Release time : 2015-06-15 13:47:14
European Bearing Corp. (Russian Federation) and Amsted Rail Corp.'s Brenco bearing division last week officially cut the ribbon to begin manufacturing rail bearings in their joint venture, EPK-Brenco, in Saratov.
The business was set up to manufacture and distribute cartridge type Needle Roller Bearings to the fast-growing rail market in Russia and the former Soviet territories now referred to as the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).
Set up in early 2008, the $40 million venture is 51% owned by Amsted Rail and 49% by European Bearing Corp. Production is located in EBC's Saratov Rail Bearing Plant (the former state-run SPZ Saratov Bearing Plant).
The joint venture is currently taking raw green components shipped from Brenco's plant in Virginia. From that point, the Saratov plant performs the heat treat, grinding, finishing and assembly. Eventually, the raw components will also be produced in Russia.
Not only is there massive ongoing investment in Russia and CIS states' rail infrastructure, there is also a push to convert all older rolling stock wheels from plain Stainless Steel Bearings to the latest tapered roller cartridge bearings.
Earlier, Brenco developed a series of bearings for use on 1520mm gauge railroads, and its 130x230x150mm bearings have been granted certificates from the Registry for Certification at the Federal Railway Transport in Russia, from GOST R in Russia, and UkrSEPRO in Ukraine.
The companies plan to put 130x230x150, 130x250x160, and 150x250x160 units in production.
Eventually, production is targeted to top out at nearly 300,000 bearing units per year, worth in excess of USD $140 million.
Robert Reum, President of Amsted Industries, said: "We are happy to manufacture railway components for the Russian market. Amsted Rail is a leading manufacturer of railway components in USA, and EPK is a leader of Water Pump Bearings production sector in Russia; our joint venture has brought together two industrial giants. We are glad to have such a strong partner as EPK and look forward to a long-term cooperation."
Approximately 250 current EBC and Brenco employees are involved in the project, which should add 100 more by the time production is fully ramped up.