Industry Europe – Issue 23.9

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VOLUME 23/9 – 2013 • €6

The world of European manufacturing






Paying for power There’s little sense in politicians promising to keep energy prices down when it’s their policies that are pushing them up.


hen party leaders address their annual conferences no-one expects them to sound like Friedrich Hayek or John Maynard Keynes. But UK Labour leader Ed Miliband surely hit a new low in economic illiteracy this autumn with his promise to ease people’s worries about rising living costs by freezing energy prices. You don’t have to be any kind of economist, let alone a distinguished one, to understand that capping prices leads to increased demand and reduced supply and therefore to shortages. Of course when Miliband’s dad was a Marxist lecturer at the London School of Economics in the 60s probably almost everyone there believed in price controls. And wage controls. And nationalisation of the commanding heights of the economy, workers’ control of industry, the confiscation of private property, the dictatorship of the proletariat and permanent Mao-style revolution. And free LSD on the NHS. And Strawberry Fields Forever. But a lot of troubled water has flowed under the bridge since those days when to be young was very heaven. Miliband may believe that the old songs are still the best but today probably even economics students at LSE understand that managing economies the Venezuelan way is not very sensible. Of course the Labour leader is right in thinking that people are worried about rising energy prices. What’s wrong is his assumption that we have high prices because energy suppliers are making too much profit. In fact UK energy prices are relatively low compared to other EU countries. The latest figures suggest an average electricity price in the UK of around 20 US cents per kW/h against 34 cents in Germany and 28 cents in Italy. Even with its secure supply of nuclear generated power France comes in at 19 cents. And there is no evidence of profiteering by UK energy companies; repeated investigations by the regulator Ofgem over the last ten years have shown no change on the companies’ return on capital.

Indeed without the prospect of continuing to make reasonable profits it will be impossible for energy companies to commit to the billions of new investment that Britain needs to ensure that energy supply capacity is maintained as old coal-fired and gas-fired power stations are closed. And, of course, the mere possibility that Labour might form the next government and implement its energy price cap is enough to deter the huge investment that the country needs right now. However, it is not so much the irresponsibility of Miliband’s promise that has upset so many in the industry as his disingenuousness. For why are energy prices at their current level? Overwhelmingly the rise in prices has been the result of government policies to decarbonise the economy, promote renewable energy production, phase out and not replace coal-fired power stations and cover the land of England and the seas around it with hundreds of hugely expensive wind farms. It is the decarbonisation agenda of the previous Labour Government (pretty much carried on by its Conservative/ Lib Dem successor) that has forced up energy costs and the bills of consumers. Without government carbon reduction programmes, electricity might be currently 30 to 50 per cent cheaper and gas 20 per cent cheaper. It is estimated that the Climate Change Act will cost taxpayers and consumers some £18 billion every year until 2050, at which point some even more extravagant programme will doubtless be initiated. And who, as Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change in the last Labour government, inflicted these costs upon us all? The very same Ed Miliband who now blames energy companies for rising prices.

Science without certainty It might not be so bad if all this extra cost were certain to produce a cleaner planet or save us all from being engulfed by rising seas or eaten by polar bears migrating south. But in fact no

matter how much money the UK and Europe pour into decarbonisation programmes, the difference to total global CO2 emissions even in 30 years’ time is likely to be too small to measure. Countries in the rest of the world will continue to rely on conventional power plants because renewable alternatives – wind, wave or solar – are, for them, impossibly expensive and inefficient. If we are serious about global CO2 reduction we need to concentrate resources on research into efficient, costeffective clean power generation technologies that all countries would be eager to adopt. There is, of course, a more fundamental question about the validity of the ‘science’ that justifies the whole decarbonisation agenda. This years’ IPCC report declared that it was now 95 per cent certain that human activity was responsible for at least half of global warming since 1951 – against a mere 90 per cent in its 2007 report. One may wonder how its authors achieve such precision when they have no explanation at all for the fact that global temperatures have not, in fact, risen at all for the last 15 years. Warming may have merely paused, not stopped, but what are we to make of climate models that completely failed to predict any pause yet claim near certainty for their predictions 50 years hence? And there is a deeper difficulty. It will be 50 years before we can know whether the IPCC’s climate predictions are accurate or not. But even then we will have no way of knowing what the climate at that point would have been like without greenhouse gas reductions or indeed increases. So we don’t know if they’re right now and we won’t know even then. What we do know is that today’s climate models are unreliable in their short-term predictions. Why should we believe that they are any better in the long-term? Surely we need better reasons for imposing billions of extra costs on the people of n the world. Industry Europe 3

CONTENTS Editor Peter Mercer

Production Manager Kamila Kajtoch

Deputy Editor Victoria Hattersley

Administration Anna Chamberlain Amber Dawson Kayleigh Harvey

Profile Writers Abigail Saltmarsh Felicity Landon Piotr Sadowski Emma-Jane Batey Barbara Rossi Philip Yorke

Art Administration Tania Balderson Advertising Manager Andrew Briggs Sector Managers Matthew Howe Milada Preslova Massimo Ragazzo Helen Leisi Mac McCarthy Anthony McClintock Ben Snowing Anna Dudek Stephen Moore Martin Gisborne Victoria Pease

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 4 5

Opinion Paying for power Bill Jamieson Oh, to break out of the euro bathtub... James Srodes Good news, bad news

Steel Industry 6

Cautious optimism for European steel

Demand begins to rise


Chemical news The latest from the industry

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 12 21 22

Marseille’s new museum American ash solution for spectacular roof

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

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

23 28

Innovative engineering solutions AIUT Chemistry and engineering: A successful marriage Rampf

Automotive 32 36 42 45

Electric vehicles driving growth Lear Corporation Driven by electronic innovation Meta System Taking care of your vehicle Ravaglioli Forging ahead with high-precision hand tools Unior

Building & Construction © Industry Europe 2013 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

48 54 58 62 66 73

Dynamic development Alutech Technology and art in steel structures Cimolai Building for a sustainable future KLH Massivholz The true all-rounder of construction specialists Lindner

Clever design Reynaers Building a sustainable future Skanska

Chemicals A Square Root Company


Colourful market leader Flügger

Consumer Goods

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

82 99 102 106 109

Leading the way in hygienic disposables Ontex A supermarket giant Tesco Fighting illegal trading Imperial Tobacco Science and style in children’s shoes Ivančica Design, comfort and value in contemporary furniture Forma Ideale

VOL 23/9

Above: Rocla p146

Electrical 112 115 118 123

Controlling the power ETI Group A breath of fresh air Elica Driving in the right direction Nord Motoriduttori High expertise in generators TES Vsetín


126 The healthy dairy alternative AGRO Danmis 130 The taste of nature EkoLukta

Forest Products

133 Continued growth for forest products leader Karl Hedin 136 In partnership with nature Spačva

Above: AIUT p23 Below: Alutech p48


139 Energy-efficient cooling Bonnet Neve

Above: Ontex p82 Below: Nord Motoriduttori p118

Materials Handling

142 Special solutions for offshore operations Kenz Figee 146 Innovation in automation Rocla

Measurement & Control

150 Constant innovation in linear technology Schneeberger


154 Special steels – a new dimension ABS


158 Underground solutions Normet

Below: Reynaers p66


161 Integrated single-source cable solutions Murrplastik 164 Total tooling T-Plasztik

Above: Murrplastik p161 Below: DSV p180


168 Sustainability in high performance fibre-based materials Ahlstrom


174 Continuous expansion for logistics leader Weberer’s Holding 180 Flexible logistics solutions DSV

Also in this issue...

184 Unlocking potential Axa Stenman 188 Creating value from waste IL Recycling 192 Creative glass solutions Yorim Industry Europe 5




Executive Editor of The Scotsman

Oh, to break out of the euro bathtub… Despite real progress the eurozone continues to bump along the bottom.


very so often debate on our economic prospects degenerates into alphabet soup as pundits argue about the shape of recovery. Will we see a quick revival – the classic V-shaped recovery? Or will it be more prolonged, like the letter ‘U’? Or might it even be a ‘W’ – an upturn followed by relapse followed by further recovery? Unsurprisingly, continental Europe does not conform to any of these. It is more akin to a ribbed-bottomed bathtub – a long period of flat-lining with only minor upturns and a genuine recovery a long way away. But we should be thankful for the progress achieved. The sense of epochal crisis that has hung over the eurozone for the past three years appears to have passed. And at least we have long-awaited clarity over two ‘hinge’ events. The eurozone is out of recession. After three years of austerity and six quarters (at least) of contraction and cost-cutting, the eurozone economy is finally growing. And the German general election has produced a clear and decisive winner. That holds out the prospect of progress ahead on those intractable issues of sovereign debt de-leveraging, additional financial aid for Greece and Portugal, and euro-wide banking regulation. But can the cheering begin? Prospects for UK exporters have certainly improved. But there is little sense of a clear road ahead on which recovery can proceed, still less optimism that the eurozone economy is finally out of that rib-bottomed bathtub. The news flow from Germany has pointed to problems ahead for Chancellor Angela Merkel in forming a coalition and that haggling could extend through November and beyond. It is also unlikely to result in a significant change in Germany’s euro policy, such as a softer line on austerity. Optimism that some clarity could emerge on the next stage of banking union due to be discussed at the November meeting of the Euro Group 6 Industry Europe

is now being tested. After that, there is only a small window of opportunity for passing new legislation as the European Parliament breaks in April, ahead of elections next May. Spain’s public finances remain chronic, and news that the country’s pension system will generate €36.5 billion of losses by the end of 2016 adds to the sense, not so much of unfinished business but business hardly begun. Italy has suffered renewed political instability and this is unlikely to disappear with the defeat of Silvio Berlusconi. And in the meantime, just how strong is that eurozone economic recovery and can it be kept on track? The latest European

In the periphery there are some signs that even in the housing market the worst is over. But in Italy and Spain a range of supply and demand factors are keeping bank lending very subdued for both households and companies. assessment by economists at global banking giant HSBC kicks off with one encouraging feature. For the first time in two years the revisions to its forecasts are upwards. However, they are modest. It expects the decline in eurozone GDP this year to be confined to 0.3 per cent and they still expect growth of just 0.8 per cent in 2014, compared with the European Central Bank’s 1 per cent prediction and HSBC’s previous estimate of 0.6 per cent. Moreover, those upgrades are largely a reflection of better growth in Germany.

Private sector debt The sober assessment of Lombard Street research economist Jamie Dannhauser is that the euro crisis is in abeyance and that underlying fragility, in particular the extreme level of private sector debt, defies complacency. His analysis is that the most egregious borrowing in the eurozone took place in the non-financial business sector. A ‘fat tail’ of exceptionally indebted business sectors, e.g. in Spain and Portugal, is clearly evident, while deleveraging across the single currency area “is largely a myth.” And here we hit the Catch-22 for the eurozone’s finance ministers. Balance sheet repair, says Dannhauser, is necessary for sustained growth to return. “But deleveraging is growth-destroying without powerful policy support: one or more of fiscal expansion, easy money and a cheap currency are required. All three are lacking in the eurozone. Sustained Japanese-style debt-deflation, a disaster for real assets, is a genuine threat.” The good news for the eurozone is that the deep consumer recessions are now largely behind it and that private sector employment growth appears to have turned the corner, helping to boost consumer confidence. However, HSBC points out it is also clear that growth in the second quarter was bolstered by stronger government spending, not only in the core but in the periphery. The latter, it warns, is set to go into reverse before the end of this year, putting question marks over the sustainability of a domestic recovery. In the periphery there are some signs that even in the housing market the worst is over. But in Italy and Spain a range of supply and demand factors are keeping bank lending very subdued for both households and companies. Weak growth and the potential for interest rate rises is not a combination likely to lift the eurozone out of that low growth n bathtub any time soon.




Veteran commentator on Washington & Wall Street

Good news, bad news The US deadlock means that something is being done about runaway government spending, but at what cost?


disagree with observers who assert that the deadlock in Washington between a rump group of Tea Party House members and the Obama White House is a dreadful thing. To my mind it is politics at its best. Although it may be more pleasant to watch, nothing good comes out of a political dynamic where one side does all the compromising and the other gets all that it wants. Indeed that was the way it was looking when Mr Obama was swept into a second term just a year ago. His Obamacare universal mandatory health care law was set to go into operation this year and the stage was set for him to advance an ambitious social agenda that ranged from immigration reform, to new gun ownership limits and to enhanced legal status for groups allied only by their alternative sexual preferences. The talk back then was about Obama’s ‘legacy’ – would it match that of John F. Kennedy or even Franklin Roosevelt? No more. Fewer than three dozen Congressmen who make up the radical conservative wing of the Republican Party have stymied all that by blocking any compromise on those fundamental tasks of any legislature: funding the government’s budget for the coming year, financing the deficits that those budgets habitually run, and – most critical of all – raising the statutory limitation on the amount of debt that the US Treasury can finance in the world’s bond markets to pay for those deficits.

At this writing that deadlock has led some parts of the federal government to shut down operations and furlough their civil servants. There is a widespread belief that some solution will be found even if it is a temporary one that allows the government to resume operations and the Treasury to honor its bond obligations on a short term basis. But assuming that both the Congress and the White House find a way, as they say, ‘to kick the can down the road’, that is in no way the end of the war between the Republicancontrolled House and President Obama and his Democrats. Compromise between the two forces is impossible. Mr Obama has nothing to offer by way of concessions and is adamant even if he had them. The Republicans, and not just the small Tea Party faction, are equally dug in because they think they are winning. The forgotten fact of life is that it was just such an impasse a year ago that led to the unintended ‘doomsday’ law known as ‘sequestration’, a series of mandatory budget cuts across the entire federal government that cuts as much as one trillion dollars from programs through 2016. That rollback came into being in January and Mr Obama has made no move to try to restore that spending in the current clash with the lawmakers. So to that extent, the Republicans have scored a major political success and as a bonus the sequestration cuts

have in fact begun to sharply curtail the very budget spending overruns that were projected.

Dangers of uncertainty But while there is relish in watching a good knock-down political brawl, especially if the big man in the fight (Obama’s Democrats) is being bloodied by the smaller chap, there are serious dangers for both the American economic recovery and the prospects for growth in the wider global marketplace. Uncertainty breeds instability. Even before the government shutdown occurred official economic estimates for growth in this final half of 2013 and for 2014 were sharply scaled back from already anaemic levels. For the rest of this year the old estimate had been for 2.0 to 2.3 per cent annual rate of growth for US gross domestic product (GDP). The new estimate is for 1.4 to 2.1 per cent GDP growth. For next year the pace slows from a 2.9–3.1 per cent expansion rate to 2.3–2.5 per cent. But now one must start subtracting from those shaky estimates because most economists agree that for each week that the federal government is not in operation, the cost to GDP is 0.15 per cent at an annual rate. The last shutdown in 1995–1996 lasted four weeks; this one could last through October and into November. Do the maths. This gloomy prospect has already knocked 2.7 per cent off the value of the US dollar against

the euro and there are even steeper penalties against other major trading currencies. In theory that might help American exporters except that these days most of those exporters get crucial commodities and other goods from abroad with the offsetting rise in import prices. Small wonder then that the International Monetary Fund, which religiously avoids criticising the domestic politics of member nations, has just cut its global growth outlook for the rest of this year by 0.3 percentage points to 2.9 per cent and next year by 0.2 percentage points to 3.6 per cent. The Fund blamed the budget impasse at both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue and the Federal Reserve’s mixed signals about whether it will or will not soon begin to ‘taper’ off its $85 billion a month injection of liquidity into the Treasury bond markets. There are political consequences for American politics too; none of them good. The Republicans are increasingly being blamed by the voters for the inconveniences of the government shutdown of social services. Mr Obama is increasingly being seen even by voters who re-elected him just 12 months ago as an ineffective ditherer. In a Parliamentary system it would be unlikely he could survive a vote of confidence these days. As it is, he is in danger of remaining a lame duck President through his term’s end in January 2017. That is not good for anyone n anywhere. Industry Europe 7

CAUTIOUS OPTIMISM FOR EUROPEAN STEEL The Europe editor of steel industry web-based magazine Steel First Naomi Christie takes a looks at the prospects for the steel industry in the coming year.


conomic recovery in Europe is beginning to raise demand for steel, causing European steelmakers to be cautiously optimistic. “I see the first signs of some green shoots in Europe,” managing director and CEO of steelmaking company Tata Steel Europe, Karl-Ulrich Koehler, said on 13 August at the company’s quarterly results conference. This followed the India-based parent company, Tata Steel, posting a 90 per cent year-on-year rise in profits for the quarter 8 Industry Europe

ended 30 June, on the back of stronger performance from its European operations, among other things. Tata Steel Europe owns steel mills in the UK and the Netherlands. Lakshmi Mittal, the chief executive officer of the world’s largest steelmaker, Luxembourg-based ArcelorMittal, believes the “lowest point in the cycle” for steel was the second quarter of 2012. “The second half [of 2013] should deliver a clear underlying improvement relative to

the second half of 2012,” he said in the company’s most recent results presentation. ArcelorMittal has mills across Europe including plants in France and Spain.

How well founded is this optimism about the steel sector? Looking to the global picture, the World Steel Association revised its forecast for steel use upwards in its short-range outlook published October 7. The association expects steel use to increase globally by 3.1 per cent this year

to 1.47 billion tonnes, and by 3.3 per cent in 2014 to 1.52 billion tonnes. This compares with forecast growth rates of 2.9 per cent for 2013 and 3.2 per cent for 2014 in the association’s previous outlook, published in April. But in Europe the World Steel Association paints a bleaker picture. Steel use in Europe is expected to contract by 3.8 per cent this year, a much worse forecast than the 0.5 per cent decrease expected in April.

Construction demand An important indicator for demand levels in the steel industry is the health of the construction industry. Construction accounts for over 50 per cent of finished steel use globally, according to the World Steel Association, and construction has been growing in some of the main steelmaking regions of Europe. In Germany, construction has grown for five consecutive months, according to the purchasing managers’ index (PMI) compiled by financial information services company Markit. Germany is Europe’s largest steelmaking nation, producing a quarter of EU27 crude steel in 2012. The UK, Europe’s fifth largest steelmaking nation at 6 per cent of production in 2012, has also seen growth in construction according to the PMI. “The third quarter of 2013 ended with output growth riding high [in the UK] amid greater spending on infrastructure projects and resurgent house building activity,” senior economist at Markit Tim Moore said. But the growth in construction has failed to translate into structurally higher prices for concrete reinforcing bar (rebar), which is one of the main steel-based products

in the construction industry. The price of rebar delivered in Northern Europe in the first ten months of 2013 has averaged €504 per tonne, down 6 per cent from €538 per tonne in the corresponding period of 2012, according to data from Steel First. The price of hot rolled coil, which is the a wholesale flat steel product used in the automotive sector and construction, has also been consistently down year-on-year. Most recently at €475 per tonne for delivery in Northern Europe, down 7.3 per cent yearon-year, according to Steel First data. European car registrations were at their lowest level since 1990 over January–August this year, according to the European Automobile Manufacturers Association (Acea), which partially accounts for the low price of flat steels.

