Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) is still awaiting investor approval for its recent merger with SolarCity Corporation, but it looks like the company isn’t going to be still until then. This week, the tech company made a surprise announcement that it plans to acquire a German engineering firm to assist in automating and accelerating production throughout its factories.
That firm is Prum, Germany-based Grohmann Engineering. It is currently led by its founder Klaus Grohmann. The company specializes in highly automated manufacturing techniques and Tesla hopes to utilize their expertise to fulfill CEO Elon Musk’s goal of designing the “machine that builds the machine.”
The new company will be “re-named” Tesla Grohmann Automation.
In a statement, the company said: “Accelerating a sustainable energy future is only possible with high-volume factories. They allow us to manufacture high-quality products with economies of scale, making them more affordable and accessible to the world. As the machine that builds the machine, our factories are so important that we believe they will ultimately deserve an order of magnitude more attention in engineering than what they produce.”
As of time of print, the two companies have not disclosed any information regarding the financial terms of the agreement. However, Tesla has said that it hopes to complete the acquisition by early next year. Still, they are waiting on approval from German regulators.
When they do receive this approval, Tesla Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) can begin to address its hope to expand vehicle production. Currently this stands at less than 10,000 units—built at its present, Fremont, CA plant—to a whopping 500,000 unit pace by 2018. After this, then, the company hopes to double rate of production to one million units, annually, by 2020.
That would rank Tesla Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) among the fastest automotive production rates in history.
Tesla Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) comments, “We have increased the production rate at our Fremont Factory by 400% in four years, and we expect this acquisition to accelerate that growth rate. We are excited to have the Grohmann team join us in our goal of becoming the best manufacturer in the world to help accelerate the world’s progress to a sustainable energy future.”
In a blog post, Tesla adds, “Combined with our California and Michigan engineering facilities, as well as other locations to follow, we believe the result will yield exponential improvements in the speed and quality of production, while substantially reducing the capital expenditures required per vehicle.”