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© PeterPhoto123/ShutterStock

Top Investments 2016 in Hessen

Palletways Group Ltd. decided to construct a brand new headquarters for its German hub in Knüllwald due to an ever-increasing delivery volume to which the current 55 network member companies contribute. This comes in addition to delivery volume increases resulting from continuous expansion into new European markets and countries as well as the central distribution function. The hub in Homberg that Palletways began operating in 2011 reached its capacity limitations. The processes in the new facility, which cost approximately €10 million to build, are considerably more effective than those in the former facility in Homberg (Efze) featuring only four production lines. This involved the construction of a 7,300-square meter transshipment hall on a 51,000 square meter property in just under 11 months. This facility has the capacity to process up to 3,500 pallets each night. An entire 30,000 square meters thereof serve as roadways and parking space for around 90 trucks and 24 cars. The 15,000-square meter grassy area features a 6,000-square meter biotope.


The South African construction equipment manufacturer Bell Equipment (Germany) GmbH has invested around €5 million in Alsfeld in Middle Hessen. The company, which has been operating in Alsfeld since the year 2000, is currently in the process of expanding its new European headquarters on location. A building complex spanning a total of 4,700 square meters of office, workshop, and warehouse space is set to be constructed on a 3.1 hectare property. Starting in May 2017, all distribution and service activities in Germany and 20 additional national markets in Northern, Central, and Eastern Europe will be coordinated centrally from Alsfeld. The Alsfeld location also serves as the company’s European central replacement parts warehouse and its northern hemisphere logistics hub.


Kingfa Science & Technology Co., Ltd., a company founded in 1993 and headquartered in Guangzhou, China, is primarily involved in the REFINING of plastic compounds and is the Asian market leader with a production capacity of around 1.5 million metric tons. Its product portfolio includes all known polymers. Kingfa operates 36 sales offices across the world and exports its products to over 100 countries and regions.

In Germany, the company plans to establish a production line, a research and development center and a distribution and service office. The new facilities will be used for the production of compounds, i.e. the refining of semi-finished plastic products in an extrusion step, as well as the execution of the aforementioned distribution and research activities. Production is set to begin in June 2016.


Velodyne LiDAR opened its first German location in Rüsselsheim on June 1, 2016. Velodyne was founded in 1983 in Morgan Hill, California and was initially active in the audio business. The company began specializing in LiDAR technology in 2007. LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) is a method of optical distance and velocity measurement using laser beams.
The system is used in autonomous vehicles to enable the recognition and avoidance of traffic obstacles. The first self-driving cars tested by Google in 2010 were equipped with LiDAR technology designed by Velodyne.
In addition to Google, the company’s customers include Ford, Volvo, Caterpillar, and TomTom.

From Rüsselsheim, Velodyne plans to expand its Germany-wide activities as well as its contacts to the German OEMs by hiring 10 employees.


Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation (SMBC) was originally founded in 1876. The bank was renamed SMBC following a merger with Sakura Bank in 2001. The bank is now the third largest in Japan (behind Mitsubishi UFJ and Mizuho Bank).


Asahi Glass Co., Ltd. (AGC) is a glassmaking company founded in Japan in 1907 that now has over 50,000 employees worldwide. The glass façade of the MyZeil shopping mall in Frankfurt was produced by AGC.

Business purpose in Germany: Distribution and marketing of industrial glass products, including industrial applications in car interiors (among other things), worldwide but primarily in Europe.

More information: www.invest-in-hessen.com/business-location-hessen

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