Investment brings innovation and jobs to north-west Poland

A project to modernise and expand a washing machine and refrigerator production plant in Wronki, Poland has brought more than 1 200 new jobs to the region. The investment in innovative technologies and production processes has enabled Samsung to deliver high-quality products to the marketplace.

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The domestic appliances now made at the plant are being distributed to the rest of the European Union, central Asia and Africa. Before the expansion at Wronki, the Samsung group supplied those markets from factories based in South Korea and China. By producing top quality goods in Europe, the company has been able to bring down supply-side costs, cut delivery times and reduce distribution costs. The investment in advanced machinery and equipment is also allowing Samsung to produce appliances at the Polish plant which offer customers improved performance at competitive prices.

Employment dividend

The changes at the site have given the region’s economy a boost and helped to lower the unemployment rate. Increasing the plant’s capacity and the deployment of innovative production technologies has added 1 229 new jobs to the company payroll. The investment has also secured the future of 614 people who worked at the factory before it was expanded. In addition, suppliers have taken on more employees to cope with increased demand from Samsung, while the factory itself regularly uses thousands of agency staff.

A key part of the project has been the development of an in-house Product Engineering Department, which aims to develop the company’s products while delivering a strategy to improve production technologies at the plant. The experience gained by the new team will enable it to carry out wider ranging research and development projects at the request of Samsung HQ. The department is also helping to improve the region’s overall R&D potential.

Advanced products

New products that have been developed at the site and taken to market include:

  • two-door, side-by-side fridges with a range of new functions;
  • slim washing machines which boast substantially improved levels of performance;
  • standard washing machines that offer market-leading levels of performance; and
  • single-door fridges with improved performance compared to what is currently available on the market.

Total investment and EU funding

Total investment for the project “Deployment of innovative technologies in Samsung washing machine and refrigerator production plants” is EUR 16 255 900, of which the EU’s European Regional Development Fund is contributing EUR 13 817 515 from the Operational Programme “Innovative Economy” for the 2007 to 2013 programming period. Work falls under the priority “Investments in Innovative Undertakings”.

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