Industry Europe – Issue 22.10

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VOLUME 22/10 – 2012 • €6

The world of European manufacturing






Separate rooms Britain and Germany are not the happy couple they used to be.


ou know, David, being alone in this world doesn’t bring you happiness,” said Angela, moodily toying with the venison on her plate. “I don’t want us to split; I can’t imagine our house without you in it but you simply must be more considerate to our needy relations.” “Don’t you worry about me, dear. We Brits have stood alone before, when...Oh, sorry, no, never mind about that,” said Dave. “Look, have some of this nice German pudding I’ve had specially prepared for you. You know you’re always welcome here but you can tell those useless scroungers that they’re not getting a penny more from me.” Maybe the recent Downing Street dinner between the British Prime Minister and the German Chancellor didn’t go exactly like this but there seems little doubt that this was a meeting of two conservatives who in normal times share many positions but who, in these extraordinary times, are steadily drifting apart. Mrs Merkel may have enjoyed her pudding and Mr Cameron’s company but the two leaders ended the session as far apart as ever on the issue of the EU budget. As the Financial Times remarked, these two ‘enjoy one of the warmest but least productive relationships in European politics’. Actually Merkel and Cameron are not far apart on the numbers; both Germany and Britain are net contributors and have a common interest in restraining EU spending. But the Chancellor knows that the 17 net recipients all support a budget increase and she is willing to work for a modest expansion to avoid a protracted battle at this perilous time for the eurozone. She also knows that the French have threatened a veto unless their farm subsidies are protected. Cameron, however, is boxed in by the Commons’ vote for large cuts in the budget; he knows he will never get those but he has to insist that he will settle for nothing less than a freeze. So he has to go to the summit brandish-

ing his veto and declaring that any increase would be ‘completely ludicrous’. A lot of people in Germany are getting tired of all this. They were not happy when Cameron used his veto last year to stop Germany’s plan to write the eurozone fiscal pact into the EU treaty; now there is this squabbling over the EU budget and coming up in December is the discussion on a banking union, over which the British are certain to cause difficulties. And all the time Cameron talks of the need to renegotiate certain ‘competencies’ back from Brussels when the rest of the EU sees its only hope of salvation in closer and deeper union. This exasperation is becoming ever more outspoken. Gunther Oettinger, European Energy Commissioner, complained recently that France and Great Britain were ‘my problem children’. France urgently needed to reform its economy – it had too little industry and innovation – but Britain, with its anti-EU posturing, had simply ‘taken leave of its senses’. He was swiftly followed by Volker Kauder, the leader of Merkel’s conservatives in the German parliament, who said that it would be good if the French socialists undertook some real structural reforms but it would be even better if Great Britain realised that it had to be prepared to compromise, that it couldn’t constantly claim special treatment. Then, Poland’s representative on the EU executive, Janusz Lewandowski, said that Britain had to understand that ‘we can’t finance more Europe with less money’ and that it was time for the UK to make a fundamental decision – ‘Either they see their future in the EU in the long term or they don’t’.

She doesn’t understand me As in most troubled marriages, it’s not usually flagrant infidelity that causes the estrangement; it’s that the parties understand each other less and less. The British find it hard to

believe that Germany will really pay any price to keep the euro show on the road. Surely the already angry German taxpayers will not tolerate indefinite subsidies to the basket cases on the periphery. Surely they must see that the fundamental problem for the PIGS is not insufficient austerity but a hopelessly over-valued exchange rate. It’s the single currency itself that has trapped them in a spiral of falling output, rising unemployment and unserviceable debt – in what Britain’s Foreign Secretary once called a burning building with no exits. The Germans, of course, are completely fed up with being told this stuff, particularly because they think that it’s coming mostly from a small group of barking mad eurosceptics who have always hated the grand project. And it’s even more galling because many of them think that it was the unregulated excesses of Anglo-Saxon capitalism – all that casino banking – that caused the crisis in the first place. And now, when everyone needs urgently to work towards making sure the euro survives and prospers – through a banking union, fiscal union etc. – all Britain can do is make difficulties and wave its veto. But, in fact, British scepticism is no longer a minority view; the Foreign Secretary himself has admitted that popular hostility to the EU is ‘the deepest it has ever been’. And banks may have lent imprudently but they did so because they thought that because they were in a currency union Greece and the rest were as creditworthy as Germany. So does Britain see its future in the EU or not? Cameron says yes but does he really believe it? 49 per cent of the British apparently want out. They only ever wanted in because they thought they would be better off inside a prospering trading bloc. With Europe in a never-ending crisis, that’s hard to argue now. The divorce lawyers are rubbing their hands. n Industry Europe 3

CONTENTS Production Manager Kamila Kajtoch Administration Anna Chamberlain Amber Dawson Kayleigh Harvey

Editor Peter Mercer Deputy Editor Victoria Hattersley Profile Writers Abigail Saltmarsh Felicity Landon Piotr Sadowski Emma-Jane Batey Barbara Rossi Philip Yorke Joseph Altham

Art Administration Tania Balderson Advertising Manager Andrew Briggs Sector Managers Matthew Howe Eniko Kovacs Milada Preslova Massimo Ragazzo Helen Leisi Mac McCarthy Anthony McClintock Ben Snowing Anna Dudek Stephen Moore Richard Thomas Lisa Ackroyd John Cliff Martin Gisborne Victoria Pease Daniel Sands Matthew Selway

Art Director Gareth Harrey Art Editor Rob Czerwinski Designers Leon Esterhuizen Paul Abbott Claire Bidle Web Development Neil Robertson IT Support Jack Everson

Comment 1 5

Opinion Separate rooms Bill Jamieson A monstrous game of bluff

Energy Industry 6 9 12

Russia tightens grip on Europe’s gas Second gas pipeline comes on stream

Energy news The latest from the industry Going for energy efficient gold The Olympics Energy Centre

News 14 16 18 19 20

Winning business New orders and contracts Linking up Combining strengths Moving on Relocations and expansions Industry people Appointments Technology spotlight Advances in technology

Reports 21 22

Focus on France Ian Sparks reports from Paris Focus on Germany Allan Hall reports from Berlin

Air & Liquid Handling 24

New sensors at the heart of pump efficiency Grundfos

Automation & Tooling 28

Power and precision Schiess


Industry Europe Alkmaar House, Alkmaar Way, Norwich, Norfolk, NR6 6BF, United Kingdom Tel: +44 (0)1603 414444 Fax: +44 (0)1603 779850 Email: Web:

32 36

Investment in precision Linamar A clear view Stakla

Building & Construction 39 44 48 51

Crowning glory Tondach Clear advantage Rolltech Danish design and function Vrøgum Winning on competence Skanska

Consumer © Industry Europe 2012 No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form for any purpose, other than short sections for the purpose of review, without prior consent of the publisher. POSITIVE PUBLICATIONS

58 62

Croatian quality Galeb Bringing the Far East to Europe L-Fashion

Electrical & Electronics 66 70 74

When performance matters Noratel Shining light Tamlite Sustainable and secure Infineon

Energy A Square Root Company

US Industry Today, Industry Europe’s sister publication, is published in the United States of America. For further information or to subscribe contact: Sue Poeton, 100 Morris Avenue, Suite 202, Springfield, NJ 07081. Tel: +1 973 218-0310 Fax: +1 973 218-0311. Email: Web site:

4 Industry Europe

77 82 86

High voltage, high performance Trench Powered up Slovenské élektrárne Serbia’s green energy Hidroelektrane

Food & Drink 90 94 99 102

Global brand with a regional flavour Lambertz Catering for every need LOT Catering True taste of success OSM Olecko Pick of the crop Pick

VOL 22/10

Above: LOT Catering p94

Heavy Vehicles

107 Driving force for positive change CLAAS 110 Tunnel vision Normet

HVAC & Refrigeration 114 118 122 126

Refrigeration innovation Hauser Energy-efficient ventilation systems Nuaire Success – from micro to macro Windhager Keeping cool EPTA

Leather Products

131 In search of excellence Elmo 134 Strong and beautiful Wollsdorf

Above: Tondach p39 Below: Trench p77

Marine 144 148 152 156

Safe and sound Consilium Specialist shipyard products Damen Delivering innovative electronics Heried On-board automation Smart Automation

Above: Angelantoni p159 Below: East Metal p178

Measurement & Control 159 164 167 170

Testing, life sciences and renewable energies Angelantoni

Setting new standards in industrial weighing Eilersen

Taking non-invasive diagnostic technology further Nicolay

Hearing the difference GN Otometrics


Below: Wollsdorf p134

174 178 184 188

Values rooted in history Cividale Winds of change East Metal Experts in complex steel shapes Siderval Where process-performance and precision meet SHB

Plastics 191 196 200

Above: Notalo p196 Below: Gazelle p220

Opening up a better future SIBO Hi-tech polymer solutions Nolato Adding precision and value to materials handling Stellana

Also in this issue... 203 206 210 212 216 220 225

Working for a clean environment IP Cleaning Making connections GN Netcom Solutions in particleboard Forestia Inspirational furniture design from the Black Forest Rolf Benz

Energy is all around us, just waiting to be released VECOPLAN

Gearing up Gazelle Pioneering hygienic, sustainable disposables Ontex Industry Europe 5




Executive Editor of The Scotsman

A monstrous game of bluff Did we ever think the euro crisis had really gone away?


he hope was that the dramatic summer pledge of Mario Draghi, the European Central Bank President, to do “whatever it takes” to avert a continental financial crisis and collapse of the euro would defuse the ticking bombs within the single currency area. And so for a time it seemed to succeed. Greek and Spanish bond yields fell from stratospheric levels. The euro strengthened. The fear gauge relaxed. But this was to overlook a key feature of Mr Draghi’s offer of salvation. It came with strings. The biggest string of all was that countries seeking the financial assistance being offered by the ECB needed to formally apply for it. This has not gone down at all well in the finance ministries of countries where help is desperately needed. Not only do they fear that such an admission would weaken what remained of their credibility in financial markets, but also that the admission would be taken as effective agreement to the imposition of austerity measures. The ECB shows no signs of budging: it’s a generous offer on the table but them’s the rules. But now, looking at the hardening mood in Spain, Portugal and Greece, Mr Draghi’s bluff could be about to be called in the most spectacular fashion. The eurozone crisis displays every sign of being about to re-erupt. In recent weeks figures from both eurozone member countries and from Brussels-based Eurostat suggest that major trouble lies ahead. Unemployment across the single currency area has risen to a new high of 11.6 per cent, while early readings of inflation in October point to price pressures remaining persistent with a 2.5 per cent year-on-year increase and little indication they are going to ease any time soon. With external devaluation denied, internal devaluation is reaping a whirlwind of weak economic activity and falling wages across the weaker economies. In Spain, now with

an unemployment rate of almost 26 per cent, this looks a truly toxic combination. The stronger the downward pressure of recession the more difficult it is for governments to reduce their debt burden. The debt to GDP ratio of the currency union has now reached 90 per cent – and there is no sign this is going to be reduced any time soon.

“The Spanish Government, for which the OMT appears to have been tailor-made, has yet to make the application to EU authorities for a line of credit, which is the minimum condition it must satisfy in order to qualify for ECB bond-buying support.” Little wonder that in countries such as Greece, Italy, Portugal and Spain there is a deepening apprehension over escape hatches being closed and walls closing in. A full bail-out for Spain and perhaps another for Italy are looming on the horizon while Greece continues to be paralysed by 48-hour general strikes in protest at a proposed new wave of austerity. All this lends growing credence to concerns that Mr Draghi’s bluff is about to be called. Eurozone policymakers are fearful it will be. The head of the Austrian central bank has urged the ECB to activate its latest bond-purchase plan, Outright Monetary Transactions (OMT), in order to prove its effectiveness. The fear is that market confidence in the OMT programme is ebbing. Spanish government yields are edging back up from the ‘lows’ reached in the immediate aftermath of Draghi’s original announcement.

No takers According to the rules that Mr Draghi attached to the OMT offer, there is no government’s bonds it is allowed to buy. Says Stephen Lewis, economist with Monument Securities, “The Spanish Government, for which the OMT appears to have been tailormade, has yet to make the application to EU authorities for a line of credit, which is the minimum condition it must satisfy in order to qualify for ECB bond-buying support.” Of the governments currently subject to bailout terms, ECB officials have made clear that neither the Irish nor the Portuguese qualified for the OMT because they did not have full market access. The ECB, with a deeply apprehensive Germany breathing down its neck, is in no mood to play Lady Bountiful. Relations between the ECB and the finance ministries of deeply indebted eurozone countries will have been further strained by an admission by the European Central Bank that it had miscalculated the ‘haircuts’ it applied to Spanish government debt supplied by banks as collateral for loans. The error arose in the classification of Spanish government securities – easy to shrug off as a minor administrative error but one that will have done nothing whatever for the reputation and credibility of the ECB. The focus in eurozone deliberations has returned to Greece and in particular whether more bail-out money could be disbursed. But it seems the German Government is unhappy with the recent drift of events. How long can Greece keep going without more funds? While the Greek Government had earlier said that it would run out of money on 16 November, there is, says Lewis, a general assumption that it would be able to keep going, if necessary, until early December. Fingers are crossed that this is so, and that events in Portugal and Spain do not provoke a more immediate test of Draghi’s n rescue fund conditions. Industry Europe 7

Russia’s role as Europe’s dominant external gas supplier strengthened in the last 12 months as Russian gas giant Gazprom boosted its export routes to key central and western European gas markets. But tensions between Moscow and Brussels heightened as the European Commission challenged Gazprom’s operations in eastern Europe. Paul Whitehead reports*.




ctober 8 marked a new landmark in Russia’s gas exports as the second pipeline in the Nord Stream gas supply route began exporting gas to Germany. The twin pipelines, which run between Portovaya Bay near Vyborg on Russia’s Baltic coast, across the Baltic Sea to Lubmin in northern Germany, provide a direct route for Russia’s gas exports, which have been hampered in the past because of disputes with transit countries Ukraine and Belarus. “Nord Stream will meet Europe’s growing demand for energy resources. Gas will be supplied directly by the shortest route, linking the major Russian gas reserves to European markets without transit risks, steadily and smoothly. We can guarantee this,” Russian President Vladimir Putin said as the second pipeline was inaugurated at a ceremony in Portovaya Bay. 8 Industry Europe

The second line came just 11 months after the first line was launched, and 30 months after construction began. Together they have enough capacity to ship 55 billion cubic metres of gas a year to Lubmin, where it is transported onwards to Belgium, Denmark, France, the Netherlands and other European markets, as well as Germany. Gazprom has a 51 per cent controlling stake in the Nord Stream consortium with western partners German BASF/Wintershall and E.ON Ruhrgas owning 15.5 per cent each, while Dutch Gasunie and French GDF Suez each have 9 per cent stakes. The partners now plan to sign a memorandum of understanding to build further lines along the route, Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller told the opening ceremony. Nord Stream feasibility studies concluded an extension of one or two lines would be technically and financially

viable, with several routes being considered. And Miller said one of these could be a connection to the UK, western Europe’s biggest gas market, whose indigenous gas sources, whilst the biggest in the EU, are fast depleting. Wherever the additional lines are built, they would take total Nord Stream capacity to 110 billion cubic metres/year. This would further tighten Russia’s grip on Europe’s gas supply at a time when political leaders in Brussels and EU capitals are grappling with concerns over security of supply as Europe’s existing gas reserves dwindle and other energy sources like coal and nuclear become less viable because of environmental legislation and safety concerns.

Pincer movement And Nord Stream is just part of the picture in Gazprom’s quest to cut dependence on transit countries, which have caused it so

many headaches in the past. Before Nord Stream 80 per cent of Russian gas went through Ukraine and the other 20 per cent went through Belarus, both of which were involved in pricing disputes with Gazprom. A dispute with Ukraine in January 2009 resulted in a two-week suspension of supplies of Russian gas to Europe. It is now seeking a direct route to southern Europe through the so-called South Stream pipeline, which will take Russian gas across the Black Sea to Bulgaria, from where the route will go to Serbia-HungarySlovenia and on to northern Italy. Gazprom project management chief Leonid Chugunov said on November 9 that work on the new line would start on December 7. Like Nord Stream, it is being built by a consortium led by Gazprom (50 per cent) with other shareholders Italy’s Eni (20 per cent), France’s EDF (15 per cent) and Germany’s BASF/ Wintershall (15 per cent). Once built it would bring up to 63 billion cubic metres/year, with four parallel lines and possible offshoots to Bosnia & Herzegovina, and Croatia. Gazprom expects the first line to open in 2015, the second and third by end 2016 and the last by end 2014. The start of work on South Stream could spell the end of rival projects seeking to open up the so-called Southern Corridor. The EU-

sponsored Nabucco pipeline has already been drastically scaled back. The project, billed as an alternative to Russian supplies, aims to bring gas from the Caspian and Middle East into the heart of Europe – the Austrian hub at Baumgarten – and potentially on to Italy. But the eastern section has now been abandoned after the Azeris signed a deal with Turkey for their own TANAP pipeline to take gas from the huge Caspian Shah Deniz gas field through Turkey and on to Greece and Bulgaria. And the Azeris have signed a similar deal to supply gas to Italy via the Trans Adriatic Pipeline proposed by Swiss utility Axpo, casting doubt on the remaining part of Nabucco, now dubbed Nabucco West. The rival Greek-Italian ITGI pipeline looks increasing unlikely without Azeri support. All of which means that Russia’s Gazprom will dominate at least two of the new supply routes to Europe, and Azerbaijan’s SOCAR the other.

Shale gas no saviour None of this would matter if Europe were not becoming increasingly dependent on imported gas. But any hope that Europe could replicate the success of the US in developing unconventional shale gas resources is fading fast. The discovery and exploitation of shale gas resources in states like Texas and Pennsylvania has transformed the US energy economy – in

just a few years turning it from a net importer to potentially a net exporter. Europe has promising shale resources too, particularly in Poland, but also in other countries including Germany and the UK. However, several reports commissioned by the European Commission into the potential and risks of shale gas exploration in Europe concluded that shale gas would never be the ‘game changer’ it has been in the US. Estimates of how much recoverable shale gas there is in Europe vary widely from 4 to 18 trillion cubic metres. But one of the reports commissioned by the EC found that, at best, indigenous shale gas would allow the EU to cap its imports at around 60 per cent of total gas use – with shale gas and dwindling conventional gas resources allowing Europe to meet just 40 per cent of its gas needs from indigenous sources. The other two reports focused on the many obstacles that shale gas exploration faces in Europe. The EU would need to adapt its existing legislation to reflect the environmental impacts of hydraulic fracturing, or ‘fracking’ – the water-intensive process used to extract gas from shale formations. They also identified issues with regard to access to water and land – Europe does not have the vast open expanses found in the Texan desert – and other obstacles including public acceptance. Industry Europe 9

France has already ruled out shale gas exploration on its territory because of environmental concerns. Concerns about a potential link to seismic activity is driving public hostility in other countries – the link between fracking and earthquakes was confirmed when the UK concluded that two minor earthquakes near Blackpool in north-west England were caused by exploratory fracking by Cuadrilla Resources in the area. In any case, there is a growing consensus that shale gas will not deliver energy independence for Europe.

EU and Gazprom in final showdown Against this backdrop, the EU has launched a new assault on Gazprom’s supremacy, challenging the Russian utility’s existing position in central and eastern Europe. In early September, the European Commission’s competition directorate launched competition proceedings against Gazprom on three suspected anti-competitive practices. The EC is concerned that Gazprom may have

10 Industry Europe

divided gas markets by hindering the free flow of gas across members of the 27-country bloc. Secondly, it believes that Gazprom may have prevented the diversification of gas supplies. And finally, the EC is investigating whether Gazprom’s practice of linking gas prices to oil prices had led to unfavourable prices for Gazprom’s European customers. This last challenge could have the most wide-ranging impact since for decades Russian gas (and gas from other sources like Algeria) has been priced into Europe using a formula that links the price to the price of oil, usually with a six-month timelag. Under EU competition rules, if found guilty, Gazprom could face fines of up to 10 per cent of its turnover in the EU, which given that Gazprom has European gas sales of around $60 billion a year, would amount to $6 billion. But Russia has strongly denied the allegations and warned the EC that in taking on Gazprom, it is effectively taking on the Russian state. Just days after the EC launched the probe, President Putin signed a new

decree “protecting Russian interests in Russian legal entities’ foreign economic activities,” stressing that the Russian state would protect the interests of strategic enterprises abroad, namely Gazprom. Meanwhile Russia says that the EU is seeking to unfairly apply its own rules to gas transit projects like Nord Stream and South Stream. Speaking at the Gastech gas conference in London in October, Russia’s deputy energy minister, Pavel Fedorov, said EU insistence on third-party access to Nord Stream and South Stream – meaning Gazprom had to open up the pipelines to all comers – was wrong. “Infrastructure investments were and are being made. You can’t come in with legislation that has retroactive impact and does not allow gas producers to make a return on investments,” he said, as the tug of war between the world’s biggest gas producer and its biggest customer reached a new intensity. n *Paul Whitehead is managing editor of European energy policy at energy news and pricing agency Platts.



New developments in the Energy industry

Production starts from gas field Devenick R

WE Dea UK has announced the delivery of the first gas from the Devenick field in the central North Sea. The field contains around 430 billion standard cubic feet of gas in place (11.6 billion standard cubic metres) and is part of RWE Dea’s growth strategy in the United Kingdom. BPe Devenick gas project, which was approved by the government in late 2010, came on stream at an initial rate of 100 million standard cubic feet per day (2.69 million standard cubic metres). RWE Dea holds 11.3% interest in the Devenick gas field with BP as operator holding the remaining 88.7%. The Devenick field contains an estimated 430 billion standard cubic feet of gas in place (11.6 billion standard cubic metres) and production is expected to last until the year 2025. The Devenick development connects gas production from a subsea manifold through highly insulated flowlines and high pressure control and safety systems to Marathon’s East Brae platform located 34 kilometres to the south of the field. From the East Brae platform the gas is exported to the UK gas grid via the SAGE pipeline system and the terminal at St Fergus. “I am particularly pleased that we have undertaken this challenging development without any incidents and just under two years from securing government sanction,” says Rene Pawel, managing director RWE Dea UK. Visit:

Major milestone for BP in UK’s central North Sea

Plan for Arctic drilling platform


BP, and is a clear example of the company’s strategy in action. Advances in our understanding of the reservoir structure, deployment of the very latest in UK subsea engineering skills and a major upgrade of the Andrew platform are key success factors of this development.” Visit:


and will have sufficient capacity for 13 billion cubic metres of gas per year, the equivalent of 20% of the annual natural gas consumption of France and Belgium combined. With its three liquefied natural gas storage tanks, the terminal will offer the network increased flexibility to supply gas-fired power stations which are able to

meet peak electricity demands, especially in the winter months. In environmental terms, EDF has opted to heat the liquefied natural gas using a zero carbon method based partly on hot water discharged by the Gravelines nuclear plant, thus ensuring that the terminal is at the forefront of energy efficiency developments. Visit:

has announced completion of a major milestone on its Kinnoull project in the UK’s central North Sea. On 14 October the new 700-tonne processing unit for the Kinnoull and Andrew Lower Cretaceous reservoirs, built in Hartlepool, England, was successfully installed on to BP’s Andrew platform, 230 kilometres north-west of Aberdeen. The Kinnoull field is one of three reservoirs that are being developed as part of the rejuvenation of the Andrew area. The reservoir will be connected to BP’s Andrew platform and will enable production there to be extended by a further decade. Trevor Garlick, regional president for BP’s North Sea business said: “The Kinnoull project is significant to the North Sea business, and wider

Foundation stone laid for the Dunkirk LNG terminal


he Dunkirk LNG terminal is expected to be commissioned towards the end of 2015 and is the second largest industrial construction site in France after the EPR site at Flamanville. The terminal will be able to accommodate the world’s largest LNG tankers

osneft and ExxonMobil have selected Vostochniy Offshore Structures Construction Yard to conduct a concept evaluation and feasibility study for a platform capable of safely exploring Kara Sea’s shallow waters. Key attributes of the platform concept are safety and environmental protection measures for operating in Arctic conditions and the ability to withstand extreme ice, wind, wave and temperature conditions. The study will evaluate the feasibility of utilising a gravity base structure that could extend the drilling season by several months. Designed to operate in up to 60 metres (200 feet) of water, the structure with drilling equipment would be installed on the seabed to drill a well and then would be refloated and moved to other drilling sites. Visit: or

Industry Europe 11


New developments in the Energy industry

Vattenfall and SWM commission accommodation platform


rom 2014 onwards, quiet rooms with a shower, internet access and a TV will make everyday life more comfortable for the members of the DanTysk Wind Farm maintenance team – right in the middle of the harsh North Sea. Vattenfall and the Stadtwerke Munich have now commissioned the Schleswig-Holstein based company Nobiskrug, whose headquarters is in Rendsburg, to build the offshore accommodation platform. The platform will be built in the Abu Dhabi MAR dockyard Kiel. The beginning of construction work is scheduled for spring 2013; the platform should then be erected on the DanTysk wind farm 70 km from Sylt in autumn 2014. The platform will be able to cater for up to 50 people and will be in use 365 days a year. “Anyone who’s experienced the harsh climate of the North Sea, with its strong winds and waves, will understand the importance of good working and living conditions for the maintenance teams on site. In Germany we’re facing particular challenges because offshore wind farms are located up to 100 kilometres from the coast,” explains Holger Grubel, head of the DanTysk project. “At these distances it simply isn’t possible for crews to commute by ship every day.” Visit:

Gazprom launches commercial gas production in Yamal Peninsula


he Bovanenkovo oil and gas condensate field has launched commercial gas production in the new large gas-bearing region – the Yamal Peninsula. The first startup complexes of the Bovanenkovo field and the Bovanenkovo–Ukhta gas trunkline systems have been commissioned. The Yamal gas production centre is replacing the Nadym-Pur-Taz region, which has been the national gas production leader for more than 40 years. The Yamal Peninsula and adjacent offshore areas have great potential: the explored gas reserves with estimated and prospective resources total 26.5 trillion cubic metres. This will make it possible to produce up to 360 billion cubic metres of gas annually by 2030. In the next few decades the increasing gas consumption in Russia and abroad will be satisfied mainly by the Yamal Peninsula. Visit:

GDF SUEZ inaugurates Estreito hydro power plant in Brazil


DF SUEZ, through its subsidiary Tractebel Energia, has announced the inauguration of a new 1087MW hydroelectric power plant at Estreito in Brazil. Estreito is owned by Tractebel Energia (40.07%), Vale (30%), Alcoa (25.49%) and Intercement (4.4%). Tractebel Energia is

12 Industry Europe

E.ON starts construction of power-to-gas pilot plant in Germany


onstruction of E.ON’s new pilot plant to enable wind power to be stored in the gas grid is now underway. The plant will be built in Falkenhagen, located in north-east Germany. From 2013 onwards the power-to-gas plant will handle excess power that is generated by wind farms and cannot be fed into the power grid. By storing the excess power, wind farms, which would otherwise be shut down for a while to avoid bottlenecks in the power grid, can continue to generate power. The plant works by using electrolysis. In the process about 360m2 of hydrogen is produced per hour. This hydrogen can then be treated like natural gas. Once the process is complete, it can be fed into the regional gas grid where it is then available for producing heat and power. Power-to-gas technology is particularly attractive because of the large storage capacity offered by existing gas infrastructure. Owing to gas regulations, at the moment only a small amount of hydrogen gas can be fed into the gas infrastructure. To expand the energy storage potential, the next step is to convert hydrogen into synthetic gas. Theoretically, this means that the entire storage capacity of the gas grid could be utilised. Visit:

responsible for the operational management on behalf of the consortium. Gerard Mestrallet, chairman and CEO of GDF SUEZ: “Brazil is at the heart of our Group’s strategy in Latin America. As the leading private power producer in Brazil, we believe that our Brazilian portfolio provides an excellent base to achieve sustainable and profitable growth.”

Estreito is located on the Tocantins river between the states of Tocantins and Maranhao, downstream from the Sao Salvador (243MW) and Cana Brava (450MW) hydro plants which are both owned and operated by Tractebel Energia. The total capacity of the plant is sufficient to meet the energy needs of 4 million people. Visit:


Major construction begins on the Prelude FLNG project


hell has celebrated the cutting of first steel for the game-changing Prelude floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) facility’s substructure with joint venture participants Inpex and KOGAS, and lead contractor, the Technip Samsung Consortium, at Samsung Heavy Industries’ Geoje shipyard in South Korea. Shell’s Projects & Technology director Matthias Bichsel commented: “We are cutting 7.6 tonnes of steel for the Prelude floating liquefied natural gas facility today, but in total more than 260,000 tonnes of steel will be fabricated and assembled for the facility. That’s around five times the amount of steel used to build the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Today’s ceremony marks a major milestone in this project, when the innovative thinking and new technology and engineering solutions which will make FLNG possible begin to be realised.” When completed, the Prelude FLNG facility will be 488 metres long and 74 metres wide, making it the largest offshore floating facility ever built. When fully equipped and with its cargo tanks full, it will weigh more than 600,000 tonnes. There will be over 3000 kilometres of electrical and instrumentation cables on the FLNG facility, the distance from Barcelona to Moscow. Visit:

More offshore wind farms for Scotland S

eagreen Wind Energy Ltd has submitted applications to the Scottish Government for consent to build and operate two 525 Megawatt (MW) offshore wind farms in Phase 1 of its Firth of Forth Offshore Wind Zone. Seagreen is a joint venture partnership between SSE Renewables and Fluor Limited. The Phase 1 applications are for two separate offshore wind farms, Project Alpha and Project Bravo, located 27km and 38km respectively at

their closest points from the Angus coastline. The wind farms would each have a maximum capacity of 525 MW and accommodate up to 75 wind turbines and supporting infrastructure including subsea cables, offshore substation platforms and meteorological masts. The subsea cables will transmit the power produced by the projects to a landfall point at Camoustie on the Angus Coast. Visit:

LNG terminal for ship fuelling in the Port of Hamburg


omin Linde LNG GmbH & Co. KG has been concentrating on the implementation of initial projects to build storage and refuelling infrastructure for liquefied natural gas (LNG) in several European ports. The first specific step taken by the joint venture of Linde Group and Bomin, a subsidiary of Marquard & Bahls AG, is the construction of a terminal for fuelling ships with LNG in the Port of Hamburg. Potential methods of implementation are

Total exchanges assets with ExxonMobil in the North Sea


otal has announced an exchange of interests with ExxonMobil in a range of producing and undeveloped North Sea assets on the Norwegian Continental Shelf. In exchange for its interests in the PL089 license (5.6%) and the Sygna (2.52%), Statfjord ÿst (2.8%) and Snorre (6.18%) fields,

presently being evaluated in order to comply with the legal approval criteria necessary to set up a so-called small scale LNG terminal on the Marquard & Bahls subsidiary Oiltanking premises in the Hamburg port. LNG has a very promising future as an alternative ship fuel. As of 2015, the limits on sulphur emissions will be reduced significantly for shipping in the North and Baltic Seas. Visit: Total will receive from ExxonMobil its 4.7% interest in the Oseberg field and its 4.33% interest in the Oseberg transportation system, together with its interests in the PL029c license (100%) and the PL029b license (30%), which contain part of the Dagny field. In addition, a minor cash compensation will also be paid by Total to ExxonMobil. Oseberg is one of the largest oil and gas fields in the Nor-

wegian North Sea, and includes a number of satellite fields currently under development. Dagny reserves are estimated by the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) to be 205 million barrels of oil equivalent (boe) and the Final Investment Decision (FID) of the field development is expected before the end of 2012. Visit: Industry Europe 13


EFFICIENT GOLD The organisers of the London Olympics were determined that 2012 would see the greenest Games ever. An example of this commitment to renewable and energy-efficient technology was a state-of-the-art Energy Centre constructed to provide power, heating and cooling across the whole Olympic Park for the entire duration of the Games – and beyond. Robert Williams reports.


he Energy Centre became operational in October 2010 and began providing an early legacy of sustainable energy across the site, helping to reduce the carbon emissions of the Olympic Park well before the Games. It was much more efficient than having individual systems in each building and saved an enormous amount of energy that would normally have been lost in transporting it long distances from traditional power stations. The building provided power, heating and cooling systems across the Olympic Park for the Games, the venues and the Olympic Village and for the new buildings and communities that are being developed. A significant proportion of the 20 per cent renewable energy target was met by this facility which includes a biomass boiler that uses woodchip as fuel to generate heat, and a natural gas powered combined cooling, heat and power plant. The project is the largest energy centre scheme to be built so far in the UK and features a gas-fired Combined Cooling Heat & Power (CCHP) plant to capture the heat generated by electricity production. It also includes biomass-fired boilers that use sustainable biomass fuels, such as woodchip, to 14 Industry Europe

generate heat and deliver low-carbon energy. Together with a second energy centre, built in Stratford City, they served the heating, cooling and electricity requirements of the Games venues and other facilities. The Energy Centre was designed to be a community landmark in the tradition of London’s Battersea and Bankside power stations. Part of the Centre is housed in a renovated Edwardian sweets factory, which was the only original building retained from the Olympic Park site as it was prior to construction. The Kings Yard Edwardian building was renovated to visually integrate with the surrounding listed buildings. It reaches 45m from the ground at its highest point. The Centre has a flexible modular design, so that extra capacity and new technology can be added when demand increases once the area is further developed after the Games. Both the energy centres will serve the new metropolitan development in east London after the 2012 Games. About five new neighbourhoods are being planned for development in the future. The environmental and economic benefits include a huge reduction of carbon emissions – while the design of the Centre is

both flexible and sustainable to allow it to be adapted as technology progresses. The Kings Yard plant is equipped with two 20MW hot water boilers, three 3.5MW bio-boilers, two 7MW electric chillers and one 4MW absorption chiller. It has five cooling towers. Boilers in the Energy Centre use natural gas as feedstock. Base demand for heat during winter is met through the bioboilers that use sustainable biomass, such as woodchips and pulp, as feedstock. Now that the Games are a pleasant and fading memory, the Centre will continue to support the permanent Olympic venues as well as the new buildings and communities that will develop after 2012.