Global overcapacity But the main cause of the continued weakness in steel prices is structural overcapacity. This is a problem not only in Europe, but also in the rest of the world. Overcapacity in the global steel sector is estimated at 300 million tonnes per year. Many industry players have called for a reduction in steelmaking capacity in Europe and worldwide. With the EU27 producing 169.4 million tonnes in 2012, the region is unable to address global overcapacity single-handedly. Nonetheless, Europe reduced its crude steel production by 5 per cent year on year over the January–August period of 2013 to 109.3 million tonnes. Sigurd Mareels, a director at the Belgian office for consultancy McKinsey & Co., added his voice to the issue of overcapacity at the World Steel Association annual

conference in Sao Paulo on 7 October as reported by Steel First. Growth in steel demand, as forecast by the World Steel Association, is not necessarily going to help boost steel prices, Mareels said. He argues that at current steel sector growth rates it would be years before the overcapacity in the system would be absorbed. Mareels suggested mill closures and consolidation in the steel industry among other things as ways to help address the overcapacity in the industry. In Europe the closure of steel mills is a deeply political issue. In Italy, Europe’s second largest steelmaking nation at 16 per cent of 2012 production, the government stepped in and took over management of Italy and Europe’s largest steel mill at Ilva, Taranto. The mill was previously managed by the family owned Riva company. The Taranto government seized Riva’s financial assets in May as part of compensation for pollution caused by the mill in the Taranto area. The government subsequently took management control of the mill. In early September the Taranto government took control of further financial assets, leading Riva to close seven other plants across the country. This was met with opposition from the Italian Steel Association, Assofermet. On September 23 the president of Assofermet’s ferrous scrap division, Romano Pezzotti, called for urgent action “to avoid the closure of thousands of businesses, which until today were healthy and fully functional.” By the end of the month Italian government officials, Riva Steel and bank representatives had agreed to reopen the plants, allowing 1400 workers to return to work. Industry Europe 9

In France, the third-largest steelmaking nation in Europe at 9 per cent of 2012 production, ArcelorMittal faced opposition from trade unions when it decided to close hot steel production at its Florange works in the north-east of the country. “The worst thing about this decision is that, once again, [chairman and CEO] Lakshmi Mittal has shown himself to be unwilling to have any kind of dialogue or structured debate about alternative solutions to such a drastic measure,” IndustriALL union deputy general secretary Bart Samyn told Steel First last year when the closure was announced. In Spain, Europe’s fourth largest steelmaking nation at 8 per cent of 2012 production, local government recently intervened in a proposed dismissal of the entire staff at the Siderrgica Balboa steelworks. The intervention managed to delay the plant owners Grupo Alfonso Gallardo, from proposing the dismissal of up to 400 workers Germany’s ThyssenKrupp recently agreed the terms for 1300 job losses through redundancy with its union IG Metall, after around seven months’ negotiation.

Consolidation moves Consolidation has also been explored by European companies. In the raw materials sector Germany’s scrap merchant and scrap trading company TSR Recycling has a policy of strategic expansion, which has led it to agree the purchase of an Interseroh scrap yard in Germany, and complete the purchase of a yard in Poland. The UK’s largest steel scrap merchant, European Metal Recycling, has also expanded by taking over five yards formerly owned by Sita UK. Electric arc furnace steel mills in Turkey, which use scrap as a raw material, are also considering vertical integration by purchasing scrap yards in the USA and Europe, according to Turkish Iron & Steel Producers Association secretary general Veysel Yayan. So while signs of economic recovery have buoyed steelmakers’ hopes, the steel industry is coming up from a low base, and faces a wide range of challenges before it n can return to full health. 10 Industry Europe



New developments in the Steel industry

Saint-Chély d’Apcher’s new €90 million continuous annealing line starts production T

he new annealing line at ArcelorMittal’s Saint-Chély d’Apcher site in France, announced in 2012, started production on 20 September. The new production line, unique in Europe, will develop new high value-added electric steels for the automotive, energy and industrial electric motors markets. To be used in appliances such as electric and hybrid cars and wind turbines that are required to meet strict environmental standards in terms of low energy consumption, the annealed products will be of the highest quality. “After two years of hard work, the new production line will allow the site to continue developing and innovating in the ‘high-tech’ steel market, and to maintain and consolidate Saint-Chély d’Apcher’s worldwide reputation in this market. So far, 23,000 tonnes have already been produced, with many more to follow,” said Joao Felix da Silva, ArcelorMittal Méditerranée CEO, on 20 September when start of production was officially announced. Visit:

Tata Steel’s lightweight armour steel can take a punch T

ata Steel has received orders for more than 200 samples of its perforated armour steel, which has been exported to a number of countries worldwide including Germany, France, the USA and India. This revolutionary armour steel, formerly

known as Super Bainite, has also undergone a number of design improvements and has taken on a new brand name, PAVISE™ SBS 600P. PAVISE™, which provides an efficient and cost-effective armouring solution for military vehi-

EVRAZ signs an agreement to sell the iron ore mining asset VGOK

US$12.4 million) to VGOK for the purpose of normalising the working capital of VGOK. Simultaneously with signing the sale agreement, VGOK and EVRAZ have executed a three-year agreement for the supply of iron ore concentrate from VGOK to EVRAZ ZSMK on market terms and a 10-year agreement for the processing by VGOK of certain EVRAZ NTMK’s by-products.


VRAZ plc has signed a binding agreement for the sale of its wholly-owned subsidiary EVRAZ Vysokogorsky Iron Ore Mining and Processing Plant to NPRO URAL for US$20 million consideration. In addition, EVRAZ has agreed to provide up to RUB400 million (up to approximately

cles, as well as for defended infrastructure such as watch towers or sangars, has now been tested up to STANAG Level 4 to create armour capable of resisting both small arms and heavy machine gun fire with armour-piercing projectiles. The ballistic performance of PAVISE™ – the way it deals with the effect of projectiles – is at least twice that of conventional rolled homogenous steel armour. The perforated design of the steel creates a large number of edges which disrupt the path of incoming projectiles, significantly reducing their potency. Henrik Adam, Tata Steel’s Chief Commercial Officer in Europe, said: “Tata Steel has spent significant effort developing this unique product and we are delighted with its performance. As a company we are well positioned to support the market, both in the UKand the wider European markets, and we look forward to receiving the feedback of all the companies currently testing PAVISE™.” Visit:

Located near the city of Nizhny Tagil, VGOK is one of the largest iron ore mining plants in the Urals region, Russia. It has three mines at the Vysokogorskoye, Yestuninskoye and Goroblagodatskoye iron ore deposits and owns ore processing facilities. In 2012, VGOK mined 4.6 million tonnes of iron ore. Visit: Industry Europe 11


New developments in the Steel industry

New Ruukki Ramor protection steel R

uukki is expanding its range of Ramor protection steels with a new Ramor 550 grade designed for ballistic protection. New Ramor 550 is six times harder and stronger than mild steel. Designed for applications requiring protection against explosions or ballistic threats, Ramor protection steels combine excellent ballistic properties with hardness and high strength. “Tested and certified Ramor 550 steel is ideal for armoured vehicles, military vehicles and equipment, safe rooms and other applications where structural weight saving is required without compromising on protection properties,” explains Jani Kastell, sales manager, Ramor at Ruukki. Visit:

Record breaking contract win for Vulcan


heffield Forgemasters’ specialist offshore design and engineering division, Vulcan SFM, has announced a triple record-breaking contract win. The contract, on behalf of Hyundai and Technip, is the largest won by Vulcan SFM. It will see delivery of the largest cast steel nodes ever made, for the world’s largest floating Spar gas production platform – the first of its type to operate in the Norwegian Sea. Vulcan SFM will deliver 12 ultra-large castings for the Spar, operated by Statoil ASA on behalf of the partners OMV, ConocoPhillips and Statoil, which will see service in the deep water Aasta Hansteen field off the coast of Norway. Paul Mockford, design director at Vulcan SFM, said: “The project to develop the Aasta Hansteen gas field requires the world’s largest Spar platform. The Aasta Hansteen Spar is the largest diameter Spar which has ever been built with a diameter of 50 metres and a total hull length of 198 metres, most of which is below the surface of the sea. With water depths of more than 4200 feet this is a deep water application and floating platforms are the only real option at these depths.” Visit:

Outokumpu provides stainless steel façade for China’s highest skyscraper


utokumpu has won a bid to provide stainless steel for the façade on Ping An Finance Center in Shenzhen, China. The skyscraper’s façade will be the largest stainless steel façade in the world. This contract demonstrates Outokumpu’s vast

12 Industry Europe

ThyssenKrupp Steel Europe to optimise management structure


he Supervisory Board of ThyssenKrupp Steel Europe AG has decided to realign the company’s management structure. The reorganisation is in connection with the optimisation program ‘Best-in-Class Reloaded’, under which Steel Europe is making a significant contribution to the profitability and strategic development of the group as a whole. Dr Heinrich Hiesinger, supervisory board chairman of ThyssenKrupp Steel Europe AG: “We are rigorously implementing our optimisation program to enable us to be successful in a continuing difficult competitive climate. We want to be best-in-class again. With the new management structure we have now taken the necessary steps for this.” Visit:

experience and advanced expertise in stainless steel. The building is expected to be finished in April 2016, with a height of 660 metres, and it is set to be the highest skyscraper in China and the second highest in the world. “In our substantive research on the bidders, Outokumpu stood out with its rich global experience and highly efficient

and customised products. Outokumpu’s vision of ‘a world that lasts forever’ and the mission of ‘creating long lasting and recyclable advanced materials’ perfectly match our vision of providing a sustainable landmark to the pioneering spirit of Shenzhen,” said the spokesperson for Ping An Finance Center. Visit:


Voestalpine opens stateof-the-art duo rolling mill V

oestalpine is improving its market position in the special steel segment with the opening of a state-of-the-art duo reversing rolling stand for the production of premium steel plates in Mürzzuschlag. This is the largest single investment thus far for the Special Steel Division at the Styrian plant of Böhler Bleche GmbH & Co KG, a voestalpine Group company. The company has invested a total of €11.6 million in this expansion, which will raise the annual production volume of premium materials to 26,000 tons in the future. “With the commissioning of the state-of-theart duo rolling mill in Mürzzuschlag, we are continuing to extend our value chain in the special steel field to include and engage our customers. The special features of the new rolling stand provide an enormous advance in quality and a significant increase in the capacity provided in Styria,” states Franz Rotter, head of the Special Steel Division. Visit:

New manager for Sweden within BE Group


Group has appointed Kalle Björklund as the new head of Business Area Sweden and president of BE Group Sverige AB. Kalle Björklund is currently marketing manager for the Business Area, which has, to date, been headed by CEO Kimmo Väkiparta. Kalle Björklund is 42 years of age and a graduate engineer in mechanical engineering from the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm. He has been employed by BE Group since

Salzgitter concludes ‘Pact for the Future’


he ‘Salzgitter AG 2015’ reorganisation project, launched in October 2012, is aimed at stabilising the Salzgitter Group’s competitiveness. Its goal is to adjust the structures and workflows of the group as a whole to the challenging conditions in the sales markets. Part of the program also

entails the intention of reducing the 25,000 jobs in the group by more than 1500. With a view to implementing personnelrelated measures, the executive board and employee representatives of Salzgitter AG, accompanied by IG Metall, conducted negotiations on a ‘Pact for the Future’ that have now been concluded. A viable business concept, taking account of the spe-

2008 in a number of different positions on the purchasing and marketing side. “Kalle has the background and experience necessary to lead BE Group Sweden forward,” says Kimmo Väkiparta, president and CEO of BE Group AB. “Together with the rest of the management team, he will continue developing the group’s offering and strengthening positions in the key Swedish market further.” Visit: cific market conditions that pose a threat to the company’s survival, was agreed for the Peine Trager sectional steel producing company. Peine’s production capacity was scaled back to one million tons a year, and more than 800 jobs will be safeguarded. Visit:

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MARSEILLE MUSEUM ROOF Thermally modified hardwood proves a sustainable alternative to tropical hardwood for Marseille’s spectacular new museum.


he Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations designed by the Algerian-born French architect Rudy Ricciotti is the flagship project of Marseille’s ongoing architectural and cultural renaissance. The museum is located on Marseille’s seafront next to a 17th century stronghold, Fort St Jean. Built upon the Greek and Roman vestiges of the antique city-state, the fort is charged with history and includes a chapel which dates back to the 12th century. Rudy Riciotti’s classic monolithic design is built around a perfect square; each side 14 Industry Europe

of the building is 72 metres. An inner square of 52 metres per side forms the heart of the museum and comprises the exhibition and conference halls. The inner structure, which is composed of steel and glass, has been covered with a delicate ornamental skin of filigreed concrete. The same innovative material has been used to create 308 tree-shaped pillars that stand at over eight metres high and form the vertical structure of the building. This patterned concrete skin opens the building to natural light and views of the sea allowing the marine atmosphere to pervade entirely the inside of the building.

Furthermore, the lace veil of concrete on the outside of the building creates intricate shadow patterns that can be seen as “a projection of the bumpy and irregular sea bed,” comments Ricciotti. He goes on to say his museum is, “open to the sea, to draw a horizon where the two shores of the Mediterranean can meet.” The museum is organised on three levels with an array of exhibitions, an auditorium and a bookstore. The rooftop is a particular feature and is set to become an iconic venue for the city with panoramic views of the sea and harbour. At night a lighting

scheme designed by Yann Kersalé creates a magical atmosphere with shades of blue and turquoise.

A wonderful setting to showcase heat-treated ash The top floor roof decking, which spans a width of 24 metres covering an area of 1600m2, is made from heat-treated American ash, supplied by Bingaman and Son Lumber Company in Pennsylvania, USA. The top deck sits along the pedestrian route running through the museum and across Marseille’s historic seafront, so with a constant flow of pedestrians a heavy duty decking solution was essential. “We asked the general contractor to come up with a decking solution that could withstand an average load of 250 kg/m²,” explains Tilman Reichert, the project architect. Eric Durand from Roofmart, the contractor in charge of supplying the heat-treated ash decking comments, “The architect was looking for solutions that would avoid him specifying tropical hardwoods; initially he wanted to try heattreated pine but was not happy with the results of the trials. The quality of the heat-treated ash we were delivered was first class. When the architect saw the samples he was won over both by the aesthetic appeal of ash with its characteristic grain but also its dimensional stability and long lengths (20 x140).” The thermal modification process uses a high temperature in a controlled environment permanently altering the wood’s chemical and physical properties. This limits the ability of the wood to absorb moisture, so products are more dimensionally stable and less prone

to cup, warp and twist with changes in humidity. The thermal modification process also removes the nutrients in wood that would otherwise provide a food source for insects and wood-destroying fungi. This increase in dimensional stability and decay resistance significantly extends the service life and reduces maintenance needs of the decking. Given its marine environment, the deck is highly exposed to weathering from the sun, rain and sea spray so will be monitored to assess its performance over time. Tilman Reichert, the project architect, comments: “We believe that ash with its long wood fibre will offer greater resistance to wear than pinewood.” The decking is laid on a traditional system of boarding joists to allow the insulation membrane directly under the wooden decking to be well ventilated. The boards were nailed not screwed which is visually more pleasing. AHEC European director David Venables says, “The Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations is a superb example of the use of newer technologies of hardwood durability enhancement. There’s a developing market for thermally modified hardwoods in Europe and this project publically showcases their potential. By processing wood produced from America’s well-managed hardwood forests, thermally modified hardwood provides a quality, environmentally friendly and sustainable alternative to imported tropical hardwood species.” The weight of the 24 metre-wide rooftop terrace contributes to stabilising the concrete pergola above it through a clever

system of stainless steel cables. The vast veil surrounding the terrace is made up with the same intricate filigreed concrete that covers the sides of the building. It rests on 15 metre-wide concrete cantilever beams that sit on top of the main vertical pillars of the building. On the outside of the building the cantilever beams carry the weight of the external ramps that lead up to the terrace through long stainless steel braces that span the whole height of the building. Stainless steel cables have also been fixed from the wooden deck to the cantilever beams which overhang above the terrace by four metres to stabilise the whole canopy structure above the terrace.

A walk through the history and aromas of the Mediterranean The roof terrace offers visitors an inclined walkway made up of 115 metres of bridges travelling out from the roof of the building and crossing the harbour basin. This links the museum to Fort Saint-Jean which hosts the main restaurant managed by local cooking celebrity Gérald Passedat. In time, the fort will house a further 15,000m2 of museum exhibition space. Furthermore the open public spaces around the fort have been redesigned to showcase a unique botanical collection of Mediterranean plants along a landscaped promenade. Another footbridge leads visitors to le Panier, the oldest and most traditional neighbourhood in Marseille with its n narrow streets and steep steps. Industry Europe 15


New contracts and orders in industry

Trelleborg awarded its largest ever offshore oil & gas order


relleborg has, through its business area Trelleborg Offshore & Construction, been awarded a contract to supply drill riser buoyancy modules (DRBMs) to one of the major leading drilling companies in the world. The order is the largest to date for the offshore operation of Trelleborg and is in the range of USD 50–60 M depending on final project scope. This order, together with other strategic orders recently awarded and a few pending, reinforces Trelleborg’s position as a leading global manufacturer within the subsea buoyancy market. “We are delighted about the contract, not only because we have the opportunity to

ABB wins substation order in Brazil


BB has won an order worth around $30 million from Furnas Centrais Elétricas SA to construct a new indoor transmission substation in downtown Rio de Janeiro to power the renowned Maracanã soccer stadium and the adjacent neighbourhood. “These compact substations will enable additional power supplies required during the forthcoming global sporting events being hosted by Brazil and will reinforce the transmission grid for the future,” said Brice Koch, head of ABB’s Power Systems division. ABB is to design, supply, install and commission a new indoor substation to replace a 40-year-old installation in Grajau, near the Maracanã stadium. Thanks to the compact footprint of the gas-insulated switchgear (GIS), the new higher-capacity facility can be built on the same plot of land as the existing substation. At 63 kilo-amperes, the substation will have the highest short-circuit current interruption level of any GIS substation in Brazil. ABB will also install IEC-61850 substation automation, control and protection systems. Visit:

Saxlund to deliver district heating plant to Ljusdal


axlund Bioenergy AB, a subsidiary of Opcon AB, the energy and environmental technology Group, has been awarded an order for delivery of the combustion part that constitute the heart of Ljusdal Energi’s new biomass fueled district heating plant. The order value amounts to around SEK 11 million.

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apply our advanced solutions for exploration and extraction of oil and gas in ever-deeper waters, but also because of the sheer scale and prestigious nature of the project itself. We expect this type of large and complex solution – requiring in-depth engineering and application know-how – to become more prevalent, going forward. It underlines our global reach as well as second-to-none capabilities within subsea polymer solutions,” says Fredrik Meuller, president of the Trelleborg Offshore & Construction business area. Visit:

Kalmar secures an order for 18 rough terrain container handlers K

almar, part of Cargotec, has gained an order to supply a further 18 rough terrain container handlers to the United States Department of Defense. Destined to replace older equipment, the Kalmar RT240s will be delivered to multiple military bases across the United States by the end of the year 2013. The customer currently operates 1246 Kalmar RT240 machines. The Kalmar RT240 provides exceptional performance, being able to handle containerised loads of up to 53,000lbs, across all types of terrain. Built to military standards, the RT240 has a proven ability to deliver a reliable materials handling solution, often in remote and challenging locations. Commenting on the order, Tim Crossno, executive vice-president and CFO at Kalmar Rough Terrain Center in Cibolo, Texas, said, “This is yet another endorsement of the quality of Kalmar’s solutions for rough terrain applications. The RT240 can quickly be made ready for The scope includes the delivery of boiler and furnace for the combustion of biomass, primarily moist biofuel like forest residues, woodchips and sawdust. Included in the scope is some materials handling equipment. Ljusdal Energi’s new district heating plant, which will work as base load in Ljusdal’s district heating network, will have an effect of 10 MW heat and will be delivered during spring/summer 2014.

operation, it is simple to service, maintain and fix in the field. A pre-existing parts agreement with the Defense Logistics Agency ensures that all replacement parts support requirements are optimised to precisely meet the customer’s needs.” Visit:

“Saxlund delivers first-class and welltested combustion technology, specially developed for this kind of application. We can offer of customers top quality tailormade solutions for high availability and efficiency ensuring a low life-cycle cost,” says Stefan Wallerman, managing director of Saxlund Bioenergy AB. Visit:


Balfour Beatty to construct Northwick Pipe Center in Park Hospital Emergency Department multi-million pound


alfour Beatty has been awarded a £14.4 million contract by the North West London Hospitals NHS Trust to construct a new Emergency Department at Northwick Park Hospital in Harrow. The pavilion style building will provide users with a new walk-in entrance, waiting area, and external drop off area; all with direct and level access to the car park.

