Hungaryʼs Tungsram eyes annual revenue of USD 1 bln in ten years

Telco

Jörg Bauer, who agreed in February to buy the lighting business of General Electric (GE) in the Middle East, Africa and Turkey, as well as its global automotive lighting business, expects the acquisition to generate annual revenue of USD 1 billion in ten years.

Jörg Bauer

This year, Bauer, a former GE executive, expects revenues of the Hungary-based business, which he has rebranded Tungsram in a nod to its past, to reach HUF 90 billion (some USD 355 million), level with turnover in 2017, national news agency MTI reported.

Speaking at a press conference in Budapest on Wednesday, Bauer said he had signed a contract with GE on taking over the companyʼs units in Hungary a day earlier. He revealed the deal was financed with short and long-term credit from Magyar Eximbank. About 95% of the businessʼs revenue comes from exports, and profits will be plowed back into Tungsram rather than repatriated, he added.

Tungsramʼs factory and office in Budapest will be the groupʼs headquarters, with production to continue at bases in Hajdúböszörmény, Kisvárda, Nagykanizsa and Zalaegerszeg, Bauer said, acknowledging the "significant value" of the more than 4,000 Hungarian staff at the plants.

Tungsram could also involve partners in product development and set up its own R&D base in Budapest, he said. In addition to the EMEA region, Bauer said Tungsram could strengthen its position on Asian markets, which generate just 4% of its revenue at present.

Gabriella Mózes, who heads Tungsramʼs global automotive lighting business, said the company would start turning out LED lamps, complying with car makersʼ needs and cooperating with potential partners.

Tungsram will continue GEʼs practice of supporting youth with scholarships, as well as cooperating with universities and local governments, Bauer stressed.

GE originally acquired Tungsram, whose flagship product was the patented tungsten filament light bulb, in 1989.

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