© ruwel PCB | December 30, 2016

Ruwel: Inner-layer production completely destroyed

As bad as the news from Ruwel in Geldern may be, there are still positive things to report. But let's start with the beginning.
In the early morning hours of December 27th, 2016, a fire broke out in the inner-layer production at the Ruwel factory in Geldern (Germany). The fire – extinguished only several hours later – leaves a mark. “The most important news for us is that none of our staff was injured”, says Rico Schlüter, CTO at Ruwel International.

This afternoon (December 30, 2016), first estimates on how much was destroyed can be expected. “We are talking about a higher, double-digit million EUR property value that was destroyed.”

Geldern location is secured

Parent company Unimicron has extensive production capacity in Asia and can support the German facility in its production needs. “A few hours after the fire, and in coordination with Unimicron, it was decided that a new inner-layer production should be build in Geldern. This will be a multi-million EUR investment”, says Rico Schlüter.

Ruwel hold a strategic importance for Unimicron, because the relationship with European customers is better served from a European location. Furthermore, the Geldern facility is focussed on Automotive production; a sector that is currently booming.

But what will happen until the new inner-layer production is ready to go online? "We are going to talk with our customers in the coming days. We have the possibility to relocate a large portion of the inner-layer production to Unimircon sites in Asia. They will return to Geldern as 'mass-lam' for the final production steps.”

"In addition, we are very proud of our suppliers and friends within the printed circuit board industry. As soon as the first pictures of the fire emerged in the news, all sorts of offers of help and support flooded in. This makes it possible for smaller batch sizes as well as express deliveries to be manufactured here in Germany. We will talk a lot during the coming few days."

"Of course, this fire is a very invasive event, but we have – unfortunately – not the time to mourn. We must tackle today's challenges and come back as an even stronger company," concludes Rico Schlüter.


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