Engineering group Edag acts as cost manager between design and production

Fulda. The move by original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to fill every available market niche with individualized models has benefited Edag Engineering + Design AG, which specializes in finding cost saving solutions for small-series productions.

In many cases Edag specialists are not only part of the team involved in the design of vehicle body work and production machinery, but are also project managers and system integrators, responsible for the co-ordination of suppliers, according to Matthias Topp, a spokesman for the management board.

Edag boss Topp, who was born in Thueringen and holds three engineering diplomas, said that Edag is "more than just an elongated workbench" and acts as a cost saving development partner within the automotive industry.

The company, with 3,540 employees worldwide, has an impressive list of recent projects. Edag was responsible for the complete design and development of the Mercedes C-class T-model and the Peugeot 206 SW. It has also done engineering work on the Hummer 2, the Smart car, the VW Beetle convertible, the VW Polo and the Chrysler Voyager.

In 2002 the company had a turnover 400 million euros, a 17 percent rise in comparison to the year 2000. After tax and including interest, the profit was approximately 12 million euros.

Edag's client base is global. For each large OEM Edag has assigned a global key account manager. Sales and project management are handled by 26 worldwide branches, which are located in close proximity to the OEMs. Design services are dealt with centrally at the design center at its headquarters in Fulda.

In the longer term Edag boss Topp hopes to increase the company's share abroad from its current 20 percent to up to 50 percent. He has high hopes for the Asian market. Due to the high demand from Chinese automobile manufacturers and suppliers Edag will soon open an in an additional location in China. "That way we have a wider basis and our company will be less exposed to economical imbalances within the individual markets," Topp said.

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