CHP efficiency gains Combined heat and power is energy efficient technology. It provides a means to substantially reduce fuel, or ‘primary energy’, consumption without compromising the quality and reliability of the energy supply to consumers. CHP integrates the production of usable heat and power (electricity), in one single, highly efficient process. It generates electricity whilst also capturing usable heat that is

produced in this process. This is a significant contrast with conventional methods of generating electricity where vast amounts of heat is wasted. For example, in coal and gas fired power stations, up to two thirds of the overall energy consumed is lost in this way, often seen as a cloud of steam rising from cooling towers. Their relative sophistication means that the overall efficiency of CHP plants can reach in excess of 80 per cent at the point of use. This compares with the efficiency of CCGTs, which in the UK ranged between 49 per cent and 52 per cent over the period 2006 to 2008. Coalfired plants fare less well with an efficiency of around 38 per cent. CHP plants generally meet local energy needs; certainly for heat, also power and increasingly for cooling. They normally avoid additional efficiency losses of around 7 per

cent incurred through transmission and distribution of electricity through the National Grid and local distribution networks – as energy is lost travelling long distances to reach its end user. When taking account of these losses, the respective efficiencies of both coal and CCGT plant fall further at the point of use. The efficiency benefits of CHP provide a range of wider advantages. Delivering the same energy more efficiently, using less fuel in the process, reduces energy costs, enhances security of energy supply and helps mitigate our dependence on imported fuels. As we move towards a lower-carbon future CHP also presents the opportunity to secure costeffective reductions in CO2 emissions. Today’s CHP systems are based predominantly upon existing, proven power generation technologies, including steam

turbines, gas turbines and reciprocating engines used the world over to generate energy. This use and adaptation of existing technology not only contributes to the relatively low cost of CHP, but also ensures that it is a proven and reliable technology, capable of delivering an immediate impact in transforming our energy system. The City of London plans to generate about 25 per cent of its power requirements locally by 2025 through the construction of energy centres. It also plans to reduce the costs associated with fossil fuels and carbon emissions by 60 per cent by then. The Olympic Park Energy Centre will play its part, powering about 10,000 homes in the long run. An educational and historic Information Centre is also planned for visitors within the Energy Centre. n Industry Europe 15


New contracts and orders in industry

Alfa Laval wins energy-efficiency order in Russia


lfa Laval – a world leader in heat transfer, centrifugal separation and fluid handling – has won an order for compact heat exchangers from a refinery in Russia. The order value is approximately SEK 70 million, it was booked late September and delivery is scheduled for 2013. The Alfa Laval compact heat exchangers will be used in the vacuum section of the crude oil distillation, where they will preheat the feed stream re-using heat from other parts of the process, thereby resulting in an energy-efficient process solution. “It is our second large order this year, from the same Russian refinery,” says Lars Renström, president and CEO of the Alfa Laval Group. “It proves our ability to supply energy-efficient solutions for these demanding refinery applications.” Visit:


NCC to construct wind farms for SEK 460 million


CC Construction Sweden has been commissioned to construct a total of 123 base plates, with associated roads, for two wind farms on the borders between the Swedish counties of Västernorrland and Jämtland. The client is Statkraft SCA Vind AB and the total

ABB wins order for next generation icebreaker in Russia’s Arctic


BB, the leading power and automation technology group, has won an order worth $35 million from the Baltic Shipyard Ltd to supply powerful propulsion and energy efficient electrical systems for a new icebreaker vessel under construction for Russia’s state shipping company Rosmorport FSUE. 16 Industry Europe

Orange official technical supplier for Vendée Globe round-the-world yacht race

order value is SEK 460 million, which will be registered in the fourth quarter. One of the wind farms is called Björkhöjden and is located in the municipalities of Sollefteå and Ragunda. It will comprise 90 turbines. The second farm, Ögonfägnaden, is located in the municipalities of Sollefteå, Ragunda and Strömsund and will comprise 33 turbines. The order also includes construction of 103km of roads. When the wind farms are completed, they will produce 1090 GWh of electricity per year, corresponding to annual consumption of household electricity for 550,000 apartments. Work will commence in October 2012 and is scheduled to be completed in November 2014. A total of 50 individuals will be employed during the project. Visit: The 25 megawatt (MW) line diesel-electric icebreaker is the next-generation multifunctional diesel-electric icebreaker. The navigation area of the icebreaker is the Northern Sea Route, the Arctic seas and estuaries of rivers discharging into the Arctic Ocean. The icebreaker is able to proceed continuously both ahead and astern at the speed of 2 knots in compact ice field up to 2m thick.

range is supplying all of the telecommunications solutions for the Vendée Globe 2012, one of the world’s most extreme yacht races where competitors sail around the world single handed, non-stop, and without assistance. The partnership with Orange will help ensure the event’s smooth operation and will support global media coverage via an extensive technological deployment. For the 2012–2013 Vendée Globe race, which began on 10 November, Orange Event Solutions, the event specialists, will deploy all of the secure telecoms solutions for each of the sites and areas used for the Vendée Globe event: the race and media computers, equipment for the floating docks, the crew area and exhibitors’ and hospitality villages. A full time team of technicians will be taking care of the operational aspects, including: telephone services (analogue and digital); high speed cabling to meet the needs of TV production and broadcasting; specific high speed links for photographers; LAN (cable) and Wi-Fi access for the press; independent and secure Wi-Fi areas; and mobile telephone services. Visit:

ABB will provide integrated power generation and distribution systems, thruster motors, fire-fighting pump motors as well as 25 MW propulsion systems. The propulsion system of the vessel features two Azipod® thruster units (power output 2 x 7.5 MW) and one centreline arranged shafting with a fixed pitch propeller generating additional 10MW output. Visit:


Röchling Automotive selects Technyl® polyamide T echnyl polyamide from Rhodia Engineering Plastics, a member of the Solvay group, has been chosen by Röchling Automotive for the manufacture of turbocharger air ducts which have to resist temperatures of up to 210°C. Since 2007, teams from Rhodia Engineering Plastics and Röchling Automotive have been working together to develop new solutions to meet the increasingly demanding specifications of automobile OEMs. Fabrizio Chini, advanced project manager at Röchling Automotive explains: “With a full understanding of our needs and a

close and efficient collaboration, Rhodia was able to develop a high performance material that meets all the stringent technical requirements for air duct system parts, which also allows us to apply our patented and exclusive JectBonding processing and joining technology.” As a result, the new polyamide 6.6 blowmoulding material – Technyl B2 – is the established grade in Rhodia’s Technyl range of products for turbo systems and has been used by Röchling Automotive for over a year. Visit:

Wärtsilä X72 engines selected for six vessels PJD secures Sheffield


ärtsilä, the marine industry’s leading solutions and services provider, is to supply its recently introduced Wärtsilä X72 licensed engines to power six new vessels for two Singapore based shipping companies. Wärtsilä equipment will be installed on four container vessels that Pacific International Lines (PIL) has ordered from Dalian Shipbuilding Industry Company (DSIC), in China,

and on two bulk carriers being built by Bohai Shipbuilding Heavy Industry Co. Ltd. (BSHIC) also in China. The Wärtsilä X72 has been selected as the main engine for these ships, with delivery of the first engines scheduled for early 2014. The Wärtsilä X72 engine offers exceptional efficiency and fuel consumption performance to provide a favourable Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI). Furthermore, the improvement in fuel consumption, when compared to conventional marine engine options, results in correspondingly reduced CO2 emissions. “The maritime sector continues to confront the need to achieve lower operational costs and better environmental performance. The Wärtsilä Generation X engines were specifically developed to address these needs, and we are confident that in selecting the Wärtsilä X72 engine for their new ships, these owners will reap substantial benefits,” says Martin Wernli, vice-president, Wärtsilä Ship Power, 2-stroke. Visit:

Siemens to equip Turkish suspension bridge with traffic control technology

ogy. The six-lane bridge is part of a freeway project linking the cities of Istanbul and Izmir in western Turkey. The customer is the Japanese company IHI Infrastructure Systems Co. Ltd. The volume of the contract for Siemens is worth around €17 million. Siemens is equipping the almost 3kmlong freeway bridge at the eastern end of the Sea of Marmara in Turkey with state-


the construction of the fourth longest suspension bridge in the world, Siemens will be the general contractor responsible for the development, installation and commissioning of all components and systems for the traffic control technol-

biomass contract


eter J Douglas Engineering Ltd, part of the UK’s leading independent mechanical engineering business PJD Group, has been awarded a multi-million pound contract by Andritz Energy and Environment GmbH to erect the boiler and associated mechanical plant at Blackburn Meadows Renewable Energy Plant in Sheffield. The £120 million E.ON owned renewable energy plant will be located near the site of the old Tinsley Towers, adjacent to Meadowhall, and when operational will generate 30MW of electricity, enough to power approximately 40,000 homes, by converting recycled waste wood into electricity. When complete the plant will displace the emissions of around 80,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide every year, the equivalent of taking more than 20,000 cars off the UK’s roads each year, by burning carbon neutral fuel in place of traditional fossil fuels like coal and gas. At its construction peak, PJD will be employing more than 60 skilled workers, with the contract lasting 66 weeks in total. Visit:

of-the-art traffic control technology. This includes the traffic control system, monitoring technology and components for the technical infrastructure such as communication and camera equipment, energy supply, lighting and ventilation. This new six-lane bridge connection will cut the travel time between both cities from eight to four hours. Visit: Industry Europe 17


Combining strengths

DSM to acquire Cargill’s cultures and enzymes business


oyal DSM, the global Life Sciences and Materials Sciences company, has reached an agreement with Cargill to acquire Cargill’s cultures and enzymes business in an all-cash transaction for a total enterprise value of €85 million. The cultures and enzymes business of Cargill is a leading global manufacturer of cultures and enzymes for the dairy and meat industries with manufacturing operations in Wisconsin (USA) and France. The business generates net sales of about €45 million per year with approximately 200 employees. The combination of the two businesses will allow DSM to achieve its ambition to become a

tier one supplier of cultures and enzymes to the global dairy market and will greatly accelerate DSM’s growth plans for its business, which continues to benefit from consumer demand for more versatile dairy products. Stephan Tanda, member of the DSM managing board and responsible for the Nutrition cluster, said: “This is a very important growth enhancing acquisition for our Food Specialties business and fully fits our strategy as we continue to create value for all stakeholders by providing innovative, sustainable solutions to the world’s greatest current and future challenges.” Visit:

Stephen Tanda

Clariant and Wilmar establish joint venture DSV acquires activities from C lariant Ltd, a world leader in speciality chemicals, and Wilmar International Limited, a leading Asian agribusiness group, have, through their respective subsidiaries, signed an agreement to establish a 50-50 joint venture as the global platform for production and sales

Hariolf Kottmann

DEUTZ, Bosch and Eberspächer restructure their alliance


EUTZ AG, Robert Bosch GmbH and J. Eberspächer GmbH & Co. KG have decided to restructure their alliance in the field of exhaust after-treatment. To this end, DEUTZ and Eberspächer will sell their shares in Bosch Emission Systems GmbH (BESG) to the majority shareholder Bosch.

18 Industry Europe

of amines and selected amines derivatives. The joint venture will be headquartered in Singapore. “Wilmar and Clariant will leverage on their companies’ individual strengths to create a global platform with significant growth opportunities. With this first step, both partners are dedicated to creating a new leading player in the global amine and amine derivatives market,” said Clariant CEO Hariolf Kottmann. Clariant will contribute its Industrial & Consumer Specialties (ICS) Business Unit’s sales activities of relevant amines and defined derivatives to the joint venture as well as its amines plant in Germany and production output from its amines plant in Brazil. Headquartered in Muttenz, Switzerland, ICS has the highest sales volume in the Clariant Group and is one of the largest providers of speciality chemicals and application solutions for consumer care and industrial markets. Wilmar will contribute a new plant in China as well as its oleochemical expertise, including access to renewable raw materials. Visit: The parties have agreed not to disclose the purchase price. The transaction is subject to approval from the antitrust authorities. DEUTZ and Bosch will intensify their future collaboration as part of an innovation partnership in the fields of exhaust after-treatment, diesel injection technology and electronics. The aim of this partnership will continue to supply DEUTZ with

AWT Čechofracht


SV in Czech Republic has signed an agreement on the acquisition of certain activities from AWT Čechofracht a.s. AWT Čechofracht a.s. has a strong market position in the Czech Republic, offering several forwarding and logistics services. The agreement includes the road, air and sea freight activities and contract logistics of AWT Čechofracht and will strengthen the market position of all three DSV divisions in the Czech Republic. In the last 12 months, the activities acquired from AWT Čechofracht a.s. have generated revenue of approximately €30 million. “AWT Čechofracht a.s. is an important player with strong traditions in the Czech market. The activities acquired match the current DSV activities in the Czech Republic well and will furthermore create a complete local distribution network,” says group CEO Jens Bjorn Andersen. Visit:

exhaust after-treatment systems. Since its establishment in 2010, BESG has supplied the modules for the diesel exhaust gas after-treatment systems of construction equipment, agricultural machinery and commercial vehicles such as trucks and buses. BESG employs around 180 people, who work at three sites in Germany. Visit:


SATO and CSD announce strategic alliance S ATO, a leading supplier of solutions for automatic identification and data capture, and CSD, a software specialist, have agreed to future collaborations in the transport and logistics sector. The aim is to merge various products from the two companies in order to offer customers integrated solutions. CSD is an established software consulting and outsourcing service provider specialising in online

business, online security and client/server solutions. TransWareOne client/server software from CSD Logistik Software is a powerful tool for an end-to-end order handling for logistics services. SATO offers a full spectrum of labelling and tracking solutions for the transport and logistics industry and supports customers in all phases from consulting and specification to design and implementation. In this regard high speed and the minimisation of potential sources of errors are important factors. For example, user-friendly thermal barcode printers from SATO deliver labels with good text legibility and persistently accurate barcode markings. “We see considerable potential from our ability to cooperate, share ideas and jointly develop comprehensive solutions, including both hardware and software, in the interest of our customers,” commented Detlev Müller, general manager SATO Germany in Raunheim. Visit:

Miston acquires majority share of Oliotalo business


liotalo Oy designs and manufactures intelligent remote monitoring solutions and provides engineering services for embedded systems. With this investment, Miston Oy becomes the majority owner of Oliotalo. Kaius Häggblom, the founder and managing director, will stay with the company as the managing director and co-owner. Oliotalo Oy will continue operations as an independent company. Oliotalo Oy was founded in 2002. It specialises in intelligent remote condition monitoring systems, including a full-scale industrial strength monitoring back-end and a web based user interface. Applications of Oliotalo’s ORM technology can be found in a wide range of industries, including wind turbines, forklift fleets and other machine-to-machine applications. With Oliotalo’s range of solutions, customers can monitor, collect and process vital

Veidekke acquiring Hammerfest Entreprenør AS


eidekke Entreprenør is buying 81% of the shares in Hammerfest Entreprenør AS in Finnmark. Hammerfest Entreprenør has 27 employees and an annual turnover of around NOK 80 million. Hammerfest Entreprenør has 27 employees: 5 administrative staff and 22 craftsmen.

information, enabling remote condition monitoring, pre-emptive maintenance and subsequently lower lifecycle costs and increased reliability. In addition, Oliotalo provides OEM engineering services of embedded systems. Most of Oliotalo’s production goes to exports. Visit:

The company carries out building and construction jobs in and around Hammerfest, and has achieved solid economical results. The company’s main market is commercial buildings, public service buildings and small construction jobs. The company was founded in 2004 by managing director Rolf Johnny Nilsen in collaboration with a number of local business partners.

BASF and CSM establish 50:50 joint venture


ASF and Purac, a subsidiary of CSM, are establishing a joint venture for the production and sale of biobased succinic acid. The company will be named Succinity GmbH and will be operational in 2013. The establishment of Succinity GmbH is subject to filing with the relevant competition authorities. The company headquarters will be in Düsseldorf, Germany. The demand for succinic acid is anticipated to grow strongly in the years ahead, driven mainly by bioplastics, chemical intermediates, solvents, polyurethanes and plasticizers. BASF and CSM are currently modifying an existing fermentation facility at Purac’s Montmélo site near Barcelona, Spain, for the production of succinic acid. This plant, which will commence operations in late 2013 with an annual capacity of 10,000 metric tons of succinic acid, will put the new joint venture company in a leading position in the global marketplace. This is complemented by plans for a second large-scale facility with an annual capacity of 50,000 metric tons of succinic acid to enable the company to respond to the expected increase in demand. The final investment decision for this facility will be made following a successful market introduction. Visit:

“Veidekke’s expertise in project development and management, combined with Hammerfest Entreprenør’s good local relations, will make us a powerful provider of construction projects linked to the land-based activities in the oil industry and infrastructure projects in the area,” says Veidekke’s regional manager Nils Hæstad. Visit: Industry Europe 19



Relocations and expansions across Europe

Wacker builds new dispersions plant in South Korea


acker Chemie AG is expanding its production capacity in South Korea for vinyl acetate-ethylene copolymer (VAE) dispersions. The Munichbased chemical group is constructing a new plant with an annual capacity of 40,000 metric tons at its site in Ulsan. This measure will almost double Ulsan’s VAE dispersion capacity, making the enlarged production complex one of the biggest of its kind in South Korea. Expected to start up in January 2013, the new plant will enable WACKER to meet accelerating demand for high-quality VAE dispersions, especially in South East Asia’s developing countries. Having budgeted around €10 million for the expansion project, WACKER is strengthening its position as one of the world’s major suppliers of VAE dispersions. Visit:

Solvay increases SOLEF® production capacity

Big move for Grayton Engineering



olvay is reinforcing its leadership on the growing world market for SOLEF® Polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) by starting up new production capacity at its Tavaux plant, France. Solvay has invested €26 million to increase the PVDF production capacity at the plant by 50 per cent. Solvay’s SOLEF® PVDF is, among others, used for demanding applications in oil & gas extraction, as binders and in separators in Lithium-Ion and Lithium-Metal-Polymer® (LMP) batteries in hybrid and electric cars, in semiconductor manufacturing and in water purification membranes for waste water filtration equipment. The outstanding properties of SOLEF® PVDF combined with the multiple available processing techniques make this fluorinated polymer a prime material for new applications in various demanding environments and applications. Visit:

rayton Engineering, part of the PJD Group and one of the UK’s leading independent mechanical engineering contractors, is relocating from its home of 17 years in Scunthorpe to new and larger premises in Immingham. The move will see Grayton acquiring 34,000 sq ft of fabrication workshop space, 17,000 sq ft of general fabrication workshops, an 8000 sq ft pipework fabrication workshop, 9000 sq ft painting and blasting facilty, three overhead 15 tonne cranes, two high capacity plate rolls, a 4-acre external laydown area and 8000 sq ft pipework fabrication workshop serviced by two 5-tonne cranes. These facilities provide Grayton Engineering with a strong platform to enhance its reputation as a leading mechanical and structural engineering business to clients such as Phillips 66, Tata Steel, Tata Chemicals and CEMEX. Visit:

Shell unveils new lubricants blending plant in Russia


hell has opened a major new lubricants blending plant, the first built by an international oil company in Russia. The new plant in Torzhok, in the Tver region northwest of Moscow, is ideally located to supply a range of finished consumer, transport and industrial lubricants to customers in Russia. It can blend up to 200 million litres of lubricants a year, making it one of the largest in Shell’s current global plant network, and will create 150 Russian

DEUTZ opens service centre in Madrid


he Cologne-based engine manufacturer DEUTZ has opened a new service centre in Spain. Covering an area of almost 4000m2, the Madrid service centre represents a centre of excellence for engines that will provide the very highest levels of customer service.

20 Industry Europe

jobs when at full capacity. Mark Gainsborough, Shell executive vice-president for Shell Global Commercial, said: “Shell is proud to open this impressive new plant in an important growth market for lubricants. Supply chain is the cornerstone of efficient delivery to our customers of high quality lubricants products, such as Shell Helix, Shell Rimula, Shell Spirax, Shell Tellus and Shell Omala.” Visit:

In addition to offices, there will be a 500m2 workshop and a 1000m2 logistics area. There will also be a spare-parts shop for customers and a large fleet of machinery. In addition to the workshop, which will be fitted out with all the necessary equipment for working on DEUTZ engines, there will also be four fully-equipped vans which the mechanics will be able to use to carry

out on-site repair work. The logistics area is equipped with state-of-the-art, fully automated wwarehouse technology to ensure rapid and problem-free material handling. The opening of the new service centre will provide the company’s local partners in Spain with a centre of excellence for diesel engine technology. Visit:



BASF appoints managing director in Ukraine

Volvo Car Group appoints new president and CEO


ASF has recently appointed Andreas Lier as new managing director for Ukraine. His career spans more than 20 years within BASF in various global positions. During this period, Mr Lier has gained professional experience in management and company business development in various markets. Before this assignment, Mr Lier was head of business management for dispersions and pigments in the region eastern Europe–Africa–Western Asia and he implemented BASF investment projects in Turkey and South Africa. Beside various other positions and projects, Mr Lier was also head of marketing for Colourants and Additives in Europe for a couple of years as well heading the businesses of BASF in the Wolga-Ural region as head of the BASF Representative Office in Kazan in the late 1990s.

New manager at Victualic foundry in Europe


ictaulic, the global high quality castings manufacturer, has appointed Dariusz Pilichowski to the position of plant manager at its European foundry in Poland. In his new role, Pilichowski will be responsible for managing one of the most modern ductile iron foundries of its kind in Europe. The Victaulic plant has recently completed a thorough process of modernisation that involved a major overhaul and modernisation of production lines, streamlining and increasing capacity by 30%, as well as improving its environmental footprint. Pilichowski has worked for Victaulic since March 2011 as production director and has over 13 years’ experience managing production departments in General Motors.

New VP at Bouygues Construction


ean-Luc Letouzé has been appointed the new vice-president, Corporate Communications at Bouygues Construction. Jean-Luc will take charge of the Group’s communications teams, documentation and archives. He will also be responsible for Terre Plurielle, the Bouygues Construction corporate foundation. Jean-Luc Letouzé, aged 45, holds a Masters in Corporate Communications Sciences and Techniques from the University of Paris 13. He joined the Bouygues Group in 1990, holding several positions in communications at Smac, Bouygues Bâtiment International and Bouygues Travaux Publics.

New MD of Atkins’ Danish operation


va Rindom has been appointed as managing director of Atkins’ business in Denmark following the retirement of Palle Beck Thomsen. Eva Rindom has been leading the company’s Danish rail operations since 2007 and has worked on some of the country’s most important infrastructure projects including the

North West line double track upgrade and the country-wide integration of the European Rail Traffic Management System (ERTMS). The ERTMS project is currently the most prestigious combined upgrade in rail passenger and freight train services in Europe. Chris Birdsong, CEO, Europe and Asia Pacific said: “Atkins is one of the leading


he board of directors of Volvo Car Group has appointed Håkan Samuelsson, currently board member, as new president & CEO. “I see major opportunities for Volvo Cars to improve profitability, and accelerate our growth plan in China specifically. I am convinced that Håkan Samuelsson’s thorough experience and leadership will help us increase performance,” says Li Shufu, majority shareholder and chairman of the board. “We have a strong strategy and transformation plan in place which we will now execute.” Håkan Samuelsson has 35 years of experience from leading positions in the automotive industry.

engineering and design consultancies in the Scandinavian rail market. Eva has been a key part of our success thanks to her extensive technical experience and her excellent track record in project delivery and now she has a chance to build on that by taking charge of the Danish business as it moves forward.”

Industry Europe 21


TECHNOLOGYSPOTLIGHT Boosting research into carbon-based materials

Dr Andreas Kreimeyer, member of the board of executive directors of BASF and research executive director, and Prof Dr Klaus Müllen, director Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research cutting the ribbon at the laboratory inauguration ceremony


ASF and the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (MPI-P) have opened their joint research and development platform, the Carbon Materials Innovation Centre (CMIC), at BASF’s Ludwigshafen site. A multidisciplinary task force will research the scientific principles and potential applications of innovative carbonised materials. The 12-member international team is composed of chemists, physicists and material scientists. The activities conducted in the 200 square metre laboratory will include synthesising and characterising new materials and evaluating their potential uses in energy and electronic applications. “We are on the threshold of a new cross-sectional technology that will revolutionise numerous applications and open the way to innovations. The race to discover future applications of carbonbased materials like graphene is in full progress and we want to be among the very front runners when it comes to utilising this potential,” said Dr Andreas Kreimeyer, member of the board of executive directors of BASF and research executive director. “There is a wide range of ideas for applications, including displays or batteries with a vast market potential for these applications.” 22 Industry Europe

Advances in technology across industry

Producing titanium powder directly from ores


etalysis, the UK based specialist metals company, has developed an innovative process that can transform natural rutile sands directly into titanium metal powder in a single step. Rutile is a naturally occurring titanium ore present in beach sands. The Metalysis process, developed at the company’s plant in Yorkshire, UK, has successfully carried out a series of production runs using rutile feedstock and is now able to produce a range of titanium powders. The breakthrough in the use of rutile ore as the feedstock is part of the decade-long development of a process to provide highly-efficient, cost effective and transformational specialist metals production. Metalysis’ use of rutile

ore as a feedstock is a low cost and environmentally benign method of titanium powder production. The new rutile derived titanium powder can be used in a variety of new applications to satisfy the latent demand for a low cost, light weight, high strength and corrosion resistant metal.

Sailing the seas of Titan H

umanity has landed a rover on Mars. Now, say scientists, it’s time to land a boat on Titan, Saturn’s largest moon. This outlandish scenario could become reality, according to scientists presenting their proposals at the European Planetary Science Congress last September. The Cassini-Huygens mission, which studied Titan extensively in the 2000s, confirmed that lakes, seas and rivers of liquid hydrocarbons (similar to household gas) exist, covering much of the satellite’s northern hemisphere. Although it eventually landed on solid ground, the Hugyens lander was designed to be able to float for a short period. The new plans, called the Titan Lake In-situ Sampling Propelled Explorer, proposes a boat-probe, propelled by wheels, paddles or screws. The probe would land in the middle of Ligeia Mare (the biggest lake, near Titan’s north pole), then set sail for the coast, taking scientific measurements along the way. The mission would last around six months to a year. “The main innovation in TALISE is the propulsion system,” says Igone Urdampilleta (SENER), a member of the TALISE team. “This allows the probe to move, under control, from the landing site in the lake, to the closest shore. The displacement capability would achieve the obtaining of liquid and solid samples from several scientifically interesting locations on Titan’s surface such as the landing place, along the route towards the shore and finally at the shoreline.”



France Ian Sparks reports from Paris on the continuing row about industry’s costs.


timing is everything in politics, then France’s Industry Minister Arnaud Montebourg may now regret launching his latest campaign to urge consumers to ‘buy French’ on the same day that a leading industry boss branded him a ‘retard’. While Mr Montebourg was shown posing incongruously on the front of Le Parisien magazine sporting a Breton shirt and holding a French-made food processor, the head of Mitsubishi France chose the same afternoon to launch a scathing attack on policies he said were sending thousands of jobs overseas. The minister’s publicity drive was aimed at rousing patriotism among French consumers in the face of ten per cent unemployment and a dwindling industrial output. On Le Parisien’s inside pages, he urged readers to forgo foreign imports, even if they were cheaper, in a bid to keep their own countrymen in work. He said: “My priority is ‘Made in France’. There’s a choice that’s more important than any other, and that is to preserve France’s industrial base.” But his efforts were swiftly eclipsed by comments from Jean-Claude Debard, the French boss of Mitsubishi’s dealer network in France, at what should have been the otherwise uneventful launch of a new car in the south of France. Mr Debard chose the moment to accuse the industry minister of pretending to be a champion of jobs while actually supporting policies that damaged the entire car industry. He said Mitsubishi was in a joint venture with France’s Peugeot and Citroen to supply a new electric car, and the entire French auto sector represented 25 per cent of France’s turnover and 10 per cent of the nation’s jobs. And he added: “Meanwhile this moron, this retard, increases ecological taxes, reduces the speed motorists can go on the

Paris ring road and motorists all suffer as a result of him. He is stupid and understands nothing, and you can quote me on that.” The French media did quote him on that, and within three days Mr Debard had stepped down from his job quoting ‘personal reasons’. Mistsubishi’s headquarters in Japan also issued a separate apology for his ‘discourteous remarks’. Mr Debard may have fallen on his sword, but his remarks triggered a deluge of similar, if less graphic, criticisms of Mr Montebourg’s handling of the industry. Renault’s chief operating officer Carlos Tavares said French labour laws gave the company ‘no choice’ but to force production overseas. He added: “Fewer than a quarter of the 2.83 million cars that rolled off our assembly lines last year were made in France. Making the same Renault Clio in France rather than in our Turkish plant is €1300 more expensive and half of the gap is due to labour costs. Within Renault, the French plants are the weakest. It’s not only a matter of cost, it’s a matter of flexibility.” French brewers have also accused the government of ‘decimating their market’ with plans to slap a hefty 160 per cent tax on beer sales, while leaving them unchanged on wine and spirits. The excise increase is aimed at raising €500 million a year for health and pensions while discouraging consumption of the least expensive alcoholic drink. But it will raise the price of half a pint of beer by almost 20 per cent, with the cost of a glass in a bar going up from €2.50 to €2.70. A spokesman for the industry group the Brasseurs de France said: “Our labour costs are already crippling, and many smaller breweries will not survive this latest blow when sales drop. France’s 450 brewing companies are devastated.” The spat has also spread abroad to Belgium, which sells 32 per cent of all its

beer to neighbouring France. Belgian MP Bart Tommelin even called for immediate retaliation, demanding his country slap an equivalent tax on imported French products like champagne, camembert and Calvados.

Shock measures Just days later on 4 November, French industrialist Louis Gallois also handed Francois Hollande the findings of his government-commissioned report on how to kickstart the French economy – but critics are already saying the president is unlikely to heed its advice. Mr Gallois – the former head of defence giant EADS – has prescribed slashing €30 billion from payroll taxes and loosening labour laws to boost competitiveness. He also suggests slicing €20 billion off employers’ social contributions and 10 billion off those paid by workers in a series of ‘shock measures’. And he has come up with 21 other key recommendations that he describes as a ‘tough but necessary’ way to revive French industry. He said on 4 November: “The French people need to support this collective effort which could be a magnificent project for our country – winning back our industry. But this will require real patriotism.” But President Hollande quickly snuffed out any expectations of the radical reforms suggested by Gallois. His Social Economy Minister Benoit Hamon said: “We feel this report is a contribution. But it’s the government that governs.” French daily Le Figaro said the report now risked ending up stuck on a shelf alongside a similar review ordered by Sarkozy when he took office in 2008. That report, by economist Jacques Attali, also called for an overhaul of labour laws and cuts to employers’ social charges. “It will simply end up in a whole cemetery n of buried reports,” the paper added. Industry Europe 23



Germany Allan Hall reports from Berlin on the woes of Opel.


ermany’s vaunted carmakers are braced for chill winds as the recession creeps nearer to the heart of Europe’s economic motor. But while the outlook may be of concern to the likes of VW, BMW, Mercedes and Porsche it is cataclysmic to the industry’s Cinderella sister Opel. The GM-owned manufacturer of mid-range automobiles has reached a low from which experts say it might never recover. Suffering from an undeserved poor-quality reputation, low sales and an overcrowded marketplace, it has suffered recent losses in the billions and the share price has nosedived. Workers, naturally enough, are worried that they might not have a job come the new year. Once upon a time Opel had a 20 per cent share of the car market and was even edging its way into premium brands. A foolish management decision some time in the 1980s abandoned that idea and the segment was lost to the musclemen of BMW and Mercedes. Just three short years ago, in 2009, Opel’s American parent company, General Motors, filed for bankruptcy and dragged its German subsidiary close to the financial brink. The government in Berlin was asked to intervene but market forces ruled. Now, after over a century of manufacturing, there are some government-subsidised programmes in place to to avoid layoffs. This involves reducing worker hours at the same time as warning that some plants remain under threat; a natural course of events, say industry experts, given that Opel’s market share has dipped from 16.5 per cent in 1995 to 7.1 today. “Of course, that’s simply appalling,” says Ulrich Brass, a veteran Opel dealer in Aschaffenburg who has 1000 employees and annual sales of €450 million, the bulk of which are with Opel. “I would really like to see some continuity in the company management,” he added, “to try to sort this mess out.” He is referring to the revolving door to the CEO’s office and the higher echelons of the 24 Industry Europe

firm’s bosses. But with car sales plummeting across Europe – only 12 million will be sold this year as opposed to 16 million three years ago – there is no white knight riding to Cinders’ rescue. “The market appears to be saturated,” says Kurt Krüger, a major car dealer in Hamburg, “and that doesn’t look good for the future of Opel.” He and others bemoan the fact that the brand itself is a problem: people want CLS and E-Class Mercedes and the hot new models from BMW; they do not, seemingly, hanker after Astras, Insignias and Zafras produced by Opel.

Just three short years ago, in 2009, Opel’s American parent company, General Motors, filed for bankruptcy and dragged its German subsidiary close to the financial brink. Image problem “Opel, it would seem, is the opposite of sexy,” said Germany’s leading news magazine Der Spiegel in a recent report on the company woes. “The brand isn’t even suitable anymore as a target for malicious lampoons, such as in the 1990s when leading German actor Til Schweiger celebrated his cinematic debut with the role of his life as a Manta-driving idiot. At the time, people in Germany at least still told jokes about Opel, which was ridiculed as the cheap, plebeian car of choice for the socially maladjusted: What are 25 Opels in a parking lot? Parent-teacher night at the special-ed school. And why do Opels have rear-window heating? So people’s hands don’t freeze when push-starting the car in winter.” Unlike Ford or Renault of France, also weathering a tough year but have big global franchises to help them, Opel’s business is confined almost entirely to western Europe’s

oversupplied car market, tipped into crisis this year as consumer confidence has withered in the face of struggling economies. Executives at GM and its rivals do not expect sales in Europe to recover for several years – and by then GM may have got fed up paying out the rope and decided to retreat from its costly European venture. “The European situation is the number one factor weighing on investor sentiment for GM,” said Adam Jonas, a New York-based analyst at Morgan Stanley. He reckons GM Europe puts a discount of $5 on the global carmakerís share price. Shares in GM, which is 32 per cent US government-owned, are trading well below their 2010 share price; Opel may soon become a luxury it cannot afford. Rainer Einenkel, head of the works council in Bochum, has called for ‘urgent’ clarity over GM’s plans as rumours abound that Volkswagen manager Karl-Thomas Neumann may come in as chief executive next year in a last-ditch bid to turn around the ailing giant’s fortunes. If so Neumann, who was also CEO of auto parts and tyre maker Continental between Sept 2008 and Aug 2009, would be the 17th CEO at Ruesselsheim-based Opel since the car maker’s heydays in the early 1970s. And he will take on a management board stuffed with Americans, drafted in from Detroit to fashion a future plan and an industrial blueprint to make the company viable. It wants to banish the only-half jokey sentiments expressed so well by Stephen Girsky, who said earlier this year that Opel’s history is “a bunch of Americans trying to sell German cars to French people, and wondering why it never works.” GM has given no guarantees that its German and British plants – it operates in the UK as Vauxhall – will be safe beyond 2014. The clock is ticking to come up with a business plan that will save a company and the n lives of thousands who work for it.



24 Industry Europe

Grundfos is the global leader in circulating pumps and related equipment. Philip Yorke talked to Dr Klaus Kattenhoej, the company’s managing director, about its new sensors division and the strategy behind its formation and innovative range of new pressure sensors.


rundfos was founded in Denmark in 1945 and is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of circulator pumps for the heating and air conditioning industries, as well as for other key sectors such as water supply, sewage and dosing. Today Grundfos is the world’s largest manufacturer of circulator pumps, with more than a 50 per cent share of the global market. It is inevitable, therefore, that with the ever-increasing demand for greater energy saving and overall efficiency the company has set up a new division to satisfy these significant market challenges. Today the Danish Grundfos Group is present in over 55 countries and has more than 17,500 employees worldwide. In 2011 it recorded sales of more than €2.8 billion.

Setting new standards in micro-sensor technology With one of the biggest dedicated, in-house R&D departments in the industry, Grundfos sensors division has already developed some innovative and ground-breaking new products. The Grundfos Sensor Division produced its first chip for micro-sensors at its state-of-the-art sensor production facilities for semiconductors located at Farum near Copenhagen. This is the very first facility in Denmark to manufacture semiconductors on an industrial scale, and one of the first of its kind in Europe. The new Grundfos semiconductor chip is made from silicon wafers – the favourite material for making sensors being steady-state, which provides the highest quality at the lowest cost – and a

proprietary coating originally developed as a Ph.D project at the University of Aarhus before subsequently being patented by Grundfos. This unique coating process makes the chip highly resistant to water as well as other liquids. Unlike traditional sensors, the Grundfos micro-sensor is so tiny that in principle it can be integrated into even the very smallest pumps and applications on the market. In the short term the production of these micro-chips has been sold internally as well as externally, before being integrated into the bread and butter of the Grundfos business – centrifugal pumps. However, in the longer term the micro-sensors will be made available for many other segments and products, as they are ideal for measur-

Industry Europe 25

ing pressure, flow and the temperatures of liquids in general. Kattenhoej said, “We are an entirely new entity and through the steering group, we retain responsibility for all global activities and at the same time take advantage of the Group’s global network in R&D, sales and production. We represent the driving force in this area and our strategy is designed to accelerate sales in this particular sector of our operations. Our strategic goal is to generate sales of more than 600,000 units this year rising to more than 1,000,000 in the next few years to come. In order to help achieve this goal we are setting up distribution channels in Europe, North America and Asia. We plan to have local capacity for assembly and our approach to production is that we start by

26 Industry Europe

having local variants and if it becomes big, then we establish manufacturing facilities to meet the growing local demand.” Kattenhoej added, “We have the competitive edge as a result of our advanced technology, lower packaging costs and our sensors have no moving parts so maintenance is minimal. We work closely with leading Danish universities and German institutes to develop new products and we see our customers not just as clients but as partners, and we help them to develop their products for the global market. We also have a tried and tested system approach so that our customers can save energy and increase efficiency in all their areas of manufacturing. In fact, we are almost at a point where more than half of our products are sold with controls designed to save

Sand Industries is among the leading suppliers in metalworking and plastics. We deal with both one-off production, batch production and fully assembled products for customers. We make everything from prototypes to large series production.

Henning Sand Maskinfabrik A/S Agerskellet 6, 8920 Randers NV Phone: +45 8642 7177 (contact person: Alex Sand)

energy. As well as producing energy-saving pumps and sensors for ‘ground-source’ heating systems and thermal solar heating, we also are seeing growth in air-to-water heat pump systems, where the control of the speed of the pump can make a big difference to efficiency and energy saving, which can be displayed to the customer, and we plan to expand from these two key applications for the present time. Temperature control – including chillers – for industry is next.”

