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Phoenix Contact plans an extensive investment program for medium to long-term growth

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BLOMBERG, Germany, Dec. 18, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — During a press conference at the SPS automation trade fair in Nuremberg, Germany, Ulrich Leidecker, Chief Operating Officer of Phoenix Contact, spoke about the company’s economic development, which, after two years of above-average growth, has been characterized by a significant decline in incoming orders since the second quarter of 2023. It is currently forecast that Phoenix Contact will close the 2023 fiscal year with a fall in revenue of around two percent compared to the previous year and a total revenue of 3.5 billion euros. “If we consider our development from 2019, we have actually achieved an average growth of 9.1 percent year on year up to today. This shows that the current economic development is not a structural problem. Phoenix Contact’s products and solutions are used in particular for electrification and automation, which are areas in which investments will continue to be made in the future”. The decline in demand, driven by excessively high inventories at several points throughout the entire value chain, is affecting all regions of the world. This is particularly noticeable in Asia, whereas some European countries continue to record growth. The number of employees is increasing only very slightly, and remains just below 22,000.

Leidecker emphasized just how special 2023 is for Phoenix Contact, despite the onset of an economic downturn in the second half of the year. “We had the pleasure and privilege of celebrating our 100th anniversary with our employees and customers worldwide. We have achieved a great deal throughout these 100 years, and have remained true to the values and culture of our family business despite our growth and development”. The General Managers and shareholders used numerous events, family days, and staff parties as an opportunity to express their appreciation to our employees for their exceptional dedication and commitment, which has made it possible for the company to become what it is today. “We also highlighted and strengthened our partnerships with our customers by sharing special moments with them at events. After all, it is together with our customers and business partners that we are driving forward solutions for the energy revolution that form the basis for a sustainable world”. The focus was therefore also on global sustainability projects, which were implemented together with partners and the global subsidiaries in 2023.

Investments

In order to prepare Phoenix Contact for growth in the medium to long term, Phoenix Contact has planned an investment program of more than one billion euros over the next five years.

The first measures for the extension to the existing logistics building at the Blomberg location have already been launched. The fully automated building will provide 220,000 cubic meters of additional storage volume. In the future, it will also be possible to supply customers outside of Germany directly from here. At around 100 million euros, this represents the largest single investment in the company’s history. At the location in India, three new buildings with production, logistics, and office spaces, with a footprint of 70,000 square meters, are being built. The investments here amount to around 40 million euros. “With this expansion in capacity, Phoenix Contact is responding to the challenge of making global supply chains more resilient and minimizing dependencies on individual regions of the world”, explained Leidecker.

China is the fastest developing market for e-mobility with its own approaches to mobility. Phoenix Contact is therefore expanding its e-mobility production capacity with a new facility in Lishui, China. The foundation stone was laid at the end of June 2023. At this new production site, Phoenix Contact E-Mobility will develop and manufacture various charging cables for electric vehicles, which will be supplied to Chinese automobile and charging infrastructure manufacturers. The company relies on local-for-local sourcing, where the purchasing, production, and sales markets are located close to each other. The new building has a total footprint of around 26,000 square meters, of which 20,000 square meters is production and storage space and 6,000 square meters is office space.

Building 60 – sustainability and efficiency in industrial applications

With Building 60 at company headquarters, Phoenix Contact is setting new standards in terms of sustainability and efficiency. This investment is an example of the vision of an All Electric Society in which carbon-neutral electricity is the central energy source. The building is designed such that it will not only cover its own energy requirements with self-generated electrical energy, but will also have a positive energy balance during operation. The amount of energy generated will be greater than our own requirements.

Phoenix Contact’s investment in this production and technology center amounts to around 35 million euros. With 18,485 square meters of floor space for 400 workstations, the building illustrates the networking of the energy, mobility, infrastructure, and building sectors. The result is a tangible blueprint for scalable solutions that can be used to network entire districts in the spirit of an All Electric Society.

In the building, thermal energy is integrated into a heating network at the local level – using heat pumps and a 1,500 cubic meter ice storage system. The demand for heating, cooling, and the generation of waste heat from the processes is integrated in such a way that enthalpy exchange is possible. The first stage involves the use of battery storage systems, a photovoltaic system with an output of 1,100 kilowatt-peak, an open-field photovoltaic system with an output of 1,500 kilowatt-peak, and a partial DC power grid. Connected to this is a bidirectional charging infrastructure for e–mobility based on the premise of vehicle-to-grid. The installation of a DC power grid for industrial use is a deliberate strategic decision, as this will play a crucial role in driving the energy revolution forward – renewable energy sources, battery storage systems, and e-mobility are based on direct current and can thus be integrated more easily.

Sustainability: part of the corporate strategy

This October, Phoenix Contact published its first sustainability report. The report, which relates to 2022, is structured in accordance with the GRI standards and is based on the three cornerstones: Environmental, Social, and Governance. Those interested in reading the report can download it from the website.

