BRP To Build Innovation Centre in Gunskirchen

Press Release –

BRP, through its Austrian affiliate BRP-Rotax GmbH, jointly with the Government of Upper Austria, announced today the creation of an advanced research centre, the Regionales Innovations Centrum (RIC).

Located in Gunskirchen, the RIC will bring together a pool of highly qualified and skilled people and provide them with a stimulating setting for the development of new engine technologies.

The RIC project represents a total investment of € 8.5 million ($CA 12 million). BRP will cover 75% of the costs; 24.5% will come from the municipality of Gunskirchen, supported by the Upper Austrian Government, the city of Wels and the municipalities of the Wels-Land district; and another 0.5% by the Oberbank Wels.

“With this project we will be able to develop and train highly skilled employees, which will help BRP remain competitive in its markets and position the Upper Austria region as a good business location to find highly skilled and qualified people,” said Gerd Ohrnberger, vicepresident and general manager, BRP-Rotax.

An innovative platform for the exchange of creative thinking between universities and the industry, the RIC stands for the next generation of technology centres. With construction scheduled to start before the end of 2007, the new building will be built on BRP-Rotax’s premises.

“Our future is research and knowledge. The RIC, a regional innovation centre of the next generation, combines these pillars perfectly: R&D on one side and high-level qualification on the other. That is the clear path for the future, which we set with the economic program “Innovative Upper Austria 2010″ and now consequently realize and steer,” said Viktor Sigl, Minister of Economy, Labour, Youth and Education of Upper Austria State. “The RIC is a major boost not only for the region but also for the whole business community of Upper Austria,” he added.

Over the last two years, BRP has announced investments of approximately € 21 million ($CA 30 million) in research and development and in design and innovation for the advancement of new products and technologies. These investments are BRP’s response to globalization, competition from low-cost countries and a strong Canadian dollar. The company believes that through these investments it will keep introducing new and innovative products to remain the leader in its traditional markets and continue to gain market share in the others.

“The RIC reconfirms BRP’s commitment to innovation in order to maintain its global leadership position,” said José Boisjoli, president and CEO, BRP. “The RIC will work closely with BRP’s advanced technology and design and innovation centres in Canada to develop synergies between Europe and North America and better support BRP’s global needs,” he concluded.

Josef Fuerlinger has been appointed general manager of the Regionales Innovations Centrum. He has been a BRP-Rotax employee since 1990.

A depiction of the project is available at www.brp.com

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