Putting sustainability first Grundfos has always taken its responsibilities very seriously in relation to the environment and believes that although industry is part of the problem, it is also part of the solution. Therefore a global response to climate change will create a greater demand for solu-

tions that will significantly reduce water and energy consumption worldwide. In its position as a global leader in its field, Grundfos is in a unique position to meet these demands with its advanced products, services, partnerships and organisational voice. Grundfos plans to be part of the ‘sustainable’ solution by focusing on innovation and new product development and applying a broad range of initiatives that will work together to propel it into a more sustainable future. When it comes to producing innovative products and the manufacture of semiconductor chips, the company sees this development as a strategically important basis for sensor integration into the overall Grundfos pump company. Whereas the microchips are produced in clean-room facilities at Farum, the pressure sensors in which the chips are integrated are

produced at the Grundfos Electronics headquarters in Bjerringbro, Jutland being the main strip of Denmark stretching up as a peninsula from the borders of Germany going north. In order to achieve its goals, Grundfos has invested more than €100 million on research and development in the last five years. In addition, the mass production of its sensors has already begun with the company predicting that it will achieve an annual production of over two million pressure sensors before the end of this decade bringing the facilities to the economies of scale they are designed for. Micro Electrical Mechanical Systems / MEMS has already changed the automotive industry fundamentally with more than 150 sensors in the latest German cars providing unseen efficiencies and safety – now the time has come for pumps, heating and cooling systems. n

Industry Europe 27

POWER AND PRECISION Machining specialist to the engineering industry, Schiess GmbH is currently undergoing exciting investment and restructuring. Emma-Jane Batey spoke to sales director Andreas Borgwardt to learn about the aim of these changes.


stablished in 1997 in the German city of Aschersleben, machining developer and manufacturer Schiess GmbH offers large-scale machines to the engineering industry. With one large facility in Aschersleben and no current plans for additional sites, Schiess’s increasingly global presence is enhanced by its on-going investment and restructuring strategy. Sales director Andreas Borgwardt told Industry Europe more about these plans, and what they hope to achieve. He said, “We are continually focused on ensuring our wide product range of machinery for sophisticated tasks is as advanced as possible. We have an exceptional manufacturing facility that supports us in our quest to deliver the most efficient, reliable machinery

to our customers across the engineering industry worldwide. Our development plans reflect that ongoing aim – we are putting a great deal of money into innovative tooling as well as restructuring our current facilities to guarantee we have the most modern equipment and plant available.”

Responsible restructuring Schiess’s huge restructuring of its current facilities has already seen a €12 million investment in new machine tools. Purchased from leading names in Germany and Switzerland, Schiess’s upgraded plant now includes a brand new large-scale measuring machine that provides exceptional quality checking. Mr Borgwardt continued, “This huge measuring machine is incredible – it’s a ter-

rific addition to our plant. It will be installed in a separate room which is carefully climatecontrolled at a steady temperature 24 hours a day.” The major investment in upgrading the already-modern facilities at Aschersleben also includes the five state-of-the-art tooling machines already installed this year, with a further three machines planned for installation before the end of 2012.

Time for investment The impact of the global financial crisis has not left Schiess untouched. The company has seen changes in expected orders due to customers experiencing a downturn in their own demand and, with the challenges of the Euro and bailouts from Germany, it appreci-

Industry Europe 29

ates that this is not necessarily the best time for customers to make investments. Mr Borgwardt said, “Our machines are major investments. They are large-scale machines that offer enhanced processing capabilities which boost our customers’ bottom line, but they still have to invest in the machines in the first place. Our machines have a value of some millions of invest-

ment, so our customers have to be in a position to invest, and now is not the best time for that. But the fact is the situation is the same for all our competitors, and it is likely that the situation will improve across much of Europe soon, so we have decided to concentrate on making sure our product offer is as varied and reliable as possible and that our service is second-to-none. That

way, when more customers are in a position to invest, Schiess can be sure of being the best supplier and partner.” For the past eight years, Schiess has been owned by a Chinese corporation (Shenyang Machine Tool Corporation Ltd), so its impressive global business development has a valuable helping hand into Asian markets. With its parent company spe-

cialising in machine tools, it gives Schiess unrivalled access to both commercial support and active markets throughout Asia, which is seen as a very strong prospect for future growth.

Positive about potential Mr Borgwardt continued, “We’re positive about the prospects in Europe and in Asia. We have potential for growth in both areas, with our historic heartland in Europe likely to pick up through existing customers ready to make new investment in upgrading their machines

and new customers in Asia keen to establish a world-class manufacturing location. Our Chinese owners help us in communicating in a suitable manner in accordance with local language and culture, which is great for us and for potential customers. We can also ‘follow the customer’ as they expand into Asia, which is a valuable tool in our supplier offer.” With Schiess very positive about the future. Mr Borgwardt explained, “Even though the present situation in many world markets is difficult, we are optimistic. It seems as though the reflection of the early

part of the crisis was visible again in 2011 and 2012, but we expect 2013 to be the start of a real return to positive trading conditions. With the restructuring of our Aschersleben facilities, our valuable relationship with our owners Shenyang Machine Tool Corporation Ltd and our market-leading product range, we know that 2013 and beyond will see customers making investment in our large machines for engineering applications. We are more than ready for this as we have concentrated on preparing our n site, our people and our products.”

INVESTMENT IN PRECISION Linamar has been investing in its Hungarian operations for 20 years now. Its latest investment project was completed in March this year, when the capacities of Linamar Hungary Zrt were significantly increased to maintain competitiveness in both the automotive sector and in general machine production. Edina Beale investigates.


he Canadian multinational Linamar Corporation is a leading designer and diversified manufacturer of precision metallic components and systems for the automotive industry, energy and mobile industrial markets. The group acquired a presence in Hungary in 1992 and introduced new technological solutions and an efficient working culture to the small town of Orosháza, in the south-east of Hungary. Since then the staff number of Linamar Hungary Zrt has grown from 354 to 2170 whilst the initial turnover of HUF 602 million has now reached HUF37.3 billion. At present there are three production centres in Hungary, two of them engaged in the automotive and precision component

32 Industry Europe

production. These plants are located in Békéscsaba and Orosháza whilst the division in Oros specialises in general machine production. Today Linamar Hungary Zrt is a vital part of the Linamar global operations and investments have been constantly made by the group to increase the firm’s competitiveness in its markets. The latest investment project was completed in March this year. Mr Csaba Havasi, the managing director of the Linamar group in Europe said in its statement to the MTI: “We opened a new manufacturing facility of Linamar Hungary Zrt as part of a HUF 6.9 billion investment. The company’s 11 000 m2 capacity was increased by 5 000 m2 in Orosháza, whilst new modern reception area and

offices were built. The company received a HUF 1.5 billion fund from the Economic Operative Programme. “Linamar in Hungary is the largest employment provider in the region. Significant investments were made to acquire new machinery and assets for both the automotive and machine manufacturing units, and we will continue with these investments this year. As a result of this development we created an extra 250 jobs.”

Diverse portfolio The company manufactures a wide range of products for the automotive industry; the portfolio includes engine components, gearbox-, driving-, braking-, steering wheel-, and

Industry Europe 33

compressor components. In addition to this, the production of large size generator components and motor generator components is also significant. Both automotive divisions acquired the ISO TS 16949 quality assurance certificate in addition to meeting the criteria of the environmental EN ISO 14001 and the health and safety requirements of the OHSAS 18001standards. The Oros division specialises in general machine production; its product range includes agricultural machinery, road construction machines and erector machines for the construction industry. The Oros division has been developing and supplying corn and sunflower adapters for over 35 years. During this period 30,000 pieces of corn harvesting adapters have been made and sold in many different parts of the world.

Recent product launches The company’s core product is the high quality corn harvesting adapter, the Oros cornhead, that can be fitted to all types of harvesters, and is suitable for harvesting corns and sunflowers that are planted in 70–100cm rows. The company’s CORNADO corn harvesting machines were redeveloped this year; customers can choose from 6 rows to 16 rows, or whether they want the product to be fixed or foldable. Continuous product development has always been a priority focus in the Oros division. The Oros Sun hydrostatic sunflower harvesting adapter was launched in 2011. This is an innovative quality product, which is equipped with a stalk crashing facility whilst operating with reduced energy and minimising seed dropping. During the

development process the company’s aim was to develop an adapter that reduces harvesting waste to a minimum: the adapter is fitted with a row of trays that collect the falling sunflower heads and seeds. Its simple construction and light weight also allow users to significantly reduce costs during the harvesting process.

Strong presence In parallel with the global strategy of the Linamar group, Linamar Hungary Zrt mainly concentrates on the European market; more than 80 per cent of the products are exported to countries including Germany, the UK, France, the Ukraine, Russia, Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Croatia. The company’s own development products are also sold in North America.

The HNS ANDON System is an emergency call system that is based on light and sound signals. It is a means of visual management, which is primarily used in the production. The HNS ANDON System makes it possible that at the defined points of the production process, commendably at all work stations, there is a tool, by whose help with different light and sound signals the colleagues can alert the competent professional that is able to solve the problem. Each signal has this meaning, so from the signal it can be immediately defined, where and which problem has occurred. HNS ANDON System enables: line workers to indicate their quality problems, material or maintenance needs, or furthermore, to call their team leader to measure the frequency and the nature of the calls and the time passed till the beginning of and during the service the management to be well informed by getting automatically generated daily reports to record and help the activity of the workers to increase the problem recognition ability and problem solving efficiency during the production process

HNS Technical Development Ltd. 9027 Győr, Gesztenyefa 4, Hungary

Mr Janos Ivanics, CEO of the Linamar Hungary Zrt has numerous reasons to be confident about the company’s future: “We have strengthened our position in the domestic market in both activities, and in 2012 we expect further growth as a result of the large and increasing demand for our products. Due to the considerable amount of funds we

received for investment purposes, our technological developments have been significant in recent times. In addition to this, we have increased our efficiency by raising our requirements to recruit skilled professionals and by continuously improving our work environment. “We will continue our investments in the next few years in both automotive compo-

nent production and in the machine manufacturing division too. The customer base of Linamar is continuously expanding, and our capacities in both automotive divisions are 100 per cent utiliSed. In the next few years we would like to continue to extend our capacities in this sector as well as in our n own machinery production.”

A CLEAR VIEW Industrija Stakla Pančevo is known for the glass it manufactures in Serbia. Abigail Saltmarsh looks at the company and its hopes for expansion and restructuring.

36 Industry Europe


or more than 80 years, the operation currently known as Industrija Stakla Pančevo has been producing glass in Serbia. Today, it continues to manufacture a variety of products, and is looking to develop its facilities and forge ahead where there are opportunities, according to commercial director Drazen Gajic. “One of the steps we would like to take would be to find a strategic partner to invest in the company and to install new equipment for the production of flat glass,” says Mr Gajic. “Until 2003, this was something we did here ourselves but today we only process it. Through privatisation, we would like to see that started up again – and the modernisation of the plant we have here could lead to further opportunities too.”

A long history Founded on 9 September 1930 in Belgrade, Industrija Stakla Pančevo was the first company in the Balkans to manufacture mechanical glass for windows. In the early days, its success saw it work with Saint Gobain in France, Vitrea in the former

Czechoslovakia, and Unitbell in Belgium. At that time, a decision was taken to build a modern glass factory machinery in Pancevo near Belgrade, in which they all invested. After World War II, Industrija Stakla Pančevo operated first as a nationalised company and then as a social enterprise. Today, says Mr Gajic, it remains partly state-owned and partly operational as a social enterprise. “This means that to some extent our company will follow the same destiny as the country itself,” he explains. “Our company will be developed in keeping with the way the whole country will move.”

A wide range Today, Industrija Stakla Pančevo’s glass portfolio is broad to say the least. As well as the flat glass it processes. It manufactures thermal insulating glass, pharmaceutical containers and special glass, which may be cut or ground. It is known for its laminated safety glass and tempered safety glass, as well as its tempered laminated glass with heaters. It also offers combinations with

organic glasses and produces mirrors for the automotive industry. “The major part of our production is the glass that is tempered and laminated for the automotive industry,” Mr Gajic says. “This is also used in the truck and bus cabins, as well as for railway transport.” Industrija Stakla Pančevo makes glass for domestic appliances, thermo-insulating glass for civil engineerings and ampoules and vials for liquid medicines, for the pharmaceutical industry. “We are continually looking at developing new products,” says Mr Gajic. “Last year, we developed a new tempered glass for the drivers’ cabins in tractors. This was for the Minsk Tractor Works. We also developed a new glass for minibuses for Phoenix buses, manufactured in Novi Sad, Serbia.”

Knowledge and know-how The company, which today employs some 183 people, still operates from its 26 hectare site in Belgrade. Technical glass production takes place according to technological Industry Europe 37

procedures that are on the same level as in developed countries. One of its main advantages is its long history in technical glass production, its long tradition and its familiarity with the production process. In the domestic market, Glass Industry Pančevo offers a wide variety of products through its sheet glass processing facilities, all produced by workers with high levels of knowledge and experience.

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The company has certificates and accreditation for straight and bent tempered and laminated glass, for tempered isolation glass and for thermo-isolating glass. As it looks to restructure, it is constantly improving its production programme and quality control systems, in order to fully comply with buyers’ demand for quality. It applies the latest technology procedures where it is able to, in cooperation

with some of the most prominent sheet and security glass manufacturers all over the world. Achieving these goals is supported by certification for quality management systems in compliance with the ISO 9001:2008 standard, issued by Quality Austria.

Significant opportunities “We try to stretch our market to the likes of Poland, Russia and Azerbaijan,” says Mr Gajic. “We also export to Germany. We believe there are good opportunities in all these places.” Indeed, according to Industrija Stakla Pančevo, in the south-east European region, sheet glass supply does not cover current demand. It is manufactured in Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria but potential markets for glass from Serbia include countries which have none of their own sheet glass production, such as Austria, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia Herzegovina, Albania, Macedonia n and Greece.

CROWNING GLORY Austrian ceramic roof tile manufacturer, Tondach AG established its first Hungarian subsidiary over 20 years ago. Thanks to its large capacities, innovative production technique and unique product designs, Tondach Magyarország Zrt is today a key contributor to the group’s European operations. Edina Beale reports.


ondach AG is the leading ceramic roof tile maker in central and eastern Europe. The company began its international expansion in 1992 and today operates 34 factories in 11 countries. Tondach’s innovative and predominantly natural roof covering solutions and extensive customer service make it a leader in the sector. Due to state-of-the-art technologies, all subsidiaries operate efficient production processes and manufacture premium quality products. Hungary was one of the first countries Tondach entered; the company built its fifth production site there three years ago. Today Tondach Magyarország Zrt plays a vital role in the group’s European operations, as it provides nearly a quarter of the group’s total turnover. The most recent Tondach plant in Hungary was built in Békéscsaba boosting the domestic capacity by 70 per cent. This state-of-the-art facility is the largest roof tile factory in Europe, with a capability of producing 30 million roof and 2.5 million profile tiles a year. Whilst providing fast and efficient service for the domestic market, where the

40 Industry Europe

company is a market leader, half of the total production is distributed to foreign markets including Slovakia, Romania, Moldova, Bulgaria and the Ukraine.

Engobe technique to increase durability The narrowed market opportunities in the last two years have encouraged Tondach to focus on quality more than ever, and to aim at satisfying the needs of customers with the highest expectations. Tondach’s use of the engobe technique for manufacturing its products enables the company to guarantee high standards. What is engobe or in another words soil paint? Engobe is a natural colouring material that contains clay minerals, and has been used by potters for thousands of years to create better colours and smooth surfaces of their pottery products and to make them more durable. Similar to this ancient technique, today the engobe is applied by modern computer-controlled specialist dispenser machines to the dry and raw clay tile before the kiln process. Thanks to

this modern technology one roof tile could receive a design with three different shades of colours. This enables Tondach to create such unique colours as bronze, silver or sand antique. During the kiln process the engobe chemically merges with the clay and burns in the surface. This means that the engobe is not a coating material but becomes part of the ceramic product during the production process. For this reason, the surface of the product is particularly resistant. Ceramic roof tiles manufactured with engobe technology have extremely good durability; they are water, moss and dirt resistant and provide strong protection against all weather conditions including storms, icy rain and sunshine. In addition to these advantages they are also fire and frost proof products.

Extensive range and unique design The Tondach XXL roof tiles are made of excellent quality basic materials combined with the most modern production technology in the Csaba II Tondach plant in

Tondach enhances the aesthetics and quality of its roofing tiles with Ceric Technologies dry preparation lines Ceric Technologies is a long-standing innovation partner of Tondach Gleinstätten AG, one of the leading suppliers of clay roofing solutions in Central and South-Eastern Europe. Over the years, Ceric Technologies has become the technological partner of Tondach for the supply of turnkey plants and dry preparation lines. Dry preparation is known to eliminate limestone grains in the clay thanks to fine grinding (98% < 200 μm) in vertical mills. It gives rooftiles an exceptional surface finish, which is very important for Tondach’s high quality standards. After delivering a complete line at the Unterpremstätten plant including a water seal Casing kiln, Ceric Technologies further strengthened its ties with his customer in 2003/2004 by installing a complete dry prepa-

ration line at the Serbian plant of Kanjiza thus contributing to the enhanced quality and aesthetics of the customer’s products. In 2007/2008, the French heavy clay engineering company also supplied the Békéscsaba plant with a complete line (excluding the kiln and kiln cars) in Eastern Hungary near the border with Romania. The delivery also included a dry preparation plant. The annual production of the factory is 30 millions rooftiles (10/m2) and 750,000 flat accessories. Convinced by the efficiency and innovative characteristics of the dry process masterfully implemented by its technological partner, the group also opted for Ceric Technologies dry preparation plant which was implemented at its Czech factory of Hranice.

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Békéscsaba, southeast Hungary. The XXL roof tiles were launched in the Hungarian market in 2009 and they have found unqualified success among the architects, building constructors and developers. The XXL roof tiles are offered in diverse engobe colours and in four different shapes. One of the most popular large-size roof tiles, the Twist, exudes harmony. The modern, simple-style Bolero is the ’big brother’ of Tondach’s popular roof tile, the Polka.

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Tango+ is the large-size version of the Tango roof tile used mostly for roof renovations. The Amadeus glass-glazed ceramic roof tile developed by Tondach is a unique solution in the premium category. From September 2012 customers with high expectations have been able to purchase the most special member of the Tondach XXL family range, the Rumba in Amadeus glass glazed design, which provides a Mediterranian look for the roof due to its curved shapes.

Besides their stunning looks, the sleek and glossy Amadeus glass-glazed roof tiles have excellent resistivity: their self-cleaning and rain-resistant surfaces protect them from dirt, moss, acid, alkali and UV light. Whilst they are in use these roof tiles do not fade, they stay free from bird dirt and do not get damaged by acid rain, so that they will look as good as new even after 30 years. In order to guarantee this, Tondach offers customers a roof system package that includes the necessary ceramic

and non-ceramic fixtures and fittings besides the roof tiles. Customers who are looking for a unique style are able to choose from a variety of ceramic roof decorations. The Hungarian subsidiary with its large capacities and unique production technique has enabled Tondach to become the leading clay roof tile manufacturer in Hungary, acquiring 80 per cent of the domestic market. Continuing this success, the company’s high quality premium products will be the crowning glory of many new buildings in the future. n

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Mercedes Museum Stuttgart – Quality meets Quality

CLEAR ADVANTAGE ROLLTECH A/S is a global leader in the design and manufacture of spacers for the insulating glass industry. Philip Yorke talked to Johnny Holm, the company’s sales director, about its latest products and the strategy behind its remarkable growth, as well as its plans for further global expansion.


Deutsche Post, Bonn 44 Industry Europe

OLLTECH was founded in Denmark in 1986 by three entrepreneurs with the object of producing high-quality aluminium and galvanised steel spacers for the insulated glass industry. Initially the company marketed its products in Scandinavia and Germany; however, with a clear focus on expansion it developed the world’s first ‘warm-edge’ spacer in 1991, named ‘CHROMATECH’. This was followed in 1999 by CHROMATECH V, Europe’s first thin SST spacer designed for prefilling, which was subsequently rebranded as CHROMATECH plus after a design change. In 2001 ROLLTECH was acquired by Alu-Pro of Italy from ERBSLÖH AG in Ger-

many. The expansion into new geographical markets was accelerated by the company’s partnership with Alu-Pro and FENZI also known by the marketing brand GLASS ALLIANCE. Today GLASS ALLIANCE is truly a global operator with manufacturing facilities throughout the world and continues to represent the most advanced technology in the insulating glass market.

Cutting-edge technology ROLLTECH manufactures probably the widest range of warm edge spacers in the world and offers the most advanced insulation technology in the glass insulating industry.

The company’s high quality warm edge spacer bars are based on stainless steel forms and provide significant advantages for glass insulation customers and end users. This is due to stainless steel having the lowest thermal expansion and the highest stability of any warm edge spacer on the market. It is also 100 per cent gas-tight, which means that no moisture or gas can penetrate. The company’s latest technological achievement is its cutting-edge ‘CHROMATECH Ultra warm edge spacer, which provides an extremely stable and flexible 7mm spacer bar, with very high stability characteristics and excellent bending qualities. This combination offers the advantage of very low Psi values and is suitable for working with almost all known bending machines. In addition, its plastic top has the advantage that it can be bent

precisely in cold working conditions and does not bend back again through temperature change. In combination with its stainless steel back, it ensures consistent, excellent corners and precise, straight sides on window frames of all dimensions. Mr Holm said, “Although we are located in Denmark and have our major production facilities here, as part of the Glass Alliance Group we have access to production sites in Poland, Belgium, Italy, Russia, China and Canada. This is important when considering the success of our latest warm bar spacer, the CHROMATECH Ultra. We expect this product to help us to achieve a doubling of our turnover within the next few years and we plan to begin production of these advanced, warm edge spacers in other strategic locations worldwide as demand

increases. In Italy production of CHROMATECH Ultra started in 2011. Mr Holm added, “We have also been investing heavily in the development and industrialisation of the CHROMATECH Ultra, which today is one of the fastest-growing products on the market. In addition, in 2011 we decided to invest in dedicated production lines for our plastic extrusion components, to give us full control of the entire manufacturing process. Optimising quality, service and delivery is a priority for us at all times and, along with our unique, cutting-edge products, this clearly differentiates us from our competitors.”

Quality and quantity ROLLTECH celebrated 25 years of service to the insulating glass industry in 2011 and has during that time produced more than one bil-

Hoher Kasten – Swiss Alps – Stunning View – CHROMATECH in the Frame

Buildings from Netherlands with ROLLTECH spacer

lion metres of high-quality spacers, with more than 90 per cent of its products going to export markets. The company’s spacer bar products are used extensively for the isolating of double-glazed windows covering all forms of building activity, from small domestic windows to the big glass fronts of tower blocks and open-plan offices. In addition to its range of standardised and customised spacer bars, ROLLTECH produces a selection of warm edge spacer bars that offer unrivalled energy efficiency and eco-friendly properties. Installing ROLLTECH products significantly reduces the CO2 footprint of today’s and tomorrow’s buildings worldwide. Products like CHROMATECH, CHROMATECH plus and CHROMATECH Ultra set the standards for efficiency and energy-saving wherever they are employed. Furthermore, they provide the end user with lower energy costs, reduced CO2 emissions and improvements in indoor climates by significantly reducing or eliminating the risk of interior condensation.

Innovation across the board Developing innovative, world-beating products is one aspect of ROLLTECH’s culture of continuous improvement; however, this 46 Industry Europe

also extends to its other business practices. When it comes to sustainability and the environment it is just as creative, and attaches great importance to the environmental issues that arise both inside and outside the company. Because of this commitment, ROLLTECH’s process technology does not generate any harmful waste and all eco-friendly waste products are melted down and recycled as a matter of course. Mr Holm commented, “Our consideration for the environment always forms an

integral part of our decision-making process, especially when it comes to manufacturing. For example, the lubricant that we use in our production processes is alcohol based, which we filter through active coal and reuse so that nothing at all escapes into the atmosphere. In addition, 50 per cent of our bought-in raw materials are made of recycled material and our spacers can also be 100 per cent recycled. In fact, our stainless steel bars are also eco-friendly in their own n way, as they last indefinitely.”

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DANISH DESIGN AND FUNCTION For the past 50 years, Vrøgum has been known for its high quality, wooden windows and doors. Now it has been having phenomenal success with a stunning, contemporary product too. Abigail Saltmarsh reports.


rom the old to the new – CEO and owner of Vrøgum-Svarre AS Frans Vindbjerg is certainly moving with the times. His Danish company is now producing windows to suit customers with more modern tastes as well as those with a passion for character and tradition. The company, which was established some 50 years ago, and remains family-run, had built up a reputation for its Vrøgum windows. Now

its Svarre products are having great success too, as the company has managed to bring function together with design. “We developed the Svarre product line four years ago and started off with some test sales,” he says. “Over the last two years, however, demand has just been growing and we have gone from sales representing less than one percent of our total to achieving approximately 20 per cent.”

Keeping up tradition It was back in 1957 that Lars Peter Mølgaard launched his business in a joiner’s shop, in a village called Vrøgum. The emphasis was always on quality and good workmanship, and the company expanded, moving to Oksbøl, a small village nearby in 1972. “We have always developed our products in an environment that has challenging weather conditions,” says Mr Vindbjerg.

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“Our windows have always been able to keep the weather out.” Vrøgum is keen on maintaining the traditions of craftsmen and, without compromising quality, prides itself on successfully adapting these into the manufacturing processes with modern technology. Product quality and durability is secured through the application of high-quality raw materials with carefully tested constructions. Slim profiles and beautiful designs ensure perfect architectural solutions, thereby preserving the individual character of a home.

Focus on the environment Vrøgum windows are wooden. The company stresses pine is a sustainable lasting raw material, which is also functional and flexible – and easy to prepare without using large quantities of energy. It can also be disposed of without unnecessary strain on the environment. “What is interesting about the Svarre window now is that it also uses wood,” he explains. “It is still wooden inside, but the wooden frame and sash is encased in three layers of glass. “The outside layer is toughened glass so, other than cleaning the window, it is mainte-

nance-free, and from a design perspective, it is beautiful and modern.” The unique product, which has never been seen on the market before, offers a combination of intelligent design and aesthetic innovation. It also has extremely high insulation against sound, wind and water, and an unprecedented high burglary and long life.

Demand for design Demand for the patented Svarre window has snowballed with customers in the UK, Germany, Austria and across Scandinavia snapping it up. “We have even had our first orders from Italy,” says Mr Vindbjerg. “We have started to have some conversations with customers in the US and Japan too but that it really something for further down the road. For now, Europe is our main focus.” Initially, he explains, demand came from private homeowners. Now architects and construction companies behind larger commercial and public buildings are also expressing interest. “We are going to a wider range of markets with this product,” he adds. “People like the design and the fact it is maintenance-free.”

Room for growth Investment in the company’s production facilities in Oksbøl has been ongoing since the launch of Svarre. As demand has grown, so the Danish company has had to increase its capacity. “We have had to invest in new equipment for the new product line,” he says. “We have had to buy new machinery and put extra manpower into the production. “We expect sales to go up and within the next few years we will have the capacity to deal with that at our current site. There is room for expansion at Oksbøl.”

A flexible operation Vrøgum-Svarre AS expects this growth to be organic. The company is looking for about 10 percent expansion year on year. It wants to increase its business while ensuring it does not compromise on quality. “We are a niche operation, with a real emphasis on quality,” Mr Vindbjerg stresses. “We will also work with our customers on modifying designs if they require it and on making adjustments. However much we grow, our focus will always be on n service and flexibility as well.”

WINNING ON COMPETENCE Leading global construction giant Skanska Group is investing in innovation to ensure it continues to meet the demands of its internal, residential and commercial clients. Emma-Jane Batey spoke to the MD of Skanska Sweden Jorgen Persson to find out more.

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rom modest beginnings in a small Swedish town, the Skanska Group has grown to become one of the world’s leading construction conglomerates, with a wide network of global subsidiaries. Today Skanska is organized in national business units, with Skanska Stomsystem in the Swedish construction unit, where it primarily supplies the concrete structures for projects for Skanska Sweden. Skanska Group was founded in 1887 and is celebrating its 125th anniversary in 2012. Mr Persson said, “People outside the business think that Skanska is mainly in the

residential and commercial construction business, and while that is an important aspect of Skanska Sweden, our civil engineering activities are as big as our commercial and residential construction activities in each of our markets.”

Multi-national presence Active in the US, Latin America and several European countries, the Skanska Group has a multinational presence. It can call on the collective skills of subsidiaries of the Group, with each operating independently on a dayto-day basis yet with the strong infrastructure the Group provides. Skanska Sweden is only active in Sweden, so it primarily undertakes projects in its domestic territory, with residential and commercial construction projects representing around 60 per cent of its turnover and civil engineering projects representing the remaining 40 per cent. In 2011 Skanska Sweden had a turnover of 28 bn SEK (3.5 bn Euro). Customers include landowners, property developers and entrepreneurial organisations that want new premises. Mr Persson said, “Skanska’s main construction activities are building large-scale residential and commercial buildings and roads and bridges, including all the related engineering

demands. We also produce the asphalt and concrete elements needed to support our construction and civil engineering projects.” Managing director of Skanska Stomsystem Jorgen Persson told Industry Europe how the Swedish subsidiary fits into the National Business Unit, Skanska Sweden. He said, “We are all fully owned subsidiaries of the Skanska Group and we work together to deliver the best possible construction solution to our customers in each market. All the knowledge Skanska offers is available for our local and regional customers, so we provide a comprehensive service that utilises our exceptional know-how in large-scale construction and engineering projects.” Skanska Stomsystem employs 400 people, which are included in Skanska Sweden’s 10,000 employees. Skanska Stomsystem generates a turnover around 800 mn SEK (100 mn Euro) annually. The company is still experiencing some challenges from the global economic crisis, although Mr Persson is feeling positive. He added, “I’m an optimist, and with good reason! We are enjoying a very strong order book and have a number of projects that will allow us to utilise our skills and experience – and deliver an excellent result for the customer.” Around 60 per cent of Skanska Stomsystem’s projects are internal, but these jobs

are not bookmarked as internal projects. The company has to apply by tender on Skanska Group jobs the same as any other company, but with its strong history in meeting the demands of commercial and residential construction projects, it is able to rely on winning many of the projects for which it applies. Steel and concrete structure production has been a part of Skanska Sweden’s most recent change programme. In line with Skanska’s development of its industrial processes the company has invested in its off-site pre-fabricated concrete capabilities, allowing

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more work to be completed off-site, saving the customer’s time and money. In 2011 it also invested heavily in a brand new concrete station to allow it to make more qualified products, providing enhanced capabilities for customers. Mr Persson added, “For example, we have invested in a technologicallyadvanced concrete station that allows us to integrate desired colour and surface into the concrete products, so customers can have long-lasting concrete façade quality with a huge variety of design options. This can even include the customer’s logo!”

As Skanska Stomsystem looks to continue its positive achievements into 2013 and beyond, Mr Persson explained that the company is presently looking at the possibilities of positioning itself in the market by offering an alternative built on competence and expertise to its customers. With the hope that the construction and engineering markets in which it operates will develop against more qualified construction solutions, it expects that its ability to be competitively priced and to offer exceptional expertise will n see it win yet more projects.

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CROATIAN QUALITY Croatian manufacturer of underwear and other apparel Galeb d.d is capitalising on a period of expansion and great opportunities both in its domestic market and across Europe. Emma-Jane Batey spoke to CEO Mr Pezo to find out more.


ounded in Croatia in 1951, Galeb d.d is very well known across the region as a manufacturer of high quality underwear for men, women and children. Initially active in the field of home textiles, the company started to focus on underwear in predominately natural fibres in the early 1960s. Since then, the company has steadily expanded to become one of the country’s leading and best known underwear manufacturers, and has boosted this reputation with an expanded portfolio of apparel of equally high quality. CEO Mr Pezo told Industry Europe how the company’s history has shaped its success over the past 60 years. He said, “Even though we are more than pleased with our current market-leading position and broad product range of high quality garments, it is fair to say that our most successful days for

production were the late 1980s. We were manufacturing 11 million pieces each year! When the war started in the early 1990s, of course there was a massive impact on our business, and many others. Thankfully Galeb survived but there was certainly an impact, as we were located in the south of Croatia and were cut out of commercial activities in north Croatia. For many years we could only access it by sea which of course had its challenges in terms of logistics. All of these experiences have helped to create our dynamic, tenacious company and have played a part in our ongoing success.”

High quality apparel Today, Galeb is a privatised company with more than 350 employees. With its focus still firmly on manufacturing high quality under-

wear, its product portfolio has expanded to include swimwear, sleepwear, outerwear, knitwear and homewear. Galeb sells its products under three core brands – Galeb, Adriatic and GLB – as well as producing garments for other brands. Mr Pezo continued, “Around 60 per cent of our €8m annual turnover is achieved through sales of our own branded garments. The remaining 40 per cent is from third-party manufacturing contracts; we manufacture using our own facilities for other brands at the same high quality point as Galeb. We work closely together with chosen partners to produce their garments to their exact specifications and we expect this area of our business to grow alongside our own brand activities.” A carefully-developed network of sales channels supports Galeb’s ongoing suc-

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cess. The three Galeb brands perform well in the domestic Croatian market as well as neighbouring countries, particularly Slovenia and Bosnia Herzegovina. The company currently operates 16 retail stores across Croatia and has ambitious plans to expand over the coming years. Mr Pezo said, “We have a number of new stores planned. We expect to operate around 43–45 Galeb retail stores or concessions in Croatia, with a further 15 stores or concessions in Slovenia and Bosnia Herzegovina within the next three years. We are clear that our growth strategy is well planned to utilise the opportunities available in our region as well as the potential when Croatia joins the EU. We are prepared for further growth beyond our neighbouring countries but will probably start with our closest markets of Austria and Switzerland – they both have stable economies and a good level of average national wage, which offers ideal conditions for retail growth.”

Underwear with added technology Current trends that are impacting on Galeb include the increase in demand for garments with additional functionality. Galeb is working hard to develop clothing with functionality including greater moisture wicking and moisture management capabilities and anti60 Industry Europe

allergy clothing. Furthermore, the company is predicting an increase in demand for fire retardant underwear. With studies proving that two thin layers of fire retardant clothing is far safer for people in emergency services than one thick layer, as well as the $7bn annual cost of payouts to firemen in America following accidents, Galeb is aware that this is an interesting market with truly global opportunities. Galeb’s production capabili-

ties reflect the company’s dedication to high quality garments. It has the three core processes needed for manufacturing high quality garments in-house, with knitting, dying and cutting and sewing all available, meaning that Galeb can produce clothing from ‘yarn to garment’ without outsourcing any aspect, keeping costs relatively low and quality high. Galeb expects to grow in two different ways over the next five years. Firstly,

it predicts its own brands of clothing will develop with new product lines and possibility a fourth brand joining the portfolio. Secondly, Galeb’s focus on R&D within the field of greater functionality will see it join new markets for high-tech clothing primarily in the safety garment sector. Mr Pezo concluded, “We are well-positioned both commercially and geographically to maximise our excellent n potential over the next few years.”

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The L-Fashion Group, based in Lahti, Finland, is active in the fashion, sportswear and home textile sectors. It is currently in the process of introducing an exciting range of sporting apparel in collaboration with its Chinese partners – something it hopes will go down well amongst European consumers. Victoria Hattersley talks to managing director Vesa Luhtanen about the continuing success of its various sportswear brands in Europe and beyond.


he L-Fashion Group, known as Luhta until 1992, is divided into three separate divisions: fashion, sport and home textiles. Its fashion and home textiles products are mainly directed at the domestic and Russian markets, where it has a chain of 60 of its own Aleksi 13 retail outlets. However its sportswear division – the focus of this article – is well-established throughout Europe and the company has ambitions to take it even further in the coming years. It has

been building up its sporting brand visibility by collaborating with high-profile motor sport clients such as Citroën and Ford, by sponsoring the world’s best ski jumping teams and dressing members of several European ski clubs, for instance. Over the past decade the company has moved almost its entire production to the Asian market in order to position itself more competitively. In this it has succeeded, as Mr Luhtanen explains: “We are no longer produc-

ing in Europe because of the cost factor. We have always positioned ourselves in the lowhigh and medium-low segments where price is a very important consideration from both the consumer and the retailer perspective. After struggling a little in the late 1990s we have now found a good quality:price ratio.” It is this outsourcing of production which the company’s managing director believes gives L-Fashion Group its main competitive edge in a fairly crowded European sector.

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“Since the financial world has been shaken, consumers are naturally much more careful with their spending. Because we have our own low-cost production company in China and work very closely with our subcontractors, we have a good and fluent flow of information so we can be both efficient and competitive on price.”

Main sporting brands L-Fashion Group has carved out its stable European market position thanks to a number of innovative, well-established and respected sporting brands. The biggest and most widely distributed of these today is Icepeak – featuring a wide range of clothes and accessories for outdoor activities. This is currently distributed throughout the world in 60 countries. The newest member of the L-Fashion sportswear stable – established in 1999 – it now brings in an annual turnover of over €100 million. The oldest brand is Luhta, which was first introduced at the end of the 1950s.