In order to be able to show as precisely as possible what impact its products have on the environment, Phoenix Contact creates a Product Environmental Footprint (PEF) for each individual product. Up to 18 environmental indicators are taken into account for this, with the company focusing on the carbon value of its products. Other indicators, such as land use or water consumption, are also calculated when the data is available. The entire value chain is examined, from product design and the choice of raw materials, through the manufacturing process and distribution of the item, to the use and end-of-life phase of the products. By examining and calculating the PEF, conclusions can be drawn from the environmental indicators for internal processes. Based on this knowledge, Phoenix Contact is constantly improving its processes in order to reduce its environmental impact and conserve resources.

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Sinotruk leaping forward to become world-class technology enterprise

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JINAN, China, March 2, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — On March 2, SinoTruk’s Science and Technology Innovation Award Annual Conference 2024 was grandly held, to recognize and rewarding major scientific and technological achievements and outstanding innovative talents since 2022, planning and deploying scientific and technological innovation work ahead. Tan Xuguang, Chairman and General Manager of Shandong Heavy Industry Group, Chairman of China National Heavy Duty Truck Group, attended the conference and delivered a report on scientific and technological innovative work – “Steadily stride forward, embracing change in science and technology”.

 

Over the past five years, Sinotruk has invested nearly RMB 15 billion in R&D, which is the sum of the previous 15 years. It has benchmarked against world-class standards and gradually established a full-process independent research and development system. Sinotruk technological strength has reached the forefront of the national industry. Sinotruk has reshaped the “Yellow River” heavy-duty trucks standard with technology, ranking first in China, and its high-tech indicators are leading the industry. The market share of heavy-duty trucks has increased from 16.5% in 2018 to 26% in 2023, ranking first in China for two consecutive years. In 2023, the export volume exceeded 130,000 vehicles for the very first time, a 2.6-fold increase compared to 5 years ago, making it the largest single-brand global export volume in the world.

Tan Xuguang called on all engineers to keep in mind their mission, be down-to-earth, persistent in innovation, and make long-term achievements through dedicated ten years of hard work. Learn from the global cooperation, grow and become talents through project training, and achieve through continuous value creation. Achieve your meaning in life, strive with vitality and passion while you are young. Let’s set off again for a better future for the century heavy truck industry and the world’s best heavy truck industry!

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Flash News: OKX Introduces Exclusive ‘Babylon Pioneer Pass Event’ in Collaboration with Babylon, Offering Free Pioneer Pass NFT Minting for the First 100,000 Users Who Stake on Babylon Testnet

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SINGAPORE, March 2, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — OKX, a leading Web3 technology company, has issued updates for March 2, 2024.

OKX Introduces Exclusive ‘Babylon Pioneer Pass Event’ in Collaboration with Babylon, Offering Free Pioneer Pass NFT Minting for the First 100,000 Users Who Stake on Babylon Testnet

OKX today announced the launch of its ‘Babylon Pioneer Pass Event,’ giving users who access the Babylon Testnet and stake any amount of Signet Bitcoin (sBTC) the opportunity to claim Babylon’s Bitcoin Pioneer Pass NFT. To qualify for a spot, users must access the Babylon Testnet and stake any amount of Signet Bitcoin (sBTC).

The event kicks off on February 28 and continues until March 6. Following the event, starting from March 7, participants who have been whitelisted will have the ability to mint their Bitcoin Pioneer Pass NFT using the OKX Wallet and their whitelisted address.

The process of participating in this event is straightforward and involves the following steps:

  1. Firstly, users will need to prepare by setting up their OKX and Keplr Wallets. These wallets will be crucial for interacting with the Babylon Testnet and the subsequent claiming of sBTC and BBN.
  2. Following the wallet setup, users can then claim the sBTC and BBN on Babylon’s Official Discord. These tokens will be needed for staking in the Babylon Testnet.
  3. Finally, users will need to access Babylon’s official website, where users can actively engage, stake their tokens and claim their whitelist spots.

Participation in the event offers a multitude of benefits. Users can engage actively with the Babylon Testnet, which in turn enhances their understanding of the Babylon protocol and its functionalities. Furthermore, participants contribute to the development and evolution of the Babylon protocol by being active users.

The ‘Babylon Pioneer Pass Event‘ is a result of OKX’s partnership with Babylon, a trustless Bitcoin staking protocol. The Bitcoin Pioneer Pass, Babylon’s first commemorative Non-Fungible Token (NFT), is a highlight of this event, representing a significant milestone for both OKX and Babylon.

For more information, please visit the OKX Support Center.

