World-class engineering facility to go under hammer

Park Village Auctions have confirmed that bidding opens shortly for the entire assets and contents of the ATS Light Alloy Wheels plant in Babelegi, Hammanskraal, representing what is certainly the largest disposal by auction sale yet of a manufacturing and engineering facility in South Africa.

Park Village Auctions have confirmed that bidding opens shortly for the entire assets and contents of the ATS Light Alloy Wheels plant in Babelegi, Hammanskraal, representing what is certainly the largest disposal by auction sale yet of a manufacturing and engineering facility in South Africa.

The world-class plant was commissioned in 1999 at a cost of R315million. The facility was one of the most cutting-edge of technology and with expanded production was capable of producing up to 1,5 million alloy wheels a year for the South African and international motor industry original equipment and after markets.

The operation was part of the multinational ATS group with plant operations in Poland, Germany and the United States in addition to the South African facility.

The group went into liquidation, affecting its worldwide interests including the South African operation, which is now to be sold off either in part or whole, according to Park Village Auctions who have received the mandate for the sale.

The disposal comprises two main aspects. Firstly the state-of-the-art manufacturing equipment including the gas and induction melting furnaces, the foundry, robotic machining cells, finishing plant, a world class paint plant, warehousing, tool room and packaging area.

Secondly there is the factory building, which comprises close to 42 000sqm of manufacturing space under roof, including the extensive warehousing, offices and other facilities that will be offered for sale in next month. All stock from the suspended operations of the plant has already been disposed of via the motor trade.

Bidding opens on today and closes on July 25. Bids for the factory will remain open beyond that date. An innovative first is that prospective purchasers will be able to view the 500 items on offer individually on the park village website, prior to viewing on site.

On-site viewing is from 9am to 4pm daily from June 23 until the close of bidding on July 25.

Park Village Auctions' spokesman Jack Moulder says one of the highlights of the sale is the paint plant which, if procured and installed today, would represent an investment of R70million in its own right.

The plant comprises a pre-treatment section, powder coating booths, wet spray booths, drying and curing ovens, coolers, conveyor systems, ABB transfer robots, effluent plant and environmental control services.

Equipment and manufacturing processes throughout the factory were installed and operated to international standards under the ISO system of quality control and have subsequently been superbly maintained.

Numerous upgrades have been carried out on the facility at various stages.

Moulder anticipates widespread local and international interest from wheel manufacturing companies, automotive component manufacturers, engineering and other sectors as well as numerous bidders for the incidental office effects, vehicles and furniture.

"This is an exceptional factory with world-class equipment and facilities," Moulder says.

For further information contact Patsy Liebenberg, Park Village Auctions, 011-789-4375/6/7 or visit www.parkvillageauctions.co.za.

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