Having lost market share at the end of the 1990s owing to the prohibitive European production costs before this was shifted to Asia, it is once again a strong player in the European market. Mr Luhtanen explains that “This is an important brand for us because it is one of our oldest, and of course until 1992 the company name was Luhta.” Rukka is unique amongst the L-Fashion Group sporting brands in that it is the only one to target a niche sector – protective garments for motor sports. This line of clothing has proven particularly popular especially in Germany and in the UK market. Torstai is a brand of skiwear which is sold mainly in Scandinavia although, as Mr Luhtanen says, the company is also looking to re-launch it on the entire European market and take it beyond skiwear. As well as this, L-Fashion is seeking to expand its offering into areas such as sporting shoes and speciality segments such as running or team sports. “We have never had any competition with brands such as Adidas,

Nike or Reebok. We understand that these sectors are tough but it will be interesting to see how we fare,” says Mr Luhtanen

A flavour of the east In addition to its core brands, L-Fashion Group is in the middle of a very interesting project. Building on its strong links with the Chinese market it is currently collaborating with the Chinese sportswear brand Li Ning to bring sporting fashion from the Far East to the European market. This is the first time Chinese sporting products have been widely introduced to the European market and Mr Luhtanen is very keen to see how they will be received by consumers. He tells us: “New ideas from Asia will almost certainly be entering the European market in many different sectors in the years to come as the power of China increases. We want to be part of that trend early on. We are following the design ideas of Li Ning but we will be adding our own twist to help the European acceptance of this offering.

“We will see how this develops, but it’s an interesting and challenging project for us. The good thing is that our Chinese partners see this as a long-term collaboration so they are in no hurry. This gives us time to grow the brand steadily, building credibility through the right offering.”

Steady growth set to continue In terms of European sales, Germany is the biggest market for L-Fashion Group, but Mr Luhtanen is quick to add that Russia offers the greatest prospects for growth.

“In the next couple of years we are expecting to see Russia overtake Germany as our most important European sales market. “In the rest of Europe, our growth will come by launching and re-launching brands there. But the growth in these more mature markets will continue to be more steady and not at such high percentages as we will be seeing in Russia. We have a daughter company in Italy and we see good possibilities in that market in the years to come. However, there are not any big openings and the competition is tough. Each segment already

has a lot of suppliers so we have to fight hard to maintain our competitive edge.” Further afield, Mr Luhtanen says the company will be keeping its eye on possibilities in the North American market – but any growth there will be slow and steady. As he explains, its strategy has always been to work closely with its retail customers in the areas its serves and to expand gradually. “We have been around for 105 years so it’s not important for us to get quick returns on investments. It’s about showing our customers we have strong brands and can perform well in the market. n



ORATEL was created in Poland in 1993 and is today the largest manufacturer of low-voltage appliances in the country. The company is the market leader in its sector of activities both in terms of the volume of production and number of staff, as well as the widest possible offer of standardised products. “We continuously modernise our production facilities in order to ensure better flows of materials, achieve better parameters of cooperation with customers and always guarantee timely deliveries of orders,” says Małgorzata Żytkowiak, sales director at NORATEL in Poland. “Our growth is of course part of the ongoing development of the entire international NORATEL Group and as a result we are delighted to be working with leading global clients who need to work with a global

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company. Our Polish company, for example, works with renowned producers such as Siemens, particularly its medical operations area, and GE. We strive to always meet customers’ expectations and we understand the need to invest in gaining new excellent staff, both technical and sales.”

Investment in all areas of operations The company is currently working on introducing a fourth production hall to its factory, which will increase the manufacturing space from 8,000 m2 to 10,000 m2. This activity is dictated not least by the fact that NORATEL is producing increasingly larger items which in turn require a larger manufacturing space. “The machine park is being continuously upgraded, with newer and faster machines, while at the same time, since July this year,

NORATEL Ltd in Poland belongs to the international NORATEL Group, specialising in a wide and impressive range of transformers and reactors. The Group brings together 16 companies in 13 countries with nearly 3000 employees. Piotr Sadowski writes about the most recent activities and developments in the Polish unit.

we are implementing the Lean Manufacturing policy to ensure a better overall efficiency and effectiveness of all of our processes,” explains Ms Żytkowiak. “We are proud to be offering a really wide range of products and therefore are always working on introducing new products to meet our clients’ needs. For the Polish market specifically, our latest addition includes low-voltage current transformers, for the production of which we have hired a significant number of specialist technical staff. For our foreign customers, we have embarked on developing individual long-series constructions which have a significantly increased operating life.” Over the period 2011-12 NORATEL has also been working on ensuring that any bottlenecks in the production of transformers are minimised. As Ms Żytkowiak explains,

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before reaching customers, transformers have to be tested and undergo 100 per cent control. Some current transformers have to be checked even up to five times in order to ensure their absolute reliability. This is where potential bottlenecks can arise and so the company’s R&D department is continuously working to ensure even faster processes in the entire manufacturing chain. “Furthermore, when working on large-series products, there is also a need to introduce

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higher levels of automation, which is precisely what we do at NORATEL in Poland and across the entire Group,” adds the sales director.

Looking for new partners NORATEL works with a wide range of customers, both large and smaller, in a wide range of industrial sectors, including installations, automation, medical equipment, renewable energy, machinery and ship-

building. Ms Żytkowiak says that the most important markets for the Group are those where its companies are located. “Poland is certainly a crucial distribution market for us and for the Group,” she adds. “As part of the Group our products reach customers across the entire world. At the moment, all emerging markets are of particular interest for NORATEL Group; they are very dynamic and offer us many opportunities for establishing new partnerships.”

R.Bourgeois is one of the world leaders in the production and supply of magnetic steel rotor and stator lamination stacks and assemblies for the electric motor and generator industries. With over 70% sales exported worldwide over 80 years technical expertise in high precision carbide stamping dies and manufacture, our products and services aim at serving the automotive, pumps, ventilation, electro domestic, power tool, generator, industrial and servo motor, windmill industry and transformer industries. 25, Rue de Trepilot • France • 25000 Besançon Tel: +33 (0) 3 81 48 66 66 • Fax: +33 (0) 3 81 53 74 40 • www.

The Group and its companies look for customers who are interested in an international cooperation. For example, in 2011, the Group opened a sales office in the USA to serve North American clients. In order to forge additional partnerships, NORATEL ensures its brand is present during leading international trade shows,

which is the role of Ms Żytkowiak and her colleagues from across the Group. “It is a key priority for us to react to customers’ needs, so that we can distribute our products throughout the world,” she says. “With increasing numbers of orders, there is of course the need to ensure that output capabilities are adequate. In Poland it is

still possible to further increase the output capacity, as well as in China, where three factories are currently being merged into one mega-production unit. Similarly we have units in locations such as India or Sri Lanka, which can be grown further and even better serve customers in dynamic n emerging markets.”

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SHINING LIGHT Leading integrated manufacturer and supplier of technical and design-led lighting solutions for a wide range of sectors, UK-based Tamlite Lighting has achieved considerable growth against the backdrop of the global economic recession. Emma-Jane Batey spoke to General Manager John Allden to find out how this is being achieved.


ounded within the UK Midlands in 1967, Tamlite Lighting is an integrated manufacturer and supplier of professional lighting products for the public, commercial and industrial sectors. Over the past 45 years, Tamlite Lighting has established itself as a customer-focused organisation with technically-advanced, well-designed lighting solutions, backed up with comprehensive sales and after-sales support. John Allden has worked in the UK lighting industry for over 30 years and has an extensive knowledge of how good lighting can add value to customers’ environments. He told Industry Europe, “We have excellent facilities here as well as a highly experienced team that knows how to maximise those facilities. It’s a winning combination.” 70 Industry Europe

Better for business A unique element of Tamlite Lighting’s team set up is the fact that its six factories in Redditch and further three in Telford are all run as industry-sector focused operations. Mr Allden explained, “Rather than have a central management across the nine sites, which can result in a sort of ‘Jack of all trades’ approach, we have dedicated teams for each market sector. There is a Business Manager at each site and they are all experts in their specific fields. If a customer wants to know general information about our products and services, or has an initial enquiry that crosses a number of sectors, they can talk directly to a Group Manager that understands all aspects of our business, or any member of our two dozen strong sales support team of

field-based engineers or Regional/National Sales Management. We find this decentralised approach works particularly well, even though it is unusual, and our sales figures prove it brings increased efficiency.” This decentralised approach allows for expertise in each of Tamlite Lighting’s core product areas. In addition to its professional lighting products for the public, commercial and industrial sectors, the company has also recently included high-end residential lighting too. Tamlite Lighting’s portfolio includes comprehensive fluorescent lighting ranges, exterior floodlighting for small spaces right up to entire stadia, display lighting such as spotlights, track and downlights, and utility lighting such as outdoor landscaping applications. All of Tamlite Lighting’s products can enjoy the integrated ‘Vision’

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lighting controls which allow for impressive energy reduction in addition to improved customer control, including simple presence detection and daylight dimming, with energy savings of 60 per cent to 80 per cent not uncommon. All of Tamlite Lighting’s product range can include LED lighting; a technical advance that has contributed to the company’s recent boost in performance. Mr Allden said, “I have more than 30 years’ experience in the lighting industry and I have to say that the last few years have seen a real revolution in terms of technical capabilities of lighting manufacture and design. There’s a huge development in LED and lighting control, and it’s really exciting to be a part of such a forward-thinking company – one that’s harnessing the increased possibility of lighting and bringing it to a wide, international audience.”

Bright investment In order to truly maximise its potential in this rapidly-changing industry, Tamlite Lighting has invested more than £5million in the last three and a half years. The main recipients of this investment have been two new factory premises. Additionally two brand new CNCcontrolled punch presses from cutting-edge Japanese machine manufacturer Amada, a second Salvagnini CNC bending machine and two state-of-the-art powder coating plants have been procured. This year has also seen the company replace half of its commercial vehicle fleet, with the rest due for replacement over the next 18 months. Furthermore, nearly half a million pounds has been invested in Tamlite Lighting’s new and varied showroom facilities. This is another area in which the company is resolutely unique: namely with its operation of ‘open house’ showrooms as ‘Application Centres’ that installers, distributors and end users can visit. Mr Allden added, “We love it when customers across the supply chain want to look around; they can visit the warehouses, the

workshops... wherever they want to see. We make sure there is someone there to show them around and answer any questions they may have on their lighting requirements and our portfolio.”

Growth and gain With around 95 per cent of its activities carried out in the UK, Tamlite Lighting also has a sister company Tamlite Lighting USA which is based in Florida and supplies the North American market. The UK company

also has a modern 4,500m2 facility in Western Turkey, which was opened in 1999. Thanks to long-standing relationships with export houses, Tamlite Lighting is active in Africa, the Caribbean and Asia, with expectations that its currently relatively lowlevel activities in Europe will advance in the coming years. Mr Allden said, “Our revenues in 2011/12 were 40 per cent higher than 2008/09, and we are targeting a further medium-term growth plan of plus 33 per

cent by continuing our policy of striving for excellence through internal focus on detail and high standards. Quality of product and quality of service have been instrumental in past success and will be paramount in our future growth strategy. Our future plans will see us continue to ‘be smart’ with active exploration of future market trends driven by light source technology, standards and legislation, and we will continue to integrate our advanced n ‘Vision’ lighting controls.”

SUSTAINABLE AND SECURE Munich based Infineon Technologies AG is focusing on the three central challenges facing modern society: Energy Efficiency, Mobility and Security.


nfineon offers semiconductors and system solutions for automotive and industrial electronics, and chip card and security applications.Infineon is Germany’s largest and Europe’s second-largest semiconductor company, with production facilities in Europe and Asia. With more than 26,000 employees, in 2011 Infineon generated a €4 billion turnover. With more than 20 R&D locations, over 15,000 patents and patent applications have been produced. Infineon is listed in the DAX index of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. Kay Laudien, Senior Director Media Relations, discussed the company’s solutions: its XMC4000 microcontroller and Integrity Guard security technology. Kay Laudien says: “Infineon’s Integrity Guard security technology offers long lasting protection for sensitive data for identification documents with high demands on security and robustness. It is setting a new benchmark for secure electronic documents. With this

Nowadays governments set high standards for electronic ID documents. Infineon’s highly secure SLE 78 product family with Integrity Guard is used in all-important eGovernment applications, such as the electronic health cards, the electronic identification cards and passports and in residence permits with biometric data.

packages, from 64kB to 2.5MB flash, and is optimised for inverter control in electric drives and renewable energy systems. The XMC4000 family has up to four fast 12-bit ADC modules achieving four Mega samples per second (interleaved mode) and offering autonomous post-processing functions to off-load the CPU. For lowest system cost XMC4000 devices host an integrated ΔΣ demodulator eliminating the need for an external demodulator IC. Kay Laudien: “With the XMC4000 and the Integrity Guard we can continue to hold top positions in all of our target markets: the automotive, the industrial, the power and the chip card and security market.”



Infineon’s XMC4000 microcontroller family is the benchmark for actuator and sensor control combined with industrial communication. It scales with five product series in eight

Infineon is the world’s second-largest chip supplier to the automotive industry. Infineon’s Automotive Division supplies the automotive industry with sensors, microcontrollers, power

technology, microcontrollers are equipped with full on-chip encryption over the core architecture and data path. The security controller core has two processing units, constantly checking each other’s correct functioning by utilising sophisticated error detection.”

Integrity Guard

semiconductors and power modules that contribute to a more sustainable mobility in terms of reduced fuel consumption and emissions, improved safety and affordability. Applications include engine and transmission controllers for hybrids, starter alternators, electromechanical valve-trains, light controllers, and tools for safety management such as electronic power steering, collision avoidance, anti-lock brake system, airbag, stability control and tyre pressure monitoring.

Power Control The Industrial Power Control Division concentrates on electrical drives and renewables. This primarily encompasses components for drives in industrial applications, such as machines or locomotives, and energy generation components in solar or wind power plants. The Power Management and Multimarket Division focuses on components for efficient power management or high-frequency applications. The components are mainly used in computing (server, notebooks, PC) lighting and metering products, solar inverters, gaming and mobile devices as well as in wireless base stations. Infineon delivers semiconductor innovations that play a valuable role in minimising power

loss and maximising power savings along the entire energy supply chain, from generation through distribution to actual consumption.

Chip Card and Security Infineon has been the world market leader in chips for card applications for fifteen years in a row and continues to pioneer new technologies in the field of chipbased security. Infineon provides security chips for passports, identity cards and contactless payment cards and is the leading supplier of chips for credit cards, access cards and trusted computing solutions worldwide. Infineon’s Chip Card and Security Division has helped to improve data security in today’s information society. As users become ever more mobile, demand for advanced security solutions is continuously rising. Infineon has the industry’s largest portfolio of chips and interfaces to meet the relevant security requirements in these areas. The company has seen turnover in Europe as a whole and Germany growing in 2011 from 46–48 per cent and from 26–27 per cent respectively, which can be interpreted as a good sign for the returning growth of the European economy as a whole.

Sustainable manufacturing Infineon’s sustainable manufacturing has been a benchmark. The company saved electricity equal to the annual consumption of a city with 1.7 million inhabitants and achieved its voluntary agreement to reduce Kyoto gases (PFC) three years earlier than the global target of the semi-conductor manufacturing industry. Infineon consumed around 70 per cent less water per sqcm manufactured wafer than the global benchmark average, and generated around 51 per cent less waste per sqcm manufactured wafer than the global n benchmark average.


HIGH PERFORMANCE As part of the leading manufacturing group of high voltage electrical equipment worldwide, Trench Germany is dedicated to producing more advanced products in a smaller footprint. Emma-Jane Batey spoke to managing director Dominik Graefer to see how this is being achieved.


he worldwide operating Trench Group has been at the forefront of high voltage electrical equipment manufacturing for more than 60 years, producing instrument transformers, bushings and coil products. Part of the Siemens family, Trench Group consists of 12 plants in eight countries with more than 3000 employees worldwide, with loca-

tions in Austria, Brazil, China, India, Canada, Germany, Italy and France. Trench Germany GmbH was formerly known as MWB Messwandler-Bau GmbH, which was established in 1947 and is located in the historic city of Bamberg in Bavaria. The company is able to harness the power of the global group to its own advantage and that

of its customers. Managing director Dominik Graefer explained how: “As part of the Trench Group we have direct access to a number of brother companies, each with considerable benefits for us and our customers. There is a great deal of long-term expertise in the various aspects of manufacturing high voltage electrical equipment throughout the group

and we all work closely to guarantee that our collective know-how and experience are used to their best advantage. That can include supplier information as well as technical expertise, so it’s a really valuable connection, particularly as we are active all over the world with strong connections in local markets.”

Meeting global power needs Primarily serving the utilities as well as manufacturers for gas insulated switchgear systems (GIS), Trench Germany manufactures high voltage electrical equipment with SF6 insulation to meet the needs of electric sector customers worldwide. Mr Graefer continued, “We are a truly global business. From Trench Germany we provide our products to customers in Europe, Asia, and the Americas. Being in a position to share the sales and marketing functions of the group, with these policies decided at group level, the group-wide

‘close to the customer’ strategy works well as regional aspects are considered.” The group-level decision-making process also extends to its geographical growth strategy. For Trench, staying ‘close to the customer’ means to share production facilities and capabilities, e.g. there is a decision made about which location is the most suitable for manufacturing certain products for certain markets, making sure that the most appropriate site manages the project.

Leading the way in SF6 For nearly 30 years, Trench Germany has been solely focused on producing high voltage equipment using SF6 technology. SF6 is the main insulation medium between high voltage and ground potential. A stable quality can be guaranteed by the use of SF6 gas according to ANSI/ DIN and the fact that this inert gas shows no ageing

even under the highest electrical and thermal stresses. The insulation properties remain unchanged throughout its lifetime. Furthermore, SF6 is not flammable which makes an explosion-proof design more feasible compared to other insulation media normally used. This is an advanced technology that harnesses the insulating properties of SF6 gas in transformers for encapsulated switchgears (GIS) and outdoor Instrument Transformers (AIS). The company’s two main product lines are Gas insulated Instrument Transformers for encapsulated Switch Gear Systems (GIS) and Gas insulated Instrument Transformers for Outdoor use (AIS). For GIS current and voltage transformers, with combinations of both for AIS, are available. Obtainable from between 72.5 and 800 kV, the products are supplied to switchgear manufacturers and utilities around the world. Mr Graefer said, “We offer the complete spectrum between 72.5 and 800 kV. Instrument transformers represent around 85 per cent of our turnover, with our extended product range including bushings and test equipment. We are keen to offer a complete solution for our customers as we know

they appreciate being able to utilise Trench technology across their businesses.” As a world technical leader in SF6-technology and its development, Trench Germany is always adapting to the new requirements of its customers, and of potential customers in the markets in which it is active. By continually improving its products and services, Trench intends and expects to maintain its market-leading position. Mr Graefer continued, “Our history has been defined by continuous improvement; by ensuring our products and services are always moving forward, we are able to help our customers improve too. We invest a great deal of money in these ongoing developments , both in improving our work processes and in increasing productivity. Our long-term focus is to be able to produce more high quality, technically advanced products with a smaller process footprint. So by investing in making our production processes as effective, reliable and repeatable as possible, and our equipment as modern as possible, we can keep our costs competitive and our products unrivalled.” Trench Germany is looking forward to a bright future. Its expectation of continued success is largely driven by the ongoing changes

across the world’s electricity generation markets, particularly as a response to the nuclear reactor environmental disaster in Japan. Mr Graefer concluded, “The transformation of the energy industry is mainly looking at new methods of energy generation, with alternative energy sources in strong focus. Our products can play a key role in this process, so we are certainly positive about the n coming years.”

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POWERED UP Slovenské elektrárne, a.s. is a company whose core business is the production and sale of electricity. In terms of available installed capacity it is the largest power generating company in Slovakia and the second largest in central and eastern Europe. It also generates and sells heat, and provides ancillary services to the power grid. Since 2006 the company has been a member of the Enel Group. Romana Moares reports on the latest developments


he Slovak electricity market is part of the CENTREL area which also includes Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic. Slovenské elektrárne represents around 8 per cent of CENTREL’s installed capacity and 7 per cent of its annual generation. In the Slovak Republic generation and wholesale activities were fully liberalized in January 2005. As a result there has been no price regulation at the wholesale level. Also, import and export prices are determined by bilateral contracts and since January

2005 there are no limits on the amounts of electricity that can be exchanged out of the domestic market. Slovenské elektrárne is the biggest electricity provider in Slovakia with 82 per cent of the country’s generation market. Slovenské elektrárne is the main supplier of electricity for the three biggest regional distribution companies in Slovakia (ZSE, SSE and VSE) and also supplies electricity to large businesses. The company is the main provider of ancillary services in Slovakia. It has an ideal

production mix – nuclear, water, fossil as well as renewable resources. The company has 5739 MWe of gross capacity in 34 hydroelectric, two nuclear, two thermoelectric and two photovoltaic plants.

New millennium, new company The joint-stock company Slovenské elektrárne was founded on 21 January 2002 as a new entity of the estate and the legal successor of the original Slovenské elektrárne a.s., of which the assets of the Slovak

power grid operator SEPS and the heating company Tepláreň Košice were spun off. The company’s goal has always been the safe, reliable, efficient and competitive production, sale and trade of electricity and heat. It is also concerned with the safe handling of radioactive waste and spent nuclear fuel, with permanent lowering of the negative environmental impacts of production processes. In 2011, the company generated almost 89 per cent of electricity without greenhouse gas emissions, thanks to hydro and nuclear energy.

As of 31 December 2011, Slovenské elektrárne has two shareholders. The majority shareholder is the Italian company Enel Produzione SpA, which has a 66 per cent stake in the company. The National Property Fund of the Slovak Republic is the minority shareholder with 34 per cent.

Becoming part of the Enel Group In July 2004, Enel submitted a binding offer and on 7 October of the same year the group was selected as a ‘preferred bidder’. During

the acquisition process, Enel, the National Property Fund (NPF) and Slovakia’s Ministry of the Economy agreed the terms of an investment plan aimed at increasing the output and enhancing the efficiency and environmental standards of the plant portfolio. The updated investment plan for Slovenské elektrárne covering the years 2006–2013 expects capital expenditures of almost €3.6 billion. When it comes to nuclear generation, the company is focused on the development of new capacity, mainly through the construc-

tion of units 3 & 4 of the Mochovce NPP with a planned CAPEX of almost €2.8 billion. Through the use of up-to-date technology, in 2008 Slovenské elektrárne managed to increase the output of units 1 and 2 of the Mochovce NPP with the total installed capacity of the plant reaching 940 MW from the previous 880 MW. After a five-year modernisation programme at the Bohunice NPP, the progressive power up-grade of its two 440 MW units was started in 2008. In October 2010, the installed capacity at Bohunice NPP increased to 1010 MW.

In the area of renewable energy, Slovenské elektrárne has developed combined combustion with biomass fuels in its coalfired plants. The first biomass co-combustion was commissioned in the autumn of 2009 at one of the 110 MW black coal-fired units in the Vojany TPP. In 2009, Slovenské elektrárne expanded its business in the distribution market by establishing SE Predaj, a 100 per cent subsidiary that operates in the Slovak small and medium enterprise market with over 1 TWh of supplies contracted for 2010.

On-going modernisation The number one priority for the company has always been operational safety. For this reason, safety at a power plant is verified and controlled at the highest possible levels throughout all of its phases (project design, authorisation, construction, operation, decommissioning and final dismantlement), using procedures that have been designed specifically for the needs of the power sector. It is also worthwhile mentioning that the development of technology has increasingly led to the adoption of safety systems for which human intervention

is limited to a minimum and safety is managed automatically. This includes systems based on fundamental physical principles like gravity or thermodynamics of the cooling fluid. Slovenské elektrárne will have invested €2.775 billion by 2013 in the construction of Mochovce NPP units 3 and 4. Further investments were required for the modernisation and power up-grade of existing units in Bohunice NPP (€500 million), and Mochovce NPP power up-grade, The Strategic Plan also covers the full automation and modernisation of the existing hydro units, the introduction of biomass in the fleet of thermal power plants (in Vojany and Nováky) and the development of renewables – mainly photovoltaic and small hydro power plants. All this investment has been made in line with the company’s vision: to be the safest, most reliable, efficient and competitive producer of electricity in the region. n

SERBIA’S GREEN ENERGY Serbian hydro-electric power provider Hidroelektrane Djerdap is investing in new equipment in order to be prepared to maintain its environmentally-responsible production in the country’s open market. EmmaJane Batey spoke to general manager Dragan Stankovic to find out more.


idroelektrane Djerdap d.o.o is part of the Serbian state-owned power industry Elektroprivreda Srbije (EPS) and is a hightech hydro power complex. With more than 1000 employees and its own maintenance capabilities, Hidroelektrane Djerdap is an important part of the state energy provision. General manager Dragan Stankovic told Industry Europe why its production is key to the nation. He said, “Serbia has only one company that distributes electrical power – EPS – and we are the most environmentally responsible element within it thanks to our hydro power capabilities. While it is not currently an open market and we have the monopoly on electricity provision across Serbia, this is expected to change in 2013 and so we must ensure we are able to maintain our leading position in an open market.”

To achieve this, Hidroelektrane Djerdap has been investing heavily over the past few years in preparation for this major change. With the aim of guaranteeing its hydro power provision is reliable, efficient and cost-effective, Hidroelektrane Djerdap’s facilities are stateof-the-art. Mr Stankovic continued, “After 40 years of continual usage, it was necessary to replace the machines in our first power plant – HPP Djerdap 1. We started the renovation project in 2009 with the upgrade of all its six aggregates – a project worth $139 million – which will be complete in 2016. We started with an expert assessment of what elements needed renovation and in what order so that we could maintain our service without stoppage or failures. It was decided that we would entrust the rehabilitation of the generating sets to the Russian companies that originally

installed them – OJSC Power Maschines from Saint Petersburg. We’ve also engaged a number of Serbian companies in the rehabilitation, with several hundred experts from the country involved in providing their expertise to the project.”

Investment for better production With an annual production of 7.5 billion kilowatt hours of pure, ecologically compatible electricity, Hidroelektrane Djerdap operates HPP Djerdap 1 and HPP Djerdap 2 plants. The modernisation of HPP Djerdap 1 will signal the completion of the largest investment by the electric power industry of Serbia, with around $39 million of the total $139 million cost provided by the Russian partner, as a result of clearing debts associated with the USSR towards Serbia.

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Power Machines Today Power Machines performs projects in Russia and CIS, Latin America, China, India, Vietnam and many other countries. One of the most significant projects of the company in the field of hydropower is the renovation of the Djerdap-1 HPP in Serbia. The turbines and generators currently in use at the HPP were manufactured by Power Machines enterprises during 1970-1972. Experience of the units faultless service through decades was the major factor that conditioned the Serbian party’s commitment to having the renovation works entrusted to the equipment manufacturer. Apart from this project Power Machines are actively involved in modernization of control systems for Djerdap-2 HPP turbines.

Mr Stankovic added, “We have chosen the harder way. Instead of renovating the generating sets on a turnkey basis, as decided by the Romanians in their part of the building which they use according to the agreement between the two countries, we have decided to carry out our own assembly and disassembly works, while our Russian partner will provide the equipment and act as supervisor. The renovation will increase the power potential from 190MW to 201MW per annum, with the plant and its machinery expected to provide high level reliable power for the next 40 years.” In order to make the most of these exceptional facilities, the company has its own high quality training facilities whereby it can provide the best possible induction and advancement of its workforce. Its socalled ‘Iron Gates School’, named after the company’s distinctive main building, offers

all employees training on the latest equipment as well as personal and professional development opportunities.

Thanks to the Danube Hidroelektrane Djerdap is appreciative of its unique location on the banks of the River Danube. Here, the natural resources provide exceptional power ready to be harnessed by HPP Djerdap 1 and HPP Djerdap 2. Mr Stankovic highlighted how the company ensures it utilises its excellent position. He said, “The Danube has always worked for us. It does not need any rest, recovery or repairs. We have also worked hard to protect our local neighbours from the potential impact of our location and operation; 15 towns were permanently protected against floodwater following a study by Hidroelektrane Djerdap and our protection system includes 282km of embankments,

2.2 million square metres of embankment linings, 53 pumping stations and over 830 hectares of drainage pipelines. We take the protection of our region seriously and, as an important local employer, we are well aware of our local responsibilities.” The ongoing revitalisation of both Hidroelektrane Djerdap’s plants is both because of the preparation for Serbia’s free market and for the satisfaction of EPS and its desire to operate clean, reliable energy provision. Mr Stankovic added, “After the renovation of HPP Djerdap 1 is completed in 2016 we will then upgrade our other hydro-electric power plants. The modernisation of our Vlasina plant is currently in progress and we are also active in modernising HPP Djerdap 2 so that all our electricity provision is delivered in the most environmentally responsible manner possible so that we will remain competitive in Serbia’s free energy n market in 2016 and beyond.”

GLOBAL BRAND WITH A REGIONAL FLAVOUR Traditional German family biscuit maker, the Lambertz Group, is considered to be one of 250 reasons why we should love Germany. It seems the international confectionary company has become something of a national treasure with a reputation for blending traditional values with continuous, and profitable, innovations in its product line.

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stablished in 1688, Lambertz is not only the oldest brand in the country’s economic history but is also something of a national institution. This traditional family bakery business has also used its expertise to garner international success in the bakery business. In 1820, Mr Henry Lambertz decided to add sugar to the company’s original biscuit mixture and then cut it into rectangular shapes. In doing so he created the company’s first range of ‘Printe’ – a traditional form of German pastry originating from the city of Aachen. Within a few years the Printe were manufactured in a variety of forms that included coating in chocolate, almonds, marzipan and the like. What was a regional seasonal business today employs some 3,450 people and is the world market leader in seasonal baked products, as well as being one of the largest German year-round baked goods manufacturers.

Tradition and innovation The Lambertz Group may well have cornered the global market for traditional German bakery specialities as the largest manufacturer of seasonal autumn bakery products, but it has also extended and strengthened its position above and beyond that of the domestic market.

Its focus remains on the two pillars of growth – maintaining and defending its dominance of its home grown market to preserve the rich tradition of a family owned and centuries-old company, while at the same time acting as a dynamic and innovative confectioner that doesn’t rest on its laurels. Today it remains at its ancestral home in Aachen operating its subsidiaries Weiss – the southern German gingerbread manufacturer – Kinkartz and Haeberlein and Metzger, which incorporate the wellknown brands of Ferdinand Wolf, Türmer, Heeman, Feinbackerei Otten and Otto Scharschmidt Marzipan. The group’s offering is pretty comprehensive and includes everything from biscuits and fruity baked products to lightly baked puff pastries, soft sugar-glazed doughnuts, marzipan and nougat pralines covered in milk chocolate, crispy mint flakes and Quark cakes with fruity fillings.

Key developments Over the years Lambertz has developed from a small niche supplier of gingerbread and ginger biscuits to one of Germany’s top bakery producers, which achieves 60

per cent of its annual revenue from sales of its year-round goods rather than its seasonal range. Not only that but the company’s track record at innovating new bakery products sets something of an example for competitors to follow; in fact, today Lambertz achieves more than 50 per cent of its turnover from items that were not even in its range 10 years ago. Just one of the many success stories in the last 10 years has been its Fine Lemon Pastry, which is known and loved throughout Germany. Meanwhile product developments in terms of its winning seasonal range include the first Christmas praline Baccione, which is made from nougat, marzipan, chocolate and almonds, and Omas Gewurzgeback a, baked festive product with Christmas spices. One of the reasons behind Lambertz’s success in the last 20 years, it seems, has been its decision to move from the manufacture of Printe into the entire gingerbread market. Up until 1978 Lambertz had been just another manufacturer of Printe, sharing a market in which there didn’t seem to be any real brand leader to speak of. Lambertz knew it could make the differIndustry Europe 91

ence and, at a time when its annual turnover was something in the region of €8.2 million, the company took the initiative and invested some €3.1 million in a new domino manufacturing system. It knew it could fill the gap in the market by delivering another household brand name, and in this it was proved to be right. In 2007, the company introduced its ‘Nussparade’ range of products, and this, combined with the growing popularity of its pastry mixes and mono pastries brought about a significant increase in sales.

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Increasing exports As well as achieving greater penetration with its own branded products, Lambertz also undertakes private label work and is collaborating with some of the biggest retailers in the business. Its international business is rapidly expanding, and today the confectioner is exporting its baked goods to more than 40 countries with its year-round product lines, in particular, reaching a wider international audience. In fact, one of the group’s focuses for the future is to expand its international exports,

and indeed the company is making great progress in the US market, for example, where sales are continuing to increase. It has a sales centre in this market and has also established permanent listing with several large US retailers. Here it markets its year-round bakery products under the labels of ‘European cookies and German cookies’. In addition to the US, Lambertz has also established a strong presence in China, Japan and Africa. Lambertz’s export business has been improved by the establishment, in 2008, of

a storage facility in Nuremberg with a storage capacity of 12,000 pallets. It has also expanded its distribution centre at Würselen to improve the flow and movement of goods from its factories to customers throughout the world.

Perfect for eastern Europe Another of the most exciting areas for the company in the future, and also one where the company has considerable success in the past, is in the neighbouring market of Poland where Lambertz’s range of baked

goods have sold particularly well. In fact the company’s penetration of the eastern European markets is another reason why Lambertz has been able to increase its turnover by so much over the last decade. Today its subsidiary Lambertz Polonia is selling to the Czech Republic, Romania, Ukraine, Latvia, Russia and Hungary as well as Poland. Indeed the company’s bulging manufacturing portfolio provides further evidence of its success in Poland. As well as its six factories in Germany, Lambertz also pro-

duces in Poland, for the Polish and eastern European markets, and it is this site that has been the subject of investment recently in a bid to increase capacity. The demands of the market have led the company to invest in inaugurating two new baking lines at its Polish facility. As well using the capacity at the Polish facility, demand is such that Lambertz also utilises its German manufacturing sites to meet the need in the Polish market. It has also added several new products to its eastern European line n over the past five years.

CATERING FOR EVERY NEED LOT Catering Ltd has been at the forefront of in-flight catering services in Poland since 1992. It is a dynamically developing business which continues to strengthen its leading position in the country’s in-flight catering market. By expanding its offer to include products for non-airline clients and the introduction of three new brands – Tomatillo, Vivanta and Biscuiterie – LOT Catering continues to build its reputation as a strong, credible and solid company.


OT Catering was established in 1992 after separating in-flight catering services from the organisational structure of LOT Polish Airlines. The main office and production plant, with a usable area of nearly 13,800 m2, is located in the immediate vicinity of Warsaw Chopin Airport, with production branches at airports in Poznań, Kraków and Gdańsk, as well as a daughter company in Katowice. “In 1993–94 we began providing in-flight catering to foreign carriers and today we regularly provide meals for 16 airlines and for special and government flights,” says Krzysztof Wiśniewski, the company’s president. “In 1996 we initiated our presence on the non-airline market and this process was

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further strengthened with the implementation of a new marketing policy and introduction of new product brands: Tomatillo for restaurants, Vivanta for ready meals and Biscuiterie for confectionery. From the most recent investments, in addition to acquiring the new property in Warsaw, we also fitted it with three HOBART tunnel washers which are by far the largest and most efficient appliances of their kind operating anywhere in Poland.”

Great results In January 2011 LOT Polish Airlines sold 100 per cent of the company’s shares to the Regional Economic Fund JSC, which contributed to a particularly strong and impressive

performance. The numbers say it all: in 2009 turnover was just over PLN 90 million and ended in net loss of PLN 2.56 million; in 2010 sales reached PLN 93.64 million and the year closed with net profit of PLN 2.21 million; 2011 was by far the strongest year, with the company recording a turnover of PLN 98.4 million and net profit of PLN 5.13 million. At the same time, employment decreased from 715 in 2009 to 643 in 2011. “This is a result of a much better use of resources and ongoing introduction of new technologies in our plants,” explains Mr Wiśniewski. “Our EBITDA for 2011 was a healthy 7.8 per cent, which sets us on a strong path to achieve even better results this year, when we will be celebrating our 20th anniversary.”

Key activities LOT Catering operates in two main service sectors: comprehensive in-flight catering for airlines (accounting for 70 per cent of the business), and non-airline services (through the Vivanta, Tomatillo and Biscuiterie brands), as well as banquet provision services conducted under the LOT Catering brand. In order to meet customers’ expectations, in April 2010 the company introduced a new catalogue of meals, launched a dutyfree offer on charter flights and refreshed the menus for government and special VIP flights. LOT Catering now offers over 5000 different items across all its service areas. “The key to success lies in delivering the highest quality, repeatability and safety in our

products,” says Mr Wiśniewski. “In-flight, our products are consumed not only by passengers, but also by crew who are responsible for the health and effectively the lives of hundreds of people onboard. On the ground, we also meet the strictest quality, health and safety standards, which are confirmed through regular audits and inspections.” The company’s non-airline services are also going from strength to strength. The Vivanta brand offers wholesome ready meals of the highest quality and is available in supermarket and hypermarket chains such as Tesco, Leclerc and others. The Biscuiterie brand, on the other hand, has been created for the most demanding clients in the confectionery sector. “Here we offer muffins, cakes, pies,

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Uni-Pack Maciejko Uni-Pack Maciejko has been existing and developing, just like Lot Catering, for more than 20 years. The company is a supplier of disposable packaging for many companies from food and catering industry. It has cooperated with Lot Catering from the very beginning, that is for more than 20 years. Inspired by Lot Catering Uni-Pack Maciejko introduced to its offer many modern and ecological solutions, which present qualities of food and gain a competitive advantage to their users. This is also reflected in the market position of Uni-Pack Maciejko.
 Currently, it provides, inter alia, disposable cardboard boxes for packaging of fresh sandwiches, salads, and tortillas.
 Uni-Pack Maciejko is a participant of the Rzetelna Firma (Reliable Company) program. It has also received a Certificate of Business Credibility granted by D&B Poland, an international business intelligence. Last but not least, the company has belonged continuously for many years to the elite group of the Business Gazelle Award winners.

fruit tarts and other products, and our advantage over specialised patisserie businesses, often run by families, is that we are able to offer a much greater volume of products,” adds the company’s president. “Through ongoing cooperation with companies such as Tchibo, Empik Café, HDF or Cinema City, as well as establishing our own network of branded outlets in major shopping malls, we are expanding our offer for the confectionery market.” In turn, the Tomatillo network of modern restaurants, located in prestigious office build-

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ings in Poland’s major cities, offers new menus, high quality service and modern interiors. The company also provides corporate catering services for kindergartens and IKEA stores, and, using its extensive experience, also offers a wide range of banquet services and catering for corporate and individual clients.

