Rolls-Royce and Schaeffler sign 12-year rolling bearing deal

Automotive and industrial supplier Schaeffler has been awarded a 12-year contract by Rolls-Royce.

Rolls-Royce is securing the rolling bearing supply chain until 2035 with Schaeffler’s reliable products and leading manufacturing technologies, whereas Schaeffler is making an important step in its growth initiative by supporting Rolls-Royce with innovative products, R&D excellence and state-of-the-art manufacturing.

Schaeffler will continue to offer the latest production technology and support engine development with optimised manufacturing processes through its high performance bearing manufacture programme. The focus of the cooperation is on rolling bearing systems for aircraft engines in the growth areas of business aviation and widebody aircraft.

Schaeffler will be responsible for 100% of Rolls-Royce’s supply volume in Europe. The vast majority of the product portfolio will be manufactured at Schaeffler Aerospace Germany in Schweinfurt, strengthening Schaeffler’s industrial headquarter.

Schaeffler will also support new development programmes with its expertise and capabilities, from simulation and design to manufacture and rig-testing, supporting the joint Rolls-Royce/Schaeffler technology roadmap.

The even closer cooperation, starting 2024, is based on the successful partnership dating back almost 40 years.

Last year, the company was added to the Rolls-Royce High Performance Supplier Group, giving it the exclusive accolade of being one of the leading suppliers and partners of Rolls-Royce. Schaeffler’s global footprint and the high vertical integration level of its production reinforce resilience and ensure business continuity. This coincided with Schaeffler receiving the Best Practice Award from Rolls-Royce for its outstanding performance in the UltraFan project, the latest development in engine technology geared to the future requirements of the aviation industry.

“We are very proud that a company as large and important as Rolls-Royce has committed itself to us with such a long-running contract,” explained Stefan Spindler, CEO Industrial at Schaeffler. “Our two companies have achieved so much together. This is not only down to our expertise and quality demands, but also our common understanding of how business developments must take place in the future.”

Warrick Matthews, chief procurement officer for civil aerospace at Rolls-Royce, added: “Our goal is to consistently improve the supply chain of Rolls-Royce with a clear focus on the strong performance of our partners as well as the strict implementation of an eco-friendly, sustainable closed-loop economy. We're ideally placed to achieve both of these things with our High-Performance Supplier, Schaeffler.”

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