Swedish international engineering company SKF, the world’s largest manufacturer of bearings, lubrication systems and mechatronics, has announced a decision to cease operations in Russia in the face of tougher Western sanctions.
SKF will cease doing business in Russia, wind down all operations here, halt investment projects and sell its plant. The withdrawal from the Russian market will be realized during the second quarter, i.e., by the end of June. The company will spend $53 million for this purpose.
The Russian team together with its colleagues from Sweden is developing a plan for reorganizing the business. It is planned that SKF LLC, the Russian subdivision of SKF Group, will continue its business activity “outside the orbit of SKF Group”. There are no plans to stop production in Tver, which will protect the interests of local employees.
SKF automotive bearings are very popular on the Russian aftermarket, but they have all been imported. The company’s plant in the Tver region has been in operation since 2010 and only produces bearings for rail vehicles.
Since last year, there have been active discussions about producing bearings for automobiles at the plant. In June, a delegation from AvtoVAZ, headed by the president of the company, Nicolas Mor, visited the Tver plant of SKF. There were plans to organize production of bearings for Lada and Renault cars, but now those plans have been postponed.