Continued growth Bearing in mind the trend for increased distribution of frozen products in the nonairline sector, LOT Catering will continue to expand its offer, not only in Poland but

potentially across the whole of the EU. “Our products are already available in retail chains in Hungary and we expect to increase our presence in the non-airline catering sector across Europe,” says Mr Wiśniewski. “In the in-flight catering sector we are also looking to expand to providing excellent quality, frozen meals to airlines which do not necessarily depart from Warsaw, Gdańsk, Poznań, Kraków or Katowice airports.” To meet the growing demand in all areas of its activities, the company is also expecting to increase its output; at the moment it has around 30 per cent spare capacity, overall. “Any investments will focus on increasing our production space and employing more staff,” concludes Mr Wiśniewski. “Our future strategy will continue to focus on increasing the number of business partners in both the in-flight catering and non-airline sectors, as well as expanding the product range. We will look to diversifying our sources of income, building greater brand awareness by highlighting our multidimensional character, leveraging our competitive advantage on the market for ready-made meals and confectionery, as well as increasing our banquet n catering services.”

OSM Olecko (District Milk Cooperative) from Olecko, Poland is a company well known for its traditional products. It is a member of the European Network of Regional Culinary Heritage and is certified by the “Quality Tradition” national system of food quality.


SM Olecko is one of the Polish milk cooperatives with the longest tradition of operation. It was established in 1927 in Olecko, a small town located in the heart of the Mazurian Lake District, in north eastern Poland. The District is one of the least polluted regions of the country and is covered by the Green Lungs of Poland programme (the district had also been elected as one of the finalists of the New7Wonders of Nature).

A group of local landowners was behind the formation of the cooperative. After World War II, the Milk and Egg Cooperative was established in January 1949 to purchase and process milk from the nearby counties. In 1954, it was nationalised and forced to operate in this form until 1957, when, after another reorganisation managed by the state authorities, the dairy cooperatives were re-created.

In 1968 the Cooperative received the “Q-like quality” mark for the butter it produced. After the modernisation of the plant conducted in 1973, its production capacity was increased. Five years later a continuous line for the production of butter was launched. The eighties were marked by further increase in milk procurement and production of dairy products. In 1996, the modernisation

of production launched a new line for production of ripening cheeses. The facilities for cheese salting and aging were modernised.

Busy years “In recent years we have implemented a number of investments in order to comply with the European Union regulations. In October 2003, we introduced the HACCP system to ensure the health safety of our products. In March 2004, the District Veterinary Officer issued a positive decision on selling our butter and cheese in the European Union and their production for other markets”, says Anna Staszkow, the president of OSM Olecko. In late 2004 a new unit for thickening the whey was put into use; in 2005, the whole refrigeration system was changed; in 2006 a fleet of Scania vehicles for the transport

of milk was bought; and in 2011 the salting department was built and fully equipped. The latter project was realised with the aid of EU funds obtained under the SAPARD SOP and RDP funds. “Now, there are 600 milk producers who supply milk to the Cooperative and are the members and co-owners of the company. They are mainly young farmers but big producers, who provide us with 50-60,000 litres of milk monthly each,” says Ms. Staszkow. OSM Olecko employs 111 people. Its annual processing of milk reaches 50 million litres. “There is a place for many different cooperatives in Poland, for big ones and for small ones. We are the medium size co-op with only one production facility,” adds Ms. Staszkow. “However our future looks bright, as far as I can see it, despite the fact that this year doesn’t seem to be favourable for milk and

cheese producers. The whole milk market suffers from overproduction and, in consequence, a price drop. But we have survived the 2008 crisis and since then our annual milk production has grown by 12 per cent each year.”

Focus on tradition According to Ms. Staszkow, what makes OSM Olecko the unique cooperative on the market is the high quality of its raw milk and the way it makes its dairy products. “We do not use any extra fat. Everything we make is based just on cow’s milk. Furthermore we use special equipment for traditional production. Thanks to this our consumers get products of true taste. And they appreciate it”, emphasises Ms. Staszkow. Dutch-style cheeses such as: Gouda, Gouda Mini, Podlaski, Edamski and Morski are the company’s flagship products. OSM Olecko is also known for its butter, cream,

cottage cheese and buttermilk. Moreover, it makes famous fudge candies, which, upon special request, can be labelled with the client’s logo. OSM Olecko products are popular throughout Poland. They are also successfully sold abroad, mainly to neighbouring countries: Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic, but also to distant markets, such as the UK, Spain and Portugal. “Distance” is a key word in the case of offering the cooperative products, since they are made in the traditional, natural way, with no preservatives, so their shelf life is short. The company is a member of the European Network of Regional Culinary Heritage.

This is the European Network with member regions all across Europe, with a common goal to develop these regions through the promotion of local and regional food. Two products made in OSM Olecko (natural butter and cottage cheese) are in a group of 39 exclusive products certified by the “Quality Tradition” national system of food quality. The “Quality Tradition” system distinguishes high-quality traditional food products. As to the future development of the Cooperative, Ms. Staszkow remains optimistic. “We see our market opportunity in continuing the production of fine tasting food,” is her simple n recipe for success.


Pick, Hungary’s biggest meat processor, was first established in 1869 when Mark Pick founded the predecessor of Pick Szeged Zrt. For a company to maintain a high profile in a tough market takes something special. Edina Beale investigates how Pick manages to do just that.


ith an annual production of 48,000 tonnes, Pick Szeged Zrt is the leading Hungarian meat processing company. Since its establishment over 140 years ago, the underlying principle for the company has been to provide consistently high quality in all of its brands and product ranges. As part of the Bonafarm group, the country’s largest integrated agricultural and food processing group, Pick Szeged Zrt has the great advantage of using the highest quality raw materials supplied by the group’s animal husbandry and crop farming divisions. Headquartered in Szeged, in the south of Hungary, Pick currently operates production plants in four locations throughout the country and subsidiaries and sales offices worldwide. The company carries out all meat and salami processing in Szeged, whilst in Baja, ham and paté products are produced. The factory in Pécs is responsible for boning and cutting processes, and in Alsómocsolád dry sausages are produced. Pick Szeged Zrt today employs around 2900 people and in 2011 generated more than HUF 60 billion.

Well-known brands The company’s core product range consists of dry products, including salami and dry sausages; however, ham, red meat prod-

ucts, paté and bacon are also produced in large volumes, whilst the company supplies various meat products as well. The company’s most important brand is ‘Pick’, the most well-known and well-loved Hungarian brand. Its leading product, the Pick Téliszalámi (winter salami) is a true Hungaricum. The uniqueness of this product is achieved using a secret recipe with the finest ingredients and a 100-day curing process. Last year the company extended its dry products range with the Pick Báthory salami that has a true Hungarian flavour in two combinations: Delicacy and Paprika. In the seasonal smoked meat category, the Pick Békebeli frikandó ham, marinated with salt and smoked traditionally, and the Pick Békebeli walnut ham were introduced and were favourably received in the market. Herz is one of the oldest and most popular Hungarian brands, recreated by Pick to become a fresh and trendy trademark whilst still maintaining the values of a traditional Hungarian brand. In recent times the company has continued the repositioning of the Herz brand and carried on strengthening the Herz brand name. The Herz Classic products are the latest developments; their market launch was set for October and already has strong media support, marketing

materials and intensive tasting programmes. The leading product within this assortment is the traditionally cured, premium quality Herz Classic Winter salami. Based on a 120 year-old recipe, the salami is made with selected ingredients, unique herbs and traditional beechwood smoking technology. The assortment also includes well-known traditional products such as the mouldripened Herz Classic Budapest salami that is made using a traditional curing technology. A new addition to this assortment is the Herz Classic Páros sausage, seasoned with a harmonious mixture of paprika, garlic and cumin. In addition to their unique and tasty flavours, the products are allergen free so that customers with food allergies are able to consume them safely. Stepping out from its traditional line of dry products, this year Pick developed and

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launched the Herz Vital ham. This is a high quality, low fat product which is free from soy- and milk protein and from gluten, and therefore attracts health conscious consumers. In order to meet the increasing customer demand, the Herz Vital ham has two varieties: cooked, and smoked-cooked. In August last year, the Herz Csemege salami and the Délhús Gála roasted ham manufactured by Pick received the Excellent Hungarian Food awards. In September, after winning the Hungarian Product Grand Prize for the 10th time, Pick Szeged Zrt won the Business Award in recognition of its continuous provision of high quality products.

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Focus on export Around 40 per cent of Pick’s turnover is sold on foreign markets, but the company aims to increase its export activities. Last year this meant approximately 9200 tonnes of processed meat products, which was 1200 tonnes more than in the year 2010. The two most important markets are Germany and Russia. In 2011 Pick achieved well above its expectations within the markets of Germany, Austria and Switzerland. In Russia, where Pick sells its products via its subsidiaries and local distributors, more than 2200 tonnes of products were exported last year.

A great result for Pick in 2011 was a longterm contract with a prominent Japanese business delegation, which will result in a significant export increase in the Far East. The company is also strengthening relationships with partners in China and Singapore. The ultimate goal is to balance the export-import ratio whilst maintaining the level of domestic sales and therefore stabilising the company’s market-leading position in Hungary. As for the long-term future, the company’s 140-year history, its professional expertise and commitment to providing high quality products will help it continue to be n the ‘pick of the crop’.



CLAAS Industrietechnik is a global player in the development of advanced drive technology and hydraulic solutions. Philip Yorke takes a closer look at a remarkable company and its latest, groundbreaking innovative products and solutions.


LAAS Industrietechnik is a wholly owned subsidiary of the world renowned CLAAS Group of Germany. The affiliate company was founded 56 years ago at its present site, located at Paderborn in western Germany where over 650 highly skilled staff maintain its enviable reputation for quality and innovation. Today the company produces industry-specific products and solutions that are developed for a wide variety of industrial sectors and applications. These range from agricultural and

municipal equipment and complex construction machinery to offshore technology. The company’s modern factory in Paderborn was recently upgraded and restructured to offer a new, state-of-theart testing centre, designed to provide its customers with the most advanced testing technology available today. This latest facility is also designed to optimise the quality and efficiency of the company’s drive technology and hydraulic systems products.

This latest investment allows the company to exhaustively evaluate its advanced components and drive systems during the final stages of production. In addition, it offers clients the opportunity to participate in the overall project management process. Another €3.5 million was invested in a new logistics centre which recently began construction and will be taken into operation in summer 2013. This is the next part of the rearrangement of the facility site and

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represents huge progress in the internal rationalisation and optimisation process. Today, CLAAS Industrietechnik’s contribution to the group’s innovative and advanced range of agricultural products has helped it to push CLAAS Group sales to more than €3.3 billion in the last fiscal year

World CLAAS driving technology CLAAS Industrietechnik is a leading producer of drive technology and hydraulics. The company’s outstanding product is the TERRA TRAC system, the world-leading rubber track undercarriage system. Owing to its flexibility and special characteristics it is used for a large variety of machines like harvesters and dumpers. Thanks to its hydro-pneumatical suspension it provides high driving dynamics, amazing riding comfort and therefore a whole new level of control. With a maximum speed of 40 kph and increased driving safety the TERRA TRAC system sets a new benchmark. Its unique construction reduces the soil pressure to the ground by up to 66 per cent and avoids irreversible damage. Besides the TERRA TRAC system CLAAS Industrietechnik offers a large variety of axles

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for any kind of vehicle. The top products in this sector are the drive axles for the world’s largest combine – the LEXION – with a net load between 22 and 30 metric tonnes. These axles are equipped with planetary gears and a transmission with two speeds based on electrohydraulic shifting. CLAAS Industrietechnik’s open-structured driving axles can be used with standard tires and have easy-maintenance tanks to ensure fast and easy access to the modules. The close-structured driving axles are equipped with electrohydraulic transmission, integrated multidisc brakes, an optional tyre pressure control system and differential lock. Vehicles with these axles have a load capacity of up to 14 tonnes and a speed limit of up to 40 kph. CLAAS Industrietechnik also provides steering (drive) axles with a load capacity of between 4.5 and 10 tonnes. These universal adjustable axles can be installed on any kind of harvester and are also available as swing axles. Owing to their modular structure any customer specific configuration can be applied. In addition to this, CLAAS Industrietechnik is known for its axles for municipal vehicles. The range of products includes numerous axle and chassis solutions. Steering, driving

and steering drive axles are available as rigid axles and as axles with independent wheel suspension. Rigid drive axles with internally vented disc brakes are also available.

New hydraulic solutions Ever since the company was founded 99 years ago, research and development has been a top priority at CLAAS, and has gone hand-in-hand with innovation, quality and reliability. As a result, CLAAS Industrietechnik’s product range for hydraulic solutions is constantly being enhanced to meet the many diverse and demanding challenges of today’s hydraulic-electronics marketplace. Whether for intelligent control of complex motion sequences for mobile applications, or for industry in general, it is the company’s passion for precision and efficiency that drives it. The company also leads the field in its core competences for switch and proportional valve technology. This is owing to its many years of system competence, which extends from the system design and simulation to integration and final application. Furthermore, the company’s advanced research and testing facilities provide the opportunity to validate the entire

development process and offer a truly holistic approach to the project management process. CLAAS Industrietechnik is in charge of the OEM sales function of the cabs produced in Harsewinkel. Its cabs offer a pleasant level of comfort combined with ergonomic efficiency and can be applied to a large variety of products such as potato or sugar beet harvesters. The cabs can be individually adjusted and offer a panoramic glaze, ensuring an unimpeded view from all sides. An automatic air-conditioning system can be relied upon to maintain the temperature required even at external temperatures of up to 50°C. Sun blinds and a refrigerated drinks compartment round off the features of the cabs. More than 1000 cabs are sold per year. All this in-depth expertise and innovative technology can be harnessed at CLAAS Industrietechnik at any time, in order to meet a customer’s tailormade specifications and requirements. To keep its leading position on the global market CLAAS Industrietechnik is always inventing new technologies and products, following the motto: “If you want to be the leader you must keep running.” (Helmut Claas). n Industry Europe 109

TUNNEL VISION Normet is a global market leader in the design and manufacture of vehicles for underground mining and tunnel construction. Philip Yorke spoke to Gary Clench, general manager of the company’s South African subsidiary, about the launch of its latest products and the recent acquisition of TAM, a leading construction chemicals company.

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ormet is a privately owned company that was founded in Iisalmi, Finland, in 1972 and has since grown to become a major player in the field of hard rock underground mining, tunneling and construction solutions. The company’s head office and its R&D functions are both located in Finland. In addition Normet operates a state-of-the-art manufacturing plant there as well as managing other key production facilities in Ludvika, Sweden and in Santiago de Chile. To provide a comprehensive service for its multinational customers, the company operates a central service network from Switzerland and has sales and support facilities in 36 locations, based in 22 different countries around the world.

Normet also supplies a wide range of construction chemicals as well as offering a comprehensive range of lifetime care services for the maintenance and operating processes of its products. Today the company offers solutions covering concrete-spraying and transportation, explosive-charging, lifting and installation, as well as underground logistics and scaling. Normet’s business vision is focused on always exceeding its customers’ expectations through partner networking and product quality and reliability, while optimising all safety and environmental standards. Normet’s quality systems are all fully certified to ISO 9001, ISO 14001:2004 and the OHSAS 18001:2007 safety certifica-

tion standard. Currently Normet employs around 1,000 highly skilled engineers and business professionals and in 2011 recorded sales of more than €170 million.

Expanding product range and global reach Normet is one of the world’s fastest growing companies in its sector with expanding global ambitions and high-tech products. The strategic decision to establish a major presence in South Africa is part of the company’s long-term global expansion programme and follows the group’s acquisition of TAM International, the leaders in specialist chemicals and systems for waterproofing

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and the protection of underground tunnels and construction sites. Today the Normet Group develops, manufactures and markets advanced machines for the mining industry as well as a range of construction chemicals for underground processes. The company’s latest machines are designed for optimising tunnel support systems and technology, which are delivered by mobile, robotised concrete-spraying units. This is in addition to providing highly mechanised explosive-charging and underground logistics systems. The entire range of Normet

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products and services are now available in South Africa from its operational headquarters and logistics centre in Johannesburg. Clench said, “Normet has had a presence in South Africa distribution agents for many years and in 2011 the decision was taken to open its own fully affiliated to Normet Oy Finland branch in Johannesburg South Africa. To support its growing presence here, the company acquired a new logistics and warehousing facility in Johannesburg which covers around 1,500 square metres and where we will be able to stock around 1,000 different spare parts for the after-sales care of our specialised construction and tunnel vehicles, as well as the manufacture of construction chemicals from the TAM range. “Normet SA will be offering all the latest underground mobile and utility vehicles and machines, as well as a full range of TAM chemical products in South Africa.” “This facility in Johannesburg will also provide the springboard for our sales in neighbouring countries such as Botswana, Namibia, DRC, Zimbabwe, Tanzania and

Zambia. As with our other global locations, we will be offering full after-market support and training programmes for our customers and partners. In fact we are one of the few global companies to offer this high level of service for clients. The entire, extensive range of underground, mobile and utility vehicles will be available from our facility in Johannesburg. This includes our latest ‘Minimec’ a small, fully robotic concrete-spraying machine.” Clench added, “However, concrete spraying and logistics equipment remains our main business activity and one where we believe that we lead the world in advanced technology and productivity. In addition to our range of Normet products, we are also acting as main agents for other specialist manufacturers such as Techwill and Hemco mining equipment. All orders received in South Africa will be supplied from our distribution centres in the UK, Taiwan or the Netherlands. This is like a greenfield site for us and we are looking forward to the possibilities and potential that our high-tech products provide for us in the fastgrowing South African marketplace.

Next year we will be showcasing our latest products and equipment at BAUMA, which is the first year this international trade fair will be staged in South Africa.”

Versatile underground logistics vehicles Normet provides a complete range of versatile, rubber-tyred hard rock underground transport vehicles that are designed to meet every conceivable challenge. The company’s ‘Utimec’ range can be customised for any purpose, such as for fuel transportation, or lubrication, as a mobile workshop, for

material transport or simply as a flat bed with a crane. In addition, Normet’s modular ‘Variomec’ concept uses a mine-type carrier and interchangeable work modules which could double as a dump-kit for rock hauling, as a re-mixer kit for concrete transport, or as a boom lift for operatives. Normet’s ‘Multimec’ cassette carrier range concept uses either a 6 ton or 10 ton carrier system and allows for a number of already designed cassettes to be used. In addition if there is not a cassette that meets your requirements this can be designed in conjunction with the customer.

In the area of concrete spraying, Normet also offer optimised self-propelled mechanised and automated spraying systems that deliver high productivity, superior operator safety and outstanding quality and reliability. The latest ‘Spraymec’ models are all available with electro, or diesel-hydraulic configuration and an optional on-board compressor. Whatever the Normet machinery that is used, whether it is for spraying, charging, scaling, lifting or transporting, it is sure to provide the optimal answer to any tunnelling or construction challenge anywhere in the world. n Industry Europe 113

REFRIGERATION INNOVATION Hauser GmbH based in the Austrian city of Linz, produces chiller and freezer cabinets for the retail sector. Joseph Altham caught up with the company’s deputy sales manager, Peter Breitenfellner, to find out how Hauser is helping supermarkets all over Europe to save energy. 114 Industry Europe


auser is a family business with more than 60 years of experience in refrigeration. The company manufactures refrigeration cabinets for commercial purposes and employs over 400 people. Hauser sells only to other businesses, and its biggest customers are supermarkets, cash and carry outlets and discount stores. The company has two main production plants. The factory in Austria, at Sankt Martin im Mühlkreis, has an area of 13,500m2 and was established in 1971. Besides producing refrigeration cabinets, the factory at Sankt Martin has four test rooms that enable Hauser to conduct tests in-house. Hauser set up its factory in the Czech Republic back in 1990. This factory, in Kaplice, has helped it

to build up its strong position in central and eastern European markets. “Our Czech plant is only a 40 minute drive from head office so it is closely integrated with the rest of the company,” said Mr Breitenfellner. “Manufacturing costs in the Czech Republic are lower, so the Czech plant helps us to offer more cost-effective products.”

A splash of colour Aesthetics matter to the retail sector, which expects refrigeration cabinets to be visually impressive as well as reliable. One way to enhance the visual impact of refrigeration is through LED lighting, and Hauser has introduced LED lighting in units such as its Regius display cabinet for meat and dairy

products. “Visually, LED means you can play with different colours and create any colour you want. The industry started moving over to LED around three years ago. We now offer LED lighting as standard on our serve-over cabinets. LED lighting also has important advantages in terms of energy efficiency. It consumes less electricity and at the same time it brings less heat into the cabinet.” The look of retail spaces has changed a lot since the 1970s, and for supermarkets battling to attract the attention of consumers, a uniform white colour for refrigeration units is sometimes no longer enough. To ensure that it can meet the expectations of its clients, Hauser has recently installed a new, fully automated painting line. “For the Industry Europe 115

retail sector, colour has an important role to play. Our customers often want green or orange colours for displaying fruit and vegetables as a way to reiterate the freshness. The new painting line means that we can do the jobs in-house and react more quickly to our customers’ changing requirements.”

Eco ES system The retail sector, which competes on price, is always on the lookout for ways to lower its costs. According to Mr Breitenfellner, Hauser’s customers are now paying much more attention to the running costs of a refrigeration unit as opposed to just the upfront cost. “Energy efficiency is a key driver, particularly for the big retail chains. Energy prices are soaring, so the retailers are looking closely at the figures for energy-saving.” Hauser’s ingenious Eco ES system enables supermarkets to save energy by using the heat that is discharged by their refrigeration cabinets to heat the whole of the building. “Heating the supermarket with 116 Industry Europe

the refrigeration system means you can bring down the supermarket’s overall energy consumption. Rather than being wasted, the heat that comes out of the refrigeration system is fed into a heat exchanger in the store.” Thanks to Hauser’s Eco ES technology, supermarkets with substantial refrigeration capacity have even been able to do without oil and gas heating altogether. Hauser has the capacity to provide customers with turnkey solutions, including planning, delivery and installation. “Our customers in continental Europe usually prefer us to take care of the whole project, which makes life easier for them.” Taking a centralised approach also allows refrigeration to be centrally controlled, making for greater energy efficiency. “With the Eco ES system, all sorts of temperatures can be visualised on the screen of a PC. You can see the store’s temperature as well as the refrigeration temperature. There are even clever modules that pick up the weather forecast and are synchronised

with it. This means that the system will start producing hot water if it knows the weather is going to be cold.”

Markets Countries outside Austria account for 76 per cent of Hauser’s sales, making the company a highly successful exporter. Besides supplying refrigeration units to many of the big European supermarket chains, Hauser also sells refrigeration systems for industrial premises such as meat factories and delivery depots. “There are 10 staff who work on this area at our industrial refrigeration centre in Vienna.” Hauser’s independent sales offices in Austria, Germany and the UK can deal with customers directly. The company also has a wide network of service engineers, and customers throughout Europe can contact Hauser on a special 24-hour hotline. “After-sales care is part of the Hauser philosophy. We don’t just want to sell equipment. We want to help our clients to maintain it n and look after it properly.”

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ENERGY-EFFICIENT VENTILATION SYSTEMS The Nuaire Group is a privately owned UK company that is a European market leader in the design and manufacture of energy-efficient commercial and residential ventilation systems. Philip Yorke talked to Mark Huxtable, the group’s managing director, about its latest innovative products and ongoing investments in environmentally friendly production technology.


he Nuaire Group was founded in 1967 and began by providing cleaning and maintenance services to metal fabricators in the UK before moving into manufacturing full-time in 1971. Thanks to a consistent investment programme and a commitment to developing innovative, energy-efficient ventilation systems, Nuaire has grown to become one of the most successful companies in its field and the only one to offer expertise in all three key ventilation markets, covering commercial, residential and industrial sectors. Today the company has extensive resources and a major manufacturing plant with warehousing facilities near Cardiff in Wales that extends to more than 250,000 118 Industry Europe

sq ft. These facilities are supported by around 500 employees worldwide and in 2011 the company recorded sales of more than £54 million.

Leading in energy efficiency and performance Nuaire is committed to the principles of low energy consumption, heat recovery and solar energy thermal innovation. It utilises a combination of cutting-edge design and innovative products in tandem with a world class performance in quality, delivery and dedicated customer services. As a result, Nuaire is continuing to grow its market share in a highly competitive marketplace.

Huxtable said, “As a company we are unique in that we design and manufacture a very broad range of ventilation products from the smallest bathroom extractor fans to huge industrial units developed for metros and underground car parks that measure over two metres across. We differentiate ourselves from our competitors in many other ways, but essentially by being the biggest investors in innovative product development. Furthermore, we are also pretty unique in that we supply our products direct to subcontractors, whereas others prefer to distribute their products through wholesalers and third parties. We also lead the industry in terms of our commitment to protecting the environ-

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ment and we continue to win awards for this. In fact we were the first company in the UK in the ventilation business to acquire the coveted ISO 14001 accreditation for our environmental management programmes.” Huxtable continued, “The trend is definitely towards greater efficiency and energy conservation and the latest government legislation helps us as well as many others to become more environmentally aware and more energy efficient. Currently growth in our sector is patchy with demand in the commercial area remaining fairly flat; however, the new-build housing sector is showing signs of recovery.

Around 80 per cent of our products are destined for the domestic market with the other 20 per cent being exported to central Europe and the Middle East. In fact we have an office in Dubai now that covers most of this region and the UAE. We stock over 1000 products at any one time and if a customer places an order with us before 4pm, we guarantee delivery within 24 hours anywhere in the UK, with the exception of the outlying Scottish islands. For the future we will continue to rely on organic growth but if a suitable opportunity arose we would certainly be open to the possibility of making an acquisition or two.”

| Hot Dip Galvanizing | Shot Blasting | Painting | Powder Coating | Cardiff Galvanizers (Holdings) Ltd Tel: +44 (0)29 2048 0321 Fax: +44 (0)29 2048 3728 Email:

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MVHR systems steal the show With its global reputation for technical innovation, researchers at Nuaire continue to provide the answers to many of the challenges facing building designers in today’s difficult marketplace. The latest development of two high-efficiency and value-for-money heat recovery ventilation systems (MVHRs), took two recent premier trade fairs by storm, as did the company’s innovative renewable energy product range, which is based on Nuaire’s own ‘Positive Input Ventilation’ (PIV) technology. In addition to its new low profile MVHR

system, Nuaire launched a new compact wall-mounted MVHR system to complement their existing compact wall range. On show alongside Nuaire’s latest MVHR systems was its new cost-effective MEV solution for new-build projects. The MEVDC2 is the company’s latest offering from its existing range of multi-point extract systems and has been specifically designed to allow quick and cost-effective installation. This space-saving, low-profile unit provides the option of fixing it in any plane, either horizontally or vertically, thus providing quick and efficient installation at either the first or second fix stage.

This latest unit is designed to meet the required Parts F&L of the current Building Regulations and is SAP Q Eligible. This advanced MEVDC2 from Nuaire delivers low SFPs along with high performance, therefore benefiting both the environment and the end user. Nuaire continues to build on its reputation for achievements in environmental care and the company was the first ventilation company to gain the ‘Carbon Trust Standard’ for reducing CO2 emissions year-on-year. The Carbon Trust Standard is an award for organisations that provide

evidence of measuring, managing and reducing their carbon footprint against strict international criteria. Nuaire’s senior environmental advisor said, “This is a significant step along our environmental journey. In the past four years we have come from a basic environmental awareness to the UK’s most qualified and accredited ventilation company on environmental issues. We are already examining future legislation, product issues and energy efficiency within our factory and embedding all these in our environmental n goals for 2013.”

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Windhager is a leading European manufacturer of optimal, fuel-efficient domestic heating systems. Philip Yorke spoke to Christoph Schneiderbauer, the company’s managing director about its latest micro pellet boilers and its triple-cascade systems, designed to appeal to new commercial markets.


indhager was founded in Austria in 1921 and began as a locksmith’s shop before emerging to become one of Europe’s leading manufacturers of domestic boilers. From the company’s headquarters in Salzburg it supplies stateof-the-art boilers and accessories of every kind throughout Europe. Windhager is unique in that it prefers to focus on providing its customers with tailor-made heating solutions, and its innovative, eco-friendly biomass boilers are acknowledged as setting the gold-standard for highly efficient, sustainable, low-emission heating systems. Windhager offers a wide range of fuelefficient boilers, which range from its revolutionary pellet fuel heating units, to solid fuel,

gas and solar heating systems. In addition, the company develops and manufactures innovative pellet storage and transport systems, and offers self-developed advanced sensor and control technology as well as a wide range of hot water tanks. Today Windhager is a privately owned company that currently employs over 500 people and in 2011 recorded sales of more than €70 million. Windhager expects to increase this figure to around €80 million by 2013.

Spearheading the green revolution Windhager has always placed a high priority on the development of innovative solutions to improve boiler efficiency and ensure sustaina-

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ble, eco-friendly operation. For many years the company has been steadily growing the market for its pellet boilers. The fuel for these highly efficient eco-friendly boilers are pellets derived from 100 per cent natural wood residues, such as wood shavings and sawdust. This means that the company is able to offer a fully sustainable, CO2 neutral, biomass fuel product. Recently Windhager surpassed all its previous innovative achievements when it launched its pellet-fuel micro-burner range. This has been specially developed for use in modern low-energy and passive buildings which require only a low heat output source. Windhager has designed an innovative, micro-burner with the highest efficiency, and lowest output offered to date. This model is an extension to its very successful ‘VarioWIN’ boiler series and enables the company to supply optimal, pellet heating solutions from 1.7kW up to 12kW. Schneiderbauer said, “With the increase in the building of low energy housing across Europe, we saw an opportunity to develop a range of biomass boilers that would offer optimal benefits in terms of eco-efficiency and cost-effectiveness. Our biomass pellet-fed boilers are more than 50 per cent cheaper to run compared to more traditional fuels such as oil or gas. So at one end of the spectrum we

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can offer the most efficient, low energy system on the market that starts at just 1.7kW whilst, at the top end we can provide the most efficient and cost-effective biomass boilers rated up to 60kW which can be combined to a triple cascade with a heating output of 180kW. This is our next step into the commercial market. “Our latest high-output boilers open up new opportunities for us as they are ideally suited for commercial applications such as hotels, schools and commercial/public buildings. We see potential across the board for our biomass boilers both on the domestic side and on the commercial side. The market is definitely shrinking for systems that rely on expensive fossil fuels and our significant investment in R&D in new biomass boiler technology will remain a long-term commitment.” Schneiderbauer added, “We are at the top end of the market in terms of quality, reliability and efficiency and Austria remains our biggest market. However, our European sales remain strong and we have just successfully entered the Chilean market. In the USA and the UK we are also seeing positive growth. In fact in the UK our partners have recently invested over €1 million in the construction of a new training and showroom facility near Bristol for our dealers, distributors and customers.” The new

headquarters boast the UK’s largest dedicated biomass training centre. Windhager’s latest achievement can be put down to a number of key factors. First of all, the boiler’s combustion chamber has been optimised for low power ratings and furthermore, the company has worked closely with the leading consultant engineers from BIOS BIOENERGIESYSTEME GmbH, which specialise in advanced CFD simulation. BIOS is active in research, development, planning and optimisation of processes and plants designed to generate heat and power from biomass. In addition, the latest sensor and control technology installed by Windhager ensures that the unit only produces low emissions whilst operating at the lowest output ranges. Its compact design, integrated hydraulics and new components for materials handling technology, means that Windhager is able to offer a unique range of heating solutions for buildings with low heating energy requirements.

Comfortable wood-fired and low energy consumption gas boilers As a specialist in biomass Windhager also offers comfortable wood-fired boilers such as the LogWIN. This has the largest filling chamber in its class made from high-grade

steel (176/226 litres for 1/3m and 1/2m split logs), which is rust resistant, can be easily refilled and ensures extremely long burning times. The LogWIN can also be equipped with a fully automatic ignition, which can take place as required – either immediately after a heating requirement is signalled or after an adjustable lock-out time. Whilst Windhager sees the biomass revolution as spearheading the green revolution in domestic and office heating, it has

not neglected its other important markets. Windhager offers the most reliable and energy efficient examples available today. Another of Windhager’s cutting-edge solutions is its MultiWINplus gas boiler. Designed for wall mounting, the unit can be very easily combined with other heat sources. With five different power levels for heat requirements from 2.9 to 65 kW, MultiWINplus offers solutions for all requirements.
By connecting modern condensing technology and offering

modular operation MultiWINplus guarantees outstanding performance in fuel consumption and emissions. The modulating premix burner allows stepless power adjustment according to the actual heat demand. Extremely economical, the MultiWINplus also scores highly in terms of power consumption. A standard integrated energy-saving pump with energy efficiency class ‘A’ can reduce electricity costs in comparison to older n pumps by up to 80 per cent.

GRUNDFOS A PARTNERSHIP WITH POTENTIAL We strive for professional dialogue and long-term relationship with our customers. We believe that trustful cooperation and extensive knowledge sharing are positively the best ways to secure our common success.

By exploiting the specialist know-how and our expertise, and linking our experts with yours, our solutions will meet and exceed market demands and expectations to cutting-edge innovation, cost savings and more.

As your partner we become involved in your project at an early stage with technical as well as commercial advice, and we will work the project specifications in close cooperation with you.


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KEEPING COOL Commercial refrigeration specialist EPTA Group is a respected global partner and the European market leader in its sector. The company has enjoyed continuous growth throughout the economic recession, so Emma-Jane Batey spoke to the international sales director, Christian Le-Gousse, to find out how this has been achieved.


PTA Group is the European market leader in commercial refrigeration and a widely respected global partner for food retailers, with its five main product areas of cold rooms, refrigerated packs, special cold cases, mainstream cases and their installation and maintenance. Offering five well-established commercial refrigeration brands, EPTA appreciates its position as the partner of choice for retailers looking for

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turnkey solutions. Its brand portfolio including Costan, Bonnet Névé, BKT, George Barker and Euro’Cryor has allowed it to continue to grow throughout the global recession. Mr Le-Gousse told Industry Europe why he thinks this is the case. He said, “There are two main reasons why we have continued to perform well during these challenging economic times. Firstly, we have strategically focused on gaining market share both in our traditional

European domestic markets and further afield. Secondly, we are lucky in that we service the whole of the food industry. This means that whether people have plenty of money in their pockets and are buying luxury food, or if they’re cutting back their food budget and retailers are working hard to retain their profit margin, we still deliver commercial refrigeration units. People always have to eat something!”

New opportunities In 2005, EPTA’s turnover stood at €340 million. By 2011, this had increased to €500 million. The company has employed a strategy of acquiring companies within the commercial refrigeration sector that can sup-

port its long-term aim of expanded market penetration. Mr Le-Gousse continued, “We are dedicated to the commercial refrigeration sector and always have been. This helps to keep us focused on the potential opportunities and proves to our customers that we are a reliable partner for their long-term needs. We have grown quite substantially since 2005 and times have been good.” The focus on gaining commercial refrigeration market share has incorporated close attention to improving all aspects of EPTA’s offer. With both time and money spent on rationalisation, new tools, increased flexibility and enhanced customer service, the company is clear that it is at the top of its game.

Mr Le-Gousse continued, “We’ve been systematically focused on trying to get where we were not already. By using our widelyappreciated high levels of service and our wellrecognised brand portfolio alongside acquiring companies that already had a solid market presence in the geographical areas in which we were aiming to penetrate, we’ve been able to grow in a solid and sustainable manner.” Active worldwide, EPTA is currently strongest in France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK. Its extended portfolio still has potential for more acquisitions in both emerging markets and traditional markets where commercial refrigeration for the food sector has either room to grow or would welcome increased competition.

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Everybody has the right to look after their own finances and look after the environment.

