Culpeper Chamber of Commerce Awards Continental Automotive 2012 Business of the Year


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CULPEPER, VA -- Nov. 9, 2012: Continental, one of the world's leading automotive suppliers, was yesterday presented with the 2012 Business of the Year Award by the Culpeper Chamber of Commerce at its 98th Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet. The event included a keynote speech by Aneesh Chopra, Chief Technology Officer for the U.S. Government, and was attended by nearly 270 people.

Brandon Lane, Manager of Continental's Culpeper facility, accepted the award on behalf of the 250 employees at the Culpeper plant.

"It is a true honor to be recognized as an outstanding business by the Culpeper Chamber of Commerce," said Lane. "We strive to be a globally premier automotive machining plant by focusing on quality and leading-edge technology. That would not be possible without our talented workforce or the continued support of our local community."

The Culpeper Chamber of Commerce determines its Business of the Year by an evaluation of select criteria, including the nominee's impact on local business as well as a commitment to the community outside of business endeavors.

According to Jim Charapich, President and CEO of the Culpeper Chamber of Commerce, Continental stood out as a leading business due to its growing market share, continued focus on quality, innovative technology, and recent capital investment.

In the past three years, Continental has invested $28 million into the Culpeper facility. In total, this has equipped the plant with six automated precision wash and inspection systems, 18 Computer Numerical Control (CNC) machines, two new shipping docks that decrease product movement by 50 percent, and the installation of a world-class tool lab.

These combined investments allow Culpeper to now provide more than 5 million ESC valve bodies per year to the automotive market.

The Chamber also noted Culpeper's longstanding commitment to the local community through job creation, sustained employment, and the support of non-profit organizations. Continental has most notably been involved with the Culpeper County School System in coordination with the Career & Technical Department, educating students about business principles for more than a decade.

"Continental has benefited over the years from its exceptional relationship with the Culpeper community," said Lane. "So it is important for us to give back to those who have supported us locally and to help those who may be in need."

Continental's Culpeper plant has been in production since 1977, when Alfred Teves GmbH came to the area with a contract from Ford Motor Company to build vacuum boosters and disk brake calipers. The facility started out with 90 employees, manufacturing parts for the Ford Fairmont and Zephyr. 

Over the past 35 years, Culpeper has nearly tripled the size of its workforce -- training and retraining its personnel to meet ever-changing technological demands. The plant currently produces Valve Blocks for Electronic Brake Systems, OES Service Parts, and Housings for Master Cylinders with state-of-the-art robotics. Culpeper also recently launched a new product, the MK100.

Continental is one of only 11 companies recognized by the Virginia Department of Environment Quality (VDEQ) as an Exemplary Environmental Enterprise.

About Continental

With sales of 30.5 billion euro in 2011, Continental is among the leading automotive suppliers worldwide. As a supplier of brake systems, systems and components for powertrains and chassis, instrumentation, infotainment solutions, vehicle electronics, tires and technical elastomers, Continental contributes to enhanced driving safety and global climate protection. Continental is also an expert partner in networked automobile communication. Continental currently has approximately 170,000 employees in 46 countries.

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