Enclosed link bridges will connect the new building to other parts of the hospital including acute admissions, paediatrics, the Intensive Treatment Unit and operating theatres. A lower level will provide accommodation such as offices, seminar rooms and the main plant room. Balfour Beatty Engineering Services will deliver the M&E services installation package including modular services units, which are constructed off site, and help to provide high quality, pre-tested services. The modular construction method also helps to reduce installation times and improves safety over in-situ installation methods. The scheme will be constructed utilising Balfour Beatty’s latest Building Information Modelling techniques which enable stakeholders to view the building from a user perspective and in multidimensional detail before the build, and also help to minimise construction time and costs. Visit:

Schuler awarded major order from Turkey IN order to expand its Rail division, the Turkish company Karabük Iron & Steel Industry and Trade Inc. (Kardemir) has placed an order with Schuler worth over €90 million for a line to produce railway wheels. It represents the largest single order the press manufacturer has received in its 174-year history. “This order confirms our successful strategic diversification into promising market segments like Railway and underlines our high technological expertise,” stated Stefan Klebert, CEO of Schuler AG. With 4000 employees and an annual turnover of €660 million, Kardemir is Turkey’s oldest

Alstom secures a large contract in Saudi Arabia


lstom has secured another important contract in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia following its selection by lead contractor Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) to supply 4 x 720 MW steam turbine generator sets for the Shuqaiq project. The contract is valued at approximately €170 million.

steel manufacturer with an annual capacity of 3 million metric tons. The company is based in Karabürk, a town some two hundred kilometres north of Ankara. Turkey’s most modern integrated steel plant is located here with a wide range of equipment for processing raw materials into steel products. “We aim to make Karabürk the centre of Turkey’s railway industry,” stated Kardemir’s CEO, Fadil Demirel, on signing the contract. “With our high-quality steel, we are able to produce topclass forged wheels which meet the needs of a high-speed rail network.” Visit:

Alstom’s contract includes the engineering, manufacturing, supply and field services for all four steam turbines and generators, and will also include all direct control and auxiliary systems. The 2650 MW power plant will be located on the Kingdom’s western Red Sea coast and will be among the world’s most efficient facilities run on heavy fuel oil. With the Alstom machines at its core, Shuqaiq will

partnership with Lorne Stewart


ipe Center is delivering a major supply contract for Lorne Stewart plc as part of the final phase of a project to modernise accommodation for service personnel across the UK. The project is one of the largest new build and refurbishment schemes in the UK, worth more than £1bn over 10 years. Construction work started in 2003 and involves the upgrade and re-provision of bed spaces, together with utility and common areas and ancillary facilities across the country. Lorne Stewart’s contract for the final phase of work will run for around 18 months. It includes refurbishment of accommodation facilities at a number of sites and draws on products from across Wolseley UK’s range. Mechanical building services equipment and ancillaries will be supplied via strategically located Pipe Centre hub branches. Instead of multiple suppliers delivering products and materials to site via fleets of vehicles, the approach provides a single vehicle with a consolidated delivery across all product sectors. As well as big reductions in vehicle miles travelled, and resultant cuts in carbon emissions, the approach reduces road congestion, improves health and safety on site and provides a single point of contact for invoicing and administration. Visit:

help Saudi Arabia expand its generation base whilst minimising environmental impact. “We are proud to be selected by HHI for this project. This second substantial order for Saudi Arabia this year underlines Alstom’s leading position in high efficiency steam turbine technologies,” said Andreas Lusch, senior vice-president for Alstom’s steam business. Visit: Industry Europe 17


Combining strengths

ASSA ABLOY purchases Mercor’s fire doors business


SSA ABLOY has signed an agreement to acquire Mercor SA’s fire doors business. Mercor SA is a leading Polish manufacturer of security and fire doors in eastern Europe, with a strong position in its key domestic markets in Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. “I am very pleased to welcome Mercor SA’s fire doors business into the ASSA ABLOY Group. The acquisition represents another important step in our strategy to grow market presence in emerging markets,” says Johan Molin, president and CEO of ASSA ABLOY. “Mercor’s fire doors business is an attractive addition to the EMEA division, as part of our strategy to offer complete door opening solutions to our customers. It will also significantly reinforce our market position in eastern Europe,” says Tzachi Wiesenfeld, executive vice-president of ASSA ABLOY and head of the EMEA Division. The acquired business was founded in 1988 and is based in Gdansk, Poland with operations in Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Ukraine and export to several other European countries. The company employs 550 people. Visit:

Tzachi Wiesenfeld

Canadian acquisition strengthens Spiroflow’s global position Sandvik acquires TechnoPartner


piroflow Ltd, world-leading manufacturer of conveying and weighing systems, has strengthened its global offering with the acquisition of Canadian bulk materials handling specialist Control & Metering, based in Mississauga, Ontario.

MEDA acquires US respiratory company


eda has signed an agreement to acquire the US development company Acton Pharmaceuticals Inc., including the proprietary product Aerospan. Aerospan is an inhaler for the treatment of asthma that contains the active substance Flunisolide. The product is approved by the FDA and has shown in clini-

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The assets of Control & Metering were acquired through Spiroflow Systems, Inc, a wholly owned subsidiary of UK-based Spiroflow Ltd. The deal has not only facilitated the retention of many highlyexperienced personnel, but has also enhanced Spiroflow’s global position through ownership of Control & Metering’s patented Bulk Bag Filling and Discharging technology. Control & Metering was established in 1937, specialising in dry bulk solids handling equipment and systems. In the 1980s the company was one of the first in North America to manufacture bulk bag fillers and unloaders, pioneering technology taken for granted today. Spiroflow Ltd is a manufacturer of Flexible Screw Conveyors, Aero Mechanical Conveyors, Tubular Cable and Chain Drag Conveyors, Vacuum Conveyors, Bulk Bag Dischargers, Bulk Bag Fillers, Ingredients Handling and Weighing Systems. The company’s technical and engineering expertise has led to it develop an international reputation for an unrivalled range of products with state-of-theart control systems. Visit: cal studies to have a high deposition of active drug in the airways as a result of a built-in inhalation chamber (called a ‘spacer’). The launch of Aerospan is planned for the beginning of 2014. The total US market for inhaled asthma products containing a mono-corticosteroid is estimated at 2 billion USD. The use of spacers is increasing very rapidly. In some markets, more

Samtronic GmbH


andvik Venture has acquired the German company TechnoPartner Samtronic GmbH, (TPS), a manufacturer of scattering machines and double belt presses. The company’s core capabilities are reinforced Teflon belt-based double belt press machines. TPS offer consists of new equipment, feed/scattering units and service and spare parts. The acquisition further strengthens Sandvik’s position in the composites segment. In turn, this will strengthen Sandvik’s total customer offering and growth possibilities. In 2012, TPS had sales of approximately €13 million, with about 35 employees. The head office and manufacturing facilities are based in Göppingen, Germany. “The acquisition is in line with Sandvik’s longterm strategy for profitable growth. Through the acquisition, we intend to further develop and strengthen the global business for these products in the composites segment,” says Tomas Nordahl, president of Sandvik Venture. Visit: than one third of patients who use inhaled corticosteroids also use a spacer. Aerospan is the only product registered in the US market with a built-in spacer. “The acquisition of Acton is a unique opportunity to gain access to a newly registered product in the US market,” says Anders Lönner, CEO of Meda AB. Visit:

LINKINGUP Atlas Copco acquires US construction tools company

Collaboration between Sekisui Alveo and Mergon Automotive



tlas Copco, a leading provider of sustainable productivity solutions, has acquired Pneumatic Holdings Inc., a leading US provider of pneumatic light construction tools. Pneumatic Holdings, based in Santa Fe Springs, California, provides light pneumatic construction tools including paving breakers, chipping hammers, rivet busters and rock drills. The company has 16 employees and had revenue in 2012 of MUSD 10.8 (MSEK 73). The new legal owner is Atlas Copco Construction Mining Technique USA, LLC.

“The acquisition of Pneumatic Holdings strengthens our distribution and presence in the North American construction market,” said Nico Delvaux, president of Atlas Copco’s Construction Technique business area. Pneumatic Holdings’s main customer segments consist of contractors and rental companies within the construction industry. The company becomes part of the Construction Tools division in Atlas Copco’s Construction Technique business area. Visit:

Saab Seaeye acquires Hydro-Lek S

aab Seaeye, a wholly owned subsidiary of defence and security company Saab, has acquired Hydro-Lek Limited, a UK manipulator and tooling manufacturer for underwater vehicles. The acquisition strengthens Saab Seaeye’s product portfolio of remotely operated, autonomous and hybrid underwater vehicles with the ambition to further grow the company. Formed 20 years ago, Hydro-Lek is an established supplier of manipulators and tooling for the ROV industry and defence and research industries. The acquisition enables Saab Seaeye to leverage

SKF to acquire Kaydon Corporation


KF and Kaydon Corporation have agreed that SKF will acquire Kaydon in an all-cash transaction valued at approximately USD 1.25 billion, including USD 95 million of net debt. Tom Johnstone, SKF president and CEO, explains, “We have followed the development of Kaydon for a long time. They have a strong product portfolio, strong manage-

Hydro-Lek’s unique tooling capability to further increase its presence in the commercial ROV market as a complete underwater ROV supplier. 

 Hydro-Lek will be a fully owned subsidiary of Saab Seaeye Limited, which is part of the underwater systems operation within Saab’s business area Dynamics. 
 Hydro-Lek, located in Finchampstead Berkshire, UK has a workforce of approximately 25 employees and service a global base of offshore industry customers in Europe, US and Asia. Visit: ment and a solid financial performance and I am delighted that they will soon be part of the SKF Group. The complementary nature of their products and technologies, their geographical and customer presence and their manufacturing footprint will enable us to even better serve our customers and distributors in the industrial market worldwide. In particular this acquisition, combined with

ekisui Alveo, a manufacturer of polyolefin foams and Mergon Automotive, a specialist in technical moulded parts, have signed a collaboration agreement. The objective is the joint development of PO foam air ducts for the automotive industry. The focus is the development of a special manufacturing process. In addition, new standards for weight savings and reduction of assembly components are to be implemented in the early development phase. The agreement between Sekisui Alveo and Mergon envisages investment in a series of prototype moulds. They will develop solutions for current and future vehicle models. Mergon Automotive specialises in the production of air ducts for automotive interiors, for example in instrument panels and centre consoles. As part of the new collaboration Mergon Automotive will invest into equipment to enable the production of these parts using the vacuum twin-sheet process. Following the development and fabrication of the prototype moulds it is planned to trial thermoforming of the prototype air ducts in order to fine tune the moulds to the foam. This is done at Sekisui Alveo’s in-house Application Service Laboratory in Lucerne, Switzerland. Visit:

our other activities, investments and acquisitions in the last few years, shows our strong commitment to the North American market.” Kaydon is a diversified industrial manufacturer with three distinct business areas: friction control products (bearings), velocity control products and speciality products, including environmental services. Visit: Industry Europe 19



Relocations and expansions across Europe

Audi to produce in Brazil CHOMARAT opens new

plant in the United States


Prof. Rupert Stadler, chairman of the board of management, Brazilian State president Dilma Rousseff


UDI AG is creating additional capacity for the next stage of the company’s growth. As of 2015, the Ingolstadt-based automobile manufacturer will produce cars in São José dos Pinhais, Brazil. The new Audi Q3 and the new A3 Sedan are to drive off the assembly line. By 2015, the company intends to invest around €150 Mio. to prepare for production at the site in São José dos Pinhais in the federal state of Paran·. As a first step, Audi will produce the new A3 Sedan here starting in 2015. A few months later, the Audi Q3 will also drive off the assembly line in Brazil. By 2016, Audi will also put a new automobile plant into operation in Mexico. With the new plants in Brazil and Mexico, Audi is consistently preparing for further growth worldwide and in particular on the South American continent. Visit:

TMAT invests to meet record demand


MAT Ltd – the multi-national manufacturer of acoustic components for tractors and excavators whose customers include JCB and Volvo – is to invest a third of a million pounds in tooling to meet record demand. A successful summer of sales has seen an unprecedented 15 projects – 10 supporting the agricultural sector; and five supporting the construction industry – come to fruition for TMAT at once. TMAT MD Jason Lippitt said: “The investment has been to meet an immediate requirement and due to the record levels of interest and sales we’ve had over the summer.” Visit:

Volvo Car Group receives approval for manufacturing in China


hinese government authorities have approved Volvo Car Group’s establishment of manufacturing plants in Daqing and Zhangjiakou. The assembly plant in Daqing is under construction and the first pre-series cars will be built in late 2013 for training

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rench family-run company CHOMARAT, a specialist in textile reinforcements for composites, is continuing to develop its advanced composites and carbon activities with the opening of a new 58,500-ft plant in South Carolina. The plant will be dedicated to the development of CHOMARAT’s advanced composite activities. It will open during the first quarter 2014 and start producing its first C-PLYTM spread multiaxial reinforcements mid-year. The South Carolina site will initially be equipped with the new LIBA MAX5 100-inch machine (variable width) for producing spread-tow carbon multiaxials. It will be the second liba max 5 machine operated by the group, following the one installed in France. These new capabilities will enable CHOMARAT to propose its innovative advanced composite solutions in the North American industrial, automotive and aerospace markets. Visit:

TECNATOM – METALSCAN opens new premises


Friday 11th October Javier Guerra, CEO of TECNATOM, and Bruno Lebrun, CEO of METALSCAN, officially inaugurated the new premises of TECNATOM-METALSCAN, the French leader in non-destructive testing. Relocating the group’s factory and headquarters, TECNATOM has invested more than €2 million in this site. Located in the Business Park Val de Bourgogne (Municipality of Saint Loup de Varennes, Saùne-et-Loire) on the territory of the Grand Chalon, the new premises, with an area of 3000m2, fully meets the two company objectives: to unite all services in one place and to provide additional space for developing activities. TECNATOM-METALSCAN works with leading contractors in the fields of Aerospace, Energy, Industry, ‘Tube & Pipe’, Rail and Petrochemicals. METALSCAN is part of the Spanish group TECNATOM. Visit:

purposes. The plant is forecast to be fully operational in 2014. The engine plant in Zhangjiakou will become operational during the autumn of this year and will deliver engines to Volvo Cars’ manufacturing plant in Chengdu, where serial production will start in the fourth quarter of 2013. Zhangjiakou will also supply the assembly plant in Daqing.

The plants in Daqing and Zhangjiakou will be operated in the form of two joint venture companies, in which Volvo Cars initially will hold 30%. The remaining part will be held by companies within Geely Holding Group. The Chengdu plant will be operated under an extension of an already existing production I Holding company. Visit:


INDUSTRYPEOPLE New MD for James Dawson & Son


ames Dawson & Son Ltd – the engineer of bespoke advanced silicone and organic rubber products, whose key customers include Caterpillar, JCB and Cummins – has appointed Paul Edwards as its new managing director. Paul joined James Dawson & Son as Sales & Marketing director in 2009 with the remit to rebuild the company’s order book and strengthen customer relationships. Having successfully rebuilt and developed the sales team, James Dawson & Son – a division of the FTSE 250-listed Fenner Group – has chosen Paul as the person to lead the business into an exciting new period that includes further global growth and significant investment in R&D.

New head of Engineering at Mercedes-Benz Vans


Jörg Zürn, 55, will become head of Engineering at MercedesBenz Vans from November 2013. Zürn has worked at Daimler since 1984. From 2003 to 2005, he was responsible for Engineering and Procurement at Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation (MFTBC). Since the end of 2005, Zürn has been responsible for Truck Product Engineering Heavy Duty/Medium Duty Cab over Engine at Mercedes-Benz. In his position as chief engineer, he was most recently responsible for the new Actros, Antos, and Arocs heavy-duty trucks.

RMI appoints European Industrial Sales Manager Sika appoints new chief technology officer


wiss speciality chemicals company Sika has appointed Thomas Hasler as its new chief technology officer and a member of group management effective 1 January 2014. Thomas Hasler joined Sika in 1989, starting his career as a chemist working in sealing and bonding. In 1995 he moved to the business segment Automotive, where he held various management positions in Europe and North America. For the past three years, Thomas Hasler has been head of Global Automotive. In this position, he implemented an efficient worldwide organisational structure for Sika’s automotive business, while at the same time growing the business significantly.

EADS announces top management nominations


ADS has announced three further top management nominations for its new Airbus Defence & Space Division, which will become operational in 2014. Pilar Albiac-Murillo (60), currently Cassidian’s chief operating officer and CEO of Cassidian Spain, will be executive vice-


adislaus Strompf has been appointed as the new Industrial Sales Manager for Europe by RMI Pressure Systems, a global leader in the supply of high-pressure and high-volume fluid pumping stations. Ladislaus will take responsibility for business development within the European markets with a specific focus on the steel industry where RMI’s pump systems have a proven track record. He will be based in Krumbach, Germany, though much of his work will be field based. Ladislaus Strompf comments: “My role at RMI gives me a unique opportunity to work with a world leader in my chosen field during a period of growth and expansion. RMI is well known for producing reliable pumping systems which offer significant benefits to many applications in many different industries.”

president Operations for the new division. She will lead the transformation process of Airbus Defence & Space. Christian Scherer (51), currently chief sales officer and head of International Operations within Cassidian, will become executive vice-president Sales & Marketing for Airbus Defence & Space. Lars Immisch (46), currently head of Compensation and

Benefits within the EADS/Airbus Human Resources organisation, will be the new division’s executive vice-president for HR.

