The future of transportation may be electric, but Schaeffler, the German supplier that built its business around bearings, is confident there is still good money to be made in the future of internal combustion engines.
Schaeffler is heavily invested in components for internal combustion engines and their transmissions. Its $13.5 billion order book from automakers includes systems and parts for clutches, gearboxes, valvetrains and camshafts.
But the company also is keenly aware of the changing future. Like other critical suppliers, Schaeffler seeks a path to new technologies as regulations increasingly push the industry toward electrified powertrains.
"For Schaeffler and others, this means a massive transformation from an internal combustion engine-based product portfolio to a hybridized electrical one," said Matthias Zink, CEO of Schaeffler's automotive arm. Zink spoke last month at the Schaeffler Symposium in Baden-Baden, Germany, an event held every four years for customers and engineers where the company showcases its latest products and innovations. "This is where we have to, maybe not reinvent, but refine and reposition ourselves," he said.