The new base of logistics operations will be in the district of Meissen, just a few kilometers from the town of Nünchritz, where WACKER operates a silicone and polysilicon production site. This spring, the Finsterwalder Group purchased a site of nearly seven hectares in a commercial zone near the communities of Glaubitz and Zeithain.
14 meters tall, 240 meters long and 145 meters wide, the warehouse will provide more than 57,000 pallet bays, most of which will be used by WACKER. The company plans to store silicone sealants, pyro¬genic silica and building-protection agents. Hybrid polymers that will be produced in Nünchritz beginning in 2022 will be stored here as well. Finsterwalder will be responsible for delivering, storing and shipping the goods. “In recent years, we have consistently invested in expanding our production, which, besides increasing our output, has also boosted our demand for logistics and storage areas,” says Nünchritz Site Manager Jutta Matreux. “We have been using Finsterwalder’s services for years, and their new logistics center is a key component of our planning and an indispensable factor in the growth of the Nünchritz site going forward.”
The Finsterwalder Group maintains numerous logistics sites in Germany, with operations in Bavaria, North Rhine-Westphalia and Saxony-Anhalt. Until now, the company had lacked a base of operations in Saxony, but that will change with the warehouse in Zeithain. “The logistics center clearly has a lot of strategic value for us,” says General Manager Michael Finsterwalder. “This investment will allow us to greatly enhance our logistics presence in Saxony and tap into new growth opportunities.”
Headquartered in the Allgäu region of southern Germany and operating throughout Europe, the Group has for years provided shipping and warehousing services for WACKER’s Burghausen (Bavaria) and Nünchritz (Saxony) sites. Construction of the logistics center in Zeithain marks the beginning of a new era of collaboration. The Finsterwalder Group will store finished WACKER products at the high-tech facility and then ship these to customers, either via truck or shipping container. “Our philosophy is to grow with our customers,” says Finsterwalder. “The new logistics center in Zeithain now gives us an opportunity to move forward and grow our many years of successful collaboration with WACKER. We want to contribute to the success of WACKER within our long-lasting partnership.”
The building permit for the new logistics center is expected to be issued in fall. Construction work could begin in early 2022 pending approval from the authorities. In addition to the warehouse and truck parking, the site will include tree plantings along the B 98 highway between Glaubitz and Grossenhain. Plans also call for trees to be planted at an offset site in the Meissen district. “Environmental restoration work represents good practice for projects of this scale,” Finsterwalder emphasizes. “We’re planting more than 1,000 trees and shrubs to adequately compensate for the environmental impact of the facility.”
If everything goes according to plan, the logistics center could begin operations as early as the end of 2022. In order to ensure that the facility is appropriately staffed, the logistics company is planning a recruiting drive for next year at the latest. The goal will be to find well-trained, skilled employees both in business professions and in commercial trades. “Prospects for regional candidates will be particularly good,” says Finsterwalder, who anticipates 90 employees in Zeithain over the long term. “Despite having fully automated warehouse and material-handling technologies, we will be dependent on people who know something about this field – that means we need well-trained, skilled employees who really put their heart and soul into their work.”
Founded in 1937, the Finsterwalder Group has grown from a shipping company headquartered in Kaufbeuren, Germany, to become a modern logistics services provider operating throughout Europe under the slogan “Finsterwalder – family of logistics” (www.finsterwalder.com). The companies within the Group offer a wide variety of logistics services in addition to warehouse logistics and transportation and shipping services. The Group’s customers include industrial firms, automakers, food companies, machine manufacturers and chemical corporations.
WACKER (www.wacker.com) is a globally active chemical company headquartered in Munich, Germany. With a wide range of state-of-the-art specialty products, the Group is a leader in numerous fields and industries. Its products are used in countless high-growth end-user sectors, such as photovoltaics, electronics, pharmaceuticals and household/personal-care products. The Group’s worldwide integrated production network currently encompasses 26 production sites. Established in 1914, the company earned roughly €4.69 billion in sales in 2020 and had 14,300 employees (December 31, 2020).
The Nünchritz Site
The Nünchritz chemical site, located some 45 km northwest of Dresden in the German state of Saxony, has been part of the WACKER Group since 1998. The site makes silicon-based intermediates and downstream products, as well as hyperpure polycrystalline silicon for the solar industry. Thanks to its integrated production network, the site manufactures an exceptionally wide range of silicone products: silanes, silicone fluids, silicone emulsions, antifoam agents, silicone rubber and pyrogenic silica. Other key operations at the site relate to production and filling of silicone adhesives and sealants for the construction and adhesives industries. With some 1,500 employees, the Nünchritz site is one of the region’s largest industrial employers.