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Advances in technology across industry

Demonstrating wave power in France DSM launches


ortum, DCNS and AW-Energy have signed a development agreement in wave power research and development with the support of La Règion Bretagne. As part of the agreement, the companies will develop a joint 1.5MW wave power demonstration project. The wave power technology chosen for the project is WaveRollerô. Fortum will be responsible for the project development and will be the owner of the demonstration park. DCNS will manage the site development and construction work. The WaveRollerô technology chosen for this project was developed by AW-Energy and is extensively patented. At the cutting edge of wave power, the WaveRollerô offers huge perspectives on an international scale. “This demonstration project is an ingenious European industrial match combining the best of Finnish and French expertise in renewable energy. For the very first time, we can now bring

together Fortum’s expertise in CO2 free power production, DCNS industrial expertise in marine energy, AW-Energy’s technology solution and the commitment of La Règion Bretagne. Together, we can truly create new renewable energy for Europe,” declared Matti Ruotsala, Fortum’s executive vice-president, Power Division. Visit: -

Creating electricity with caged atoms


lot of energy is wasted when machines turn hot, unnecessarily heating up their environment. Some of this thermal energy could be harvested using thermoelectric materials; they create electric current when they are used to bridge hot and cold objects. At the Vienna University of Technology (TU Vienna), a new and considerably more efficient class of thermoelectric materials can now be produced. It is the material’s very special crystal structure that does the trick, in connection with an astonishing new physical effect; in countless tiny cages within the crystal, cerium atoms are enclosed. These trapped magnetic atoms are constantly rattling the bars of their cage, and this rattling seems to be responsible for the material’s exceptionally favourable properties. ‘Clathrates’ is the technical term for crystals, in which host atoms are enclosed in cage-like 22 Industry Europe

spaces. “These clathrates show remarkable thermal properties,” says Professor Silke Bühler-Paschen (TU Vienna). The exact behaviour of the material depends on the interaction between the trapped atoms and the cage surrounding them. “We came up with the idea to trap cerium atoms, because their magnetic properties promised particularly interesting kinds of interaction,” explains Bühler-Paschen. For a long time, this task seemed impossible. All earlier attempts to incorporate magnetic atoms such as the rare-earth metal cerium into the clathrate structures failed. With the help of a sophisticated crystal growth technique in a mirror oven, Professor Andrey Prokofiev (TU Vienna) has now succeeded in creating clathrates made of barium, silicon and gold, encapsulating single cerium atoms. Visit: article/8391/

solutions in advanced thermoplastic composites


oyal DSM, the global Life Sciences and Materials Sciences company, is launching a custom-made solution for structural and semistructural applications, incorporating various types of continuous fibre reinforcements embedded in its advanced polyamides. Together with several industry partners, DSM has developed advanced thermoplastic composites, which are initially aimed at the automotive industry. “Car makers around the world continue to improve the fuel efficiency and sustainability of their products,” says Rein Borggreve, Global Research and Technology director at DSM. “Over the years, thermoplastics have provided various solutions, in the form of lightweight components and systems in the passenger compartment, in bodywork, and under the hood. DSM materials have proven important in making this trend to replace metal by plastics possible, in such applications as the air bag system and the oil sump. Now it’s time for the next step, with advanced thermoplastic composites.” Composites containing carbon fibers, based on DSM’s EcoPaXX® polyamide 410, Akulon® polyamide 6 and Stanyl® polyamide 46, will facilitate significant weight reduction in automobile body and chassis parts, while glass fibre reinforced composites will be targeted at reducing the weight of semi-structural components. In all cases, the lightweighting will result in increased vehicle fuel efficiency and reduced emissions of carbon dioxide. Visit:



France Ian Sparks reports from Paris on plans to ‘reindustrialise’ France.


rench President Francois Hollande has unveiled plans for a ‘third industrial revolution’ by injecting €3.5 billion into 34 key sectors and creating 470,000 new jobs. The grandiose-sounding ten-year plan has been described as an ‘offensive strategy’ aimed at cutting France’s record ten per cent unemployment and revitalising the nation’s image as a leader of world manufacturing. The president’s ‘wing-man’ in the ambitious project is his controversial industry minister Arnaud Montebourg, who has been repeatedly blamed this year for his hostile attitude and highly public spats with hard-nosed foreign investors like the Arcelor Mittal steel conglomerate and US tyre giant Titan. Critics have also said the government should avoid giving grants for specific industries and instead help all industries with permanent tax breaks. Mr Hollande’s 34 priority areas for growth include investment in electric cars and electric planes, a new generation of high-speed trains as well as handouts to the food, biotechnology and digital sectors. He also wants to catch up with Germany in the field of industrial manufacturing robots, saying France had 35,000 in use compared to the German’s 150,000. But the president has delighted the French employers federation MEDEF with the promise of a six per cent rebate for companies on some payroll taxes and labour reforms that make it easier to fire employees or reduce wages. The money will be handed out by France’s new Public Investment Bank, but the plan will also rely heavily on private investment, with officials saying they hoped to match every euro of public money invested with ten euros raised from the private sector. Stateappointed ‘industrial officers’ would then coordinate the grants to spur growth in the chosen industries.

Announcing the scheme in September, Mr Hollande said: “In previous centuries and decades, France developed technologies from the steam engine to hot-air balloons and rechargeable batteries. We are a nation of inventors, pioneers and producers, and we have a duty to remain so. “We must show the world that quality is not only German, technology is not only Japanese, innovation is not only American and competitiveness is not only Chinese. The third industrial revolution will also happen in France.” Pierre Gattaz, the president of the employers’ organisation MEDEF, said: “This initiative should be warmly welcomed. However this ambitious plan will fail if fiscal, social and regulatory conditions in our country are not improved in the coming weeks. The president must follow through with his pledge to lower labour costs, simplify the rules and liberate our companies.” Mr Hollande’s project is also being viewed as a reaction to the latest grim figures that revealed France’s economy had no growth in 2012 and shrank by 0.8 per cent in the first three months of 2013. Unemployment is already at a 30-year high of 10.5 per cent and forecast to rise to 11.6 per cent next year.

Labour costs are the key Industry minister Mr Montebourg was recently accused of contributing to France’s unemployment with his aggressive approach to foreign companies seeking to invest in France, threatening in May to close down every Arcelor Mittal steel operation in France, which employ 20,000 people, if the Britishbased billionaire owner Lakshmi Mittal axed a loss-making steel plant in Florange with the loss of 630 jobs. French daily Le Figaro wrote: “Mr Montebourg’s spats with international companies are making France look like an increasingly

unappealing place to do business. Perhaps, in fairness to Montebourg, he is not so much the problem, but the symbol of it. Quite simply, it costs bosses too much to hire workers to make things that cost too little.” Economist Elie Cohen, of the prestigious Science Po university in Paris, added: “The goal of re-industrialisation is a perfectly legitimate goal. The only question to ask for France is whether it’s too late. I believe it’s probably too late.” Air France, meanwhile, has announced plans to revive its ailing fortunes without any state handouts by slashing almost 8000 jobs from its 69,000-strong workforce in a massive drive to return to profitability. The deep restructuring plan, combined with ‘wage moderation’, is aimed at putting the whole Air France-KLM group back into the black by the end of the year. Air France, which merged with Dutch carrier KLM in 2004, has been in difficulties since 2009, hit along with other European airlines by low growth in passenger numbers, high fuel costs and competition with low-cost carriers such as Easyjet and Ryanair. In September, the number of passengers carried by the entire group rose by 0.7 per cent, but freight traffic fell sharply by 4.1 per cent. Air France-KLM chief executive Alexandre de Juniac said: “The staff are involved in an enormous plan. We have asked them to make a considerable effort. They have increased their working hours, they have increased their time in the air, they have changed their work methods. “Air France-KLM should make money from 2013 and Air France should do so in 2014, which means that we will have the means for development, to open new routes, notably in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Air France is in the process of being saved but we have to do what we have said we will do to achieve that.” n Industry Europe 23



Germany Allan Hall reports from Berlin on the remarkable success of Angela Merkel.


here is only one story in Germany at present – perhaps in Europe – and that is the incredible election result achieved by Chancellor Angela Merkel at the end of September. She was the only European leader not to become a casualty of Europe’s unending financial crisis and now faces the mighty task of confining it to its grave once and for all. While victory at the polls may have been tempered by a catastrophic showing from the liberal FDP party with which she has ruled the country for the past four years, Germany Inc. remains under the stewardship of a remarkable woman. She steered her conservative CDU party to its best electoral showing in two decades and, although she will now have to forge an alliance with the politically polar opposite SPD ‘Labour’ party, Mrs Merkel remains at the helm of Europe’s mightiest economy. Mrs Merkel’s CDU party scored 42.5 per cent of the vote from among the 62 million Germans who went to the polls. After shepherding Germany through the debt turmoil, Mrs Merkel went into the race more popular than ever, portraying herself as a safe pair of hands as the crisis claimed leaders in France, Greece, Italy and Spain. And the voters believe her. Their endorsement gives her a mandate like no other offered to German chancellors in recent times. Her countrymen like her austerity blueprint for countries like Greece, like her management style which has protected Germany from the worst effects of the financial crisis and her determination to project German power once more. Second only in terms of influence in the west today to only Barack Obama, her triumph was trumpeted on the influential magazine Der Spiegel’s website as heralding a new ‘Era of Merkelism’ in Europe while the populist Bild newspaper said: “It’s a phenomenal victory for the woman whom 24 Industry Europe

the majority of Germans trust – and only that seems to have counted at the ballot box. Taxes, justice and the euro weren’t the decisive factors. This question was: Who do people trust to rule calmly, sensibly and with strong nerves?”

Connecting with the people But just WHY is she so popular with ordinary voters? The daughter of a Protestant church minister, who was born in West Germany in 1954, but went east behind the wire later that same year when her father’s job took him there, has managed to connect with voters in a way not seen in decades, crossing party lines to convince them that she is best placed to look out for their interests. She was schooled under the communist system of the old East Germany, and stood out at arithmetic, winning a medal at the ‘maths Olympics’ held to promote the brightest children in the Eastern Bloc. After school she studied at Leipzig, one of the top universities in the East and went on to become a research scientist before moving into politics. The Stasi, the all-pervasive, sinister secret police, approached her to spy on fellow students. Merkel makes clear that she refused, and certainly nothing has ever been found in the miles of decaying paperwork left behind by the agency to prove otherwise. But it was after the collapse of communism and German reunification that her career took off. She became the protègè of former Chancellor Helmut Kohl, and with his sponsorship of ‘Das Maedchen’ – The Girl – as he called his young party colleague, her future success was assured. She has become the first female German chancellor, the first from the former communist east, and was the youngest person to hold the office when she assumed it in 2005. Having got her foot into the door of the all-white, all-male leadership of the CDU

conservative party, she intended to keep it there. While maintaining a down-to-earthness that endears her so much to the voters, she developed the political wiles of Tony Blair at his best. Critics accuse her of being a slave to the soundbite and next headline, switching policy from day to day and theme to theme if it suited her. But she stayed the course, and stayed strong, on the euro and that is now reaping benefits for both the currency and her own political capital. Although sometimes compared to the late Lady Thatcher as an ‘Iron Lady-Lite’, Mrs Merkel wrought no political revolution in her country; rather she gave her supporters confidence that the good days, like the days of the ‘economic miracle’ in the 60s and 70s, could once again return. The Sueddeutsche newspaper summed it up thus: “They see Merkel as the representative of an enlightened liberal conservatism that doesn’t shy away from recognising same-sex marriage. Merkel has mastered many roles. “In the euro crisis – and this was her biggest role so far – she gave a masterful performance as the thrifty housewife who keeps the money together. Many Germans like that. And she has turned the exercise of power into an unspectacular affair. That, too, appeals to many Germans. In that way, she has ensured that the modest achievements of her governing coalitions didn’t damage her popularity.” Merkel is the only political leader who has had a Barbie doll made of her. When it was unveiled at a toy fair in Nuremberg, the company’s vice-president claimed: “For 50 years Barbie has inspired girls to believe they can be anything, and Chancellor Merkel certainly brings that message to life for girls worldwide.” If it carries on like this, it will soon be statues and not dolls that are erected in n her memory.

INNOVATIVE ENGINEERING SOLUTIONS AIUT Ltd is a successful Polish engineering company, established in 1991, providing services and complete technical solutions in the fields of automation, telemetry, process control and IT systems. The company’s turnover for 2012 reached PLN 80 million, which was an impressive 30 per cent increase on the previous year. Piotr Sadowski reports


runon Gabryś, the company’s president, describes his enterprise as three operational units in one. “Industrial automation and electrical solutions form the core of our activities, as they generate over 80 per cent of our income,” says Mr Gabryś. “This area of work clearly determines the success of the company and gives impetus for our growth. Not withstanding, we are also well-known for our telemetry systems, both in Poland and increasingly abroad, as well as for our work on IT solutions.” It is also important to note that AIUT is a very flexible business which focuses on imple-

menting innovations in areas which show the strongest market demand and dynamics. “This certainly helps us perform well even in times of the current crisis, enabling us to continuously expand our staff base, which is now made up of over 200 people, which includes many highly-qualified young engineers,” adds Mr Gabryś.

Working with a diversity of clients In 2008 the company moved to its new headquarters located in the Katowice Special Economic Zone, which gave major impetus to the company, its staff and also

clients. AIUT has been extensively developing its offer and today boasts a very impressive portfolio of customers. “In automation, we work closely with automotive industry leaders, such as Opel, Volkswagen, BMW, end clients who list us as their official suppliers,” explains the company’s president. “It is the automotive industry where I expect to see the strongest dynamic in the current year. In automation we also work with other leading business names, such as ABB or Siemens, and we act as subcontractors to general contractors in new investment projects taking place in such

industrial sectors as energy, cement, foundries or biogas. It is often the case that we start off participating in a project in Poland and then, recognised for our effectiveness, efficiency and innovation, we are invited to work with the same general contractors on investment initiatives taking place across export markets.” AIUT also cooperates with many end customers in the telemetry sector, ffor which it delivers cutting-edge systems for remote measurement of the consumption of LPG, water and heat, gas etc. The company is the leading Polish supplier of such solu-

tions on the domestic market, working with clients such as GASPOL and is now also gradually increasing its presence on export markets. It also ensures its ongoing participation in related trade fairs, such as the important LPG Forum which is attended by many international businesses. “We are working on pilot projects in the UK, where our currently biggest contract is being implemented, Ireland and Denmark, as well as the Middle East, with clients in Qatar and the United Arab Emirates,” says Mr Gabryś. “Telemetry is a relatively new industrial area and it takes a while for customers to actually

realise the immense logistical and planning, and thus cost-saving, benefits of telemetric systems. Nevertheless, it is a very exciting and promising area and we have strong ambitions for growth in this sector. We also work with leading brands such as IBM in our third activity sector, IT systems, which completes our wide-ranging offer.”

Ongoing investment As a dynamic and growing company, able to perform well even in times of economic downturn, AIUT and its management realise the need for continuous investing in all areas

- a global supplier of supply sources. The main activity: • Battery packs design • Production and assembling • Supplier of cells and batteries (nickel-cadmium Ni-Cd, nickel-hydride Ni-Mh, lithium-ion Li-Ion and NMC, lithium-polymer Li-Poly, lithium-manganic Li-Mn2O4, lithium-iron-phosphate Li-FePO4, alkaline cells, 3,0V and 3,6V lithium cells, maintenance free lead-acid batteries in AGM and gel technologies) • Authorized supplier for armed forces and NATO • Integrator and contractor of photovoltaic systems

WAMTECHNIK Sp. z o.o. | 24, Zawodzie STR | 02-981 Warszawa | Poland Tel: +48 22 701 26 00 | Fax: +48 22 701 26 01 | E-mail:


Wamtechnik Sp. z o.o.

TURCK is a leading manufacturer in the field of industrial automation.

Wamtechnik Sp. z o.o. was founded in 1992 as a Polish-German joint venture company. We started assembling battery packs for Polish

With more than 3,200 employees working in 27 countries and repre-

producers of emergency lighting and metering equipment. Today

sentatives in further 60 states, the family owned enterprise achieves

Wamtechnik is a well-known producer of power supply systems and

a turnover of approx.. 430 millions euro in 2012. With a wide range of sensors, fieldbus, interface, connectivity and RFID products, TURCK offers highly efficient solutions for factory and process automation. The company has continued to set new standards with superior products such as the RFID solution BL ident, revolutionary uprox®+ sensors

battery packs, designed and produced by our specialists. Our product is used worldwide in devices demanding portable sources of energy, mainly in power tools, medical and measuring equipment, electric vehicles and battery backup. We design and produce power supply systems based on the newest technology. Our production plant of approx. 2,000 sq metres, the

without reduction factor or ultra-compact and modular fieldbus and

biggest one of this kind in Poland, provides workplaces for over 100

remote I/O systems, also for use in explosion hazardous areas. With

employees. Our offer consists of:

production sites in Germany, Switzerland, USA, Mexico and China, today

- battery packs assembling

TURCK succeeded in adapting to the conditions of local markets.

- distribution of batteries and cells: nickel-cadmium Ni-Cd, nickel-hydride Ni-Mh, lithium-ion Li-Ion and NMC, Lithium-

“We have been working with AIUT for 10 years. We’ve realized together

polymer Li-Poly, lithium-manganic Li-Mn2O4, lithium-iron-

many domestic and European projects in different industries. TURCK

phosphate Li-FePO4, alkaline cells, 3,0V and 3,6V lithium cells

products are also applied in AIUT’s telemetry device. AIUT is our strate-

- distribution of: maintenance free lead-acid batteries in AGM

gic partner” – said Piotr Glinka, Managing Director of TURCK Poland.

Find out more at:

and gel technologies, fixture, cables and connectors - photovoltaic systems: modules, inverters and controllers, PV power stations, ready to use photovoltaic sets, photovoltaic and hybrid lamps, components for PV systems.

of its activities. The company has already purchased an additional plot of land where a new warehouse will be erected. This will enable it to convert the current storage facility into a brand new extension of the production hall. “I expect this will happen in two to three years’ time,” predicts Mr Gabryś. In term of staff, we continue to employ new people and really focus on young engineering graduates, as well as engineering students in their last years of university, offering them an opportu-

nity of gaining work experience and training. It is really important as the areas of our activities are directly linked to innovation generated by sharp, creative and well-educated engineers. I must point out that there many opportunities for engineers nowadays and it is a shame that there is a tendency for young people to avoid higher education in engineering.” As previously explained, AIUT also realises the need to continuously expand its offer of products and services – for example, in

automation, it now offers individual appliances, complete work stations as well as full production lines composed of robotic devices. “While the domestic market remains the primary geographical area of our work, we will nevertheless continue expanding across Europe, followed by the Middle Eastern markets,” concludes Mr Gabryś. “Our ongoing development will be generated by organic growth, which offers the strongest potential for further n expansion of the business.”

Put your money where the future lies: The Innovation Centre of the Rampf Group in Grafenberg is used mainly for laboratories and application technology. The group companies Rampf Tooling and Rampf Giessharze, which are also based in Grafenberg, are thus able to cater even more specifically to customer requirements.


A SUCCESSFUL MARRIAGE The German company Rampf sells components for tool, plant and machine engineering, polyurethane castings and mineral casting machine beds to OEMs and Tier 1 companies in the most diverse industries worldwide. Marco Siebel speaks with CEO Michael Rampf. No crevices, no edges: The 1:1 close contour cast of an automotive model made from Rampf Tooling’s RAKU-TOOL® Close Contour products continues to set new standards in model and mould making.


he company history of Rampf may not be all that long, but this makes it all the more impressive. Founded in 1980 by Rudolf Rampf, the one-man operation quickly developed into one of the leading development partners and system suppliers for customised solutions in reactive casting resins, processing technologies and machine systems. In 2011, company founder Rudolf Rampf retired from active operational management and handed over responsibility for the RAMPF Group’s business operations to his sons Michael and Matthias. This strongly characterises the corporate philosophy of the company: “We place great emphasis on ensuring the

‘Discover the future’: The company works from modern laboratory facilities. Thinking outside the box and developing innovative solutions are key priorities.

sustainability of our business activities and our independence as a family-run company,” Michael Rampf says. “The corporate culture established by our father, which embodies a passion for innovation, entrepreneurial drive, fairness, a down-to-earth approach and total commitment, is something that the management team strives to continue.” The group’s headquarters is based in Grafenberg near Stuttgart, Germany. Rampf has three production sites in south-west Germany. Its subsidiary in Taicang on the outskirts of Shanghai, China, has another production site and the subsidiary in the USA has one each in Georgia and Michigan. A partner in Osaka, Japan, produces Rampf tooling products under a licence agreement. In the financial year 2012/13, Rampf Holding GmbH & Co. KG employed 560 people, of whom 450 worked in Germany. They generated sales of over €122.9 million (3 per cent up on the previous year, 30 per cent up on sales five years ago). And the company is set for further growth. Michael Rampf: “In 2012/2013 we have invested €5.2 million in expanding our production capacities worldwide and for the financial year 2013/1014 we have €7.4 million reserved for the investment budget.”