About OKX

A leading global technology company driving the future of Web3, OKX provides a comprehensive suite of products to meet the needs of beginners and experts alike, including:

  • OKX Wallet: The world’s most powerful, secure and versatile crypto wallet which gives users access to over 80 blockchains while allowing them to take custody of their own funds. The wallet includes MPC technology which allows users to easily recover access to their wallet independently, removing the need for traditional, ‘written down’ seed phrases. In addition, OKX Wallet’s account abstraction-powered Smart Account enables users to pay for transactions on multiple blockchains using USDC or USDT, and interact with multiple contracts via a single transaction.
  • DEX: A multi-chain, cross-chain decentralized exchange aggregator of 300+ other DEXs and approximately 15 bridges, with 200,000+ coins and more than 20 blockchains supported.
  • NFT Marketplace: A multi-chain, zero-fee NFT marketplace that gives users access to NFT listings across seven top-tier marketplaces including OpenSea, MagicEden, LooksRare and Blur.
  • Web3 DeFi: A powerful DeFi platform that supports earning and staking on about 70 protocols across more than 10 chains.

OKX partners with a number of the world’s top brands and athletes, including English Premier League champions Manchester City F.C., McLaren Formula 1, The Tribeca Festival, Olympian Scotty James, and F1 driver Daniel Ricciardo.

As a leader building innovative technology products, OKX believes in challenging the status quo. The company recently launched a global brand campaign entitled, The System Needs a Rewrite, which advocates for a new paradigm led by Web3 self-managed technology.

To learn more about OKX, download our app or visit: okx.com

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UnionPay International and The Tourism Organisation of Serbia Sign MOU to Enhance Tourist Payments and Promote Serbia as a Premier Destination

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BELGRADE, Serbia, March 1, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — UnionPay International, the leading global card scheme, has entering into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with The Tourism Organisation of Serbia (TOS). This strategic partnership aims to enhancing the payment experience for tourists and to further facilitate tourism growth in Serbia.

The MOU signing ceremony took place at Belgrade on 27th February 2024, marking the beginning of a collaborative effort between UnionPay International and TOS. The agreement outlines various areas of cooperation:

Jointly promoting Serbia as Travel Destination: Through optimised marketing resources, both parties aim to promote Serbia as tourist destination among UnionPay cardholders, with its rich cultural heritage and unique experiences, provide comprehensive tourism information and payment guides for the tourists visiting Serbia. UnionPay International aims to provide more diversified and convenient payment choices, and ensuring seamless payment experiences for travellers visiting the country.

Privileges and Benefits: The partnership will explore opportunities for preferential activities that bring additional benefits to UnionPay cardholders visiting Serbia. This approach aims to boost the attractiveness of the local tourism market and create a win-win situation for both parties.

Ms Bomee Sheng, Product Director of UnionPay International, expressed her enthusiasm about the collaboration, stating, “We are delighted to partner with The Tourism Organisation of Serbia to promote tourism and facilitate payment experiences in Serbia. Through this partnership, we aim to provide UnionPay cardholders with enhanced convenience and benefits, ultimately contributing to the growth of Serbia’s tourism industry.”

Ms Marija Labović, CEO of National Tourism Organisation of Serbia, commented, “This partnership with UnionPay International comes at an important time as we strive to become the most popular all year destination in the region.” She outlines Belgrade’s popularity and the diversity of attractions from city breaks to natural retreats and she is looking forward to the Expo 2027 in the capital, “By leveraging UnionPay’s global network and advanced payment solutions, we are confident that we can attract more visitors to Serbia and provide them with memorable experiences.”

In recent years, Serbia has emerged as one of the most attractive destinations for Chinese visitors. It is hailed as the “heart of the Balkans” and offers a unique blend of captivating landscapes and rich cultural heritage. Its visa-free entry policy, coupled with the exceptional acceptance coverage of UnionPay cards, has played a significant role in attracting Chinese tourists. With over 90% of local merchants and ATMs supporting UnionPay payments and withdrawals, travellers can enjoy seamless payment experiences across various sectors, including retail, dining, hotels, gas stations, toll stations, and tourist attractions.

About The Tourism Organisation of Serbia (TOS)

The Tourism Organisation of Serbia (TOS) was formed under the Law on Tourism of 1994 as the institution in charge of promoting Serbian tourism in domestic and foreign markets, as well as performing other duties relevant for the development of communication and advertising activities in Serbian tourism. The activities of TOS are focused on positioning Serbia’s tourism products in domestic and foreign markets and exploring Serbia’s comparative advantages in terms of tourism, including its geostrategic position and its historical, cultural and natural identity.

About UnionPay International

UnionPay International focuses on the international business of UnionPay, a global payment network that serves the world’s largest cardholder base. Collaborating with over 2,600 partners globally, UnionPay acceptance now reached to 183 countries and regions. Outside the Chinese Mainland, UnionPay is accepted at nearly 67 million merchants and 1.7 million ATMs.

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