Company Makes Strategic Investment to Support Growth in Eastern Europe and welcomes its global President and CEO, Jim Keane, to its official opening
Prague, 20th January, 2015 – Steelcase Inc., the world leader in the provision of high performance workplace solutions, celebrated the official opening of its newly built plant in Stribro, Pilsen, Czech Republic. More than 180 guests, that included media, employees, senior management from Steelcase’s US headquarters and local authorities, were invited to join a range of celebratory events that took place in Steelcase’s premises on the recently opened Panattoni Logistics Park. Steelcase’s President and CEO, Jim Keane was in attendance to formally ‘cut the ribbon’.
The plant in Stribro is a model plant and a critical part of the Steelcase EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa) and global manufacturing network, where Steelcase aims to showcase best practices for its other plants. Its primary role is to produce melamine case goods for the EMEA market. Opened just last October the plant already employs more than 150 people, but long-term it plans to build a larger workforce, with positions ranging from shop floor to senior management personnel. Many will find employment in the modern 26.000 sqm Steelcase plant, which is equipped with cutting-edge technology, especially in the field of laser edge banding.
In his speech during the official opening ribbon cutting, Jim Keane said: “Eastern Europe is a strategic market for us, and our facility in Stribro provides a high potential location for our long-term growth plans in the EMEA. Steelcase supports leading organizations around the world and this move is demonstrating our global reach and commitment to the EMEA region.”
Explaining some of the reasons why the company chose Stribro as its base for the region, Keane went on to say: “We need to export to the whole of Central Europe, so an excellent infrastructure was our most important condition for selecting a new site. At the same time, we needed reliable and skilled workers. We have found all of that in Stříbro in the Czech Republic. The total capital investment in this facility is approximately $25 million.“
Steelcase has been present in Central Europe since the early 1990s and operates through established dealers in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland and Hungary. Steelcase has therefore managed to establish a footprint in all of its typical customer sectors: banking and finance, telecom, consulting and utilities. With Linstram as its local partner, Steelcase´s list of clients in the Czech Republic already includes leading names such as Kooperativa pojišťovna, a.s, Raiffeisenbank, PwC, KPMG Česká republika, s.r.o, J&T Banka, a.s. and VEOLIA VODA ČESKÁ REPUBLIKA, a.s.
Steelcase is the world’s largest manufacturer of office furniture and it has been conducting business in the Czech market since 1993. Its new plant will be one of just four (Rosenheim/Germany, Sarrebourg/ France, Madrid/Spain) Steelcase facilities in the EMEA region. Globally Steelcase employs around 10,700 workers and last year the company reported global sales of almost 55 billion crowns (3.0 billion U.S. dollars). The company invests heavily into research and development with R&D spending totalling an equivalent of two billion crowns (over 100 million U.S. dollars) in the last three years.
For over 100 years, Steelcase Inc. has helped to create great experiences – wherever work happens – for the world’s leading organizations, across industries. We demonstrate this through our family of brands – including Steelcase® and Coalesse®. Together, they offer a comprehensive portfolio of architecture, furniture and technology products and services designed to unlock human promise and support social, economic and environmental sustainability. We are globally accessible through a network of channels, including over 800 dealer locations. Steelcase is a global, industry-leading and publicly traded company with fiscal 2014 revenue of $3.0 billion.