Group companies Rampf Tooling is the group’s producer of liquid, paste, close contour and board materials for model, mould and toolmaking. It sells an important quantity of its innovative products and solutions for lightweight construction to the aerospace industry. Applications range from cockpit covers and helicopter cabin roofs, produced via galvano bath model and nickel shell lay-up tools, to wings and acoustic panels, produced via low temperature prepreg lay-up tools. Rampf Dosiertechnik is one of the leading manufacturers of low-pressure mixing and dispensing systems and serves customers in the automotive, electrical, household appliance and filter industries. A particular asset of the company, which has been part of the international Rampf Group since 2003, is its broadranging product portfolio. This stretches from simple manual systems all the way through to fully automated production plants. Rampf Giessharze has specialised in the development, production and sale of resin systems made of polyurethane, epoxy and silicones since 1980. Its product portfolio includes liquid and thixotropic sealing systems, electro and engineering casting resins, edge and filter casting resins and two-component

Rampf’s products and solutions are also applied in the aerospace industry. For this gyrocopter, polyurethane board material from Rampf Tooling was used to prepare moulds/tools for carbon fibre parts. © With kind permission from Autogyro GmbH.

The Rampf Group is a typical German family-run SME. Since the start of 2011, when company founder Rudolf Rampf (right) retired from active operational management, his sons Michael (centre) and Matthias have been leading the company.

adhesives. Rampf Giessharze offers solutions for all key industries around the globe. Rampf Ecosystems has been operating the world’s first industrially usable plant for manufacturing polyols from PU flexible foam waste since 2012. The acidolysis process developed by Rampf enables the recovery of polyols industrially from flexible slabstock foams and

flexible moulded foams. The company also offers the construction of recycling plants on site at customer premises. In addition to cutting transport and disposal costs, this makes the production of polyurethane-based products more environmentally friendly. Epucret Mineralgusstechnik offers integral service concepts for high-precision machine

components. Its core activity is the production of machine beds made of mineral casting. Its service portfolio also includes a state-of-theart grinding centre for machine components and beds made of various materials such as mineral casting, hard stone, ceramic, steel and cast iron. The company has been part of the Rampf Group since 1996.

Innovation is key Michael Rampf emphasises that the drive for innovation is inherent in all group companies. “We are continuously developing new products, technologies and processes. Our business is a combination of engineering and chemistry. The constant flow of new ideas that are born through close cooperation with our customers and partners has kept us a highly innovative company – hence the company’s slogan ‘discover the future’.”

Rudolf Rampf Foundation and the future For the Rampf Group, economic success goes hand in hand with corporate citizenship and a commitment to cultural and regional affairs, Michael Rampf points out. The Rudolf Rampf Foundation, set up in 2001 in Grafenberg, subscribes to the principle that children are our future. It focuses exclusively

Environmental protection has been a top priority at RAMPF from day one. With the invention of the first polyurethane model making board, ornamental wood types such as mahogany were replaced with plastic in order to avoid further depletion of the world’s forests. © Sophia Winters –

on the local community of company founder Rudolf Rampf. The foundation supports music and sports clubs for youngsters, and Grafenberg’s youth work in general. So far, €40,000 has been channelled into the youth work of local clubs and the community, and into projects that benefit young people. Each year, all Rampf Group companies also make donations to various establishments in and outside the region, such as kindergartens, hospitals and foundations. The future of the company is defined by long-term considerations. Michael Rampf concludes: “Our philosophy is based on fairness, trust, encouragement, recognition and sustainability. We plan far ahead: we have set out a long-term strategy for the years until 2030, and a mid-term strategy for the years up to 2020. We expect growth from organic expansion and do not exclude acquisitions.” n

Materials and machines from a single source – that is one of the outstanding features of the international Rampf Group. In this particular case, Rampf Giessharze is providing the material – electro casting resin – and Rampf Dosiertechnik the high-precision dispensing machine.


32 Industry Europe

Fortune 500 company Lear Corporation is a leading global supplier of automotive seating and electrical power management systems. Industry Europe looks at the latest from the company.


ith 242 manufacturing facilities in 33 countries, of which 60 are located in Europe and Africa, Lear is a leading global manufacturer and distributor of automotive seating and electrical power management systems. The Lear Corporation is a Fortune 500 company with world-class products designed, engineered and manufactured by a diverse team of employees. A leading supplier of automotive seating and electrical power management systems, it serves its clients with global capabilities. Almost every industry throughout the world was hit by the global financial downturn, and

automotive was no exception to this. As a leading global supplier that was traditionally associated with complete systems, Lear has worked especially hard to re-engage with its clients and in recent years has been positioning itself to utilise the growth of electric and hybrid vehicles.

Geographical growth In recent years, Lear has been increasing its production in the areas of hybrid and electric vehicles, and has started to make investments in additional state-of-the-art facilities in North Africa in order to further increase

its capabilities. This year (2013) it opened a new automotive wiring plant in Morocco’s Amer Saflia area to complement its existing three plants in the country. These include two in Tangier for electrical wiring systems and automotive seating and one in Rabat, supplying industry-leading electronics such as battery chargers and gateway modules to European automakers including BMW, Renault and Volkswagen. North Africa is noted as a location for strategic development as it offers both business potential and economic benefits. Lear has invested in technology for the continued

development of lightweight products and vertical integration potential as the region offers attractive labour rates and investment opportunities, as well as being a good location for transportation and logistics. The company supplies ‘all the car manufacturers in Europe’ and, as such, has a strong understanding of the changing face

of the automotive industry. In addition to its existing European manufacturing facilities, Lear is making considerable investments in what it sees as positive market conditions in Russia. A company spokesperson said, “We see Russia and North Africa as important geographical areas for business development, and they are key areas of investment.

We have invested well over €30m in Russia alone, with funds put into factories for seat manufacturing, wire harnesses and electronics. Our two new Russian factories will give us 23,000m2 of impressive technologically advanced manufacturing space.” The two core divisions at Lear Corporation are the seating systems division and the

electronic systems division, both of which work closely together to deliver carefully designed and manufactured solutions to the global automotive industry. The battery chargers produced by Lear are designed to offer a viable backup for electric vehicle owners as second and third batteries are needed to sustain their electric vehicle usage. Available in 12, 24 and 48 volts, the batteries represent a key market for Lear now and in the future. Having spent considerable time and resources during the recession in ensuring that its product portfolio is adapted to the changing demands of the automotive industry,

Lear is looking stable. It continues to make the exceptional quality car seats and structures, mechanisms, foam, trim covers and electrical components upon which it has built its reputation, with all of the European car manufacturers working alongside it to ensure partnerships are mutually beneficial as the automotive industry continues to pick up. “But what we’re especially excited about is our significant growth expectations for our involvement with the electric and hybrid vehicle market, particularly as it sits closely with our ongoing commitment to offering environmentally responsible solutions,” adds the spokesperson.

Investing in the future The positive environmental approach at Lear reflects its future-focused development strategy. The company continues to make strong investments in new technology, and is continually working to track and reduce the emissions and environmental impact of its products both in their manufacture and through the life cycle. Lear Corporation is positive about the future, with predictions for excellent performances in Europe, Russia and North Africa. It has been putting considerable investment into technology and innovation alongside its n strategic growth in emerging markets.

36 Industry Europe


stablished in Reggio Emilia in 1973, today Meta System SpA has five sites (plus head office) in Reggio Emilia and one in Mornago, Varese, from which it carries out its electronics focused activity, developing innovative ideas from product design to customer service. The company develops and produces a wide range of products and active/passive electronic security systems, as well as next-generation comfort solutions, including both hardware and software. Products are supplied with all necessary certifications and homologations. The northern Italian company, which overall employs 656 people, holds various certifications, namely quality-focused ISO 9001, environmentally focused ISO 14001, data management ISO 27001, AVSQ94 for OEM Auto Product division (ANFIA specifications),

ISO/TS 16949, and automotive SPICE (ISO/IEC 15504) for the development of software in the OEM domain. In 2012, Meta System SpA achieved a €130 million turnover, €120 million of which derived from accessories and equipment for the OEM, OES and telematic automotive market segments. The range offered to OEMs is mainly centred round safety and security products, with the former being products for the cockpit and the vehicle, and the latter regarding parking system models and accessories for comfort. In particular, in the last couple of years, the company has developed power modules, which are inverters for electric cars, having supplied and currently being involved in manufacturing battery chargers, as well as electric engine controls, for large German and

While remaining true to its Italian roots, electronic security system specialist Meta System SpA continues to expand in European and international markets, thanks to its high-quality products, innovative solutions and excellent service. Barbara Rossi speaks to the company’s CEO, Giuseppe Simonazzi.

French automotive manufacturers. The range offered to the OES sector partly overlaps with that supplied to OEMs, while the telematics solutions are mainly linked to the Italian and European insurance world, as Meta System produces black boxes sold to final users, who thanks to this equipment have the advantage of paying lower insurance premiums. These products are thus indirectly funded by the insurance sector and to date, out of the 4 million vehicles fitted with this equipment which are circulating in Europe, 3 million have installed Meta System’s boxes. The telematics range also includes products for home security, still linked to the insurance sector. As mentioned, in Reggio Emilia there are five sites, located close to each other, plus the head offices. One of these sites is

Industry Europe 37

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Mi Comp di Sanavio A. & C. S.N.C. | Via Piovego 14 Prima Strada, 35010 Arsego di S.Giorgio delle Pertiche (PD), Italy Phone: +39/049/9330069-9330070 | Fax: +39/049/933071 | E-mail:

Mi Comp is a leading Italian manufacturer of small parts and components for electrical connections on printed circuits and for general purposes. We produce: • fastons for C.S. • fuse holders for 5 x 20 fuses • male/female connectors • coaxial connectors • strips with contacts for loudspeakers • contact pins • customised connectors /connections and items Our clients include such major players as: Elvox, Inarca, I Guzzini, BPT, FAAC, ASK, Meta System, Claber, Richco, Keystone, Flextronix, Jabil, Omega Fusibili, DeLonghi, Fadini, Merloni, Riello, Candy and FAGOR. We invite you to view our catalogue on our website

FCM ITALIA was born out of its founders’ will to create a company in the field of electric cabling, brusholders and electric motor manufacturing, as well as assembling of electro mechanic components. Over the years FCM ITALIA has developed many competencies in various industrial segments, from Automotive to Appliances, establishing commercial relationships with Clients ranging from middle companies to large multinational groups. The Management pays particular attention to own resources, both technological and human, putting the Client at the centre of its mission and directing its business vision towards solid partnership relationships. The aim of the company is therefore that of strengthening its own position on its reference market, guaranteeing competitiveness, quality and flexibility in accordance with its clients’ standards. The continuous implementation of technological systems for assembly make FCM a company open to innovation. Today FCM is present in Italy and Romania, where it has been operating for several years, manufacturing products for primary European and world customers. F.C.M. ITALIA s.r.l., Viale Marconi 81, 10090 Bruino (TO) Italy Tel: +39 011 9094541, E-mail: Mr. Loris Pasotti, Chairman - E-mail: | Mr. Liberto Pollani, Sales Director - E-mail: Mr. Andrea Bertana, Quality Director - E-mail:

dedicated to logistics, one is focused on R&Dt, and the remainder deal with general production. In Mornago, on the other hand, where originally the site was opened in 2006 (and then expanded in 2012) production is exclusively focused on equipment for OEMs, accompanied by R&D activities. Furthermore, there is a production plant in Shenzhen, China, which is currently manufacturing for the Italian company, but which in future, probably in 2014, will initiate production for the Chinese

automotive OEM market, in particular for European automotive manufacturers based there. While Meta System invested significantly before 2008, before the beginning of the economic downturn, since then investments have been mainly channelled into the expansion of the Mornago site, thanks to which the productive potential of the company has increased by one-third, effectively making it ready for the increase in production volumes expected for the 2014–2020 period, thanks to contracts

already signed with automotive manufacturers. Here automation has been implemented, allowing the company to greatly widen its activity in terms of design and of the number of units produced.

Riding on electrics As previously discussed, development of new products has been linked to the electric car and scooter world, for which the company has produced battery chargers for new vehicles.

The company holds various patents in this field and the first actual application of this stateof-the-art technology has been for the BMW electric car and scooter. As well as being Tier1 and Tier 2 suppliers for OEMs, Meta System supplies the OES market through importers, head offices of automotive manufacturers, or their regional or national equivalents. Geographically, Europe is the first market of the company, with obviously, due to the link to automotive manufacturers, a strong presence in Germany, where all the three main automotive players are served, followed by France and Italy. Italy is mainly significant in terms of Italian clients that distribute the products abroad. Markets in which the company is present with its products and which will

further develop in the future include North Africa and Malaysia. Brazil is another market supplied, albeit indirectly through Italian intermediaries. Things work slightly differently for the telematics market, where Italy plays an important role, due to the link with the insurance sector. A growing pattern for telematics products is also been experienced in the UK, as well as in South Africa, while in the future scope for growth in this area will be particularly significant in Russia. When talking about future developments, Mr Simonazzi says, “These are the market segments within whose boundaries we will carry on operating in the future, with the telematics range experiencing a particularly important growth. In terms of the OEM production we do not expect surprises, as here planning times

are longer, and we already have the contracts for the period 2014–2020. At least for the next few years, growth in production for the OEM sector will still be due to European automotive manufacturers, mainly German, French and Italian. Certainly further OEM development will require an increase of our critical mass. We’ll see what action to take with regard to this, depending on the opportunities that will arise. In future, we will develop in terms of new products and new markets. Whilst in the telematics sector we will acquire new clients and new geographical markets, with regard to OEMs we will look for new clients, but this also means taking advantage of the new opportunities arising from existing clients, in terms of new vehicles and platforms, which for us is n equivalent to acquiring a new customer.” Industry Europe 41



In need of an MOT testing station or a repair service bay? Ravaglioli SpA is part of the solution. In fact, the company, part of the Samiro Group, is today at the head of four Italy-based companies specialised in manufacturing vehicle lifting, tyre service and vehicle testing products. Barbara Rossi spoke to the CEO, Silvano Santi.


he four production companies comprising this division are: Ravaglioli SpA itself, Butler Engineering and Marketing SpA, Officine Meccaniche Sirio Srl and Space Srl. Ravaglioli SpA is the company from which the division has originated and it is based just outside Bologna – currently in Sasso Marconi – while at the time of its establishment in 1958 it was situated on the opposite side of town. Its activity is almost totally focused on the production of vehicle lifting equipment. At first the company manufactured small devices for vehicle repairs, but after having started to grow, towards the end of the 1960s, it started producing vehicle lifting equipment, a range to which in the 1970s the company added tyre changers, wheel balancers and test lanes. The early 1970s was also the time when the company started to push the export of its products, culminating in a boom in the 1990s

when the export share started growing from 50 per cent of turnover to the current 85–88 per cent. Butler SpA was acquired by the Ravaglioliled group in 2006 and is based in the Reggio Emilia area of northern Italy – specifically in Rolo – where it carries out its tyre changer manufacturing focused activity, while from its base in Ferrara (San Giovanni di Ostellato), Sirio Srl manufactures components for the other companies of the group, as well as producing equipment for tyre servicing. The fourth production company belonging to the division is Space Srl, based in Trana – Turin area of north-western Italy – and specialised in wheel aligners and test lanes, as well as in all the electronic components used by the equipment manufactured by the rest of the group. The vehicle lifting, tyre servicing and vehicle testing group headed by Ravaglioli SpA

employs about 550 people, including the foreign subsidiaries, and achieved a €125 million turnover in 2012. The products manufactured are mainly for cars and vans, but the range extends to products for trucks, buses and earth-moving vehicles, while a smaller share is produced for large diggers – employed in mines for instance – and for railway lifting. The foreign commercial subsidiaries can be found in France, Germany, Spain, the UK and the USA, respectively in Paris, Freising, Tarragona, Maidenhead and Texas, in addition to which there are also representative offices in Belgium, Brazil and Japan. The division sells its products in over 140 countries. “In terms of recent products, we launched a fully computerised super-fast leverless tyre changer, called G1800.4, whose development required a significant amount of R&D investment. We are also continuously devel-

Industry Europe 43

oping new products such as wheel aligners, recently resulting in a new product, called Vistar, a workstation for fast and accurate alignment measurement. Moreover, continuous product updates are carried out for all of the lifting range.” Mr Santi explained. “We are very active in R&D. In fact, all our products are designed and developed by us, here in Italy, using European manufactured components. We have three dedicated R&D departments: one at Ravaglioli for lifting equipment, one at Butler for tyre servicing and one at Space Srl for hardware and software for the electronics parts. Overall we invest about 5 per cent of turnover in R&D every year. Each of the companies of the division is present on the market, with personalised products and comprehensive catalogues, and each of them has its own specialisation.” As well as having been ISO 9001:2008 certified for years, the division headed by Ravaglioli also holds all relevant EC approval standards and fulfils the requirements of most of the world automotive and tyre manufacturers.

Growing, despite the recession “We have always invested in R&D, even during the crisis period. Before the current crisis we were invoicing about €138 million, but since then this level has been slightly lowered to €125 million. I have to say that we have

only marginally suffered from the recent economic downturn and in the past four years, overall, we have invested about €25–30 million. First of all, Butler SpA has moved to a new location, and €13 million were channelled into developing its new 14,000m2 site; then we spent €2–3 million in machinery on a yearly basis. I also believe that Sirio has one of the most modern and better equipped sites that can be found in our sector, featuring highly automated production machinery.” The group’s main clients are distributors that supply car dealers as well as repair and tyre shops, and testing centres. Products are also sold to automotive and tyre manufacturers – or their branches located all over the world. Export plays a major role, as previously discussed, and the main markets are European countries where the group is present with subsidiaries, followed by North America and then the Far East and India. “In future we will certainly continue to improve and update our range. We have made a big effort in North America, which is paying off, as in recent years we have witnessed an important turnover increase there. Now we are also working hard in terms of the Far East and India. “Joint ventures are not part of our philosophy, as we like to retain control of what we are doing. On the other hand, acquisitions might be possible, considering that in

Italy we are a very profitable company in our sector, and opportunities could arise, either on the Italian or European horizon. What we are not interested in doing is delocalising our production outside Europe. For us all our future development will be centred around an increase of credibility on the markets, thanks to growing product quality, exactly to differentiate ourselves from competitors in emerging countries. We are obviously aware of the fact that the European market is experiencing a period of crisis, which has even started affecting Germany, but we have managed to avoid a dip in European sales, thanks to an increase in market share. We are going to try to further improve our market penetration and our after-sales offer, while we will also take full advantage of opportunities for growth leaps outside of Europe, focusing on North America, n the Far East and India.”

Unior is a global manufacturer with four distinct production areas: forging and sinter parts; hand tools; CNC machines and tourism. Philip Yorke takes a closer look at a company that continues to demonstrate strong growth and develop cutting-edge innovative products for both industry and consumers alike.



nior was founded in Slovenia in 1919 as Stajerska Zrece and began as a foundry, manufacturing forged hand tools for the farming, forestry and craft industries. It was renovated in 1947 after the Second World War and renamed the Factory of Forged Tools Zreče. In the 1970s

the plant was upgraded along with a new development strategy and its current name: Unior, which was created from the words Univerzalno Orodje meaning Universal Tools. By the 1980s, Unior had established itself as an important partner of the European automotive industry.

