- Ceremony marks completion of the Kia U.S. Corporate Campus
- Elected officials join Kia Motors in celebration
- First Kia-exclusive U.S. design center in company history
(SEOUL) June 25, 2007 -- Today, Byung Mo Ahn, group president and CEO of Kia Motors America (KMA) and Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia (KMMG), was joined by local and state representatives for the grand opening ceremony of the new 21.7-acre Kia U.S. corporate campus in Irvine, Calif. The $130-million investment includes the Kia Motors America Corporate Headquarters and state-of-the-art Kia Design Center America (KDCA).
"The investment in our new corporate campus reaffirms our commitment to the United States market and California," said Ahn. "Our new U.S. Corporate Headquarters and Design Center enables us to develop products specifically for Kia that are designed and tuned for North American consumers."
"We established our operations in Orange County 15 years ago, and as the company has grown, so has our presence in California," added Ahn. "This is a special day as we celebrate our permanent home in Irvine and look forward to our continued success in the U.S. market."
In attendance and speaking at the opening ceremony was Euisun Chung, President of Kia Motors Corporation, who stated, "This new corporate headquarter facility will serve as the control center for our US operations that will soon cover the entire business cycle - from R&D and production to marketing, sales and after service, thereby enabling us to better serve our growing base of US customers."
Now fully operational, the Irvine campus currently employs approximately 400 permanent full-time employees and has the potential to house almost 600 employees at full capacity. The corporate headquarters is a custom-built facility and home to the KMA U.S. sales division, as well as its marketing, public relations, consumer affairs, technical service, research and development, product planning and administration departments. The new facility also houses the KMA western region office and IT services.
The state-of-the-art 100,700 square-foot design center was developed with tremendous input from the Kia Motors U.S. design team to ensure an aesthetically and physically functional layout that encourages creativity. It consists of a design studio, a modeling studio that allows up to eight vehicle models to be worked on simultaneously, a milling shop featuring a Zimmerman computerized milling machine, a 2-D presentation room, a color and trim room, a wood/metal shop, a 3-D presentation room that features clearstory windows to allow for viewing indoors under natural light, a paint booth, a private outdoor viewing courtyard, a recreation room, a research library, four conference rooms and a secure, underground garage.
"By establishing the first Kia-exclusive U.S. design center, we can take advantage of the tremendous design talent and inspiration provided by the Southern California car culture in a functional environment set up to maximize our designers' abilities and creativity," said Tom Kearns, Kia Motors U.S. chief designer. "KDCA will produce stylish new vehicles that will impact the new design direction for Kia Motors worldwide."
The Irvine corporate campus was designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP in partnership with the City of Irvine to serve as a distinctive architectural gateway to the city and an example of eco-friendly features. The 239,000 square-foot modern glass and steel main structure features a 36,000 square-foot reflecting pool visible to drivers on Interstate 5. Kia was one of the first companies in Irvine to voluntarily install a bioswale system in its parking lot to remove silt and pollution from surface water runoff. The landscaping features drought-resistant plants, and reclaimed water is used for landscaping irrigation and toilets. The exterior glass of the building meets the California Energy Commission's requirements for energy efficiency standards.
Kia Motors America (KMA) is the sales, marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. KMA offers a complete line of vehicles through more than 640 dealers throughout the United States. For 2007, KMA recorded its 14th consecutive year of record U.S. sales. Kia Motors America is the "Official Automotive Partner of the NBA." Information about Kia Motors America and its full vehicle line-up is available at its Web site - www.kia.com. For media information, including photography, visit www.kiamedia.com.
Kia Motors Corporation (www.kia.com) -- a maker of quality vehicles for the young-at-heart -- was founded in 1944 and is Korea's oldest manufacturer of motor vehicles. As part of the Hyundai-Kia Automotive Group, Kia aims to become one of the world's premier automotive brands. More than 1.4 million vehicles a year are produced in 14 manufacturing and assembly operations in eight countries which are then sold and serviced through a network of distributors and dealers covering 165 countries. Kia today has over 40,000 employees worldwide and annual revenues of almost US$17 billion. It is the major sponsor of the Australian Tennis Open and an official worldwide sponsor of the Davis Cup. Kia is an official automotive partner of FIFA -- the governing body of the FIFA World Cup -- as well as a EUROTOP partner of UEFA. Kia Motors Corporation's brand slogan -- "The Power to Surprise" -- represents the company's global commitment to surpassing customer expectations through continuous automotive innovation.