DK Heat recovery featuring internal heat exchanger

The DK-Heat Recovery is the best way of using the waste heat created by cooling systems to warm up water for drinking and heating purposes. The result: warm water that doesnʼt cost anything. And the beautiful side effect: less fossil fuels and less CO2 production. DK products - innovative technology leaders when it comes to “heat from cooling” technology.

DK Heat recovery featuring external heat exchanger

Combination tank for Drinking and Heating water

The newest from DK: Using CO2 Cooling systems to heat drinking water - also in the critical area of up to 130bar.

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In order to increase its competitiveness, EPTA is clear about its unique selling points. Mr Le-Gousse explained, “As an organisation we are continually considering our customers. We stay close to them and listen to their real needs to ensure that we are meeting their changing demands. We are a slim company that is totally up to the challenges presented by the retail industry, particularly during such difficult economic conditions. We know that our complete flexibility and reliability is valued by our customers too, and we have many long-term customers that truly see us as a partner. We offer short delivery times and can change orders if required to suit a new style of store, for example.”

Ready for more growth A retail industry trend that is set to see the majority of stores across France change the way they display cold food is also set to

DK-Heat-Recovery There is no question that high energy costs are a drag on budgets of a lot of companies and that inefficient energy practices have a negative impact on our environment. That is why it makes sense to use the energy in cooling plants as efficient as possible. DK-Heat Recovery Systems use the waste heat produced during refrigeration in order to heat service and heating water. This means: hot water at no charge. Vital areas of application for DK-Heat Recovery Systems include restaurants, bistros and all types of catering trades, as well as fast food chains, butchers, bakeries and fresh food departments in supermarkets.

The DK-Heat Recovery System is alternatively produced with an internal and external heat exchanger so that units of a variety of sizes can be supplied for almost any area of application. For heating potable water, DK-Heat Recovery Systems are as a rule furnished with double-walled safety heat exchangers. If the DK-Heat Recovery System is to produce potable as well as heating water, we recommend our DK-Combi Tank. As a company eager to innovate, DK already present on the CHILLVENTA 2008 a Heat Recovery for CO2 refrigerating plants in the transcritical range. The internal and external heat exchanger was strengthened to a degree that it is approved for pressures of 130 bar at +150°C.

have positive repercussions for EPTA. Mr Le-Gousse told Industry Europe about the recent French government announcement that all food retailers will have to display cold food such as meat and cheese behind glass doors by 2020, rather than the open chilled cabinets that are currently used. With EPTA able to supply these units, it is keen to highlight its capabilities in meeting this new regulation. EPTA expects to continue to grow in the

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coming years due to its dedication to meeting customers’ needs, acquiring new companies that will boost its presence in the commercial refrigeration sector while enabling it to gain new market share in countries outside its traditional European heartland. Mr Le-Gousse concluded, “In many ways we have reached a critical mass in terms of commercial refrigeration as we have financial stability, excellent R&D, strong customer

service and support and an unbeatable offer. What we will concentrate on in the next few years in bringing that total package to a wider geographical audience by both following our existing customers and looking at interesting acquisitions. Any company we consider must be active in the commercial refrigeration sector but we are open-minded about what area they specialise in, such as manufacturing, n service or contracting.”


EXCELLENCE Since the founding of Elmo in 1931, the company has grown to become a leading manufacturer of exclusive leather to the furniture and automotive industries. Abigail Saltmarsh reports on its drive to be even better.


lmo is known across the world for its high quality, exclusive products but, says sales and marketing director Jimmy Ahlgren, the Swedish company is constantly looking for ways to improve its offering and make better use of the raw hides it buys in. “If we buy raw hides, statistically a small percentage will be of a standard that can be used in high quality furniture,” he explains. “A further percentage is still pretty good and we can make use of it in leather for other uses – but the majority is of a much lower standard. “What we need to do now is to find more uses for that leather. We always seek a balance between the leather we supply for the furniture industry and that which can be used by other industries. We need to supply our products to a greater mixture of industries.” Now more than 80 years old, the company is renowned for its expertise in the leather business. It supplies products for the furniture and automotive sectors as well as for the aviation, rail and marine industries.

“We buy the raw hides from dealers. We tan and finish the product, and about 90 per cent of it leaves us as leather hides, although we do offer added services, such as cutting,” says Mr Ahlgren. “Mostly our customers will be cutting the leather for seats, whether that is for residential furniture, restaurants and hotels, or for automobiles, aircraft, trains and cruise ships.”

Investing in Elmo From its production facilities in Svenljunga, as well as sales offices in New Jersey, USA and in Hong Kong, Elmo sells to customers in about 45 markets worldwide. “We export about 95 per cent of our leather,” says Mr Ahlgren. “Most of it goes to countries in Europe or the US but we do sell to customers farther away as well. China is currently the fastest-growing market for us and the one where we see the greatest potential for future growth.” Over the years, the site has seen ongoing investment. In 2005, for example, Elmo Leather spent €5 million on a new cleaning

plant. “In the tanning process, you have to take responsibility for any waste matter that is produced. Now that we have this cleaning plant we can do it ourselves on site,” he says. “On the production side, we have recently made a large investment in our early tanning process as well.”

Taking off Recent growth at Elmo has been within its aviation sector. Air transport places high demands on the interior of aircraft cabins with requirements from customers that the leather is durable, fireproof and lightweight. In response, Elmo has developed its Endurance collection. This specially designed collection comprises leather that has been treated repeatedly and dyed in shades to withstand the tough wear and tear in aircraft. At the same time, it is resistant to dirt and quick and easy to clean. “This is a relatively new industry for us – and is currently the fastest-growing sector for us,” Mr Ahlgren says. “We are working with Norwegian Air and Virgin Atlantic.

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“With so many short-distance flight operators in Europe now, who are keen for quick turnarounds, and to see their planes cleaned after landing and back up in the air as quickly as possibly. “Many of these airlines have traditionally used fabric but now they are discovering that leather is not only durable but can be cleaned quickly. It can also be made to be very thin and lightweight, which makes it very suitable for aviation purposes.”

Future prospects Elmo hopes to find more uses for its leather within the transport industry in general. Rail and bus companies, for example, can also make the most of a product that it hardwearing and easy to clean.

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“The furniture industry is also an area that holds great potential for us in our drive to serve more customers. While the residential furniture industry is suffering at the moment we do believe there will be growth in the office and contract furniture business,” he says. “These days, the two do blend more into each other, with more residential-style furniture going into some businesses and with people often opting for office-like pieces for their homes.” And he adds: “The key for us is to keep looking at all these industries, and thinking about what we can offer them and how we can make better use of the raw hides that arrive with us and that we n turn into leather.”

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STRONG AND BEAUTIFUL One of the world’s leading producers of high quality leather for commercial applications, Wollsdorf Leather is proud to stay one step ahead of sustainable environmental demands. Emma-Jane Batey spoke to CEO Andreas Kindermann to learn more about how the company continues to move forward.


ustrian-based high quality leather manufacturer and supplier Wollsdorf Leather has a strong global presence and an ongoing commitment to exceeding the environmental regulations of both the European tannery industry and the sectors in which it operates. Its broad product portfolio is centred on delivering leather of exceptional quality to leading customers in the automotive, aircraft, marine, garment and upholstery sectors. CEO Andreas Kindermann told Industry Europe how Wollsdorf Leather’s focus on

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quality underpins every area of the business. He said, “We truly understand that beautiful, hard-wearing leather adds value to our customers products so it is imperative that we maintain our market-leading position as a reliable partner in leather production to a range of high-end industries. Our exceptional technical capabilities in the field of leather production, as well as cutting, dyeing and stitching, ensures that our customers can continue to rely on Wollsdorf Leather as their partner in production. The use of leather in cars, boats

and planes truly adds a premium beauty that end users appreciate, so we are pleased to play an important role in that aspect of our customers’ business.”

Global footprint With two production sites in Austria and a worldwide network of sales representatives, Wollsdorf Leather has the foundation to meet the needs of its customers quickly and effectively. The company exports more than 90 per cent of its production, and is active in more than 30 countries. This strong global

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Sustainable Leather Solutions by Clariant The principal focus of Clariant, the specialty chemical provider to the leather industry, is to add substance to sustainability and advanced ecological performance. The company has an enviable track record of anticipating the demands of both international legislators and end-users, and creating environmentally sound solutions for leather manufacturers and specifiers. One of its major innovations for tanners is its EasyWhite Tan system that uses less energy and water, fewer chemicals and no salt or chrome. Wastewater treatment is simplified and more effective, too. EasyWhite Tan also delivers a key essential: optimal quality to meet the requirements of the automotive and transport sectors.

TRUMPLER TRUMPLER, established in 1868 in Worms, Germany, is one of the oldest producers of leather chemicals in Europe. Today TRUMPLER is a modern, ISO-certified and global operating chemical supplier with subsidiaries in all important markets for leather. The TRUMPLER Group attaches greatest importance to quality, innovation, sustainability and environmental safety. Customer satisfaction and partnership are the foundation of our philosophy. Practical, production-convertible and customer-specific developments are our strength. The relationship between WOLLSDORF Leather and TRUMPLER has already a long tradition and projects between both companies have resulted in new developments both chemical products and new leather types.

presence is a key element in its ongoing success. Mr Kindermann explained, “We are present and active in the geographical areas that are important to our customers and their sectors. In addition to our two longestablished production sites in Austria, we have recently started production in China, where we have invested heavily in a cutand-sew facility. By keeping key elements of the production in Austria and strategically using this new facility, it will enable us to maintain our well-deserved reputation for excellent quality leather while utilising both the location and the low-cost benefits of this exciting region.” The product areas in which Wollsdorf Leather are active are enjoying solid growth. The company’s product portfolio is both dedicated to traditional quality and futurefocused innovation. With regards to the automotive industry, Wollsdorf Leather’s 138 Industry Europe

recent launch of a new steering wheel leather has been well-received. The market leader in this sector, it has recently launched a hard-wearing product that is available in various colours and can be adapted to suit the demands of the customer. Indeed, all Wollsdorf Leather’s products can be customised to suit, including lamination, perforation and deep-embossing as required. The company has also recently launched an all-weather leather than is ideally suited to upholstered furniture for outdoor use. Able to be left outside in all weathers except for the coldest winters, this leather has been greeted with approval by luxury garden furniture manufacturers.

Greener than ever Mr Kindermann was keen to highlight the fact that Wollsdorf Leather has recently added to its long list of environmental

Bauce presents the revolutionary new machine for pressing the wet blue skins with 5 pressing cylinder model BLUESTAR VERSUS. New pressing system of Wet Blue belly to belly, ideal for full thickness leathers and splitting in lime leathers. Designed and patented on the basis of careful research in particulars and on 45 years of experience in the tanning industry, this machine has been designed keeping in mind during the design phase of the following characteristics dictated by the most modern and advanced tanning industry: • • • • •

Sturdiness and reliability Drying power Pressying system with double calender Quick maintenance Easy to use

New system with double blade cylinders to work the leathers in: • belly to belly mode, butt to neck mode and belly to belly mode for leathers with hump PATENTED MACHINE OUR COMPANY IS CERTIFIED: MEMBER OF FEDERATION CISQ RINA ISO 9001:2008

BAUCE TRI.MA s.r.l. Via del Lavoro, 27 - 36070 TRISSINO (VI) TEL. 0445-490740 - FAX 0445-490068 Codice Fiscale / Partita IVA 02171330240 Registro Imprese Vicenza n. 25649 R.E.A. VI n. 211871 - Mecc. n. VI 010962 - e-mail:

accreditations, taking its quality-focused production to above-market standards. He said, “We have always been committed to working to the strictest environmental standards, so we are particularly pleased to note that in the last year we have passed a number of environmental audits for our production sites. Firstly, we can state that our carbon dioxide emissions are considerably lower than accepted industry levels, having passed the audit by the German tannery board. Secondly, the famous German ‘Blue Angel’ quality audit has confirmed that Wollsdorf Leather products do not contain any elements which are hazardous to people. Our leather looks as good on the inside as it does on the outside!” Innovation is important to Wollsdorf Leather. In the industries in which it operates, there is a demand for reliable, hard-wearing leather products that add value to the clients’ offer. Mr Kindermann added, “We are continually looking to develop innovative products that suit the ever-changing demands of our customers in all industry sectors. We know that the added value of leather can be taken even further with the right development and fresh thinking. By working closely with our customers and talking with them in detail, we

are at the forefront of technical and design-led innovation for leather.” Wollsdorf Leather’s future plans are clearly defined. The company aims to maintain its market-leading position in the automotive industry, supported by its recent launch of a new steering wheel leather, and to increase its

position in the global aircraft industry. Wollsdorf Leather also predicts it will boost its presence in the office furniture and upholstery sectors. Furthermore, with the successful opening of its cut-and-sew facility in China, Wollsdorf Leather plans to see continued cost-effective results n across its portfolio.

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SAFE AND SOUND One of the world’s leading suppliers of navigation and safety systems for industries including the global marine sector, Swedish Group Consilium AB is enjoying a positive growth in 2012, its 100th anniversary. EmmaJane Batey spoke to president and CEO Mr Ove Hansson to find out more.


a supplier of fire and gas detection, navigation and emission monitoring systems for ships, property, transportation and the oil and gas industries, longestablished Group Consilium AB is continually developing new products and services for its customers worldwide. The Swedish company has operations in 20 countries and in 2011 generated a net turnover of SEK 1 billion. Celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2012, Consilium is both forward thinking and proud of its heritage. President and CEO Mr Ove Hansson told Industry Europe, 144 Industry Europe

“We have managed to retain many important customers over the years as we have stayed committed to delivering products and services that meet their ever-changing needs. So although we have been active in the navigation and safety systems market for 100 years, we provide the very latest technology in our products.” With its product portfolio focusing on fire and gas alarm systems and different types of navigation systems for the marine industry, Consilium’s client base is centred on ships and off-shore sites, primarily ship yards and

ship owners. Mr Hansson added, “We also supply safety and navigation systems to the oil and gas industry, commercial buildings and hospitals, as well as some transportation segments like underground trains. But our main demand is from the marine industry – over 50 per cent of all larger ships in the world have Consilium systems in some way or another.”

Worldwide demand Consilium is certainly a globally-active business, with around 95 per cent of sales gained from outside Sweden; Around 60

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Hatteland Display Hatteland Display would like to congratulate Consilium with their 100 years anniversary. We have been working with Consilium for many years and we are proud to have been selected as their trusted supplier of computers and displays for their ECDIS and Radar systems. As a leading manufacturer of display and computer hardware for the maritime segment, Hatteland Display continuously develop specialized products for a multitude of onboard ship systems and this has now lead to the brand new product range called SERIES X. Series X is now available in sizes from 8” and up to 26” and all sizes are available in display or panel computer formats, as well as various performance specifications to choose from. The modules used in Series X, are all qualified having undergone and passed our extensive test program, which includes HALT testing. This means that the products are

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tested well outside the requirements in EN60945 and E10. Type approvals and product data sheets are available at our web page : As a part of the Series X product family we can offer the optimal size, 24” panel computer, for your ECDIS system. This model has been a great success and we will be pleased to assist you with real color calibration for your ECDIS certificate. Color calibration of the display is a very important aspect of ECDIS and Hatteland Display’s ECDIS calibration method overcomes all problems associated with different display properties and will ensure correct matching between the standard and the actual products. Calibration service is supplied with detailed implementation instructions and extensive support. Please contact us for more information and we will be more than pleased to assist you.

per cent of this is defined by Mr Hansson as coming from ‘everywhere east of Turkey’. He explained, “We are seeing a terrific demand from Asia and its near neighbours. As the global demand for transportation follows the increasing globalisation of sales in general, our systems are needed by the marine industry. Furthermore, the majority of the world’s shipbuilding is no longer based in Europe but is now in Asia, so it is imperative that we are meeting the needs of our customers and potential customers in the region in order to maximise our world leading position and to utilise the incredible opportunities available.” The remaining 40 per cent of Consilium’s sales are split between Europe and North America, with some activities in Australia and Africa. Its production facilities are

located in Sweden and Italy, and products are shipped quickly worldwide as required. Mr Hansson went on, “Our continued growth is not just because of the increase in global sea transport. We are also able to benefit from the strengthening of marine safety regulations in many territories worldwide, as well as tighter environmental regulations. These have both contributed to the increase in demand for our navigation and safety systems. The oil and gas industry is also seeing a steady increase too, so all these elements together ensure that Consilium is destined to continue our excellent performance.”

Happy 100th Birthday Consilium Consilium is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, and its on-going strong performance is indicative of its ability to stay in touch with its clients’ needs. Mr Hansson pointed out, “We have a strong product portfolio and are well-known as a premium brand. Our market share for our core products is particularly high and we proudly develop and supply quality products and provide the best global support for our customers. We’re a reliable partner for the ship’s lifetime.” Consilium’s core products are its fire and gas alarms, which are mainly supplied to the marine and offshore market. Its navigation systems are considered important world-

wide, and its fire safety systems are for the on-land gas industry. The company is always working to ensure that its products are of the highest possible standard through continual technical development, and it also offers an efficient, reliable after-sales service to give its customers complete peace of mind for the lifetime of their ships. Having enjoyed steady organic growth throughout much of its 100-year history, particularly during the past ten years, Consilium is predicting on-going growth through meeting its customers’ needs and maintaining its commitment to developing new products that address the ever-changing safety and environmental regulations in its active industries. Mr Hansson concluded, “We are not interested in the volume market; we deliver high-quality, high-performance products to niche segments and in areas where growth is expected. We will continue to perform well in our long-established marine segment as well as delivering more products to specific markets such as fire alarms for underground trains, radar products for oil detection applications and a number of environmentally-focused products. We see excellent potential for growth in finding additional applications for our existing products too, so we are certainly starting our second n century in a very positive position.”

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Damen Shipyards Koźle is one of only a handful of inland shipyards operating in Poland. Nowadays part of the Dutch DAMEN SHIPYARDS GROUP, it belongs to the group of leading inland river shipyards in Europe and its business activities are fully aimed at customers across export markets. Piotr Sadowski reports for ‘Industry Europe’.

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ędzierzyn-Koźle in Poland has a longstanding maritime tradition – despite being located inland in the country. Situated 600 kilometres away from the sea, the city’s port on the Odra River was, during the years between the two World Wars, the second largest inland port in Europe, after Duisburg in Germany. “The shipyard was created in the 1970s and the original plan for its establishment was so that it could become part of the Odra-Danube channel, which would link Kędzierzyn with Vienna,” says Janusz Bialic, president of the board of the shipyard. “However, this never happened. Nevertheless, a very positive and practical result of this investment was the

creation of the largest river-based shipyard in Poland, which, to this date, has produced nearly 200 specialist vessels.” In November 2006 the shipyard joined the Dutch DAMEN SHIPYARDS GROUP. As Mr Bialic explains, the decision by the Dutch Group to purchase the Polish company was very much dictated by the fact that, for many years, nearly 50 per cent of the shipyard’s production was for the Group. “Today, by being part of the Group, we have access to the most modern technologies, machinery and knowhow,” says Mr Bialic. “We produce vessels which range from pushers and tug boats and cutter suction dredgers, to passenger ships, freighters, tankers, as well as river construc-

tions such as bunker stations, tanks and other specialist installations. Our vessels reach some of the leading customers across export markets and we are proud of delivering the highest standards in the European shipyard industry.”

Maintaining the Damen standard After joining the Damen Group, the high quality standards of the Kędzierzyn-Koźle shipyard are now confirmed further as it adheres to the unique, standardised shipbuilding concept called the ‘Damen Standard’. The standard gives the Group the ability to offer customers well-proven, innovative vessels at competitive prices. The standard hulls offered by the shipyards that belong

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to the Group can also be easily modified to meet customer wishes and equipped with different options that meet the requirements of specific jobs and utility requirements. As Mr Bialic explains, the vessels manufactured by the shipyard are built for the maximum performance and come with the highest quality standard guarantee. “They also provide the lowest levels of fuel consumption and are designed to ensure very low running maintenance costs for their owners,” says Mr Bialic. “With years of experience in the engineering, building and testing of vessel hulls, strengthened by the fact that we are now part of the DAMEN GROUP, we guarantee the best possible results and the shortest delivery times for all of our products.”

Specialist vessels The shipyard in Kędzierzyn-Koźle produces first and foremost three main types of ships: small- and medium-sized dredgers, multi-functional haulers, and tankers. These include double-chamber chemical-container vessels. “Bearing in mind the increasing demand for our vessels, we are continuously expanding our offer,” says Mr Bialic. “In addition to the main three groups of products we are also developing vessels such as modern patrol boats, and boats for

river-cruising, as well as sea-faring boats. Nearly half of our products are made as turnkey projects. In fact, we are able to complete any type of vessel design; as part of the DAMEN GROUP we have the comfort of not being alone when it comes to solving constructional challenges in vessel-building.” The Group’s policy of standardising processes across the shipyards which belong to the DAMEN GROUP means that the company in Kędzierzyn-Koźle, by benefiting from access to international technologi-

cal know-how, is able to meet all individual client needs, while at the same time, its manufacturing location in the Polish market ensures the most competitive market price for the clients. “Our shipyard facilities on the right-hand side of the Odra River in Kędzierzyn-Koźle are fitted with 11,000 square metres of manufacturing space, where all the production processes take place,” concludes Mr Bialic. “The cranes in the shipyard are capable of lifting up to 25 tonnes of weight, which means that we can

deliver very complicated and heavy vessels. Our computerised research and design office is staffed by specialised engineers who prepare a plan for a vessel that will always meet the most demanding client needs. The most important thing is that we can safely work to deliver the best possible standards of quality and always get them to clients in the agreed time. This is what certainly makes us stand out from the competition and continues to support our strong n brand name in the European market.”

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The Hareid Group is a leader in the design, development and installation of complex electronic systems for the maritime and construction industries. Philip Yorke talked to Henning Moltubakk, managing and technical director of the company’s marine division, about its latest acquisitions and its move into new market sectors.


he Hareid Group is a privately owned company that was founded in Norway in 1950 and began by selling electrical components for domestic kitchen installations. Since then the company has grown significantly to become a leading player in the design and manufacture of complex electrical systems for the shipbuilding and construction industries. The diversified

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Hareid Group is comprised of 11 distinct companies that cover marine, construction, product design, property development and financial services in the commercial sector. In the private sector the group designs and delivers electrical installations to new buildings as well as for properties requiring renovation. Furthermore, the various companies within the group offer expertise in computers and

broadband installations as well as in phone systems and fire and burglar alarm technology. All work carried out by the Hareid Group conforms to the highest government and EU standards for quality, safety, reliability and energy savings. Today the group employs more than 350 people in Scandinavia and eastern Europe and in 2011 recorded sales of over NOK 414 million.

Energy-efficient marine technology driving sales The marine division of the Hareid Group represents more than 50 per cent of the company’s turnover and is located in the heart of the Norwegian shipbuilding industry off the north-west coast of Norway. This densely populated industrial area consists of shipping companies, shipyards, com-

ponent manufacturers and maritime supply companies. In this dynamic environment the Hareid Group employs highly skilled electrical engineers that specialise in the field of maritime electrical systems and installations. This well-proven expertise has made the Hareid Group one of Norway’s most successful and respected suppliers of electrical installations to the shipping industry.

Moltubakk said, “Our switchboards and advanced electrical systems are all tailormade for installation in ships’ bridges and for communication control units throughout the vessels. At Hareid we offer a complete turnkey service for the installation of all the main electrical systems on board ship as well as an in-depth technical support and after-sales service. When it comes to land-

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based industries such as those involved in transportation and construction, we offer traffic solutions and services for infrastructure projects such as tunnels and roads, as well as complete electrical installations for offices and domestic dwellings.” Moltubakk added, “We are currently seeing strong organic growth but we are also investing in some exciting new acquisitions which strengthen our position in the market and open up new markets for us at the

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same time. I am talking about the recent acquisition by our Danish company of 51 per cent of the shares in an electrical installation company in Greenland and a joint venture with Kleven Maritime (KMT) of Norway which is the largest Norwegian-owned shipbuilding group. “In order to increase our capacity we have moved some of our switchboard manufacturing to our extensive facility in Poland in Gdansk, where we currently employ more

than 120 people. We are also increasing our presence in South America where KMT already have a service network through a joint venture with ORN of Brazil. In addition, we are also applying our specialised technology to applications for fire and safety communications purposes. Over the years we have established very good long-term relationships with our customers and much of our new business comes from personal recommendation and the ability to grow alongside our clients.”

Warning signals for ship, off-shore

and industrial use

New markets broaden scope for growth The Hareid Group has always been a diverse and dynamic organisation and no more so than today when the company is branching out into new regions and new markets. The group’s recent acquisition of 51 per cent of the Greenland-based company, Polar El Aps in Nuuk, offers services for the construction and infrastructure industry. The company believes this will offer the group new opportunities for growth in the infrastructure, energy and mining

industries as well as the possibility of becoming involved in larger projects for the gas and oil sectors. In a separate move, the Hareid Group has acquired a specialist Norwegian company, More Kantakt AS, which manufactures electrical switchboards and control systems for the buildings and infrastructure sectors. This acquisition will strengthen the group’s production capabilities and expertise in this area and bring added scope for further onshore business activities.

Perhaps the most significant development at the Hareid Group recently is its joint venture with ORN (Offshore Reparos Navais) of Brazil in association with Kleven Maritime, which supplies maritime electro services to offshore vessels. Ronald Dyrhol, CEO of the Hareid Group, said: “Being based in Brazil will improve our response time and we will be able to provide customers with the service they ask for much faster. We will utilise the extensive experience we have in companies in Norway n to support our new entity in Brazil.” Industry Europe 155

ON-BOARD AUTOMATION Leading marine automation supplier Smart Automation is at the forefront of developing innovative products for its customers worldwide. Emma-Jane Batey spoke to Director Sales & Marketing, Jan Erik Skog, to find out more.


ased in the Norwegian town of Bømlo, marine automation product developer and supplier Smart Automation was founded in 1979. Initially called AS Steinco, Smart Automation has undergone a number of name changes in the last 33 years, with its product range also seeing considerable developments. But what has not changed is the company’s underlying commitment to creating and supplying technically-focused products that support the marine industry. Director Jan Erik Skog told Industry Europe how Smart Automation has harnessed that commitment over the years. He said, “In the early days we were concentrating on products such as battery chargers for lifeboats and, as we gained a more sophisticated technical competence and fell right into step with our customers, we have continued to develop ever-more innovative products to meet the very exacting needs of

the marine industry. We now offer advanced automation systems for ships worldwide.” Smart Automation’s on-going focus on research and development is clearly evident in its evolving product range. The company invests considerable sums in its R&D department, resulting in a new generation of products to be launched in early 2013, with a number of sales and marketing events planned for late 2012. The first new product to be launched is the SMART Power management system. With the focus on fuel saving it indicates a new and “green” direction for this type of product. The system is designed with great flexibility to meet any customer’s need for full automation of the power plant. Tight integration to the SMART Chief IAS give rise to an extensive monitoring and analysing capability for the vessel’s operation, onboard and onshore, by use of SMART Link.

Investment excitement The large-scale investment has partially been driven by the difficult economic conditions of the last few years. In order to maintain its market-leading position and be well-prepared for when the market returns to pre-recession levels, Smart Automation has ensured it is ready to hit the ground running with its new products. Mr Skog said, “We’ve used the opportunity of a relatively slow period to upgrade our products. We’ve worked hard to optimise our existing product range and to add to our range, making sure that each product is suited to various vessels, which helps us to be competitive in terms of price. We’ve always been ahead of the game technically speaking, so by being cost competitive too we know we are well positioned for the future.” Mr Skog explained that the marine industry has been hit hard by the recession. Thankfully, Smart Automation has avoided

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being too negatively impacted as its varied product range means that it is in demand by a number of clients with various types and sizes of vessels. He added, “We are usually involved with clients pretty early on as we are included in new-build discussions. This really helps to create mutually-beneficial relationships and guarantees that we provide clients with the exact automation solutions and systems for their needs.”

Ready for the new generation Autumn 2012 marks Smart Automation’s promotional activities for its new generation of products, with the company expecting

to reach a new audience with its innovative additions to the range. With expanded functionality, the high-tech automation solutions on offer will really ensure that it capitalises on its R&D investment. Mr Skog concluded, “As the industry trend for more specialised vessels looks set to continue, our increasingly high-tech automation systems for the marine industry will allow us to reach new levels of achievement. These sophisticated solutions are perfectly in tune with the changing demands of the marine industry and I’m proud to say that our teams and our products will guarantee that we will keep up n with these demands.”

TESTING, LIFE SCIENCES AND RENEWABLE ENERGIES Angelantoni Industrie is one of the world’s leading producers of environmental test chambers, test equipment and benches, laboratory and biomedical equipment, and cold technology applied to industry and research. Its mission is to manufacture innovative and high quality systems going beyond customers’ expectations as far as performance, technical features, design and innovation are concerned. These results are achieved through constant improvement, respect for employee safety and environmental protection.


his year Angelantoni Industrie is celebrating the 80th anniversary of its activities. Today the group consists of eight production units located in Italy, Germany, France, India and China, with a total of over 850 employees. The company started its activity in the refrigeration sector and over the years has become renowned in three main industrial fields: testing, life sciences and renewable energies. The first of its divisions, ATT (Angelantoni Test Technology) deals with the design, sale and manufacture of test chambers, stress screening systems and space simulators. These products find applications in many industries including automotive, defence, electronics, aeronautics and aerospace.

“We manufacture environmental test chambers, space simulators (used to test satellites or satellite components), test benches and crash test systems for cars, car parts and electrodynamic shakers for electronics or mechanical parts or assemblies,” explained the company’s CEO Gianluigi Angelantoni. The second main division is ALS, Angelantoni Life Science, involving the design, manufacture and sale of cold equipment for healthcare and biotechnology. Its products include cold and thermostatic chambers, CO2 incubators, blood banks, plasma shock freezers and clean rooms used in both the healthcare and pharma industries.

The third division, Angelantoni Clean Tech (ATC) deals with all types of investments in the field of renewable energies and energy efficient manufacturing of thermodynamic solar power plants and photovoltaic plants that can be applied to different environments such as buildings, camper vans, shelters and green houses. “We also offer additional and more specialised services to other companies, such as sputtering systems which are capable of thin film deposition and are used in the thermodynamic and photovoltaic sectors,” explained Mr Angelantoni. “They are nanomaterials that give the surface a particular quality. In the case of solar energy, instead Industry Europe 159

of using traditional photovoltaic cells we use a special glass where semiconductor material is deposited. This procedure guarantees better results in terms of the efficiency of PV modules.” Archimede Solar Energy is another company within the Angelantoni Group which operates in the renewable energies sector. Archimede produces, under licence from ENEA, solar receiver tubes for thermodynamic solar power plants. The tubes produced by Archimede operate at high temperatures (up to 550°C) and use molten salts. In solar power plants, the tubes are positioned in the focus of a parabolic solar mirror, which concentrates the sun’s rays while the thermal vector fluid runs inside the tubes. Thanks to a specially selected coating called CERMET and a casing kept in a vacuum, Archimede tubes ensure maximum sunlight yield (maximum absorp160 Industry Europe

tion and minimum emission). Thermodynamic solar power plants using molten salts produce energy without either emissions or pollution, and they do not use of any toxic or dangerous materials. In particular, the vector fluid is a common fertiliser already used widely in agriculture. The technology used for the high-temperature thermodynamic solar power is modular and can be used to create large autonomous solar power plants for supplementing the thermoelectric plants currently in operation.

Recent investments “After four years of research we invested in the solar power sector. Recently, we presented a concentrated photovoltaic module with an efficiency level of 31.7 per cent that produces more energy compared to a traditional PV panel with an average efficiency of

12 per cent. Whereas, in the test technology field we patented an environmental test chamber called ‘Flower’ that operates at -70 degrees Celsius up to +180 degrees Celsius using 50 per cent less energy compared to traditional chambers. Two patents used in the chamber make this possible. This leads to significant savings for unit plants and companies,” said Mr Angelantoni. “In the healthcare and biotechnology fields we introduced the SMARTFREEZER

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– a robotic cryobank operating at -80°C and -180°C that is able to take samples of biological material, such as stem cells, following precisely the directives of the user.” However, investments do not stop at the development of new products but also involve geographical expansion: “Last week I was in Brazil and will soon be in Russia. We are considering the idea of investing in more countries,” continued Mr Angelantoni. “However, our goal is North America where we hope to

expand the testing field.” Recent achievements in this market include the FII’s (Italian Investment Fund’s) investment in the testing field. “This fund is the most important private equity fund in Italy and some of its most prestigious banks are associates. They invested in our group through a capital increase that we are thinking of investing abroad.”

Future goals Continuous investment in its R&D department is a key strategy for Angelantoni Industrie. “A radical innovation programme is necessary. Last year we invested 4.5 per cent of our turnover in R&D. Upgrading the product is not enough; we want to design new ones and create technological breakthroughs that will allow our group to continue n as the leader in our field.” Industry Europe 163

Eilersen Weighing Instrument


IN INDUSTRIAL WEIGHING Eilersen is a global leader in the development and manufacture of digital load cell sensor technology. Philip Yorke talked to Frederik Eilersen the company’s CEO about its latest groundbreaking products and move into new market sectors. EtherNet interface module

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ilersen Electric A/S was founded in 1969 near Copenhagen in Denmark by Nils Eilersen when he developed a capacitive measurement system for measuring the injection pressure in diesel engines. This unique, patented technology was sold to Bosch Gmbh of Germany during the 1970s and set the trend for many more innovative products from Eilersen including the world’s first modular weighing systems using groundbreaking digital load cell technology. The company has continued to see consistent growth and remains a privately owned business managed by Frederik Eilersen, its second-generation CEO. Today Eilersen is the leading supplier of digital weighing solutions for a diverse range of industrial applications, which provide full connectivity with PCs, PLCs, MES and ERP terminals. The company also offers a com-

plete range of weighing terminals with software for standard weighing applications or with customised software developed by the company’s in-house team of experienced engineers. All Eilersen load cells are based upon the digital capacitive weighing technology, which is protected comprehensively by worldwide patents. This digital technology is the most robust on the market and eliminates the inaccuracy found in analogue electronics as the complete measurement chain is digital. Furthermore, Eilersen’s load cells are pre-calibrated which saves time during the commissioning process.

Robust and hygienic The manufacturing processes in many of the world’s biggest companies rely on Eilersen load cells and these include such giants as Unilever,

Food Installation

Coca-Cola, Nestle, Novartis, Tetra Pak and FedEx. Unlike the traditional analogue technology, Eilersen digital load cells offer a tolerance of overloads and sideloads of up to 1,000 per cent of rated capacity. In addition, Eilersen digital load cells are not sensitive to torsion and are laser welded for hermetically sealing to IP68 to ensure optimal, waterproof protection in the toughest industrial environments. Eilersen said, “The culture of innovation and high quality lives on in our company and we continue to invest heavily in new production technology and advanced calibration equipment. All product development is carried out in-house and our ceramic sensor manufacturing, product testing and assembly is also conducted here in Denmark. However most

of the components in our products are manufactured by partners worldwide under strict quality control and all final calibration is carried out here at our own facilities. “The capacitive technology is unique and Eilersen load cells are far more robust than traditional analogue products and don’t require mechanical mounting kits to protect them from overloads. We are an independent company and our in-house team of software engineers allows us to react fast to customer demands.” Eilersen added, “We have two big customer segments, the first being manufacturing companies that build machines that benefit from our sensors, and the second are end users such as food and pharmaceutical companies. We are constantly extending

weighing under meat tumblers

our global reach and last year our biggest customer was located in China. We are also looking to expand our business in the offshore sector in the Middle East and South America. We are the preferred supplier of weighing solutions for use in extreme and explosive environments, such as those found in offshore production installations.” “Our core business is seeing strong growth as an increasing number of companies require more effective and reliable quality control to validate the quality and quantity of their products. The Eilersen load cell solutions are delivered in OIML versions up to C6 and in ATEX zone 1, 2, 21 and 22 versions while the instrumentation communicates through EtherNet/IP, EtherCAT,

Digital Load Cells for Dynamic Weighing

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Profibus, DeviceNet, Modbus, RS485 and through 0-10Vdc and 4-20mA. Currently, our robust, stainless steel load cells are installed in more than 85 countries worldwide and we continue to expand our global reach.”

Growing demand for customised digital load cells Manufacturers are continually striving to be more cost-effective and energy efficient, as well as needing to minimise downtime and reduce give away. It is no surprise therefore that more and more companies are requiring customised solutions to solve their challenging manufacturing processes and applications. Recent examples of customised solutions based on digital load cell technology include web tension measurements in paper and plastic foil manufacturing equipment, extremely robust and sanitary scales, force measurement in power plants, as well as in monitoring construction equipment and that of load measurements in commercial vehicles. Eilersen’s robust digital load cells are based upon a capacitive measurement principle where a non-contacting ceramic

Sanitary Load Cell

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sensor is mounted inside the load cell body. As the Eilersen load cell contains no moving parts and the sensor is not in contact with the load cell body itself, the load cell can tolerate very high overloads, sideloads and torsion. As a result, mechanical installation of the load cell can be achieved without expensive and complex mounting kits and overload protection devices.