Today Unior enjoys an enviable reputation worldwide for its high-precision hand tools and innovative designs and is comprosed of four business segments: hand tools, forging parts, special machines and tourism. In 2012, Unior recorded sales of more than €141 million and currently employs

more than 2130 people. Unior remains a major producer of high-quality hand tools and sinter and forging parts as well as CNC machines and tourism products. The company is a tier-one supplier to many of the world’s leading automotive OEMs including BMW, Audi, Daimler, VW and Renault.

Quality and innovation driving sales Unior’s unique multi-disciplinary approach to product development has resulted in many new materials and products being launched successfully over the years. Unior always considers its users’ needs first when developing new tools. Through its commitment to a constant improvement in materials, new ergonomic solutions and consideration of

safety protocols, the company has evolved to become a reliable and valuable partner of choice for professional tool users worldwide. Unior is also constantly monitoring the changing needs of its customers, and works in full compliance with the latest standards and international legislation in the global marketplace. A company representative said, “All Unior hand tools are based on a complete understanding of the needs of individual users; it is not surprising therefore that Unior tools ensure a high level of customer satisfaction, even for the most demanding tasks. Furthermore, a great number of Unior tools are protected by international patents and are distinguished by well-proven concepts that ensure effective operation and minimal

physical effort. In addition, they are well known for their ergonomic design and long service life. A special advantage of Unior tools is their optimal ratio between high quality and price and extreme product durability, which is assured through the use of quality materials and strict controls during each stage of production.”

Expanding world markets Unior continues to expand its global reach through its highly qualified network of distributors established in more than 80 countries worldwide. Unior’s range of more than 5500 precision products are sold all over the world and are guaranteed through its proven multi-branch distribu-

tion network. The company is an important supplier of forged components worldwide and particularly in Europe where it fulfils its customer’s orders with advanced logistics and just-in-time delivery schedules. Unior’s modern warehouse for complete and semi-manufactured products and for the commissioning and packaging of hand tools, is specially tailored to suit the needs of individual customers. The growing demand for Unior’s various products is not restricted to Europe. On all the world’s continents, from Europe to America and Asia, and from Africa to the Middle East, the company is increasing its presence and strengthening its brand. In many countries such as the UK, Unior is represented by its daughter company, Unior International, and today the Unior trademark is protected throughout the world.

Seal of quality guaranteed As one would expect from a company such as Unior, its hand tools are in full compliance with the latest European and global legislative standards. In fact, Unior was among the first manufacturers of hand tools in Europe to receive ISO 9001 quality certification in 1994. This covered the production, development and manufacturing of hand tools, as well as sheet metal housings and the mechanical processing of forged parts. Unior tools are also in compliance with the international DIN standard, as well as VDE certification for high voltage applications. Furthermore, the company follows the EFQM excellence model, thus assuring quality business practices with all its suppliers, buyers n and trading partners. For further details of Unior’s latest innovative products and to view its current product catalogue visit:

Established in 1989, Topp d.o.o is a family-run business focused on the transportation of goods across Europe and beyond. Our main business is the road transport of general cargo between Slovenia and the UK. In September 2008, a branch office was established in Belgrade. Our fleet of vehicles complies with the highest standards of the EU with Euro class 5 and eev systems across the fleet. They offer the following: • Full vehicle and cargo insurance • Tracked and visible locations of vehicles 24/7 • Loads delivered by fully trained staff with over 80% with ADR certificate • Special consignments on request – urgent, fragile etc. • Adaptable warehousing and freight holding service • Movement into the rest of Europe and beyond • Collection from any location If you would like to find out more on the selection of services we offer, please contact us on +386 1 78 85 127. Alternatively, you can visit our website or

DYNAMIC DEVELOPMENT As the leading manufacturer of sectional doors and aluminium profile systems in eastern Europe, the Alutech Group is showing exponential growth.


domestic and industrial settings sectional doors have become a convenient, reliable and most effective type of door solution. They can be integrated into any kind of doorway and architecture and do not require much space on the inside or outside. In less than 20 years the Belarus-based ALUTECH Group has grown into a leading production and sales holding, whose vigorous growth was accompanied by a qualitative expansion: the mastering of new product lines, introduction of innovative technologies, and advancement of the ALUTECH products. The group makes profiles, components and accessories for roller shutters, doors and grilles, garage and industrial sectional doors of various types, aluminum window sills as well as supplementary accessories and extruded aluminum profiles and profile systems. The group also acts as a wholesale distributor of electric motors and automatic control systems for roller shutter systems manufactured by Somfy, Nice and Sketch. Starting out with six employees in 1996, the company initially purchased parts from

western European companies, but soon decided to develop in-house production and to change the strategy to a focused b2b holding development. Today the ALUTECH Group includes six manufacturing enterprises and over twenty sales subsidiaries in Russia, Belarus, Ukraine and the Czech Republic. The company has over 3000 employees and does business in more than 40 countries of the EMEA region.

Overview of the group’s companies The central management and the four main production locations are concentrated in Belarus: Alutech Incorporated produces roll-formed profiles and roller shutter systems accessories, and currently the annual production there exceeds 150 million running meters. Doors are produced at Alutech Door Systems, in the shape of garage and industrial sectional doors, sandwich-panels for sectional doors and also steel guide profiles, brackets, joint plates and other accessories. Alumin Techno is one of the group’s flagships. As one of the biggest plants in

eastern Europe, it specialises in the full production cycle of extruded aluminium profiles, polymeric coating and anodising. The Alstrong operation specialises in production from aluminium alloys through high-pressure casting of aluminium alloys and polymeric coating of aluminium castings and profiles. Two more enterprises that manufacture roller shutters and doors are located in Russia and Ukraine, and land has already been acquired for two more plants.

Quality standards All the plants of the ALUTECH Group are equipped with high-tech machinery from leading European manufacturers. The quality management system is certified to International standard ISO 9001 in the TUV CERT system. The quality of ALUTECH aluminium extruded profiles coating is approved by Swiss certificates such as Qualicoat/Seaside, Qualanod, and ALUTECH roller shutters comply with the requirements EN 13659:2004. ALUTECH roller shutters’ coil coating is supplied by BASF Coatings GmbH (Germany)

and AkzoNobel (Sweden). To this end, a new coil coating facility has just been started up in Minsk with technical support from BASF. It is primarily designed to coat aluminium for the production of roller shutter slats and boses, but there are also plans to coat steel coils for other applications in the future.

New products for demanding applications “At the moment, the most complex and promising products are aluminium profile systems for facades, windows, doors and office partitions. Our range of solutions based on aluminium profile systems can bring to life practically any project.” marketing director Mr Rybakov explains. “Our systems are in demand for a range of high-rise buildings. A construction mounted on a building 100–150 m high is extremely complex and requires a high level of calcula-

tions in thermal physics, wind- and fireresistance and seismic stability. We are proud that the share of complex façade and interior systems today makes up 80 per cent of the whole extruded profile production.” ALUTECH complies with market trends and energy saving: in 2010 a window frame system with better heat engineering ALT W72 was introduced, in 2011 came a new energy effective filling in the façade system ALT F50 and new options were offered for “Aquaparks”, and in 2012 an actuator access for smoke removal with a gear over 1.0 (m2°C)/Vt) was brought to market. This year sees the launch of the new structured glazing ALT F50 SG with double-chamber glass units and an integrated window of the “hidden flap” type with better heat engineering features of ALT EF65. “The level of technological processes realised at our enterprises dictates also the choice of suppliers.” Mr Mr Rybakov adds. “When

producing roller shutter systems we use raw materials from leading European companies. For the production of profile systems we use aluminium from the worldwide-known company RUSAL.”

Trade Fairs ALUTECH is a regular exhibitor at the biggest specialised exhibitions in the CIS countries such as BUILDEX (Moscow) (St-Petersburg), SibBUILD (Novosibirsk), YugBUILD (Krasnodar), MosBuild (Moscow) and others. “Last year we took part in the biggest in western Europe specialised exhibition R+T (Germany, Stuttgart), and in 2013 we will present our products at GlassBuildAmerica in Atlanta, USA. Also we plan to take part in the biggest Middle East construction exhibition Big Five which will take place in the UAE. We have also preparing for the German R+T in 2015 with a total stand area of about 1000m2.”

“We have many goals to achieve in the near future.” Mr Mr Rybakov says. “Right now we are completing the second line of the extrusion plant AluminTechno, and the manufacturing facility for door accessories - with a floorspace of 50 000m². This will bring capacity up to 220–240 000 doors per year, which would make us the leader in European door production within three to four years.” Alongside dynamic development, entering new markets and broadening production and supply geography, the group knows that personal relationships are extremely important in business. The major principle: “ALUTECH is the ethics of system business, esthetics of system quality” was formulated and remains a motto of the whole group of companies; it is reflected in areas such as environment protection, product release, relationships with partners, personnel policy n and charity works. Josef Timmer Handels. u. Bet. GmbH

The specialists when it comes to safety brakes for roller shutters, garage doors and industrial doors.

Private company “Stublina” D.O.O was founded in 1993. Due to the recognizable design and product quality, we have become the market leader in the Balkans in production of hardware for aluminum joinery. “Stublina” produces a large series of handles for windows, door handles, hinges for windows and doors, locks, latches, turn and tilt mechanism and lock cylinders. Today, the company “Stublina” employs 200 workers.

Stublina d.o.o. T: +381 34 6707 160 | E:

Cimolai has come a long way since its beginnings in 1949, when it was set up in Pordenone, north-eastern Italy, by Armando Cimolai and his wife Albina. Currently the Cimolai Group is one of the most advanced companies in the metal construction sector, active on both the Italian and foreign markets. Barbara Rossi reports.


the beginning, the company manufactured steel gates and fixtures but soon the range of activity expanded to the making of frames for industrial buildings (for Zanussi in particular, as both companies were located in the same town) and projects for public bodies. It has to be noted that the company’s activity was not limited to manufacturing, but also included design and installation, a factor which gave

it a definite advantage over its competitors, allowing it to grow and take on engineering challenges, including the manufacturing of custom-designed blast-proof enclosures for military air bases. In the 1970s, the second generation of the family, the founding couple’s two sons, Luigi and Roberto, entered the business and the company made a further leap, also favoured by the expansion of the national infrastructure market. Cimolai

quickly adapted to market needs and was able to construct the larger structures demanded, such as aircraft shelters, bridges and stadiums, working both in Italy and abroad. Examples of these projects include the Grand Canal Maritime at Le Havre, the Second Severn Crossing in Bristol, the Olympic Stadium in Athens and the 95,000 capacity football stadium in Johannesburg built for the 2010 World Cup. Over the years,

due to its expansion, which increasingly happened outside Italy and which also involved the making of ship hulls, the company built several new manufacturing units (on average one every ten years), one of which was constructed on the banks of the Aussa Corno river and equipped with a mooring quay for ocean going vessels, a facility that enabled structures to be shipped directly from the plant to global customers. In recent years the ownership of the company passed to Luigi and Roberto, respectively owners of Cimolai SpA and Cimolai Technology, while Cimolai Centro Servizi Srl has remained in the hands of Armando and Albina. Cimolai Technology specialises in the manufacture and supply of machines for lifting and transportation operations, and Cimolai Centro Servizi Srl in the fabrication

of steelwork structures and heavy steel construction works for civil and industrial buildings, as well as in making welded beams for the naval and off-shore industry. Despite this re-organisation in terms of ownership, the group remains united, to be able to serve and expand its presence on its different markets. Since 2007, Cimolai has had a manufacturing facility in Venezuela helping it to grow into the South American market. The same year also saw the entrance in the company of the third generation of the family. This was followed by the acquisition of Fabris Srl, a company specialised in mechanics, in 2011 and of Zwahlen & Mayr SA, a Swiss firm belonging to the metal carpentry sector, in 2012. Alongside this, Cimolai has acquired new 253,000m2 production facilities in Monfalcone (north eastern Italy).

Current operations Presently the Cimolai Group specialises in the construction of bridges, viaducts, stadiums, residential and industrial buildings, military infrastructure, normal and special plate girders for the off-shore and shipbuilding industries, stainless steel bulkheads for chemical tankers, polygonal and cylindrical poles for telecommunication and power lines, pipes of great diameter and wall thickness, and ship hulls. It operates from seven plants and workshops based in north-eastern Italy, as well as from its Venezuelan facility. In addition to this, the group can also avail itself of the facilities of its recently acquired companies (Fabris and Zwahlen & Mayr SA) and of those of Cimolai Technology and Cimolai Centro Servizi Srl. Highly automated machinery is employed

METAL SERVICES is a materials testing Laboratories net, headquartered and operating in the North East part of Italy, with a strategic branch located in SuZhou (JiangSu Province ) PR of China. The company’s core business includes the supporting activity of the largest Italian players worldwide involved in the manufacturing of large steel structures, nuclear power plants components, Oil and Gas equipment, shipbuilding related activities. In addition to the traditional testing service, having a long and deep manufacturing process experience, METAL SERVICES is a reliable partner able to complete the traditional tests reporting with effective solutions to the Customers’ process problems. METAL SERVICES China, offering the same kind and level of service, has been given the mission to support the Western Companies located there and their local Suppliers, identify and monitor products, suppliers, processes, expediting deliveries and inspecting the outgoing quality. The offered services are including the chemical composition and mechanical performances of raw and finished materials, the characterization of metallographic structures and related defects, the set-up of thermal treatments, a wide range of corrosion tests and environmental simulations, perform the NDT practices, failure analysis, welding process as well as the operators qualification and training. A fully equipped internal machining shop provides a timely and reliable machining of the testing samples.

Offered key services • Chemical analysis • Metallography • Enviromental simulation • Failure analysis • Training, advisory, R&D

• Mechanical testing • Corrosion test • NDT • Welding qualification of operators and processes METAL SERVICES TESTING SRL Via J. Srebernic, 14 34077 Ronchi dei Legionari (GO) Tel. 0481 474849 - Fax 0481 474825

SUZHOU METAL SERVICES Co., Ltd. 33 A2 Minsheng Road, ShengPu Suzhou Industrial Park, 215126 Jiangsu CHINA Tel. 0086 0512 69361963


in all plants, as well as skilled and qualified technicians and labourers. Quality control is performed by in-house qualified personnel, test equipment (NDT) and testing laboratories, and a wide range of certifications are held by the company, including the UNI EN ISO 9001: 2000 for design, fabrication and erection of steel structures. Over the years, Cimolai has received strong recognition for its work, having won ECCS (European Convention for Constructional Steelworks) awards for several of its projects. In 2012, it achieved production of about 120,000 tonnes of steel and a turnover of about €30 million, as well as making important investments (1.5 per cent of turnover is regularly invested in research). The company’s strengths are its competitiveness, quality and time performance, alongside the previously mentioned commitment to research, which keeps it in the vanguard in terms of design and engineering and enables it to offer the best customised solution for each project that it undertakes.

A wide range of impressive projects The group has recently completed or is currently involved in several important projects: the Reggio Emilia railway station, the third set of gates for the Panama Channel, the

Intesa San Paolo tower, the New Safe Confinement (Chernobyl), the World Trade Center Hub, the Sluice Gates of Mose in Venice, the 140m Crati bridge in Cosenza, the 4160m Third Orinoco River Crossing, four viaducts in Algeria, the Auditorium in Tbilisi, the Brasilia Stadium and the Bordeaux Bridge, among others. These are challenging and cutting edge projects. For instance, the Bordeaux vertical lift bridge was built over the 400m wide Garonne river and was designed to unite the two parts of the city and to stimulate urban development on its eastern bank, while at the same time not affecting the harbour facilities located in the city centre and not impeding access to large ships during and after construction. The Reggio Emilia station, designed by Santiago Calatrava, is at about thirty metres from the A1 motorway, and its wave-like external design is such as to maximise the viewpoint of passing car drivers. Because of the area in which it is located, this high-speed railway station has a potential of about two million users. With regard to the Panama channel Cimolai is involved in a $400 million project for the design, manufacturing and transport of sixteen gates for the new channel under construction, which when completed in 2014 will allow the passage between the Atlantic and

the Pacific oceans of extremely large ships, which can not use the old channel. Cimolai is also going to be involved in the wreck removal of the Costa Concordia ship, which sank off the coast of the island of Giglio in January 2012. Cimolai is going to provide four megaplatforms and 20 steel beams to be used for the large structure which will be put in place for righting the ship. Even the steel case enveloping the Chernobyl reactor will be made with Cimolai steel components. Cimolai is able to participate in these projects thanks to its skills, quality, competitiveness and financial solidity. This has definitely been a good year for the company, and its order portfolio for next year (2014) allows it to keep an extremely positive outlook, especially thanks to projects for nonn European markets.

BUILDING FOR A SUSTAINABLE FUTURE As a specialist in laminated timber, KLH Massivholz focuses on the development, manufacture and delivery of structural wall, ceiling and roofing elements made to fit the client’s project’s requirements.

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LH Massivholz GmbH developed its first products in cooperation with the TU (University of Technology) in Graz. Based on extensive research and development, the Austrian business was able to begin the manufacture and distribution of large-format glued laminated timber elements in 1999. The following years of steady growth saw the company gain market-leader status in its field. Today, KLH employs around 130 staff, produces close to 650,000m² of timber boards per year and has an impressive portfolio of creative architectural projects located all over Europe. Its services include technical and static consulting to ensure the smooth running of the construction process. Due to the company’s vast experience gained in numerous

international projects KLH Massivholz can be considered an expert in providing sustainable construction materials. The production process of the timber elements involves the cross-wise stacking of spruce strips which are then glued together under high pressure, forming solid wooden boards. The advantages of this manufacturing technique are numerous, as the strength of the wooden raw material is increased significantly, eliminating the swelling and shrinkage problems commonly associated with wood. Excellent static and high load-bearing properties allow the use of KLH even in earthquake zones and its fire resistance has been proven based on the European Technical Approval 06/0138. The KLH elements are delivered ready for assembly, and only

require a short construction period. The slim elements’ space-saving qualities help to make excellent use of any living space and the dry construction method cuts down the waiting time for occupancy. KHL is continuing to develop new products, such as the newly created ribbed slabs for ceiling construction. It has also created a new type of ceiling element to meet particularly strict fire-safety requirements. In cooperation with BiosLehm, a company specialising in clay render solutions, KLH has recently designed a clay render system optimised for use in combination with KLH timber. The wood and clay system, consisting of solid timber, a wooden fibre board and the clay interior render, has excellent insulation properties.

Industry Europe 59

It regulates humidity, is extremely airtight and provides improved soundproofing. Clay is a non-flammable material and thus increases the fire safety of any construction. The combination of both ecological building materials constitutes a highly efficient and sustainable construction method for those who wish to build for the future.

The KLH vision KLH Massivholz takes pride in the partnerships it establishes with its clients and has a strong commitment both to its customers

60 Industry Europe

and the environment. It strives to become the world’s leading manufacturer of sustainable solid timber construction materials and aims to achieve this position through providing the highest level of quality with regards to products and services. At KLH, honouring agreements and acting responsibly towards employees and clients both form part of the company ethos. The wood KLH uses to manufacture the innovative timber boards is sourced exclusively from sustainable forests, as certified by PEFC, the independent forest certifica-

tion system. Being CO2 neutral, wood is an excellent construction material for the ecologically minded. Its energy-efficiency and versatility make it a very attractive material for a variety of projects. Thus, KLH’s timber boards have been used to create many stunning architectural gems, including family homes, shopping centres, industrial units, schools and nurseries. They have also been used to build offices and hotels – and even a beautiful tower in Kärnten. KLH has a strong interest in international partnerships. The company’s main market

currently lies in Europe, with many clients in Austria, France, Germany and the UK. The business also has strong links with customers in Italy and Spain. Due to its international outlook, KLH is keen to establish itself on the international market. New Zealand and Australia are of particular interest, as well as Canada, Turkey, Japan and the Middle East.

