Germany’s third-largest defence company and one of the world’s market leaders in conventional submarines thyssenkrupp Marine Systems has announced a €250m investment in Kiel.

The company will invest the total amount by 2023. thyssenkrupp’s objective is to develop the shipyard into an international competence centre for conventional submarine construction.

thyssenkrupp will hire approximately 500 new employees by the end of 2020 and the majority of them will work in Kiel. The company is looking for engineers and skilled workers, particularly in research and development (R&D), construction and manufacturing.

Over the next few years, numerous ultra-modern buildings with related infrastructure are planned in Kiel, including a new shipbuilding hall for large-scale section production, a second outfitting line, a new stage system, a modernised service hall and a shiplift.

thyssenkrupp CEO Dr Rolf Wirtz said: “Our ambition is to be Europe’s most modern naval company. By making major investments, we are preparing our operations for the future.

“This comprehensive modernisation program will strengthen the importance of our company as one of the most important employers in the region. Our recent successes show that there is strong demand for our products and services. We want to further strengthen this position.”

Schleswig-Holstein minister-president Daniel Günther said: “The shipbuilding and shipbuilding supply industry is the heart of the maritime economy in SchleswigHolstein.

“The planned investments in Kiel demonstrate the future viability of the maritime industry. They are also a strong signal for the workforce and for the region. As the state government, we expressly welcome this.”

thyssenkrupp Marine Systems succeeded against strong competition in the surface sector. In August, an African customer contracted the company to build four frigates.

thyssenkrupp is in charge of building Germany’s most modern naval vessels F125-class frigates. In June, the German Navy commissioned Baden-Württemberg.

In May, the first of four state-of-the-art corvettes was christened for the Israeli Navy. In April, Brazil selected the company as preferred bidder for the production of four corvettes.

In Germany, thyssenkrupp is involved in the construction of the second batch of K130 corvettes.

During the first few months of this year, thyssenkrupp christened the largest conventional submarine that was ever built in Germany for Singapore and the third of four submarines for Egypt.

With the 212CD project for building a total of six identical submarines for Norway and Germany, thyssenkrupp with its customers and partners aims to create the European NATO standard of the future in the field of conventional submarines.

thyssenkrupp manufactured 70% of NATO’s conventional submarine fleet. The company also has a strong service base. It received its first order within a strategic framework agreement with Portugal for the modernisation of submarines and surface vessels and an order for the modernisation of an Indian submarine.

In the field of naval electronics, the company also achieved a decisive breakthrough. The world’s first anti-torpedo torpedo was successfully tested with the SeaSpider.

With the integration of ATLAS ELEKTRONIK, the development from a platform provider to an integrated system house was completed.

thyssenkrupp also introduced a new combat management system ORCCA. thyssenkrupp and Kongsberg joint venture kta Naval Systems developed the technology, which is considered the most advanced system for conventional submarines on the market.

New developments in stealth technology, fuel cells, lithium-ion batteries, additive manufacturing (3D printing), cyber-security and the use of virtual / augmented reality to support production processes and training are also being driven forward.

thyssenkrupp offers a range of naval shipbuilding services from a single source. Their operating units include submarines, surface vessels and naval electronics.

The range extends from the conceptual design, construction, development and production to the integration of command and weapon deployment systems. Very few suppliers offer these services to the international markets.