Simple plug-and-play installation All Eilersen digital load cells are designed for true plug-and-play installation as the load cells are pre-calibrated to transmit the load directly in gram, kilogram, ton or Newton, which eliminates the need for on-site calibration in most applications. This is an important feature, especially in high capacity applications where it is difficult to find calibration weights. In addition, the digital RS485 signal from the load cell means that the calibration is not dependant on the load cell cable length. Furthermore, it is possible to monitor the load and status of each individual load cell with its built-in integrated n diagnostics function.

Pharma installation

TAKING NON-INVASIVE DIAGNOSTIC TECHNOLOGY FURTHER Nicolay is one of the global market leaders in the development and manufacture of medical device accessories for non-invasive patient monitoring and diagnostic. Philip Yorke talked to Christof Muz, owner and MD of the Nicolay Group, and Jens Hoche the company’s sales and marketing director about its latest investments in plant, new technology and its groundbreaking, innovative new products.


icolay was founded in 1964 by the two Nicolay brothers who began by establishing a plastic injection moulding company in Waiblingen, Germany. With the ambition to diversify and grow in 1972 the company invested in a new, modern plant in Nagold, close to its original site. From the beginning the site in Nagold focused on the production of electro-medical accessories. A management buy-out two years later led to a separation of the two business operations, with the plastic injection moulding company in Waiblingen still owned by the Nicolay brothers and the medical accessories business then held by the families Muz and Schwarz.

Nicolay GmbH in Nagold has kept its focus to the medical device accessories market for the past 40 years and has expanded its operation in several steps to reach a total of nearly 10,000 square metres of production space in Nagold today. One remarkable milestone was the establishment of the raw cable manufacturer Sensocab Kabelproduktion GmbH in 1992, on the same site with the same ownership. The two companies form the core of the Nicolay Group and complement one another to the advantage of their customer base, as the differing technological expertise of each of these is combined in the medical cable accessories offered by Nicolay.

Dynamic growth followed and in 2008 another milestone was reached when the Nicolay Group established a new, state-of-theart manufacturing facility in Romania, which today supports the group with another 1500 square metres of production space. In 2009 the group consolidated its board of management with all shares in the Nicolay Group being transferred to the Muz family. Today Nicolay is a highly successful, vertically integrated manufacturer of medical cables, connectors and cable assemblies that can be customised to suit any individual requirement and specification. Currently the group employs over 400 people

at its three manufacturing sites in Europe and in 2011 recorded sales of more than €35 million.

Continuous investment programme Since it was founded over 45 years ago, the Nicolay management followed a programme of continuous investment, not only in facilities but also in new technologies as well as in research for the development of new, innovative, noninvasive medical products. The company’s broad portfolio of products includes high qual-

ity cable systems, connectors, silicone rubber sealed and packaged electro-mechanical components and sensors such as SpO2 sensors and surgical handles as well as complex modular sub-assemblies, which are custom developed as required in the application. Recently Nicolay made a major investment in the extension of its facilities in Nagold when it finalised the installation of a new, state-ofthe-art clean room for the manufacture of its latest sterile products. In addition, the company plans to invest an additional €2.5 million in the expansion of its modern cable manufacturing plant. This means supplementing its existing manufacturing site by a further 1,500 square metres of productive manufacturing space with a view to significantly expanding its production capacity and increasing its current product portfolio. In the development of innovative medical devices, Nicolay is making major progress in a number of key areas, as Muz explained, “Historically we have always placed a high priority on the development of the highest quality, innovative products for reusable applications which are developed to our OEM customer’s specifications. Our portfolio includes three generations of ECG monitoring cable systems, all customisable to different application scenarios from operation room, critical care, wake-up room to ambulance and telemetry applications.

We are very proud of the fact that the 2nd generation of these systems was chosen to form the basis of the American National Standard ANSI/AAMI EC53:1995. “However the requirements do not remain constant. Currently we are involved in the development of our fourth generation of non-invasive products designed for the cardiovascular therapeutic area. This includes the development of a complete new connection system to support the tightened requirements on cleanability of such reusable accessories and also a whole new class of products which are compatible with the reusable products, which we like to name single patient use (SPU) accessories. This class of products will not be a truly disposable product, but will support one patient throughout his hospital treatment, be it one day or one week. The advantage of this product class is the minimisation of the risk of cross-infections from patient to patient, but in addition it also limits the volume of waste, which is a well-known problem with single-use disposable products. “Nonetheless, we are also involved in the development of disposable products as there are medical applications where only this type of product will work. This is especially true in areas of sterile accessories, which our newly built clean room supports. All R&D for such new developments is con-

ducted in-house in very close cooperation with the OEM concerned. To support this we are a full scope, one-stop shop supplier not only for the manufacture and assembly of products, sub-assemblies and systems, but also for all the services necessary to bring such developments to the market. This includes tool construction, tool making, test development and all necessary verification and validation testing with regards to the requirements of the customer and all relevant medical regulations.” Muz added, “Unlike our competitors, we are a truly vertically integrated company that is capable of all kinds of thermoplastics and liquid silicone rubber moulding and insert moulding, metal stamping and the customising of our welding, joining and gluing processes in the range of cable assemblies. We also have another major advantage in that none of our competitors presumably can match the depth and breadth of our manufacturing. One reason for this high integration is that we are so exclusively focused on the development of non-invasive medical systems, which led us from the past to the point where we are now. On this path we always prioritise the problem analysis, the wishes and the ideas of our customers, add our knowledge and experience in the development of the best possible application specific solution for our customer. This

application centric approach often requires the development of totally new manufacturing technologies, which each time expand our manufacturing capabilities and at the same time result in the best possible solution within each project. “One of the most exciting developments recently has been our move into a new therapeutic area, that of non-invasive lung function monitoring, where we are developing a complex patient cable for impedance tomography, which involves measuring very small higher frequency signals at the patient’s chest. This required the development of a totally new kind of raw cable combining six tri-axially shielded signal wires in a cable with an overall diameter of only 3.3mm. Each of the double-shielded signal wires has a diameter of only about 60 µm (AWG 42). For this product we also had to develop several new assembly processes to attach up to 12 connection elements to the signal wires on one cable.” The development of electro-surgical handpieces, is another area where Nicolay has dominated the market through its innovative designs and superior product functionality. These items can be identified by their highly individual design, robustness and long-lifetime service cycle, in a demanding application environment, where hot-steam autoclaving at 138°C is mandatory.

Increasing global reach A large proportion of Nicolay’s non-invasive medical products are exported to its traditional markets in Europe and the USA where its customer base has established markets. However, the company is moving into new global markets in South America, Russia and Asia. Hoche commented, “With our ability to increase our production capabilities and with the introduction of new, innovative products, we are actively looking at extending our export reach to new global markets such as Brazil, Russia, India, Japan, and Korea. However our main focus for the foreseeable future in addition to the North American market will be Asia, which also mirrors the growth markets for our OEM customers. China is a different question altogether and it is a very different market so at the present time this is not a region on our list of priorities.” Nicolay’s formula for success continues to deliver exceptional, innovative products that are driving sales and the company forward. The company’s strategy is based upon its commitment to further organic expansion as well as to the continual introduction of new products targeted to provide optimal efficiency and ergonomics for its OEM customers. For further information about Nicolay medical products and systems, visit: n


Part of the GN group, GN Otometrics is known for its innovative solutions for all types of ear-related diagnostics and as the largest global supplier of computerised audiology and hearing-instrument fitting equipment. Abigail Saltmarsh finds out more.


Otometrics already has a reputation as a specialist in the field of diagnostic and screening equipment for hearing and balance-related issues. Soren Holst, president of the company, and senior vice-president of the GN group, of which the company is part, says this reputation is only set to grow, along with product sales and the size of the company, as demand for its innovations increases. “We are a global player in the industry, with more than 50 years’ experience and a worldwide network of customers using our products,” he explains. “We have already increased the size of the company significantly, and, as a result, have had to move to a larger space in Copenhagen. We are growing at double digit rates – 170 Industry Europe

and have been doing so for the past two years. We expect this to continue for the foreseeable future.”

it is required,” says Mr Holst. “Our products are used by clinicians in more than 70 countries across the world.”

A wide range of products

ICS Impulse

GN Otometrics is a subsidiary of the Denmarkbased GN ReSound, a leading international manufacturer of advanced hearing healthcare solutions. GN Otometrics, which designs and supplies a spectrum of ear-related diagnostics and computerised audiology and hearinginstrument fitting equipment, markets its products under the brand names of Madsen, Aurical, Hortmann and ICS. “We have a broad range of products, every-thing from when the clinician first screens a newborn baby within 48 hours of its birth through to the fitting of equipment if

“Keeping one step ahead of the competition is vital in this sector,” he goes on, “and making technological advances is essential. As such, GN Otometrics has a continual focus on product development and research. “Over the past decade, we have been working with a research team in Sydney and have developed a whole body of scientific material and products based on a new way of diagnosing people with balance problems,” he explains. “From this, we have jointly developed a new product, ICS Impulse.”

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ICS Impulse is the world’s first video head impulse testing device to combine high levels of accuracy with unrivalled patient comfort. It provides precise data based on real life, high frequency stimuli. It also detects more abnormalities than visual observation and reduces false negatives. “This new device has also greatly reduced the amount of time it takes to carry out one of these tests,” he stresses. “These tests can take up to 45 minutes now, but with the ICS Impulse this time can be shortened to 10 minutes. Even more importantly perhaps, patient discomfort has been greatly reduced.”

Improved Aurical The response to the ICS Impulse has been overwhelming, he says. Doctors and other professionals are responding with nothing but positive feedback. The other recently launched device that is also causing a stir in the field is the latest Aurical equipment. This has set the industry standard for hearing aid fitting equipment.

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The system interfaces seamlessly with NOAH, the industry’s fitting and programming software platform. Portable and lightweight, it handles virtually every audiological function necessary in a hearing clinic. “For the past 15 years, we have been adding to and improving Aurical, which was the first fully computer-based fitting system. Over the past three years, we have been introducing replacement modules for the original equipment. This last module to be introduced means the whole Aurical system is now new. It is a fantastic clinical device that has been very well-received. Indeed, the largest clinic in the world placed an order for hundreds before it was even launched!”

State-of-the-art GN Otometrics outsources production of its components but carries out final assembly, quality control and calibration in Copenhagen. Its reach is global and it expects to see worldwide growth. “We are seeing our highest growth rates in places such as the BRIC countries,” admits Mr Holst. “But we expect our business to increase in all the markets in which we have a presence. Our emphasis on innovation will continue. We have a reputation for our achievements and are extremely positive about the future, which will see us continuing to launch new products and to replace our existing platform with ever more n accurate pieces of equipment.”

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Cividale’s Group origins can be traced back to Acciaieria Fonderia Cividale S.p.A. which started its activity at the end of the 60s’ in the plant located in Cividale del Friuli, in the province of Udine, in the north eastern part of Italy, producing ingots,manganese steel casting and steel casting for general engineering application.


he expansion of the Cividale’s Group began in 1977 when the company began to develop and extend its own lines and take over other steel foundries and forges both in Italy and abroad to become a group which now employs over 1,500 workers and has a turnover of more than €360 million. In this article I aim to focus more specifically on the evolution of the Group, to find out what fuelled its growth and what has enabled it to stand the test of time. I spoke with one of its longer standing sales director, Luigi Scordamaglia and asked him to outline for me the role of the development process of the Group. “The company’s core business today,” said Mr Scordamaglia, cover a wide range of products stretching from items weighting just a few kilograms all the way up to 80 tons castings in all range of steel grade,

from low carbon up to high alloys,stainless steel, duplex and super duplex steel. Furthermore even the served market was enlarged covering components for general engineering, ship building, valves for petrochemical- and gas- application, pumps,compressors, impellers, steam- gasand hydro-turbines, in rough machined and finish machined conditions. The major part of our production is adressed to foreign markets as EU countries, India, China, Russia, North America and South America .

Complete service Supplying a specific component with custom-made finishing and any other complementary work requested with a prompt delivery time is all part of Cividale’s plants’

everyday business, along with supplying special processes such as thermal treatment, ‘revamping’ hydraulic turbines and overlay welding of special alloys. For each specific component the process will start at the drawing board and then go on to the project stage in which the most advanced software equipments (Magmasoft andProcast) are used to verify in advance the process and soundness of the casting. “We have always invested profits back into the company,” added Mr Scordamaglia, “and for this reason have remained financially sound and can also fight off any rivals as far as quality is concerned. Our quality has been the mainstay of our success along with a continuous diversification of our products to satisfy the needs of an ever-changing global market. These factors, along with our unfailing customer service have been

the basis of our long-standing success. We are a large company but provide a level of customer service more commonly found in smaller businesses as we have always believed in the personal touch and that any customer request or problem needs to be addressed at once. This is becoming rarer in large companies today.” “The work in a foundry today,” concluded Mr. Scordamaglia, “has not changed so significantly over the past 50 years. Despite the necessary health and safety innovations and a general ‘cleaning-up’ of the environment to safeguard workers it is still a place of noise, sweat and heat and may not be everyone’s calling but if you do get hooked into this business you’re generally hooked for life and we are especially proud that our production plant with its 1500 employees is still here in the n region of Friuli where we first began.”

WINDS OF CHANGE East Metal is a leading manufacturer of high-precision steel components. Philp Yorke spoke to Bent Juul Larsen, the company’s CEO, about its growing involvement in the renewable energy sector and its investments in the latest cutting-edge technology.

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ast Metal was founded in 1997 as a privately owned production enterprise in Latvia. The company’s structure has proved to be one of the keys to its success with sales and project management located in Denmark and all production carried out at its two state-of-the-art facilities in Latvia. East Metal supplies extremely high-quality steel components to a number of major companies that are mainly focussed on the wind turbine and transport industries. East Metal is a ‘top drawer’ supplier and outsourcing partner for a steadily increasing number of customers who have discovered that outsourcing to the company optimises their value chain, improves cash flow and minimises capital outlay as well as providing greater production flexibility. Many of East Metal’s customers have previously produced their own steel components directly for their products, but all have experienced the many disadvantages associated with in-house manufacturing in an industry where it is often impossible to produce to inventory. Thus it is an advantage to use a sub-supplier, which can adapt to its customers demands.

New vision brings new horizons Any disadvantages that existed in the past with outsourcing components have been dispelled by East Metal, which promises to offer, “Outsourcing without compromise”. This new vision has captured the imagination of other leading OEMs and today the package offered by East Metal is fast becoming the industry goldstandard. The company works closely with many of the major wind turbine manufacturers to supply high quality steel components to the most exacting specifications. The transport sector is another major customer group of East Metal. In a situation where one or more ships or vehicles require adaptation to meet special load or lifting requirements, East Metal can develop and produce the specialised equipment required quickly and cost-effectively. Larsen said. “Our services are being sought throughout Europe and we have increasing interest from the USA because as a medium size, independent company, we are very flexible and able to produce complex, precision components quickly and to a very high standard.

“We are close to our customers and when you make ten of this and ten of that you work as a partner and together we are able to make the price more competitive. For example we have developed a special test centre for our offshore and transport clients as well as for other applications such as heavy lifting test of up to 350 tons. Furthermore, if you have big items, say 10 metres long, we can make them and then test them all in-house. We are trying to develop our offshore business, a sector where we can produce precision components of upto 50 tons with ease”. Larsen added, “The offshore oil and gas industries offer us new horizons for growth as we are ideally suited to meet the challenges that their high precision components demand. Our two modern production facilities in Latvia each employ around 250 people and we have more than 30,000 square metres of productive manufacturing capacity available. Last year we generated sales of more than DK220 million which is over €30 million, and we expect to be able to achieve growth of around 15 per cent this year”. “One of our main competitive advantages is the high quality of our welding and Industry Europe 179

JN Metal provides the following services: • MAG, TIG welding work (welders are certified according to SFS - EN 287 - 1) • Sawing with bandsaw • Plates cutting • Drilling / pressing • Sand blasting / shot blasting • Grinding works (cast iron, bronze, aluminium, plastic) • Painting works (spray painting, painting by dipping) Our company is ready to offer its experience in the production of high quality metal constructions. We offer our clients production of ironworks in accordance with their needs. JN Metal has a certified quality system in accordance with ISO 9001:2008 JN METAL SIA “Metali”, Gardene, Dobele region, LV 3701, LATVIA Mobile: +371 28640401 / +371 26518868 Fax: + 371 63724155 E-mail:

ECO System Service Ltd. (SIA “EKO Sistem Serviss”) is the company specialising in dangerous and non-dangerous waste service. The company ECO System Service Ltd. collects, transports and utilises dangerous and non-dangerous waste throughout Latvia. The sphere of our business activity: - Identification, collection, transportation, storage and utilisation of dangerous household and industrial waste such as technical lubricants, oils, worn out tires, useless laboratory chemicals, mercury waste, industrial waste containing heavy metals, lacquer/varnish, paint and tar/pitch waste, waste organic solvents, expired medicaments and other medical waste, old electrical equipment/appliances, used batteries and so on.

Rigas street, Kraslava, Kraslavas region, Latvia, LV-5601 Tel./fax: 0037165426373, Mob.: 0037122333270 E-mail:

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the advanced processes that we employ and these are produced to the very finest tolerances and tested with advanced ultrasound NDT equipment. We can also paint very big items and have a modern finishing plant for this purpose. Everything we do is done with openness and transparency as we are only interested in developing a long-term relationship that is designed to benefit our customers.”

More complex assignments

in accordance with DS/EN ISO 1461 – the industry’s most stringent quality standard. To ensure that all aspects of East Metal’s operations are to the highest quality and to the best ‘LEAN’ standards, the company’s quality control begins when it receives the raw materials from its suppliers and is only complete once the order has been delivered and approved by its customers. There is strict quality control in place at every stage of production under the expert leadership of the

Danish quality management team. In addition, many of East Metal’s customers require third party quality control of their processes and finished products and the company is happy to facilitate such requests. Customers are also invited to visit East Metal’s production facilities and monitor the manufacture of their products first hand. Clearly, the formula for success developed by East Metal over the years will continue to drive their sales forward in the n years ahead.

Adding to its already impressive catalogue of state-of-the-art machinery, East Metal has complemented its inventory by investing in the latest Fermat CNC milling machinery. This broadens still further the company’s range of competences and services and will enable it to carry out larger and more complex assignments. The new machine by Fermat is a universal boring and milling machine designed with the latest cutting-edge technology that affords the highest precision available on the market today. East Metal has also continued to invest in other areas of its operations including its surface treatment facilities, which enables it to achieve optimal results in relation to its customer’s specific requirements. The company’s modern factory in Latvia offers a variety of surface treatments including shot blasting, metalising, galvanising and painting. The company guarantees lasting quality and provides painted coatings up to corrosion category C5 and galvanises Industry Europe 183



STEEL SHAPES 184 Industry Europe

Siderval is a globally successful company and a leader among the manufacturers of special hot extruded steel bars produced by hot extrusion.


iderval is renowned both for its high quality products, which are marketed worldwide, and for the overall high standards of the service provided, such as customer assistance and on-time delivery. The company was set up in 1972 in the province of Sondrio, in the north of Italy, and worked hard to specialise its production in order to satisfy the needs of many industries. “Hot extruded steel bars are provided to many different industries, such as energy industry where they are used to manufacture thermo-nuclear and hydraulic power stations; aeronautics industry, maritime industry, building, machinery, automotive, transport, chemical and many more,” explained Mr Ernesto Riva, the Sales Manager of Siderval. Hot extruded steel bars have several fields of application ranging from simple things like cruise ship windows and machinery up to more sophisticated applications such as military jet parts and nuclear power stations.

“A significant percentage of our turnover comes from the materials handling industry which uses our products to manufacture lift trucks and internal movement forks. These parts are applied to the attachments. These hot steel bars complete the structure of lift trucks,” said Mr Riva. “These are only a few of the applications of hot extruded steel bars. Every day there is more to discover. So far our most rewarding industries are aeronautics and weaponry.” Siderval uses cutting-edge technology which offers technically innovative and economically advantageous solutions such as production of complex and unusual shapes in tubular and solid sections, transformation of high alloy steels which require rapid deformation due to their high cooling velocity and consequential hardening of the material, and finally the production of small quantity orders at competitive prices due to limited tooling costs, giving the possibility to have a number of sample bars at no added cost.

A global company Siderval is present in all international markets: Europe, North America, Asia and Australia and is currently planning marketing strategies to expand to additional areas, such as Russia, Brazil, India and the United Arab Emirates. “We believe that Siderval will grow particularly through careful investment plans aimed at acquiring know-how and efficiency. Nevertheless, we do not underestimate the importance of organic acquisition as that allows us to improve our technical knowledge on hot extrusion and product finishing,” said Mr Rival. Siderval’s current investment plan aims to optimise the hot steel bar production process to be applied in specialised industries. This investment plan is ongoing and 10 per cent of the company’s turnover is being invested. “We are focusing in particular on the types of steel that are more difficult to process,” explained Mr Riva. “We try and improve our profitability by finding the best possible way to employ raw materials and by investing to reduce swarf.”

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Health and safety measures are central to Siderval, which operates to quality standards: UNI EN ISO 9001, TUV AD2000-MERKBLATT WO/TRD 100 AD-MERKBLATT WO/TRD 100 AQAP 2120 Ed.1. The company also complies with the environmental management system, UNI EN 14001. Siderval’s technical department is equipped to carry out the following tests: technological tests (hardness, microhardness and tensile tests), chemical analysis (by spectrographic methods), magnetoscopic examination and surface tests (roughness).

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Future goals Despite the recent economic crisis Siderval has succeeded in keeping the business prosperous. Before 2008 the company’s turnover amounted to €42 million with an establishment of 120 people. Today, in the middle of the euro crisis, turnover amounts to €38 million with an establishment of 114 people. “Among our future goals there is the acquisition of a 6,000 tons extrusion horizontal press that will enable us to accomplish our mission; that is, to be the most effective and efficient hot extruded steel bar producers in the

world,” stated Mr Riva. “We aim to achieve this through the stabilisation and strengthening of our activities and through constant innovation in our production. Another major concern for Siderval is our customer service. The company is aiming to improve our services through the enhancement of our automated production lines by investing in new numerical control systems.” The Italian company has already set up a computerised automated workstation that can meet the needs of customers whose hot extruded n steel bars require further working.

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WHERE PROCESSPERFORMANCE AND PRECISION MEET SHB is a leading European foundry that specialises in casting high quality, complex steel components. Philip Yorke talked to Alexander Grosshaeuser, the company’s managing director, about its strategy to produce heavier and more complex castings and its move into new market sectors.


HB Stahl-und Hartgusswerk Bösdorf is part of the Swiss DIHAG Group, which is one of the largest foundry groups in Europe and one that produces superior castings for a wide range of industrial applications and markets. SHB was founded in 1894 and began as a local steel dealer in Leipzig, Germany. However, it wasn’t until the turn of the century that

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the company began producing its first high quality steel castings in Bösdorf. In 1984 the foundry relocated to the today location in to take advantage of the boom in coal mining, which was a major consumer of heavy steel components for the mining industry. The SHB Stahl-und Hartgusswerk Bösdorf foundry complex is one of the largest of its kind in Europe and covers more than

55,000 square metres. Today the company employs over 250 people and in 2012 recordes sales of over €42 million.

Optimising the solidification process SHB uses specially developed software to simulate its casting operations which enable it to fully optimise its entire solidification process, even before the initial casting

sample is made. This makes it possible for the company to advise its customers on the best design and composition considerations possible, that will in turn help to optimise its manufacturing processes and achieve a cost-effective outcome. The built-in flexibility and cutting edge technology that is readily available at the Leipzig foundry provides customers with process reliability in combination with the latest plant and engineering technology. This allows SHB to produce both large and small production runs as well as individual pieces. In terms of the environment and economics,

SHB’s cast steel production processes are resource-conserving. Today the company’s primary aim is to supply its customers with top quality steel products at a competitive price, backed up by guaranteed product reliability and fast response times.

Strong demand from rail, mining and energy sectors SHB Stahl is a dynamic company that is able to gear its production to meet the challenging demands of any fast changing marketplace. Traditionally the mining and construction sectors have been the com-

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pany’s main customers, however today it’s the rail, mining and energy markets that are seeing the strongest growth. In the valves and heavy duty vehicle markets for example, SHB Stahl produces a wide range of products that include hand-made moulded parts, machine moulded parts as well special steel casting components. Grosshaeuser said, “In order to maintain our position as a premier supplier of precision steel components we continue to invest heavily in new plant and technology. In 2008 we invested over €11 million in new furnaces and smelting equipment and since then we have invested step by step in new technology and advanced testing facilities.” “Whilst our traditional customers, such as those involved in excavation and mining, still represent a significant contribution to our turnover, we see the energy and railway sectors as being the main drivers for growth in the longer term. Compared to our main competitors we are a little larger than they are but our focus is much more on the production of higher complexity products for the mining, oil and rail sectors. Stationary engines, such as very large industrial generators are also featuring more regularly in our order books. Today we are producing more than 10,000 tons of precision castings per year, which can weigh anything from just 20kg to over 5.5 tons.” Grosshaueser added, “At SHB we have a full complement of casting facilities including two 8 ton electric arc furnaces, two moulding lines, one of which is fully automatic and

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the other semi-automatic, as well as several state-of-the-art heat treatment furnaces. To supply the demand of fully machined products we offer a well-appointed machine shop to our customers. When it comes to customer service and relations, we like to develop long-term partnerships with our customers to help them to optimise their businesses and their competitive edge.”

Investment and renewal SHB’s growth is based on the one hand on a programme of continuous investment in new technology, and on the other a commitment to innovation and dedicated services to its customers. As part of the DIHAG Group, SHB’s steel products complement the wide range of materials and services offered by the group. For the benefit of its customers, the company is able to exploit synergetic opportunities in terms of materials and energy procurement and to co-ordinate its efforts with regards to other areas such as sales and technology. The company’s commitment to optimising its manufacturing processes and customer related services, added to its many years of experience in the manufacture of cast steel products, has earned SHB Stahl- und Hartgusswerk Bösdorf GmbH an enviable reputation in the steel industry. Together with its customers, the company strives to achieve success in world markets, which will ensure growth and profit for both parties. It is SHB’s strong customer focus that is the basis for the above average growth of the company. n

OPENING UP A BETTER FUTURE The Slovenia-based company SIBO specialises in injection moulding for technical plastics as well as caps and closures. It serves a wide range of industry sectors, including pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, food, household products and many more. Industry Europe looks at its history of success in the market, current capacity, its latest products and plans for growth.


IBO was founded in 1967 by Franc Sifrar and initially only produced plastic closures for the cosmetics industry. In 1993 the company was taken over by his son Boštjan Šifrar and moved to a larger factory and expanded its activities to include tool manufacturing. Over the years it branched out into food, household products, automotive and finally injection blow moulding technology for the pharmaceutical sector. Today the company has two manufacturing facilities, both based in Slovenia, with four production halls covering an area of 16,700m2. All production is based upon GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) principles. In total,

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the company owns 90 different machines for injection moulding and processing. It also has Class 8 clean room, which is equipped with seven fully-electric machines with clamping forces ranging between 50 and 380 tonnes, and linear robots. All its production is certified according to the ISO 9001 quality standard. An investment of €20 million was made in 2008 into the establishment of hi-tech and modern technology. A representative from SIBO explained: “Gaining new business and signing contracts with new customers has allowed us to invest further in machines, technology and people. On average we invest around €1 million per year in these areas.”

SIBO is a truly worldwide player. Its products are currently sold in 43 countries and it has more than 130 long-term customers. In all, around 90 per cent of its production is destined for export markets.

SIBO company structure The SIBO Group is organised into six divisions: Tool Shop, Pharmacy, Medicine, Technical Parts, Assembling and R&D. The Tool Shop is where the construction and manufacturing of tools for the injection-moulding of polymer materials takes place. It uses the latest CAD/ CAM computer technology (Catia, SolidWorks etc.) and state-of-the-art CNC processing

machines. Here, SIBO can create a 3D model of a tool, construct it and then carry out a review and make adjustments if necessary. The group’s injection moulding activities also cover more than 200 varieties of caps and closures, for areas such as household products, pharmaceuticals, food etc. Production for its Pharmacy and Medicine divisions takes place in a clean room environment which has been

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certified according to the ISO 14644 Class 8 standard. Its Pharmacy products include closures for aluminium tubes, laminate tubes and plastic tubes.

New product development SIBO’s R&D department focuses on packaging development for the needs of the personal care industry (such as caps and

shoulders for toothpaste), the food industry (such as caps for mayonnaise), the cosmetic industry (including various flip-top caps) and the pharmaceutical industry. The latest innovation to come from this was the ‘container cap’ – a unique solution for the caps of bottled water. It can hold substances like powder supplements or pills, keeping them fresh until their release into the water.

The company feels it offers a number of competitive advantages when it comes to product development. It is able to offer complete solutions with a combination of mould design, tool production and thermoplastic production. It is able to adapt to individual customer needs and is always open to exploring new ideas or technologies. All of this, plus state-of-the-art equipment and its reputation for quality and reliability, make it the ideal partner.

Plans for growth A representative from the company discusses the ways in which it intends to move forward: “There are plans to move closer to

our customers in the future or to buy some of our smaller competitors in some of the markets where our customers are present. We would like to establish the same hi-tech production facility and offer excellent service and further benefits to our customers.” SIBO is particularly focused on developing its pharmacy business and stepping up its activities in the Middle East and Asia. In addition to acquisitions, growth will also be of an organic nature. “In the past 10 years the average SIBO growth in terms of turnover was 20 per cent and in the past five years it was around 30 per cent. We would like to continue this trend of expansion in the next five to 10 years.” n Industry Europe 195

HI-TECH POLYMER SOLUTIONS The Nolato Group is a global leader in moulded polymer components and product systems designed for pharmaceutical, telecommunications and industrial applications. Philip Yorke talked to Christers Wahlquist, the president of Nolato Medical and a member of the group management, about its latest products and plans for further expansion.


olato Medical is part of the Nolato Group which is a global, high-tech developer and manufacturer of polymer components and products systems for the pharmaceutical, telecoms and industrial products sectors. Nolato was founded in Sweden in 1938 as Nordiska Latexfabrieken i Torekov AB with the trademark ‘Nolato’, which has since 1982 been the company’s trading name. Today Nolato is a global group with its head office based in Torekov (Sweden) and with production facilities in Sweden, China, Hungary, Romania, the UK the USA and India. The company also has sales offices in France, Norway, Germany, Taiwan and the Czech Republic. Today Nolato employs around 5,500 people of which around 85 per cent work outside Sweden. The majority of Nolato’s customers are large, global companies that work within 196 Industry Europe

areas such as medical technology, pharmaceuticals, telecommunications, white goods, automotive, construction and forestry. The Nolato Group is quoted on the NASDAQ OMX Nordic market stock exchange.

Developing customer- specific systems and components As a major contributor to the Nolato Group, Nolato Medical is a fast growing company that specialises in the development and manufacture of injection moulded polymer components and systems for the pharmaceutical and medical devices industries. The company works in close collaboration with its customers and has over fifty years of experience in delivering advanced medical technology systems and devices. This in turn has given Nolato Medical a firm founda-

tion based on cutting-edge technology and product development expertise. Wahlquist said, “We work in close partnership together with our clients to deliver new technologies and systems and therefore are able to provide optimal solutions. We do the development and manufacturing in-house, which means that we can be not only innovative, but can guarantee consistent quality in all that we accomplish. “We operate three key divisions, the Medical division, the Telecom division and the Industrial division. In the industrial sector our focus is on the automotive industry, as well as white goods, hygiene, construction and forestry etc., whereas in the telecommunications division we bring more than 20 years experience to bear as a leading developer and manufacturer of mechanical modules

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for the mobile phone industry. Our approach here is to balance the requirements of materials, usage, technology and production features to deliver complete solutions rather than just isolated components.” Wahlquist added, “We plan to continue to grow both organically and through acquisition and currently we are seeing strong growth in our medical division where we have recently acquired a leading UK company: Cope Allman Jaycare, which specialises in pharmaceutical packaging and has sales of approx SEK270 million. This latest acquisition gives us a local presence in the UK, which is an important part of the global pharmaceutical industry and in addition, opens the door to a large number of leading international pharmaceutical companies.”

Expanding global reach Nolato continues to invest in its manufacturing capabilities worldwide and is constantly looking for new plant and production sites that are located close to its growing portfolio of international clients. In Hungary for exam-

ple, the plant has been extended to meet the growing demand for medical devices, with a further major investment in Romania one year ago which is designed to support its customers with products in that region. Nolato Medical is also expanding its pioneering technology centre in southern Sweden to meet the increased demand for more complex product development. Nolato Medical has a professional reputation as one of the best companies in the business of creating smart solutions, that combine different polymer materials, technologies, functions and design. “What sets us apart from our competitors is our Swedish heritage – of developing ingenious solutions based on quality and attention to industrial design detail, as well as a commitment to deliver when we say we will,” said Wahlquist. “We create true partnerships through honesty and a straightforward dialogue with our customers. By keeping our customers informed of the progress throughout the development and production process, they can plan capacities and sales efforts

accordingly. This has now led us to increase our efforts in customer development projects to meet requests to provide simple solutions to some complex projects.” For many years Nolato Medical has been successfully developing and manufacturing products for the world’s leading medical device companies. Recent examples include diabetes care products, asthma treatment devices, external catheters and complete operative sets for blood salvage and transfusion, as well as made-to-measure packaging solutions and latex-free anaesthesia breathing bags. In addition, Nolato Medcal’s pharmaceutical packaging division develops and manufactures speciality packaging from polymer materials in the form of its own products as well as specially designed packaging for individual pharmaceutical and dietary supplement companies. Production involves the use of advanced injection moulding and injection blow-moulding equipment in the company’s specially adapted manufacturing facilities, all of which comply with stringent European n safety and quality standards.

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TO MATERIALS HANDLING Stellana is a global leader in the development and manufacture of thermoplastic, polyurethane, and rubber wheels for the materials handling industry. Philip Yorke talked to Peter Lindblom, the company’s sales and marketing director about the company’s move into new market sectors and its increasing investments in the world’s fastest-growing markets.


tellana is part of the multinational Hexpol Group and was founded in Sweden in 1946 to manufacture polymeric products; it has since grown to become one of the world’s biggest producers of Vulkollan, thermoplastic polyurethane tyres for forklift trucks. The Hexpol Group is focused on two business areas: compounding and engineered products, of which around 95 per cent are exported to global markets. Nine of the group’s 24 produc200 Industry Europe

tion sites are located in the expanding regions of Asia, Mexico and Eastern Europe. Today Stellana plays a vital role in the group’s manufacture of high quality rubber wheels and solid tyres for the transport and material handling industries. Stellana operates state-of-the-art manufacturing plants in North America, Europe and Asia. Together the Stellana/Elastomeric brand names are recognised as significant global partners to the leading

OEMs and parts suppliers of the material handling and transportation equipment industries. Stellana currently employs more than 1,400 people worldwide and in 2012 recorded sales of more than SK185 million.

Standard and tailor-made solutions Stellana offers a wide range of standard Vulkollan, polyurethane and thermoplastic products designed for fork lift and pallet

truck applications, as well as a diverse range of phenolic wheels for the industrial castors sector. However, as the world leader in the development and manufacture of high quality industrial wheels, the company also offers its customers a comprehensive and flexible resource for its special, customised products. These are made of various polymers with many combinations in terms of strength and resilience. The company is also a global leader in the supply of high-quality wheels

for hand pallet trucks and in this segment standard materials include Polyamide, polyurethane and rubber. Stellana’s industrial solid tyres for forklift trucks are constructed from a well balanced, three layered structure, that is comprised of a base, cushion and tread, each designed to ensure an optimal dynamic solution for each application. These advanced industrial wheels are composed of highly engineered materials and are available for marking and non-marking operations. Lindblom said, “At Stellana innova-

tion and quality work side by side to produce the best possible solutions for any future materials handling challenge. We continue to invest heavily in new plant and technology and this year introduced the latest ‘Robotcell’ technology for the automatic assembly of wheels, bearings and shafts etc. In addition to these ongoing investments in the latest technical advances, we have also built a major new plant in China for the production of polyurethane industrial products, which is probably the most advanced of its kind in the world.”

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Lindblom added, “As a Swedish company, one of our main priorities has been the protection of the environment and all our manufacturing plants are accredited to the international eco-certification standard, ISO 14001, as well as to ISO 9001. Although we rank number three in the league table of manufacturers in our specialised area of activity, we are the only company that is able to offer a truly global service and a worldwide manufacturing capability. We are also developing our presence in South America with special emphasis on the Brazilian market where we already have a sales network in place. “All Stellana R&D is conducted in Sweden but we have regular global meetings with our technical staff worldwide to pool our technology and innovative resources. Our increasing manufacturing capability in China is designed to meet the demands of the local market there and also to be close to our multinational clients and partners. Looking to the future we will continue to expand both geographically and in the other market sectors where we are not represented. We will also keep the door open for acquisitions should the right opportunity present itself.”

