Verdion hands over state-of-the-art Derby Cycle e-bike factory in Emstek

Verdion has completed and handed over a state-of-the art cycle production facility in Emstek, near Cloppenburg in northern Germany to Derby Cycle Werke GmbH. The leading bike and e-bike manufacturer is expanding its presence at this location and will now produce up to 400,000 Kalkhoff brand bikes per year on the site in a 32,230 sq m facility adjacent to its existing distribution hub.

Developed by Verdion in close cooperation with the Derby Cycle team, the new facility offers 26,500 sq m of high-tech production and storage space, 5,730 sq m of office and community space as well as 510 parking spaces on the 63,000 sq m plot in the ecopark industrial park. It includes a new Kalkhoff brand experience where employees and visitors are invited to trial new models at the on-site test track.

Following a 15-month construction period, the property at Europa-Allee was handed over on time and in budget, with Verdion targeting a DGNB Gold certification. It is located right next to a 25,000 sq m bespoke distribution facility which Verdion completed for the company in 2015.

A major focus of the project was ensuring that the building supported production flow as effectively as possible. Drawing on extensive automotive sector experience, Verdion optimised the masterplan layout, locating the final assembly line at the front of the building in order to have the best daylight provision for the final assembly workers and connecting the final assembly area with the paintshop through an air sluice. The office location was chosen to allow for the most effective flow of people to/from the production area and its interior was designed with flexible working in mind, providing different workspaces for a range of tasks.

Staff wellbeing was also a priority, with large windows creating more natural light in the production area, and a floor heating system and ventilation system installed to provide an ideal indoor climate. A restaurant with a large open-air terrace offering attractive spaces for a break is also provided.

André Banschus, Executive Director at Verdion, says: “Cities are becoming increasingly bike friendly and more and more people want to travel with as few emissions as possible. Sales are rising, but new production space in Germany is rare. That is why we were especially pleased to offer a solution for the expansion of Derby Cycle at the existing site in Emstek. As well as using our development expertise in complex production facilities, we also supported the tenant on financing and leasing the new site.”

The new facility was delivered in partnership between Verdion and Canadian pension fund Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan (HOOPP), with Verdion taking on the role of asset manager post-completion. Since 2014, Verdion and HOOPP have created a European logistics portfolio and pipeline valued at over €1.2 billion.

The first 200 e-bikes have been rolling off the production line since 7 March with operations launching in full on 1 July. Derby Cycle is creating around 200 new jobs on site.

The ecopark is located directly adjacent to the A1 motorway which links the Baltic Sea via several North See ports and the Rhein-Ruhr metropolitan region with the French border near Saarbrücken. The municipality of Emstek borders the district town of Cloppenburg with its 35,000 inhabitants and is located 60 km southwest of the Hanseatic city of Bremen.

List Bau was the general contractor of the project, Phase 5 the architect.

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