Miele to Open First US-Based Factory
December 14, 2023
In order to pave the way for further growth, Miele announced in March that it would be setting up an additional production facility in the United States. The exact location has now been finalized: the German family-owned company’s first plant on the American continent will be built in Opelika, Alabama. Production is scheduled to start by the end of 2024. In the first phase, the plant will employ 150 people.
The United States, where Miele has been represented by a sales and service company for 40 years, is the largest market outside Germany. At the same time, the company still sees a lot of growth potential. The new site will enable Miele to produce the ovens and ranges designed for the USA, Canada and Mexico close to the respective region. Later, the matching ventilation hoods will also be produced there.
“This reduces the delivery time from up to ten weeks today to just a few days in a customer-friendly way and also reduces the impact on the climate,” said Dr. Stefan Breit, executive director, technology at the Miele Group.
Opelika is a fast-growing and prosperous city in south-east Alabama with a current population of around 32,000. Including the neighboring city of Auburn, which is home to one of the state’s leading technical universities, more than 100,000 people live in the region.
“This means that there is a good supply of skilled workers, including highly qualified engineers,” said Dr. Uwe Brunkhorst, senior vice president, Cooking Business Unit, which is one of the most important growth drivers for the Miele Group in the USA and as a whole.
“Miele is one the world’s most iconic home appliance brands, and we’re thrilled to have this great company select Alabama as the home for its first U.S. manufacturing facility,” Governor Kay Ivey said. “Miele is a wonderful addition to our state’s business community, and I look forward to the day when its new Opelika facility is turning out first-class appliances.”
Thanks to the neighboring industrial companies, particularly in the automotive sector, Miele also found good conditions for the development of a local supplier network. In the interest of further CO2 savings, the majority of parts that Miele does not manufacture itself will also come from the USA. The transport links are also ideal, as the plant is close to Interstate 85 and just a 75-minute drive from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL).
“Overall, Opelika offers the best conditions for a successful start for our new plant, including the long-term perspective for further expansion stages,” Brunkhorst continued. Brunkhorst and the entire Miele Group thank the city of Opelika and the State of Alabama “for their outstanding support in the process so far” and look forward to further cooperation.
“We are excited to announce the arrival of Miele to our vibrant community. We are committed to fostering innovation, creating high-quality jobs, and contributing to the economic growth of our community,“ said Opelika Mayor Gary Fuller. “Together, we look forward to a future filled with shared success and lasting positive impact.”
Today, the Cooking Business Unit’s production is distributed in Germany as the following: cooktops and steam ovens, as well as warming drawers come from the Bünde plant (approx. 730 employees), ventilation hoods from Arnsberg (approx. 250 employees) and ranges, ovens and steam ovens from Oelde (approx. 670 employees).
“The new site will give all three plants the capacity for future increases in production volumes for the other model ranges,” said Brunkhorst.
Including the new plant, the Miele Group international production network will include a total of 16 locations, eight of which are in Germany and one each in Austria, China, the Czech Republic, Romania, Poland and the USA. In addition, there are the two plants of the Italian medical technology subsidiary, Steelco Group.
Photo credit: Miele USA
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