The Berlin-headquartered logistics giant intends setting up a large distribution center for the automotive industry in Shenyang, China. According to plans the project will be realized together with a local Chinese partner. The projected joint venture (50/50%) still needs the approval of the Chinese authorities.
DB Schenker spokesman Peter Sauer leaves no doubt that not a single cent will be invested nor detailed information passed on to the media and interested public before the Chinese side has given their consent to establish a joint venture. Asked by CargoForwarder Global if DB Schenker’s future Shenyang partner is a financial investor or a major automotive company Peter remained tight lipped. He only said that from all he knows it will be a 50/50 joint venture, if given the green light by China’s competition watchdogs.
All what’s known up to this point is that the €20m-plus warehouse will comprise 45,000 sqm with construction work scheduled to commence in 2015. Once operational, mainly automotive parts from international but also local suppliers will be handled there.
"This upcoming joint venture is another important step to strengthen our leading position in contract logistics services within China," comments DB Schenker Chairman Thomas Lieb. "It is part of our strategy to increase our presence in the mainland’s growth regions and to provide quality logistics services for all our clients.”
Shuttle trains ensure continuous supply of parts
Shenyang, located in the northeastern part of China, has lately developed into a major center for the automotive industry, increasingly attracting foreign and local investments. Currently, 25 employees of the local DB Schenker station, highly trained and specialized in automotive issues, provide the full range of freight forwarding services there.
The logistics firm is since a long time a leading provider of transport and contract logistics services for the automotive industry. According to Peter Sauer, three trans-Eurasian cargo trains are currently leaving Germany each week to rail car parts and supplies to automobile producers in Shenyang. “The city is an essential location for car production in China,” he says.
Major firm is BMW that started assembling different models at its local Dadong production plant in 2003 in cooperation with its Chinese joint venture partner Brilliance China Automotive Holdings Ltd.
BMW automobiles have been rolling off the assembly line in the Shenyang plant ever since. Currently, the BMW 5 Series long-wheelbase version is produced there. In 2012 the grand opening of the second production plant “Tiexi” took place: in the new plant the BMW X1, BMW 3 Series Sedan and BMW 3 Series long-wheelbase are produced.
Is Brilliance DB Schenker’s partner of choice? Meanwhile BMW and Brilliance have jointly begun producing engines at a third location in Shenyang. The launch of this production line will allow the joint venture’s two production locations in Dadong and Tiexi to be supplied locally.
This might be a hint that DB Schenker’s future joint venture partner could well be BMW’s long-time ally Brilliance, since the new logistics facility shall not only handle car parts brought in from Europe by cargo train or freighter aircraft, but also those coming from the local industry, as stated in a release of the Deutsche Bahn logistics arm. However, an official confirmation is still pending.