The Future With their partnership approach to business and development, the innovators at KLH are keen on working with businesses and repre-

sentatives from various fields. Their products are an inspiration for architects, construction firms, project developers, investors and property owners alike and KLH is looking to expand its contacts in the media and press sector in order to promote the use of sustainable building materials. KLH also invests in the future through its commitment to collaborating with students on research projects for dissertations and diplomas. KLH is positive about the business’s future development and has plans to double its turnover in the coming five years through

the gradual extension of the company’s networks. It is preparing for an increased demand and is currently planning to expand its production facility in Austria, beginning with the investment in a new state-of-the-art CNC milling machine. Combining architectural freedom with environmental compatibility, KLH construction materials will continue to contribute to the creation of buildings for the future which are sustainable and beautiful in design. Prospective clients can meet KLH at H’Expo in Lille from 4–8 November n 2013 BATIMAT in Paris.

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THE TRUE ALL-ROUNDER OF CONSTRUCTION SPECIALISTS Lindner is a global leader in the design and manufacture of individual modular solutions for interior fit-out and the building envelope. Philip Yorke talked to Helmut Lang, the company’s main board director for commercial development, about its dynamic growth and the latest innovations, such as graphite ceiling systems, which are changing the face of modern construction.


he Lindner Group is one of the world’s leading companies for interior fit-out, facade construction and industrial insulation projects. The company was founded in Arnstorf, Germany in 1965 by Hans Lindner who had a vision: this was to offer the construction industry ‘seamless’ solutions for entire buildings. By now, this vision has become a reality and is endorsed by the company’s involvement in many of the world’s most prestigious developments. These include major installations at international airports, railways, hospitals and hotels, as well as in leading concert halls and even luxury cruise liners. Today the company’s unparalleled expertise makes Lindner the partner of choice for the supply of customised interior solutions. These are sometimes combined with the management of the complete building envelope, insulation and construction-related services, which is represented by the company’s inimitable range of capabilities, “Concepts-ProductsService”. With a current workforce of more than 6000 people, the family-owned Lindner Group operates state-of-the-art production

plants and subsidiaries in more than 20 countries worldwide, from Atlanta to Zagreb. This also includes specialist companies such as the envelope experts Lindner Facades Ltd and Prater Ltd in London as well as Lindner Saudi Arabia Ltd offering industrial insulation services.

Innovative system solutions driving sales Whether it is outstanding functionality combined with modern architecture and design, or unique innovative solutions, Lindner’s projectspecific designs are guaranteed to meet a client’s exacting requirements. For example, the design of amenities such as exclusive lounges, modern offices, medical facilities and auditoria are all based on over 45 years of experience in the use of environmentally friendly, state-ofthe-art technologies and comply with the most stringent international quality standards. Also the wide range of products like facades, floor and ceiling systems, partitions, heating and cooling technologies and construction-related services from green building consulting to scaffolding, makes the Bavarian company the partner of choice.

Lindner’s high-capacity production facilities ensure that customers receive optimised products and services, on time, every time. Through detailed planning and implementation processes, Lindner is selected to erect iconic buildings all over the world. The implementation of Copenhagen’s Danish Radio Concert Hall, the roofing of London’s Olympic Velodrome and the complete fit-out of the Dubai Metro Line are just a few recent examples of these global prestige projects. Mr Lang said, “Design, innovation and our unrivalled experience have kept us at the forefront of our industry. To underscore the importance that we attach to new product development, we employ more than 200 people at our extensive R&D facilities here in Arnstorf, Germany where we have a stateof-the-art production facility that covers more than 160,000m2. This is our largest global production facility, but we also have similar manufacturing plants in Taicang, China, as well as in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, where we also work to German quality standards. We are definitely not into typical mass production

projects.” For example, Lindner has worked in recent times in Azerbaijanian Baku on their new signature building, Zaha Hadid’s Heydar Aliyev cultural centre, for which the company had to develop a corner-free “internal skin” – an adaptable substructure with a threedimensionally curved surface – to transfer the external design into the interior. Mr Lang added, “As a truly vertically integrated company we can do literally everything ourselves from the initial design concept to the

manufacture and installation on-site. In fact we can take care of the entire value chain for customers. This means that our clients only need one supplier and one point of reference, which is a major advantage these days.” It is an advantage especially acknowledged when it comes to integral planning and implementation processes for large-scale new constructions or high-class refurbishments, sometimes in conjunction with an aspired green building certification. This is when the

Your Glass Partner

one-stop-shop Lindner – internal departments would even take care of specialist jobs like building decontamination – creates its added value for the client by reducing the complexity of the enormous task.

Buildings without interfaces and using the latest technologies Hans Lindner’s original vision of an entire building that is designed and constructed without interfaces has become reality and in

a most spectacular way. The Lindner System Buildings combine the highly desirable concept of prefabricated, modular construction with unlimited spatial planning options. This cutting-edge technology means that the building can be adapted to any client’s specific requirements while maintaining the advantage of rapid on-site erection. The system is based upon a heavy-duty steel frame structure that offers unlimited scope: extraordinarily wide unsupported spans and variable ceiling height enable infinite options of reversible floor layouts (dependent on fitout), a flexible solution tailored to the builder’s individual requirements. Beside the System Buildings, one of the Lindner Group’s most exciting innovative developments at this time is the unique graphite-based Lindner Plafotherm® chilled

ceiling. “This is a ground-breaking development which offers significant benefits to developers in terms of its overall lightness, an accelerated temperature regulation with significant energy savings and enhanced comfort for occupants. We have entered into a joint venture with renowned SGL Carbon to drive this technology forward, which we see as being trend-setting for industrial ceilings worldwide. The natural product graphite and its derivative, expanded graphite, fit perfectly with our commitment to sustainability and our protection of the environment. We are a founding member of the DGNB, the German Sustainable Building Council, and, as a responsible manufacturer, we run numerous internal research projects aiming for a longterm reduction of energy consumption and avoidable emissions.”

The continuous striving for well-balanced, sustainable solutions, based upon resourceconserving high-quality products and customised services is characteristic of the market approach of the Lindner Group. For instance, one of Lindner’s bestsellers, calcium sulphate flooring NORTEC and FLOOR and more®, is made of 99 per cent recycled materials. But it’s much more than just ‘green’. The floor impresses just as much by its versatility and resilience: it can be equipped with integrated heating and cooling technologies or acoustic elements, and it can carry incredibly high weights for decades – a solution individually designed and manufactured for each client. n For further information about Lindner’s latest innovative concepts, products and services visit:

Architects: Daluz/González Architekten Photo: Peter Baracchi


R Belgian Reynaers Aluminium ranks among the top three European companies in the design and development and sales of aluminium windows and doors, sliding systems, curtain walls, conservatories, sunscreens and solar systems. Marco Siebel spoke with the chief technical officer, Erik Rasker and the group communication manager, Els Fonteyne, to find out more. 66 Industry Europe

eynaers Aluminium is a family-owned company which was founded in 1965 by Jan Reynaers in Duffel, near Antwerp, Belgium. He produced windows and doors using the Classic system, an aluminium system he designed personally. This new high-quality system was so easy to process that other aluminium joiners started buying from him. Since then, Reynaers has opened offices in 37 countries, from which it exports to over 60 countries worldwide. More recent expansions within Europe concern ao. the start up of activities in Italy in 2005 and in Portugal in 2008, making inroads into Portuguese-speaking countries globally.

Architectural design: Zaha Hadid Project architect: Stephane Hof Photo: Hélène Binet

Hi-Finity sliding door

In 2012, Reynaers also acquired a Belgian paint factory. The recent entery into the African continent was another important step in the company’s global geographical expansion strategy. To this end, Reynaers has started to promote its solutions through offices in Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco. Reynaers Aluminium employs some 1500 people, who together generated a turnover of €315 million in 2012.

Els Fonteyne explains: “Our Reynaers Institute is our knowledge centre for all our partners. It has a training centre, test zone and demonstration area. Here our staff work on new designs, develop and do all the research and testing necessary before launching and marketing a new product or product line.” Erik Rasker adds: “ Around 70 per cent of our turnover is generated in western and southern Europe. Main growth markets are

Erik Rasker, CTO

the central and eastern European countries, the Balkans, Turkey, the African continent, SEA and the Middle East. That’s where we expect double-digit growth figures.”

Aluminium windows and doors Reynaers offers aluminium window and door solutions for construction projects ranging from residential and retail to healthcare and commercial, in both classic and romantic styles to stark and modern. All systems are

Reynaers Aluminium headquarters, Duffel

PRESAL EXTRUSION is a reliable supplier of aluminium extruded profiles tailor-made or commercial ones. Specialised in construction profiles (our own series) and automotive, solar, furniture and other industries.


PRESAL EXTRUSION has obtained EN ISO 9001:2008 certificate and CE marking. PRESAL EXTRUSION D.O.O. Knešpolje BB, 88220 Široki Brijeg, Bosnia & Herzegovina tel: +387 39 702-061 • fax: +387 39 701-241 • e-mail:

Architect: Albert Wimmer ZT GmbH, Arnika, Ukrdesigngroup Photo: Nikolay Kravtsov

available in more than 400 colours and are highly secure owing to the strength of the material. A number of extra fittings can be installed for optimal security.

Hi-Finity sliding doors Reynaers recently launched a new sliding door, Hi-Finity. Innovative in style and design and with industry-leading profiles that hardly impact on the exterior view, Hi-Finity allows the internals of a building to merge seamlessly with the outdoors. The glazed units are bonded to the aluminium profiles and can accommodate large glass panels of up to 500kg. Although the large glazed areas already offer good thermal efficiency, Hi-Finity is also available in a triple glazed version to provide increased levels of thermal and acoustic insulation, further enhanced by the airtightness of the system. Special brushes with an airtight membrane create a firm barrier against air ingress and the sections between each glass panel are fitted with Reynaers’ patented adjustable profiles that guarantee a perfect fit for good airtightness.

The Reynaers Hi-Finity sliding door system offers different opening options, including duo rail, three-rail and central closing for up to six movable glass panels per application. Ease of operation is enhanced by specially designed integral wheels to provide fluidity of movement, making even large openings easy to operate manually. Available as an option, an automated version opens the doors at the push of a button. In addition to its layered glass, Hi-Finity offers a secure solution with a special designed locking mechanism on a discrete and hard-toreach position on top of the glass. Besides developing cleverly designed sliding doors and windows, Reynaers also provides other custom-made solutions for architects and fabricators: curtain walls, an in-house developed computer model for the Brise Soleil sun-screening, conservatories and covered terraces, solar systems, railings and other peripherals. Reynaers’ curtain walls cover traditional grid, panel and unitised systems. All systems are mutually compatible, allowing for the seamless integration of window, door, façade and roof

systems. Reynaers designs and sells façade systems that can be used on constructions ranging from high-rise buildings to shop fronts, and from roofing to display windows.

Brise Soleil computer model for sun-screening The Reynaers Brise Soleil system is an aesthetic and practical solution for nearly all new and existing buildings. It is available as a standard system or a tailored solution. Brise Soleil is the general designation for a louvre system that is secured to the outer façade and protects against heating and glare. Reynaers Brise Soleil systems come with a software package for the simple calculation of shadow angles and the correct dimensions of the shading device for each outer wall.

Conservatories and covered terraces With a Reynaers conservatory one can enjoy light and space for 12 months a year. Reynaers aluminium conservatories have three lines: the Functional, for example, has a simple, yet elegant appearance, whilst the Orangerie line conjures up the authen-

Architect: JSK Architektci Sp. Z o.o. Photo: Jarosław Ceborski

tic mood of a Victorian winter garden. For romantic building styles and renovations there is the Renaissance series. In case one has no room for a conservatory, but still wishes to create a comparable atmosphere, customers can opt for a Reynaers skylight. Reynaers aluminium skylights let through sufficient light and provide thorough protection against rain and wind.

Solar systems, railings and other peripherals With its Solar product range, Reynaers offers architects and fabricators multifunctional construction materials that that can be fitted with photovoltaic panels to generate electricity. The solar system applications cater for an extensive range of products, from roof covers to curtain walls and glazed surfaces. Reynaers railings can be combined with numerous pattern and design modules, allowing for an individual railing design. Other peripheral products are screen systems, ventilation grids, shutters, gates, swimming pool fences and care products. Erik Rasker concludes: “We intend to continue our growth through organic and geographic expansion; however, when the opportunity presents, we will not hesitate to realise growth through acquisitions to strengthen our n leading market position.”

BUILDING A SUSTAINABLE FUTURE Skanska Sweden, like all the companies in the Skanska Group, is committed to leading the building and construction industry in sustainable technologies and business practices.


January 2014 more than 1000 employees of Swedish construction company Skanska will move into a new global headquarters in Stockholm. The new office building, designed and constructed by Skanska itself, is located in the Western Kungsholmen area of Stockholm, a district that is rapidly being transformed as new homes are built right up to the water’s edge, new restaurants and shops are open-

ing and new offices are going up all along the central boulevard. The new head office is itself an excellent example of what Skanska can deliver in environmentally friendly design and construction. It features a carefully controlled indoor climate with Skanska’s own Deep Green Cooling patented technology through which energy-efficient cooling is provided from 144 boreholes under the building. Heat

in the summer is also used for pre-heating ventilation air in the winter and waste heat will be reused to provide heating for nearby homes. Environment-friendly pool cars will also be available as well as there being a large bicycle garage. Skanska even intends to install beehives on the building’s roof to help the local bee population to recover. The facility will also include the latest project visualisation technology which will allow

residential customers to experience and add colour to their new homes long before they are actually built; local politicians and planners will also be able to visualise and explore their ideas for new district developments years before they become a reality.

Across the market, across the world Skanska Sweden is one of Sweden’s largest construction companies, with operations in building and civil engineering construc-

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tion. It has some 11,000 employees and its revenues in 2012 amounted to approximately SEK 30 billion. Skanska in Sweden is also active in the development of residential construction and commercial premises. The Swedish operation is, of course, part of the global Skanska Group, founded in 1887 in southern Sweden to manufacture concrete products and now one of the world’s largest construction companies, with some 57,000 employees worldwide.

In Europe the Group is active not only in the Nordic markets of Sweden, Norway and Finland but also in Poland, Estonia, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and the UK. It also has fast-growing operations in the USA and Latin America. Skanska’s construction services include the building of large commercial and public buildings – office blocks, hospitals, schools, railway stations etc – bridges, roads and private homes. The company develops

residential areas to include single-family and multi-family housing and takes care of all stages of these developments, from choosing the location to planning, designing, building, marketing and sales. It sees its core competence as understanding how people want to live their lives, and creating attractive new homes to meet these demands.

From hospitals to highways The new contracts awarded to Skanska Sweden in 2013 give a good idea of the range of the division’s capabilities. At the beginning of the year Skanska signed a partnering agreement with Värmlands Läns Landsting

(County Council of the Värmland region) for the building and reconstruction at Centralsjukhuset (the Central Hospital) in Karlstad, Sweden. The contract value for the initial work is SEK 370M. During the first phase, Skanska will construct a new operating unit building, House 60, and substitute premises in the existing House 53 and House 54. The new operating unit has a total area of about 29,000m2 on four floors, including a garage. The building is constructed according to a vision in which the operating unit is built around the needs of the patient. Sustainability is of great importance when it comes to choosing materials and there are high

demands for energy efficiency. The goal for the building is to be LEED Health Care certified on level Gold. Work has started, and the building is planned to be completed the summer of 2016. This order was followed by another contract to build the image and intervention centre at Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Gothenburg, Sweden. The client is Västfastigheter. This SEK 300M contract comprises construction and conversion of a total area of about 22,000m2. The image and intervention centre will comprise functions and medical activities using advanced methods for image diagnostics and for treatment.

Skanska has been active at this hospital since 2011 with excavation, foundation-laying and frameworks, among other things. The current assignment will be the second phase, out of three, in developing the hospital. In the assignment, Skanska will make additional framework, installation and connection to the adjacent building. Work is set to start in the beginning of 2014 and is scheduled to conclude late 2015. In 2013, Skanska also won a contract from AB Storstockholms Lokaltrafik, SL for the construction of a new bus depot in Charlottendal, Gustavsberg, east of Stockholm. This contract is worth SEK 375 M. The bus depot will be situated in Ekobacken 1, about two kilometres south of central Gustavsberg. It will be built to

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accommodate 140 buses and will, amongst other things, include a workshop, parking lots and offices. Project work has already started and construction is planned for mid-January 2014. The facility is planned to be completed in the summer of 2016. Also adding to its road-building experience, Skanska is to construct the last part of the E6 highway in south-west Sweden. The client is Trafikverket (the Swedish Transport Administration) and the contract is worth SEK 453 M. The E6 road is an important infrastructure link between the Öresund, Gothenburg and Oslo regions. The last part that Skanska will complete is 7.5 kilometres, between Pålen and Tanumshede on the Swedish west

coast. Construction work has started, and the road will open for traffic in the summer of 2015.

Helping to build communities Skanska’s roots in Sweden run deep – construction is largely a local activity and the company’s projects place it in numerous communities. It is committed to being a responsible and appreciated community member, based both on how it carries out its projects and on its wider contribution. Skanska believes that focused efforts are best, so it contributes what it knows and does best. It educates in safety, green building practices and technical know-how as well as n supporting relevant local activities.

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The Flügger group is one of Scandinavia’s largest producers and suppliers of paint products. Industry Europe looks at its growing operations.


lügger has been looking for growth within its existing markets by strengthening its operation where it already has a presence. The group, which produces and markets a full range of architectural paint, wood stain, wallpaper and painting tools, is one of Scandinavia’s largest producers and suppliers of paint products. Danish owned, and with some 1500 employees, the group has its own production facilities and a chain of 300 retail stores. It also

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supplies more than 300 franchise operations. It is currently looking for organic growth across its existing markets, which include Scandinavia, the North Atlantic, Poland, the Czech Republic and China. Flügger was established in 1783, by Johan Daniel Flügger. It remained in the Flügger family through four generations until 1973. In 1975, the Flügger chain of shops was founded and in 1983 the group went public. Between 1984 and 1985, it then bought Fiona, Den-

mark’s largest wallpaper factory, and Dansk Smergelfabrik, Denmark’s only manufacturer of abrasive materials. Both factories later merged with Flügger AS. In Sweden, the company bought Stiwex AB and Forsbergs Børstefabrik, paint brush and paint roller factories, which later merged under the name Stiwex AB.

A market leader In the 1990s, the Swedish platform was expanded. Flügger bought HP Färg & Kemi, Sweden’s third-largest paint and varnish factory that later changed its name to Flügger AB, and it established a new central warehouse in Gothenburg with room for 11,500 pallets, in order to serve the Swedish and Norwegian markets. In 2004, Flügger bought HarpaSjöfn in Iceland – making Flügger the market leader in the North Atlantic region. The acquisition was made to follow the strategy of development in the Nordic Countries.

