NEWS & MEDIA
HIGH POINT — Upholstery major Kuka Home is expanding its global manufacturing footprint with a new upholstery plant located in Monterrey, Mexico. The new facility will focus on special-order stationary upholstery for the North American market.
The Mexico plant, where equipment is currently being installed, will open with an initial 130,000 square feet of production space and 250 employees. Kuka aims to expand that to 750,000 square feet and 1,500 workers within the next five years.
Initial production should be 23 to 30 truckloads a month.
“As the factory gains experience, we’ll expand shipping to more dealers with more models and up to 100 truckloads a month by the end of the year,” Lush said. “We’re looking at an ultimate capacity of around 600 truckloads a month. This will serve what we feel is a growing part of the market: special orders with fast delivery capability.”
Kuka’s goal with the Mexico plant is a three-week production cycle and week to week-and-a-half transit for a total of four to five weeks’ delivery to the door. While the facility will produce fabric upholstery only to start, leather production should come online by 2021.
The Monterrey factory will begin production with in-line goods, but Kuka plans to develop new products exclusive to the Mexico plant by April High Point Market.
He added that the government of Monterrey’s home state, Nuevo Leon, has been very helpful in development of the new upholstery plant, from site research to assistance in the training of workers.
A larger plan
The Mexico plant “is part of our long-term vision to become a global manufacturer,” Lush said. “We started this process a year ago when we started our motion facility in Vietnam, which is now shipping 300 containers a month.”
In addition to expanding shipments from that current 300,000-square-foot leased facility, Kuka has purchased 45 acres north of Ho Chi Minh City where it will start construction this year on a 400,000-square-foot motion plant with room for additional growth.
Kuka also will continue production at its two plants in China.