Knauf Insulation: 120 Million Euro Zagorje Investment Announced

Lauren Simmonds

Updated on:

Copyright Romulic and Stojcic
Copyright Romulic and Stojcic

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marija Brnic writes, Novi Marof received a new large investment of 120 million euros announced by Knauf Insulation in a close race with locations in Slovenia and Slovakia, which were shortlisted by the aforementioned German group. The group operates globally and is a leader in the production of building materials.

Before making the final decision, the main partner of the Knauf Group, Alexander Knauf, contacted the relevant state institutions, and a week ago, after a meeting with the Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development, Davor Filipovic, it was announced that the project will be realised in Novi Marof, where Knauf Insulation has been operating since the 1980s.

According to the answers we received from Knauf, the project is currently still in its preparation phase, and if everything goes according to expectations, the start of construction is expected at the end of this year and the beginning of next year. The start of production is planned for 2025 and most of this Zagorje investment will be in equipment and machinery, along with the expansion of Croatia’s own R&D potential. The planned portfolio of products from the new line based in Novi Marof will be largely similar to the company’s existing one.

However, according to Knauf, the production of some additional segments, such as products for green solutions, is also planned as part of this massive Zagorje investment. The expanded plant in Novi Marof will be one of the largest locations within the Knauf Group, which has more than 300 production bases worldwide, according to Dominique Bossan, Chief Executive Officer of Knauf Insulation for Europe, the Middle East and Asia and a member of the Board of Directors of the Knauf Group. Currently, Knauf Insulation has 236 employees in Novi Marof, and at least 70 more jobs are expected to be created with this new Zagorje investment.

The company operates in more than 40 countries, has 28 production facilities and 6,000 employees. Their annual turnover exceeds two billion euros but there is no data on the financial results for Croatia in the last year yet. According to the data for 2021, their revenues exceeded 64 million euros, and business has been seeing an upward trend.

The company is extremely export-oriented, with the share of exports in its total revenues standing at 81%. The main export markets are Italy, Germany and France, but they also export to other parts of the world much further away, such as South America. With this new Zagorje investment, the export potential will grow further, and their construction solutions will be marketed, according to Bossan, primarily in Italy, Slovenia, Hungary and Romania, and technical, industrial and green solutions systems will be delivered to all of Europe.

Priority is being given to local partners in the procurement of raw materials, of which there are more than 150. And when it comes to the selection of Novi Marof for the realisation of this investment in Knauf, they make it clear that the attractive location in the heart of Europe and a highly qualified workforce were decisive.

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