Nanterre, France -- Faurecia is to buy the seat comfort segment of Hoerbiger Automotive Komfortsysteme GmbH of Schongau, Germany, a player in the field of automotive comfort solutions. French automotive supplier Faurecia said 26 Oct that the deal is in line with its growth strategy and reinforces its technology offering in complete automotive seats.
Hoerbiger Automotive Komfortsysteme develops and manufactures leading-edge pneumatic (as opposed to electro-mechanical) seat comfort systems, mainly targeted at premium vehicle segments. The pneumatic system allows for a wide variety of comfort functions, such as massage, shoulder, lumbar, lateral and thigh support, said Faurecia.
Also, Hoerbiger's pneumatic solution can be adjusted individually to the contour of the driver/passenger, resulting in "ergonomically first-class vehicle seats using the sophisticated system," Faurecia's statement said.
According to Faurecia, this is already the standard in the latest high-end premium German vehicles. Over time, the company added, lighter and thinner pneumatic systems are expected to substitute existing electromechanical systems across vehicle segments.
Seat systems developed by Hoerbiger Automotive and their components are covered by a comprehensive portfolio of patents, which ensures long-term technology leadership, Faurecia points out.
"This new acquisition is in line with Faurecia's strategy: it reinforces the technology leadership of our Automotive Seating activity and strengthens our presence in the premium segment," said Yann Delabriere, chairman and ceo of Faurecia, in the company statement.
Hoerbiger's seat comfort segment generated sales of Euro 20 million ($28 million) in 2009, mainly with Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz.
"The sale of the Seat Comfort Segment is the start of a comprehensive restructuring phase of our company. In the future, we will focus even more strongly on our core competencies of hydraulic convertible top systems and pneumatic gearshift systems," said Gerhard Messmer, managing director of HoerbigerAutomotive Komfortsysteme, in the Faurecia statement.
Faurecia noted that, since the acquisition is subject to approval by the German anti-trust authorities, closing is not expected till the end of 2010.