 23) — Teklas Kauchuk San. Ve Tic. A.S. said it will bring its Bulgarian plant on stream within two weeks, to make coolant hoses and assemblies for an unnamed auto manufacturer.
Teklas plans to increase production at the factory in Kurdjali, Bulgaria during the coming months, said Raul Danon, board member at Teklas. He said Teklas already has approvals from several car makers to provide hose made at the site.
This is just the first phase of a significant international expansion by Teklas, said Danon. The company has acquired land in southern Bulgaria, about four hours' drive from its headquarters in Turkey, and the firm will make a final decision on a second factory for coolant hoses in the near future.
Danon said the manufacturer is shipping compound from its existing mixing facilities to the Bulgarian unit.
Teklas has posted sales growth of at least 20 percent in each of the last four years, behind growth in business with both new and existing customers. Auto makers are encouraging the firm to expand internationally, Danon said.
The project, in a predominantly Turkish speaking part of Bulgaria, was established to allow Teklas managers to learn about managing satellite manufacturing facilities, and to take advantage of low labor costs and a well-educated population, said Danon.
The next international project, said Danon, will support one an unnamed car makers and be located close to one of its factories.