WLP and RaktárAD top out Magna International Plant

Logistics

Yves Weerts, executive chairman of Weerts Group, speaks at the topping-pit ceremony, with Ernő Hadnagy of WLP and RaktárAD behind him in the hardhat.

The Belgian-Hungarian WLP (Weerts Logistics Parks) and RaktárAD have topped out a 40,000 sqm logistics and production plant for the Canada-based firm Magna, the world’s fourth largest automotive parts supplier. WLP and RaktárAD launched their third investment in Hungary in Vecsés this year. The complex is adjacent to the M0 circular motorway and the Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport.

“As a real estate developer, in the past eight years, we have built nearly 202,000 sqm of real estate in our country together with the Wefts Group, through which we have created more than 900 jobs and hosted many domestic companies,” said Ernő Hadnagy, domestic co-founder of WLP and RaktárAD, at the topping out ceremony.

“Magna has excellent experience in maintaining the standard of living of residents in close proximity of its facilities, which conditions we also wish to uphold with regards to the area near Verses,” he added. The company has built 150,000 sqm of space in Hungary and is developing 55,000 sqm in Debrecen. 

“We started investments here in Hungary almost 25 years ago. We have always thought positively about this country, which is why we continue investing here on a large scale,” commented Yves Weerts, executive chairman of Weerts Group.

“Most of our investments are located on the east side of Budapest because of the overcrowded nature of the west side. We have now reached the stage of investing outside of Budapest, in Debrecen. We are delighted about this partnership and would like to thank Magna-Cosma for their trust, as this is our second joint development since we have just concluded our first development in Hannover, Germany,” he added.

Magna aims to achieve carbon neutrality in its European operations by 2025. The factory has achieved BREEAM “Very Good” accreditation and will use solar energy, for example.

Crucial Importance

“This project is of key importance in our growth. Magna International is investing more than EUR 50 million in the construction of the new facility. It will provide state-of-the-art production and assembly processes and initially plans to hire 300 employees,” stated Lerouge Gauthier, vice president of Magna International.

“With the investment in Vecsés, it will expand its network with a vital production capacity with which it will be able to structurally serve the growing needs of the region’s vehicle industry. We aim to install the latest technology into the building. We are on track to install our first equipment in March 2024, and we aim to start production serving customers at the end of 2025,” he explained.

“It is key for us to build a positive image among people living in the neighborhood. We want to offer the best work and career growth opportunities for the locals. I am grateful that the Hungarian government was very supportive and prioritized this investment,” Gauthier added.

Csaba Szlahó, Mayor of Vecsés, is delighted with the development. “The most important thing for Vecsés is that in the past year, a major investment started in the area that has been ready for development for 30 years.”

He was equally pleased that Magna International would be one of the first major international clients in the park.

“The company is committed to ensuring that the investment also serves the interests of the local community. [.…] Such investments are important for the country, the city, and the people who live here because they create jobs and generate profits,” Szlahó added.

This article was first published in the Budapest Business Journal print issue of November 17, 2023.

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