Opening the Chinese Market

Johnson Controls signs technology pact with China

May 13, 1985 (PD: 201605)


Johnson Controls’ first controls plant opened in Shanghai in 1995, ten years after the company signed a technology pact with the People’s Republic of China

The Johnson Controls newsletter Briefing reported on May 13, 1985 that the company had signed a five-year agreement with the People’s Republic of China (PRC) to provide automated temperature control technology for analog environmental control systems.

In exchange for $1.8 million, Johnson Controls gave the Beijing Instrument Industry Company technology developed at Johnson facilities in The Netherlands, Italy, and West Germany. Representatives of the Beijing company were to receive training at Johnson’s European plants beginning in the fall of 1985.

Discussions leading to the agreement began in November 1984, when Johnson Controls CEO Fred Brengel and vice president Jim Keyes visited Beijing.  While the controls agreement was a first for the company, Johnson Controls had sold battery technology to the PRC since 1979 – the first American company to do so.

In 1995, Johnson Controls opened its first controls factory in China under a joint venture agreement with the Shanghai Thermostat Company.