Drives and Controls Magazine
Moulding machine maker buys AMK’s automation arm
Published:  19 January, 2021

The German injection-moulding machine manufacturer Arburg has bought the drives and motors developer AMK Arnold Müller from its Chinese owner, Zhongding Holding Europe. The terms of the deal have not been disclosed.

Arburg says that the deal will give it access to AMK’s drives expertise and influence its future development work. It will allow the drive systems used in Arburg’s electric injection-moulding machines to be refined faster and more efficiently.

The two companies are said to have similar values. AMK has worked with Arburg as a development partner for its electric drive systems since 1994. Arburg says that this partnership has contributed significantly to the success of its Allrounder electric injection-moulding machines which it launched in 2001. These machines are largely equipped with AMK drive components.

“We are very confident about this important acquisition,” says Michael Hehl, Arburg’s managing partner and spokesman for its management board. “This underlines the importance of electric injection-moulding machines, whose share in our portfolio has been growing steadily for years and still has plenty of potential for the future.”

AMK Group, based in Kirchheim/Teck in southern Germany, was previously a family-owned business, until 2016 when the company and its two divisions – Drives & Automation and Automotive – was sold to the Chinese investor, Zhongding Holding Europe.

When the Chinese owner decided it wanted to make strategic changes to its portfolio, it gave the Hehl and Keinath families which own Arburg the opportunity to take over the Drives & Automation division. A new company, AMKmotion, is taking on the division’s employees. Its locations in Kirchheim/Teck and Weida in Germany, and Gabrovo in Bulgaria, will continue to operate.

AMK was founded by Arnold Müller in 1963, initially to develop and manufacture speciality motors, which a focus on solving problems previously regarded as insoluble. The company now employs about 900 people and its product portfolio now includes motors, centralised and decentralised drives, and control systems. Areas in which AMK has operated include geared motors, AC servodrives, motion control systems, air compressors and drives for power-assisted steering.

AMK’s portfolio includes motors, centralised and distributed drives, and control systems

Arburg was founded in 1923 and is now run by Juliane Hehl, Michael Hehl and Renate Keinath – third-generation members of its founding family. It currently has around 3,200 employees worldwide – 2,650 of them in Germany – and in 2019 it achieved a turnover of €738m. About 70% of its production is exported from Germany.

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