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Another outstanding year for NKE – 87 percent sales growth and 50 new jobs

. Janet Mo

NKE AUSTRIA reported another outstanding year: Sales hit 43.3 million euro in 2008, up 87 percent over the previous year. The main areas of growth were wind energy, gearbox and agricultural machinery sectors.

87 percent growth and 50 new jobs

To cope with the rapid growth, NKE started building new headquarters in the Stadtgut Steyr industrial park in July 2008. Twelve million euros will be invested in the new office and production facilities, which will have a total floor space of 10.000 square metres (ca. 110.000 square feet) and are scheduled for completion in May 2009.

The company recruited 50 new employees in 2008, upping its workforce to its current level of about 170. The goal of a 10 percent share of apprentices has been realised by taking on seven additional apprentices. To ensure effective training and ease skills shortages in the long run, an apprentice workshop was established in cooperation with Austrian vocational training institute BFI.

Awards as recognition

In December 2008 NKE won an award in the “Women’s Advancement Initiative” in Austria. With 40 percent women in the workforce, the bearing manufacturer lies far above the industry average, also on the management level: four of the nine department heads are female. To help its female employees find a balance between job and family, NKE offers flexible working hours and will, in Summer 2009, introduce a holiday childcare service. 

NKE was also awarded the innovation prize “Schrittmacher 08”, impressing the jury with its innovative tailored solutions for different industries. In the past 12 months, the company has developed 375 custom bearing solutions.

Positive outlook for 2009

Despite the difficult current economic environment, NKE has a positive outlook for 2009, as NKE’s commercial Managing Director Heimo Ebner explains: “We started the new year with a full order book, which will even take us some way into 2010. Growth potential exists especially in renewable energy, for example wind energy, and infrastructure, such as railways. As part of our expansion drive we are this year for the fifth time exhibiting at the Hannover Industrial Fair.”

NKE produces standard and special bearings for all industrial applications. In addition to product development and application engineering, NKE provides a full range of technical services and training. NKE’s products are distributed through 15 international representative offices and more than 240 distribution outlets in 60 countries.