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Delivering ‘Lean’ manufacturing Both the Stellana and Elastomeric brands are recognised as leading the field in ‘Lean’ manufacturing processes. The company’s plant in Sri Lanka is one of the world’s foremost producers of rubber industrial products and processes more than 150 tonnes of natural rubber products every month. This is achieved using the latest state-of-the-art technology which meets the strictest international manufacturing standards. Today lean manufacturing is the operational tool which has helped Stellana to maximise its production efficiency and to achieve ‘world-class’ status in the specialised materials handling marketplace. As a result of its dedication to manu-

facturing excellence and quality management procedures, the company’s products are synonymous with superior quality, reliability, fast delivery and unparalleled customer service. The company has also adopted a ‘teamwork concept’ which has been introduced to enhance employee participation and to encourage involvement in the contribution of ideas, improvements and suggestions to reduce or eliminate problems in working practices. This is with a view to improving overall efficiency and productivity throughout the entire value chain. Today Stellana continues to set high standards for the industry and is well placed to meet its ambitious goals for dynamic n growth in the years to come.

Barbara Rossi speaks to Mr Vernazza, Sales, Marketing and R&D Director of IP Cleaning SpA, about this cleaning machine manufacturing group and in particular about IPC Gansow, its floor care sector division. In particular Industry Europe learns about IPC Gansow’s line of environmentally friendly scrubbers and driers.




he IP Cleaning Group (Integrated Professional Cleaning) was set up in 2005, following the merger of a number of leading companies in the professional cleaning sector, each one specialised in a different market segment. The group employs over 1,000 people worldwide and is headquartered in Portogruaro, near Venice. It is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of professional cleaning machines and equipment for manual cleaning, featuring a portfolio with a vast range of products and brands. In particular, alongside IPC Gansow, the other six production units which comprise the group, and which are all based in northern Italy, are, IPC Euromop (a leading designer and manufacturer of professional cleaning equipment), IPC Faip (specialised in the high-pressure washer sector), IPC Portotecnica (also a specialist in high-pressure washers), IPC Pulex (a top producer of glass cleaning equipment, products and accessories), IPC Ready Steam (a manufacturer of industrial cleaning equipment), and IPC Soteco (a leading manufacturer of wet and dry vacuum cleaners and carpet washers). Furthermore, the group has locally based production units in foreign countries, as well as foreign commercial and service branches and a network of distributors, making it present in all five continents. Nowadays IP Cleaning SpA is the international cleaning 204 Industry Europe

sector group which has the most complete product portfolio. Mr Vernazza explains the group’s strategy: “In this market there are big players whose strengths are those of having strong brands, branches in various countries, and strong product development, in terms of marketing and research, but whose weak point is that of being centralised and therefore of having a slow reaction to the market’s demands, and then there are local players, which are limited in terms of markets, but strong in terms of being very focused on one product category and employing a high degree of flexibility. Our strategy is that of having the critical mass of a medium-large group, while at the same time, offering the specialism and flexibility of a local player, thanks to our different business divisions, their specialism, and the fact that each of them has a high degree of autonomy, resulting in a quick response capacity. In fact, while the group works at a centralised level in terms of marketing, purchasing, and logistics, in terms of R & D each company is independent, although there is also the possibility of taking advantage of the group’s synergies.”

IPC Gansow IPC Gansow is based near Modena, in the Emilia-Romagna region of northern Italy, and is specialised in the production of motorised sweepers and scrubber driers for professional

uses. IPC Gansow’s products are all targeted for professional use and are manufactured at the company’s 26,000 m2 covered site, one of the most important factories in the floor care sector. IPC Gansow’s products are used for the professional cleaning of large areas, always exceeding 50 m2.Its scrubbers and driers are used in places such as factories, supermarkets, schools and airports, while the motorised sweepers are mainly employed on industrial sites and, in smaller volumes, either in hotel or public car parks, and warehouses. Clients are either the final users or the cleaning companies in charge of cleaning these sites. In recent years IPC Gansow’s important investments have mainly been focused on product development. In particular in the last three years there has been the development of the ECS (Eco Cost Cleaning Solutions) line of scrubbers and driers, which is on offer alongside the Professional line, dedicated to more traditional products. The advantages offered by the ECS products include low running costs, thanks to resource savings (up to an 80 per cent reduction in water consumption, a 90 per cent reduction in the use of detergents, a 40 per cent reduction in terms of energy usage, and a 20 per cent lowering in noise levels), as well as an increase in productivity, due to the fact that less downtime for filling and emptying the tanks is required, better ergonomics, and the use of microfibre pads. Furthermore the ECS products are

highly versatile, and can be used as traditional scrubber driers or polishers, and don’t cause wear to the wide range of surfaces that they can clean. In terms of motorised sweepers, although this market is more traditional and offers less scope for innovation, IPC Gansow updates its products on a yearly basis and has been the first company to launch hybrid models, running on dual power (batteries and diesel or petrol). IPC Gansow is able to offer customised products, in terms of visibility, acoustics, type of surface to be cleaned, detergents to be used, and ergonomics, thus responding to clients’ needs. For instance, as Mr Vernazza clarifies: “The needs of the Japanese and the Norwegian markets are very different, in terms

of ergonomics, as well as in cultural terms, and we can customise our products so as to meet the demands of each of them”. Currently IPC Gansow exports about 84 per cent of its products. Scrubber driers, and in particular the ECS line, constitute a strong motor for growth and the company is particularly expanding its presence in emerging markets, such as China, Korea, AsianPacific countries, Brazil, India, and Russia, as well as in Japan and North America. In fact ICP is one of the few European groups with a consolidated distribution network in North America. Expansion plans are also in place for countries such as Indonesia and Turkey, which offer significant scope for growth. While for a highly focused group such as IP Cleaning organic growth is central, in future

its strategy may include acquisitions. In terms of IPC Gansow Mr Vernazza highlights how in the last five years this division has been the leader in the floor cleaning sector in terms of the development of new products with an added value. Its ECS system, which is in constant evolution, has won several international awards, such as the 2009 Golden Broom (ISSA Interclean Eastern Europe), and the 2010 environmentally friendly award Clean Green Afidamp, as well as having been a finalist in the 2009 Clean Green Afidamp (Pulire 2009) and in the 2010 Innovation Award (ISSA Interclean Amsterdam 2010). Furthermore the ECS machines are part of a programme of incentives offered by the British government to promote products producing considerable n water savings.

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MAKING CONNECTIONS 206 Industry Europe

GN Netcom is part of the GN Store Nord group, supplying headsets and other equipment under the Jabra brand. Abigail Saltmarsh finds out more about its latest developments.


hile GN Netcom prides itself on its ever increasing business on the office side of its operation, it is also seeing significant growth in its mobile products. Leo Larsen, the company’s chief technology officer, says that a number of exciting products are being launched in response to growing trends in both consumer and professional items – wth more on the way. “We are starting to really address these trends and as a result I think these new products will drive growth for us,” he says. “On the consumer side, these are mobile and communication products in the areas of music and fitness. Also, more and more people are trying to be more flexible and to have the option of working in different locations. They therefore want products that will enable them to do so.”

A global operation GN Store Nord’s history goes back to 1869 when the Great Northern Telegraph Company was founded. Initially functioning as a telegraph company, it today focuses on headsets, through GN Netcom, and hearing instruments and audiological diagnostics equipment company, through GN ReSound. GN headsets are marketed globally under the Jabra brand whereas GN’s hearing instruments are marketed under the ReSound, Beltone and Interton brands. All products are largely manufactured in China. The total work force comprises around 4100 employees of which approximately 900 are in Denmark. The group’s headquarters are in Ballerup, just outside Copenhagen.

“We sell our products worldwide and are seeing growth everywhere,” says Mr Larsen. “We are starting to see some nice growth in Asia, in particular.”

Streaming sound Mr Larsen says that one of the big developments for GN Netcom in the areas of music and sports is that technology has moved much further in supporting music streaming. And as demand has grown and technology improved so the company has developed more complementary consumer products. “One significant product is the Jabra Halo and another is the Jabra Clipper,” he explains. “Also, for music and sport, we have developed the Jabra Sport, which is ideal for running or riding a bike.” The Jabra Halo con-

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208 Industry Europe

nects easily to a mobile phone through Bluetooth and enables the user to stream music and to take calls wirelessly. A corded option can be used if the player of choice doesn’t support Bluetooth Stereo/A2DP. The Jabra Clipper gives the wearer wireless stereo music and calls, in one small Bluetooth clip. Its in-ear headphones block external noise, which enhances its clear, vibrant music and calling quality. It also automatically switches between music and incoming calls to the phone. “These are not the first wireless music or stereo products we have launched but streaming music has now really taken off,” explains Mr Larsen. “A lot of things have happened in wireless streaming of music content, which have been triggers. These have included Apple’s support on the iPhone and the development of the smart phone for streaming. He adds: “This is an area we will continue to develop. There will be more products coming out.”

Unified communication Another area of continued success for GN Netcom is Unified Communication. Today office communication takes place via different devices and media types.

These include telephone landlines, mobile phones, video conferencing, email and soft phones – and employees can feel stressed and overwhelmed trying to juggle all the different channels and still work effectively. “Unified Communication (UC) brings together all these devices and interfaces into one single integrated application,” says Mr Larsen. “In short, UC makes it easier for people to connect, communicate and work together. The result is more productive employees and smoother interactions. This is another big growth area for us and will continue to be so. It also sees the convergence of professional and mobile products, as people increasingly work in different places.”

Larsen says. “We are still focused very much on our professional users, developing wireless products for call centres, but I do believe that expansion over the next years will come in these areas of sport and music for the consumer market. And Unified Communication for the office market.” n

Looking ahead The office products side of the business continues to expand as well. Products such as the Jabra Speak 410, a small speakerphone that offers a hands-free solution for the office, for example, are proving particularly successful. “I think the overall shape of the company will remain the same for the next two or three years but hopefully we will have gained a bigger market share with these new products,” Mr

The VTech CMS Division is part of the VTech Group of Companies and is a Contract Manufacturer with decades of knowledge and experience. Our global customer base comprises of companies who seek Quality, Competence, Competitive Pricing, Engineering & Design Support, and a one stop shop Contract Manufacturer that is very familiar with the Professional Audio Market, Power Conversion applications, Lighting and LED applications, Medical applications, Industrial Control, Wireless, and Home Automation. Our group helps our clients in the manufacturing of complete units or PCBAs as sub-assemblies for the above applications. Due to the size of the VTech Group as a public company, you will benefit from the Corporate buying power. We also offer the necessary Design & Engineering Support to our clients.

Industry Europe 209


Norwegian manufacturer and wholesaler of particleboard Forestia is part of Byggma Group, a leading supplier of innovative solutions for the building industry in Scandinavia. Forestia has developed a wide range of treated and untreated products for a variety of applications in the furniture, building and construction industries. Emma-Jane Batey spoke to director Bjarne Fluto to gain an insight into the company’s plans for continued success.


ased in Braskereidfoss, Norway, manufacturer and wholesaler of high quality particleboard Forestia has established a strong reputation as a leading name in Scandinavia. Forestia is feeling positive about its return to pre-recession levels. Director Bjarne Fluto told Industry Europe, “Like many other companies across the world over the past few years, Forestia has seen some difficulties, but we are pleased to report that our key market segments of furniture, building and construction are improving steadily. We’re more comfortable with the market at the moment than we have been for a while and,

although we still have some spare capacity that we are keen to fill, we can see that the demand trend is going in the right direction.”

Product innovations Mr Fluto pointed out that Forestia’s plans for an enhanced product range have seen further additions to its portfolio of particleboards, with a continued focus on its Scandinavian clients’ demands. He commented, “We have been bringing some new, interesting products to the building industry in particular. We already have the investment in machinery in place and the innovative

development, so we are now getting ready to launch the products and bring them successfully to market. Forestia is very much a Scandinavianfocused producer, with its strategic locations near the main milling areas to ensure it has regular and reliable access to the quality virgin fibre it uses to manufacture its particleboard, which is mostly residue from the saw mill industry. It produces predominately light-coloured particleboard, which offers considerable advantages to its customers in the furniture, building and construction industries as it is of a high and even quality that remains constant.

Forestia’s focus is largely on the Scandinavian market because, as a small, regional chipboard producer, it is dedicated to making the products that match its local demand. The requirements of panel sheet material in the markets in which Forestia operates are specific to Scandinavia, with the building trade in the rest of Europe using other products. Mr Fluto continued, “We are experts in particleboard for the Scandinavian market and it is this excellence that adds value for our customers. If customers or industries outside Scandinavia find our products interesting, we would certainly be happy to cooperate, so it is not a strategic decision, but rather one which we find ensures the best results for us and our customers.

Understanding industry trends In order to ensure that this approach continues to be the best for the company, Forestia is active in visiting and participating in trade exhibitions across Europe. With much of its building trade custom connected to its strong network of contacts within the major-

ity of the leading DIY chains in Scandinavia, this has proven to be an effective way to stay at the forefront of the industry trends. Forestia supplies both Scandinavian DIY chains and those European chains that have branches locally, so it is an effective way to keep its products and services relevant. For the furniture industry, Forestia concentrates its activities on the smaller furniture suppliers in Scandinavia, although it also supplies chipboard to a number of the companies which manufacture furniture for IKEA. Forestia particleboard offers considerable advantages in addition to its exceptional quality and reliability. The boards have vital strength properties that can be utilised both by the building industry and the furniture industry. Its best selling products are flooring-grade chipboard and panelling systems for ceiling and wall panels, which offer excellent foil surface treatment possibilities. All the Forestia particleboard products are manufactured at one of its two factories in Norway. The first is located around 200km north east of Oslo and has a continuous chip-

board line that produces a thousand cubic meters each day. The second factory is a little further north and offers smaller, specialised production of mainly flooring-grade chipboard and chipboard for the construction industry, including moisture-resistant and heavy-duty load-bearing products. As Forestia looks to bring new products to the market, its aim is to continue to develop innovative particleboard solutions and to further improve its profitability. n


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Rolf Benz is one of Germany’s leading furniture makers. Marco Siebel speaks to Director, International Sales, Rupert Hainzl about the company’s plans for the future and the importance of keeping production in the Black Forest.


nce upon a time, in a town named Nagold, a furniture maker named Rolf Benz decided that it was time for a change. He designed and created the first angled sofa on the German market. The Rolf Benz sofas, recliner, chairs, dining tables and coffee tables rapidly became the German standard for high quality furniture. Rolf Benz AG & Co KG, since 1998 part of the Hüls group, has its global head-office in south-western Germany, in the heart of the Black Forest, halfway between the French city of Strasbourg and the German city of Stuttgart. The company has all of its production sites concentrated in this beautifully inspirational area, and it plans on staying there. There are no plans for production sites outside of Germany, to keep the label Made in Germany an honest one. The company employs around 500 people, working together with an in-house design

team on some 25,000 square metres. In 2011 and 2012 the site was expanded by an extra 4,000 square metres of showroom for two newly launched lines: ‘Concepts’ with furniture especially designed for use in hotels, restaurants and companies, and ‘Freistil’.

Global market, local suppliers In 2011 Rolf Benz partnered with the German leather tannery company Heller in Hehlen, which won the 2011 Tannery of the Year award for its artisan leather products and its environmentally friendly production processes. The company provides Rolf Benz with seven stunning shades, from Nude to Choco, helping to make the upholstered furniture from the Black Forest alluring to an ever-widening public of connoisseurs. In 2012 the Italian designer Gino Carollo joined forces with Rolf Benz to produce a new urban line Scala, a sophisticated modular

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furnishing range that unites volume with grace, variety with style, and design freedom with cultural appreciation. The successful collaboration of all that is best in German craftsmanship and Italian design serves the global aspirations of Rolf Benz.

Using its leading market position in Europe Rolf Benz currently enjoys a recognition level of around 35 per cent in the German market, which accounts for nearly 60 per cent of its sales. The rest of Europe generates 30 per cent of turnover, while Asia, with Singapore, Indonesia, India and notably Japan count for the remaining 10 per cent. Growth expectations for the German and European markets until 2015 are 5-7 per cent, and for the Asian markets, 7-10 per cent. Director International Sales Rupert Hainzl: “During the next couple of years we will continue to follow the strategic course we have been pursuing for several years now, namely of leveraging the leading market position in Europe in the high-quality seating furniture segment to export the German quality label to Asia. For the European market we expect to see our client base grow, partly because of the fact that people turn away from impulsive spending and instead want to invest in a product that will last – one of our designs was created 27 years ago and still stands firmly.” Freistil is the German and international name for Rolf Benz’s latest effort to attract the new generation. An extremely daring yet typical German stylish line, Freistil aims to persuade young consumers that they can afford the same quality Rolf Benz furniture that their parents have enjoyed for years. n

214 Industry Europe

Pre-Shredder Hurricane


Sorting at MSW plant

RDF plant

MSW Pre-Shredder

Coal and petroleum are obvious sources of energy because they have been exploited to serve this purpose for centuries, but less obvious materials, such as the waste and refuse produced by our modern industrial society are also valuable energy sources. Old wooden pallets, film, PET bottles, metals, household and commercial waste – can all be converted for use in the production of energy. You just need the expertise to release it!


ECOPLAN AG, Bad Marienberg, Germany, has the expertise. For more than 40 years, VECOPLAN AG has designed, engineered, manufactured, and commissioned technologically advanced machines and systems that shred, convey and process primary and secondary resources in production and recycling processes. The efficient recovery and recycling of residual materi-

als requires state-of-the art environmental technologies, which can only be achieved through a combination of skill and knowledge in engineering, research and development. Because the goal is high: it is about the future. Not only in Germany or Europe – but worldwide. Emma-Jane Batey spoke to head of business development Jörg Müller to learn more

about a company, which works and lives under the mission “technology for a sustainable tomorrow”. Long before the importance of recycling took root in our collective consciousness, Irene Scheidweiler, Hans-Josef Leukel and Jürgen Musche recognised how important efficient reprocessing of valuable materials would be for the future. In 1969, they made a bold and


Jörg Müller

Plastic Recycling

far-sighted business decision, and founded VECOPLAN. Thus a pioneering company was born. Today VECOPLAN is a subsidiary of M.A.X. Automation AG in Düsseldorf – whose continuous innovative strength has made it a worldwide market leader in the international raw materials and recyclables industry.

Demonstration and Test Facility

“The large number of patents held by VECOPLAN are tangible evidence of what we have achieved together over many years,” says Jörg Müller, “we have established a strong reputation as innovators through the technologies we have developed for our customers and as a reliable partner through our performance

in the delivery of customised solutions, from planning through to implementation.” Historically rooted in wood recycling, VECOPLAN has grown into one of the most versatile companies in the recycling industry with an extensive product portfolio. By clearly structuring and organising areas of expertise according to markets, VECOPLAN achieves the highest degree of precision for their seven markets: Wood, biomass and pelletizing, alternative fuels, domestic and commercial waste, plastic, paper and special applications. In addition to shredding technology VECOPLAN offers a comprehensive range of technologically advanced machinery for conveying, screening, separating, storage, and dosing. “Whether processing waste for conversion to energy or for traditional recycling, the first stage is shredding. With the invention and launch of the well-known VAZ single-shaft shredder in 1984, VECOPLAN established itself as a leader in shredding technology. From then until now the VAZ has written its own success story. This is demonstrated not only by the most recently issued patents, but also through the number of shredders delivered and successfully operating in factories around the world,” states Jörg Müller. The diversity of materials that the shredder is able

VAZ Shredder

to process and the wide range of applications in which it is used is particularly impressive. The machine’s unique design allows it to be adapted to changing requirements quickly and reliably. VECOPLAN also focuses on the energy efficiency of the machines they produce. In 2005, systems engineers at VECOPLAN developed a revolutionary drive motor for their shredders. Gearless and water-cooled the HiTorc® direct drive motor allows power savings of up to 60 per cent. The company exports more than 85 per cent of its machines and is active worldwide. Its ongoing strategy for growth is to own offices or subsidiaries in all major global markets. VECOPLAN will increase their growth both through organic expansion and acquisitions. The latest subsidiary started their business in Spain in July of this year and in April 2012 VECOPLAN AG acquired the company WasteTec GmbH, Wetzlar. At the moment over 450 employees are working inside the main facility in Germany, the United States, Austria, Great Britain and Spain. And they all have one vision: Develop “technology for a sustainable tomorrow”. Because the goal is high: it is about the future. Not only in Germany or Europe – n but worldwide.

Shredder production

GEARING UP Royal Dutch Gazelle is one of the oldest bicycle manufacturers in the world and probably the most revered brand in Europe. Philip Yorke looks at how the company’s dedication to quality and innovation has resulted in it being the recipient of countless design awards and examines how the latest E-Bike electronic models are driving sales forward. 220 Industry Europe


oniinklijke Gazelle was founded in 1892 by Willem Kolling, a Dutch postmaster who was one of the first to see the potential of this new mode of transport. His early success led him into partnership with a colleague by the name of Rudolph Arentsen and between them they set the seal on the future of Gazelle, the ‘Rolls Royce’ of Dutch bicycles. From a the production of just three bicycles in 1892 to becoming the biggest bicycle brand in the Netherlands producing more than 350,000 bicycles a year, Gazelle has come a very long way during the last 120 years. Today the company is still based at its original premises in Dieren, near Arnhem,

where all its models are assembled and tested prior to delivery. Gazelle Bicycles currently employs over 500 people and in 2011 recorded sales of more than €200 million.

Exporting new standards in design and efficiency Although Gazelle was founded more than 100 years ago, the company is far from old fashioned in its products or operations. In fact it is the trend setter when it comes to stylish, high-quality, smooth-geared bicycles. The Gazelle range today is geared to suit every conceivable consumer’s needs. From city bikes and hybrid bikes to fold-

ing bikes, racing bikes and mountain bikes, the company satisfies every sector. It is also leading the field in energy efficient ‘E-bikes’(Electronic-Drive Bikes) which are fast becoming the flagship range of the company as demand for them continues to grow. Gazelle Bicycles exports its products to most European countries, as well as to the USA and Australia; however, its biggest markets remain Germany and the Netherlands. The price range of the company’s bikes also reflects its wide variety of models as prices start from as little as €380, and go to as much as €3000 or more for its custom made hand-crafted racing bike models. Industry Europe 221

Award-winning designs Recently Gazelle Bicycles won three new design awards to add to its considerable collection accrued over the years. To be considered for the Dutch Industrial Design Award 2011, a product needs to be more than aesthetically pleasing, it must also offer originality, functionality, respect, innovativeness and user-friendliness. Gazelle submitted three innovative products, including the Friiik range, which is equipped with a revolutionary gear-changing system known as the ‘Gazelle Shifting System’ (GSS). This latest GSS system can be described as a totally enclosed derailleur system that combines the main benefits of a hub gear with those of a derailleur gear. This all-new gearshift system offers optimal, low-maintenance and yet lighter cycling comfort. Furthermore, Gazelle’s Friiik range has a unique design of its own that benefits from a one-sided rear wheel suspension system. Gazelle Bicycles also won a Dutch Design Award for its unique ‘Power Click Evo integrated kick-stand’ as well as for its ‘Balance Innergy’ intelligent seating design. This new device makes it possible 222 Industry Europe

to adjust the bicycle seat to suit the rider’s ideal sitting position, whether the rider is 4ft 8 inches tall, or 6ft 4 inches tall. What also makes this particular electric-drive bicycle special, is that it is always possible to reach the ground with both feet, thus enhancing the ‘balanced safety’ aspect of the bicycle. The majority of Gazelle’s bicycles are also fitted with a high quality AXA wheel lock as standard, as well as a conventional chain lock for maximum security. What’s more, all Gazelle bikes are equipped with top quality Vredestein and Schwalbe tyres. These embody the very latest tyre technology and offer all year-round leak protection. Furthermore, due to their unique profile and specially formulated composite walls, they are far less prone to having a puncture.

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All innovations past and present that are introduced by Gazelle are backed by a full ten year warranty against defects in both materials and construction.

Electronic-drive ‘E-bikes’ showing healthy growth Gazelle’s latest range of advanced performance E-Bikes are gaining ground with commuters who prefer to cycle to work. These bicycles were originally designed for the elderly, who wanted to take advantage of the novel electronic drive system that significantly assists propulsion, to help them keep mobile. It was soon realised however, that in both Germany and the Netherlands, many younger people were attracted to the new E-Bikes. This is because they offered them the possibility of cycling 15-20 kilometres to

work with ease and could also save them money whilst keeping fit at the same time. Today, many companies throughout Europe are offering rewards and incentives to their staff to cycle to work because it results in fitter, happier and healthier staff, who are far less likely to take time off due to illness. Gazelle is also keen to contribute towards making the world a better place ecologically and is doing this by taking a critical look at its everyday actions and manufacturing processes. For example, Gazelle only uses water-based paints and is committed to optimising its recycling processes. Working in close association with Ganswinkel, the leading waste disposal experts, the company has embarked upon a project towards the production of the world’s first 100 per n cent recyclable bicycle.


ntex is a global leader in the production of hygienic disposables and the biggest manufacturer of its kind in Europe. The company operates 12 manufacturing facilities, which are strategically located to optimise service and logistics for its FMCG customers and the healthcare market sector. Ontex offers a diverse range of hygienic disposables for baby care, such as nappies and wipes and for feminine care, with products such as

sanitary towels, panty liners and tampons. The company is also a key supplier to the adult incontinence sector through its growing healthcare division. All Ontex products are produced either for private label customers or its own well-known generic brands. Ontex is based in Zele, Belgium, and employs more than 4300 people worldwide, with major production facilities located in Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the

Ontex is the European market leader in the development and manufacture of hygienic disposables for the private label sector. Philip Yorke looks at how the company is continuing to invest in the latest sustainable production methods and deliver innovative products for a diverse range of consumer and healthcare applications.

UK. This is in addition to other modern manufacturing facilities that it operates in Algeria, Turkey, China and the Czech Republic. Ontex is headquartered in Zele, Belgium, and was acquired by Goldman Sachs and TPG Equities in 2010 for €1.2 billion. The company has continued to grow and diversify and has recently taken over Lille Healthcare, which is the leading French company in adult incontinence products. This well-known brand operates throughIndustry Europe 225

out Europe and Australia selling incontinence products to institutional healthcare customers under the Lille brand, as well as selling private label products to retailers.

Product development driving sales In order to maintain its leading position in the hygienic disposables market, Ontex maintains a strong focus on product development and invests continuously in innovative technology and new products in order to optimise comfort, fit and product performance. This is in addition to other research programmes designed to enhance its strong commitment to improving sustainability. This ongoing broadbased research enables Ontex to deliver high performance products with a clear environmental advantage at a competitive price. The Ontex R&D centres are divided up according to the product categories that they serve and each has specialised R&D teams operating in every one of the company’s key manufacturing units, as well as in Ontex’s headquarters in Zele, Belgium, from where all R&D activities are managed. 226 Industry Europe

To ensure that all its products are fully validated and well tested before release to customers, Ontex R&D centre laboratory facilities work closely with the company’s 12 manufacturing units, which in turn have their own laboratory testing equipment. In addition, all Ontex R&D activities are based on multi-functional and short time-to-market principles. It is this dedication to meeting both changing market trends and increasing EU legislation that is helping Ontex to improve the sales of both its private label and own-brand products.

Prioritising sustainable business practices For many years Ontex has led the drive for more sustainable products and improved manufacturing processes. The company continues to demonstrate its commitment to the environment through its activities and product development programmes. At Ontex, all manufacturing plants have introduced an advanced, environmental management system based on a number of key principles

which give particular consideration to waste management, energy consumption, transport efficiency and packaging optimisation. In addition, the company works to minimise the effect that its products have on the environment after use, and works in close collaboration with its suppliers to achieve the sustainable use of natural resources, raw materials and energy. A good example of success in this area is the company’s research programme that has enabled it to drastically reduce the amount of fluff used in its production processes. Fluff pulp is the main raw material used to form the absorbent cores of all Ontex products. All fluff used in its products is obtained from suppliers who subscribe to responsible sourcing programmes such as the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI/PEFC) and the Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC). One of the key priorities for Ontex is to ensure that only wood from well-managed forests is used and furthermore that it is used with respect for the regulations that apply to water quality and the important habitat elements for wildlife.

Focus on renewable energy Another eco-efficiency parameter for Ontex is its electricity consumption, which is one of its key performance indicators (KPI). In order to lower the cost of its manufacturing activities and their environmental impact, every Ontex plant has an action plan to cut electricity consumption with a view to drastically reducing its carbon footprint. Furthermore, the company’s plants in Belgium run exclusively on renewable energy due to the installation of a large number of solar panels on the roofs of its major warehouses. As a result of this success, many other plants are now looking to install solar panels or expanding their use. In the area of transportation too, the company recognises that this sector poses a key environmental challenge and therefore wants to limit the impact of its logistics activities. As a result, Ontex plans to limit the impact of its operations through optimised packaging and compactor products, as well as through an optimised ‘truck-fill factor’ programme. n Visit: Industry Europe 227




A.P. Form SpA Alge Elastic GmbH Aperam Stainless Services & Solutions AS Tari ASCO Advanced Supply Chain Organisation GmbH

P 128 P 60 P 47 P 52 P 136

B Bag-Pol Dystrybucja Baltic Zinc Technics SIA Bama Srl Bamberger Polymers Inc BASF Bauce Trima Srl Beehive Coils Limited Bitzer Blossom Srl Brandskyddsmalarna AB Brenntag Ljubljana d.o.o Bucher Unipektin AG

P 96 P 182 P 187 P 193 P 139 P 142 P 121 Inside back P 176 P 52 P 194 P 141

C C.C.A.G Crotti Srl P 205 Cardiff Galvanizers P 120 Ceric Technologies P 41 Cisaplast SpA P 117 Clariant International Ltd Outside back Clariant Produkte (Deutschland) GmbH P 137 Conexant Systems Worldwide Inc P 208 Cowell and Cooper Ltd P 121

D Danese Srl Det Norske Veritas DK-Kaelteanlagen GmbH DO.CA srl Doubrava Ges.mbH & Co. KG Drink & Schlössers GmbH & Co. KG Druckerei Schefenacker GmbH & Co. KG DSV Transport d.o.o.

P 141 P 155 P 128 P 186 P 43 P 31 P 168 P 195

E Edmetal SIA Eko Sistem Serviss SIA Escatec Electronics Sdn. Bhd Esco GmbH + Co. KG Etipol Sp z.o.o. Eurocarbo SpA

P 182 P 182 P 147 P 141 P 101 P 27

F Ferbe Tools Fike Safety Technology Ltd Finnradiator Frigomec SpA

P 198 P 72 P 113 P 128

Hatteland Display AS Heatex AB Hecksher Henning Sands Maskinfabrik AS Hidra-Sor Hidraulika Sorozatgyarto Kft HNS Muszaki Fejleszto Kft Hoch GmbH

P 146 P 120 P 53 P 27 P 35 P 35 P 92

I IB Andresen Industri AS IFE Aufbereitungstechnik GmbH Institut Mihajlo Pupin

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J Jaroslav Cerni Institute JN Metal SIA

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K Kartek Fasteners APS

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L L-Fashion Group Oy Lam Research Lamplighter Products Llopis SA

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O Oerlikon Leybold Vacuum Officine Mario Dorin SpA Okregowa Spoldzielnia Mleczarska Otlec Lamiere Srl Ottmar Mayer GmbH Oy Kart AB Oy Lux AB

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P Polstal Spolka Jawna Post Moderne Tech Corporation Power Machines ZTL Preem AB Problend PrOTeUS e.k. Lackiertechnik



G. Coreth Kunststoffverarbeitungs Ges.mbH P 42 Galeb d.d. P 61 Goodway Plastic P 208 GPV Group P 173 Grundfos Pumpen Vertrieb Ges.mbH P 124

Querbach (Zschimmer & Schwarz)

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P 140

R R. Bourgeois (Suisse) SA Rafo AB Rainer Linz Ober-Flachentechnik GmbH

P 104 P 69 P 205 P 104 P 78 P 162 P 186 P 43 P 215 P 202 P 180

S S.T.L. Imballagi Srl P 163 Salinen Budapest Kft P 105 Samsung Electronics Benelux BV Inside front Sartori Ervino Snc P 176 Schill + Seilacher GmbH P 136 SKS Metaplast Scheffer-Klute GmbH P 222 Solvent Kereskedohaz Zrt P 104 Stevia Kft P 104 Stogel Kosher Catering P 97 Suyin GmbH P 208 Synflex AS P 68 Szegedi Öntöde Kft P 35


M Marin Supply AS Metric AS Meyer Ship Mida Mosconi SpA MR Projects S.n.c.

Raps Hungaro Kft Raven Sp. z.o.o. Ravioli SpA Red Arrow Reinhausen Power Composites GmbH Rivoira SpA Rivoira SpA Robert Thomas Metall – und Elektrowerke GmbH & Co. KG Rolf Benz AG & Co. KG Rolmech SP. J Ronde Industriteknik AS

P 69 P 198 P 142

T.I.A.C. Tan Tech Nordic AB Tatra Tera d.o.o. Tolmin Termostav – Mraz spol s.r.o. TFL Ledertechnik GmbH Therma Solutions Int Ltd Tim d.o.o. Torin Sifan Limited Tredegar Trumpler GmbH & Co. KG

P 187 P 132 P 109 P 195 P 85 P 142 P 128 P 38 P 120 P 226 P 140

U Uni-Pack Maciejko Sp. J.

P 96

V VP Components VBK Konsulterande Ingenjorer AB Vingtor Viskase Volvo Construction Equipment VTech Vuez a.s.

P 223 P 52 P 154 P 104 P 54 P 209 P 84

X Xiameter Xian Wei Nuo Machinery and Equipment Co. Ltd

P 79 P 202

Z Ziehl-Abegg Zwaans GmbH Zwaans GmbH

P 117 P 141 P 141

Articles inside

Gearing up Gazelle

pages 222-226

Energy is all around us, just waiting to be released

pages 218-221

Adding precision and value to materials handling

pages 202-204

Inspirational furniture design from the Black Forest

pages 214-217

Making connections GN Netcom

pages 208-211

Solutions in particleboard Forestia

pages 212-213

Working for a clean environment IP Cleaning

pages 205-207

Hi-tech polymer solutions Nolato

pages 198-201

Opening up a better future SIBO

pages 193-197

Where process-performance and precision meet

pages 190-192

Winds of change East Metal

pages 180-185

Hearing the difference GN Otometrics

pages 172-175

Values rooted in history Cividale

pages 176-179

Taking non-invasive diagnostic technology further

pages 169-171

Setting new standards in industrial weighing

pages 166-168

Testing, life sciences and renewable energies

pages 161-165

Delivering innovative electronics Heried

pages 154-157

On-board automation Smart Automation

pages 158-160

Specialist shipyard products Damen

pages 150-153

Safe and sound Consilium

pages 146-149

Strong and beautiful Wollsdorf

pages 136-145

Keeping cool EPTA

pages 128-132

Success – from micro to macro Windhager

pages 124-127

In search of excellence Elmo

pages 133-135

Refrigeration innovation Hauser

pages 116-119

Energy-efficient ventilation systems Nuaire

pages 120-123

Tunnel vision Normet

pages 112-115

Driving force for positive change CLAAS

pages 109-111

Catering for every need LOT Catering

pages 96-100

Powered up Slovenské élektrárne

pages 84-87

Pick of the crop Pick

pages 104-108

Global brand with a regional flavour Lambertz

pages 92-95

True taste of success OSM Olecko

pages 101-103

Serbia’s green energy Hidroelektrane

pages 88-91

High voltage, high performance Trench

pages 79-83

Shining light Tamlite

pages 72-75

Bringing the Far East to Europe L-Fashion

pages 64-67

Sustainable and secure Infineon

pages 76-78

When performance matters Noratel

pages 68-71

Croatian quality Galeb

pages 60-63

Winning on competence Skanska

pages 53-59

Danish design and function Vrøgum

pages 50-52

A clear view Stakla

pages 38-40

Clear advantage Rolltech

pages 46-49

Power and precision Schiess

pages 30-33

Crowning glory Tondach

pages 41-45

New sensors at the heart of pump efficiency

pages 26-29

Investment in precision Linamar

pages 34-37

Focus on France Ian Sparks reports from Paris

page 23

Energy news The latest from the industry

pages 11-13

Technology spotlight Advances in technology

page 22

Winning business New orders and contracts

pages 16-17

Russia tightens grip on Europe’s gas

pages 8-10

Bill Jamieson A monstrous game of bluff

page 7

Going for energy efficient gold

pages 14-15

Linking up Combining strengths

pages 18-19

Moving on Relocations and expansions

page 20
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