Since then, Flügger has grown as an international business. In 2010, it opened Scandinavia’s largest online paint shop and established its chain of shops in the Czech Republic. Today, approximately two-thirds of its production goes to professional painters and the remaining one-third to end users. Flügger’s core business is to distribute and market a wide range of paints, decorative products and tools. It produces a range of brands but its own is its largest. Now the extensive range of products includes paint, wood stain, filler, wallpaper adhesive, wall coverings, abrasive materials, brushes, tools and cleaning products. It has seven production sites in total and still has plenty of capacity. All the sites produce for their local markets.

modernised, it was also decorated by artist Poul Gernes, who is famous for his systematic work with colour. Also in Denmark, in Fåborg, some 10,000km of wallpaper and wallcoverings are manufactured annually. In Sweden, there are factories in Bollebygd, Bankeryd and Bodafors. The factory

Varied production profile In Denmark, the factory in Kolding manufactures around 20 billion litres of water-based paint, wood preservation and wall paper adhesive every year. When this factory was

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in Bollebygd manufactures water-based and solvent-based paint, wood preservative, cleaning products, and filler while at Bankeryd brushes and rollers are made. At the factory in Bodafors, plastic handles for brushes, rollers and filling knives, as well as other plastic components, such as lids and packaging, are manufactured. The most recently established Flügger factory is situated in Gdansk. This is the most modern wallpaper factory in Europe. “We also have a factory in Shanghai, China, where we manufacture water-based paint, primer and wallpaper adhesive. Here, production, which began in 2009, has nearly doubled since the first year,” says a company spokesperson.

A better understanding The group’s retail chain, Flügger Décor, has approximately 600 shops across Scandi-

navia, eastern Europe and China. Flügger owns about half of these stores. The shops have maintained their core focus on professional quality, and this concept has proved its viability in a wide array of markets. “As opposed to traditional retail shop chains, we develop, produce and sell our own products. This provides us with an important knowledge about our customers,” says the company spokesperson. “We believe we have seen such success because we have this distribution network that allows us to be close to our customers. This also means we understand them very well.” The group has set out certain targets for its 2013–15 strategy. It wants to achieve a market-leading, professional standard – “#1 Go Pro is the target” – and also to increase its EBIT margin by a little more than one per cent per year, with a view to re-achieving an n EBIT margin of 8–10 per cent.

Bjørn Thorsen A/S is among one of the few larger independent distributors in the Nordic countries. Our flexible organisation and highly skilled employees give us the possibility to understand and operate in the dynamic business environment of today. Our strong position gives us the capability to provide the industry with technical and processing know-how and efficient logistic service. We represent only the leading manufacturers of special raw materials to the industries within the areas of our expertise. We bring solutions!

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DISPOSABLES Under its new leadership, Ontex is expanding its skills base, its geographical presence and its branded products business while continuing an ambitious programme to reduce its environmental impact. Peter Mercer talks to its new CEO.


January of this year Ontex, a European market leader in hygienic disposable products for baby, feminine and adult care, acquired a new CEO. Charles Bouaziz took over the leadership of the Belgium headquartered group from Michael Teacher, who had been CEO since 2006. Welcoming the new CEO, Ontex Chairman, Adrian Bellamy, emphasised how important his role would be in continuing the successful track record of the business and the expansion into new geographies and new growth areas that had been achieved by Michael Teacher and CFO Chris Parratt over the past six years. “Charles Bouaziz’ focus will be to use his extensive experience in fast-moving consumer goods to continue strengthening the Group’s performance,” he said.

In fact, Mr Bouaziz has spent most of his career in the consumer goods industry, including five years in marketing with P&G and nearly 20 years at PepsiCo, where he was appointed as the president of PepsiCo Western Europe in 2008. He was subsequently CEO of Monoprix before joining French private equity company PAI in 2011. Beginning as a family company in Zele, Belgium, Ontex has grown into a global operation with sales of more than €1.4 billion and around 5200 employees across the globe. It currently operates 15 manufacturing facilities in 11 countries. Ontex has built up its position as a European market leader in hygienic disposables through a determined focus on retailer brands. Its strategically located manufacturing plants enable it to optimise logistics and deliver

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products to customers with maximum efficiency and timeliness. In recent years, Ontex has also grown its own brands, especially in emerging markets and in the healthcare sector. In fact, production now breaks down into a 60/40 ratio between retail and own brands. The company’s Retail Division is primarily concerned with the development, production and sale of baby care, feminine care and adult incontinence products to retailers across

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Europe. Ontex also produces and sells its own branded products under names such as Helen Harper, Moltex and Babycharm. The Healthcare division similarly focuses on the development, production and sale of adult incontinence products to institutional customers in the healthcare market. The main Ontex brands here are Serenity, ID and Euron. Ontex also has an important operation in Turkey which similarly produces and sells

baby care, feminine care and adult incontinence products across Turkey and neighbouring markets. Here the main brands are Canbebe, Helen Harper and Canped.

Expanding branded business It is this expansion into the production and marketing of its own brands while strengthening the retailer brands that Charles Bouaziz sees as his most immediate priority. “Ontex is

a very strong company, with streamlined and highly efficient manufacturing sites and a clear focus on product development and innovation,” he explains. “But as we move from our historic focus on European retailer brands towards more geographical markets and the expansion of our own branded business we need to develop a broader set of skills, specifically in marketing. Carefully balancing retailer brands and own brands will accelerate our growth. We need to be thoroughly professional in this area, especially since in tough economic times consumers tend to go for products with the best price/quality ratio.” Mr Bouaziz adds that Ontex has fascinating growth opportunities across the world.

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“In western Europe there is still plenty of room to expand our retail business in baby care and feminine care products, particularly as other major producers exit the market, and an ageing population means growing demand for our incontinence products. Beyond Europe there are many countries that are experiencing very high growth in birth rates so there is a huge demand for baby care products such as nappies, wipes, pants etc. We need to identify the most promising markets and move into them, initially through sales and marketing and then, if appropriate, with local production lines. “Sometimes this can most efficiently be achieved through strategic acquisitions. The

addition of Lille Healthcare to the Group in 2011, for example, brought us not only a leading French producer of incontinence products but also an extended coverage in Australia. Now we are opening a nappy production plant in Pakistan and growing our business in the North African markets.”

Acquisitions and rationalisations Ontex’s presence in the branded and incontinence market was strengthened further in February of this year when it agreed to acquire Artsana Sud SpA from the Artsana Group. Artsana Sud is a leading manufacturer and distributor of incontinence products under the Serenity brand in Italy. “Until this year we had

A cooperation between our company and the company Ontex has existed since the year 1993 in the area of component manufacturing. In 2002, we also received a contract for the development and manufacture of plastic applicators. We prepare initial samples with experimental tools and optimize them until they are ready for production. We constructed and manufactured the first tool set for serial production in 2003. Since then, the scope of this particular production has increased steadily, so that as of 2006, we also set up a production line for the serial injection moulding for applicators. Our client, the company Ontex, receive all services regarding manufacturing of applicators, such as mould part development, tool construction, tool manufacuring, serial injection moulding of selected formats, maintenance and repair of injection moulding tools from a single source.



Phone: +44 (0)1469 576 305 | E-mail:

a limited presence in Italy but now Serenity has brought us an important manufacturing site, products and people,” explains Charles Bouaziz. “And, of course, Serenity is a wellknown brand so its acquisition has accelerated our move into branded healthcare products. We are investigating the opportunity of marketing the Serenity brand throughout Europe to seize its growth potential.” Ontex has also announced its intention to regroup its production sites in the north of France. The plan is to concentrate its production sites at Arras and Wasquehal into a new facility to be located halfway between the two. Ontex has explained to its employee representatives that no jobs will be lost as a result of this project – all workers will simply transfer to the new, state-of-the-art facility. “Following our acquisition of Lille Healthcare we were operating two sites in northern France within 50km of each other so it made obvious sense to consolidate production,” says Mr Bouaziz. “We will not only improve manufacturing efficiency but also our inventory and logistics operations. We are currently assessing the options for a greenfield or existing manufacturing site but we are confident that a new single facility will strengthen our operating footprint in France and help us prepare for further growth.”

Environmental priorities Ontex maintains a strong focus on product development and innovation in order to continually improve the comfort and performance of its products. The role of its R&D teams, which are based in each key manufacturing unit as well as at its Zele headquarters, is to enable the group to work on new concepts and product specifications, to validate new raw materials and to optimise the use of current raw materials. This R&D effort is closely linked to Ontex’s commitment to minimising the impact of its activities on the environment. Its sustainabil-

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Pasaco Established in 1994, the Polish company Pasaco is a leading producer of niche carbonless copy papers in the world and significant manufacturer of silicone paper in Europe. Pasaco produces silicone paper, which is supplied to many trade industries in the global market. We currently export to over 50 countries worldwide and have a large number of high-profile clients. We are the main supplier of silicone paper (printed and unprinted) to the global hygienic disposables giant Ontex. Our mission is to respond to our customers’ requirements, wherever they are, with the highest quality products, timely deliveries and dependable service. All our production is certified according to the ISO 9001:2008 and ISO 14001:2004 standards. In addition Pasaco offers FSC® certified product.

ity programme focuses on energy savings, transport efficiency, packaging optimisation and the search for more eco-friendly and lightweight raw materials. For example, continual product development has enabled the company to drastically reduce the amount of fluff pulp – its main raw material – used in its production processes and it ensures that all its fluff pulp comes from suppliers that subscribe to responsible sourcing programmes. And every Ontex plant has an action plan to reduce electricity consumption. In fact, Ontex’s Belgian production plants are all run exclusively on renewable energy and its plant at Buggenhout has deployed a large number of solar panels on the roofs of its major warehouses – an initiative other plants are looking to follow. Also at Buggenhout, an energy recuperation unit recycles part of the mixed waste to provide energy to heat the entire site in the winter and cool it in summer. “It is vitally important that we behave responsibly by reducing energy consumption and raw material volumes as well as minimising waste,” says Charles Bouaziz. “We are also working with our key suppliers on the development of alternative, biodegradable raw materials. But we have to also remember that the primary goal of

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everything we do is to satisfy our customers and consumers, and the fact is that at the moment most alternative materials cost more and, particularly in the current economic conditions, most consumers don’t want to pay any more. So we have to look to increasing the scale of our operations to get production cost economies that will

help to offset the increased costs of these alternative raw materials. “For Ontex, customers and consumers will always come first and all our operations – in R&D, production, marketing and sales – have to work together to understand their needs and then to satisfy them in ever n better ways.”

A SUPERMARKET GIANT Tesco operates over 200 stores throughout Hungary and is now the third largest employer in the country, providing employment for over 22,000 people. Industry Europe reports on the group’s strategy to deliver the best quality, service and variety in a highly competitive market, which helped it to achieve revenues of £1,606 million in 2012.


ritish retail giant Tesco opened its first supermarket in Hungary in 1995. From the beginning, Tesco intended to carry out an expansion plan that covered the whole of Hungary. The aim was to establish and rapidly increase the number of stores in order to reach as many customers as possible. Now, 18 years on, as well as continuing to extend the chain of hypermarket stores, more emphasis has been placed on the establishment of local convenience stores. The point of this strategy is to attract customers during their daily shopping routines in addition to their once a week main shopping trip.

A company spokesperson explained: “We are very flexible and try to follow the market changes at all times; for now this seems to be the most efficient development strategy. It is hard to predict, however, whether we will continue with this strategy in the long term.” The expansion of small stores such as Tesco Express has been targeting town centres and housing estates instead of locations in the outskirts of the towns. Most of these shops were previously operating as supermarkets. Tesco buys or rents them and refurbishes them to meet the identified local needs. Many of these shops are now operating in Budapest but more and more are opening across the country.

Focus on own-label brands The economic downturn created a huge challenge for the whole retail sector, as the company spokesperson says: “We had to satisfy the increased customer demand for cheaper products, therefore the assortment of these products has been greatly increased. At the same time, it was a challenge for us to

balance the price boosting effect of the economic crisis and try to sell products that were not more expensive than a year ago.” The most important product range that was specifically created to respond to the negative effects of the changing market is Tesco’s own-label products. These products have similar qualities to branded products but at the same time they are available at much more favourable prices. The introduction of Tesco Színes in 2007 brought a new element within Tesco’s ownlabel brands. The range was established to create a new brand that suggests higher quality value than Tesco’s oldest brand, Tesco Economy, which guarantees the lowest prices on the market. The brand name, Színes (meaning Colour) was created by the customers themselves. The range is marketed in attractive packaging and offers a wide variety of goods: fresh and dry products, cosmetics and household chemical goods. Products in the Finest category represent premium quality products at lower prices.

In spring 2009 Tesco launched the Light Choices range in Hungary. This range includes nutritious products that have reduced calories and low fat and sugar content and they are particularly popular among people who live a healthy lifestyle. A new category, the Organic range arrived from England in 2008 and appeals to ethical shoppers, as all products in this range are fair trade goods. In recent years Tesco has introduced a new discount product range under the name of Családi Márkák (Family brands), which provides great value for the whole family. Products in this range are only available in Tesco stores and they are specifically marketed to compete with products at special discount stores. Technika, is Tesco’s own brand for electrical goods including LCD and traditional CRT televisions, DVD players, MP3 players and other household equipment. The Cherokee clothing brand was introduced in central Europe including Hungary in 2006 and has been increasingly popular ever since.

A local focus In Hungary, Tesco has a strong focus on sourcing products from local suppliers. In fact, local products account for around 85 per cent of its sales, and some categories are even higher: for instance, 92 per cent of dairy products sold in its Hungarian stores come from Hungarian producers In order to foster local production, the company has also developed a support network for its local suppliers, including seminars and a suppliers’ academy. In fact, its efforts in Hungary have been so successful that its suppliers export more than £100 million worth of products to the UK, including TVs, lightbulbs, wine and sweetcorn.

Additional services Since 2003, Tesco in Hungary has been offering a wide variety of financial services including loans, credit cards and club cards for consumers. In 2009, many new services were introduced: customers are now able to purchase travel insurance, apply online for

casco (vehicle safety) insurance and book their holidays with Tesco on the internet. Customers can select their most suitable solutions from offers provided by 30 different banks and insurance companies. In recent years Tesco has been extending its services even further and intends to respond flexibly to customer demands. The retail group carries out an enormous amount of market research in Hungary and builds its findings into its operations. “Customers’ buying experience is a very important value-adding factor,” says the spokesperson. “The competition is very strong; there are too many players in this sector. Product price is one of the most important issues but there are many other factors that significantly affect customers’ choice. As in other European countries, consumer buying behaviour in Hungary is very sensitive to promotions. They are less likely to stay loyal to a particular chain or retailer; they would rather compare what products are available at what prices in which retailer. They make their decision based on the free promotion leaflets.

This is why it is extremely important that our promotion offers have a wide variety and the accessibility of these promotions is also a key question.” Putting the customer first has put Tesco in a league apart. Service, quality and variety are the key components of Tesco’s success. The range and diversity of stores, products and services mean that Tesco is ready and able to face the challenges of the coming n months and years.

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FIGHTING ILLEGAL TRADING Imperial Tobacco Polska, of Jankowice near Poznan, is the leader in Poland’s tobacco market, with about a 50 per cent market share. The company is also ranked third in the country in terms of cigarette sales.


mperial Tobacco Polska is a part of thw Imperial Tobacco Group, the leading international tobacco company, which manufactures and markets a comprehensive range of cigarettes, tobaccos, rolling papers, cigarette tubes, cigars and cigarillos. Imperial Tobacco’s products are available in more than 160 countries around the world. Altogether the group has 46 factories and employs about 36,000 people. Imperial Tobacco entered the Polish market in 2002 when it purchased the company Reemtsma, which in 1996 had acquired a majority stake in WWT SA, a local cigarette producer from Poznan. In 2000, Reemtsma built a modern facility in Jankowice, near Poznan, and four years later its name was changed to Imperial Tobacco Polska SA. Today Imperial Tobacco Polska SA employs around 800 people.

Since 2008, when the Imperial Tobacco Group acquired French and Spanish tobacco producer Altadis, an Imperial Tobacco factory has been operating in Radom. Since 2011 the Radom company changed its name from Altadis Polska SA to Imperial Tobacco Polska Manufacturing SA and it currently employs about 500 people. The company’s core products include such cigarette brands as Davidoff, West and Route 66. Other products offered by ITP include tobacco (including Route 66, Fairwind, Drum and Amphora), a wide range of cigars (including the Pleiades, Guantanamera, Vegafina, Fleur de Savane), cigarillos (including Mini Cohiba, Mini Montecristo, Mini Romeo y Julieta) and papers, as well as tubes and machines for cigarettes.

In September this year (2013), Imperial Tobacco Polska SA completed the development of the Janowice plant. Thanks to the new production and storage halls of about 230,000m2, the facility has increased its potential production and stock capacity, improved the process of tobacco manufacturing, as well as strengthened the company’s key position in the Imperial Tobacco Group.

Against illicit trading The illegal trade of tobacco products (smuggling and counterfeiting) is one of the most serious problems faced by the tobacco industry in Poland. The black market consists of tobacco goods smuggled across the eastern border, counterfeit products made in the country and illegal trade. The economic situation in the country as well as the growth

Manufacturing Plant and office of Imperial Tobacco in Jankowice

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Kazimieruk Mechanical Plants Kazimieruk Mechanical Plants is a quality tool shop providing comprehensive machining services. What has made us stand out for years is solid and precise workmanship. We use only high-quality materials with certificates of origin. We process almost any machineable material. Our machinery enables us to manufacture a wide range of products. Our services include: • precise mechanical processing in CNC centers: turning, milling, grinding, EDM • support of experienced design engineers and process engineers with: - implementation of new products - upgrades and improvements ending with the preparation of new tools and modification of machines - selection of optimum materials for specified operating conditions • inspection of finished parts. For many years we are trusted supplier for world leaders in following industries: - tobacco - pharmaceutical and cosmetic - automotive - machinery - food.


CLIP Group CLIP Group is Polish logistics group, which for four years has supported Imperial Tobacco. CLIP Group operates a logistics warehouse and industrial area of 200 000m2 in Swarzędz near Poznan, and 100 ha of investment areas. CLIP Logistics Centre in Swarzędz expands its Container Terminal CLIP Logistics Centre in Swarzędz plans to expand its portfolio of industrial warehouses to include new extended Multimodal Container Terminal. The currently running terminal is capable of annual handling of 10 000 TEU. Its storage capacity is of 1000 TEU. The terminal is equipped with two 750-meter long unloading tracks. The CLIP terminal supports daily rail service between Swarzędz CLIP Terminal and Port of Rotterdam, which is run in cooperation with ERS Railways. The intermodal train is able to carry 1,100 tons of cargo and is equipped with railway carriages for the transport of containers of all sizes, including high cube, and intermodal trailers, including mega trailers. By 2014, CLIP plans to open a new, expanded container terminal with annual capability of 150 000 TEU, with two 750-meter long unloading tracks that allow handling of two trains at the same time. The terminal will be directly connected to the E20 railway road, and through the new flyover will have a more convenient direct entry to the E92 national road, the S5 expressway and the A2 Motorway. Also in 2014 CLIP will open a depot for empty containers with the capacity to store 3000 TEU. In the years 2014-2015 production and storage facilities with additional 70,000 m2 of floor area are planned to be constructed. CLIP Logistics Sp. z o.o. 62-020 Swarzędz-Jasin ul. Rabowicka 6 Tel: +48 61 897 53 30 Fax: +48 61 818 13 89

The CLIP facilities include A Class warehouses, railway sidings and container terminal with a capacity of 1,000 TEU. Each day, the terminal supports direct rail service between Swarzędz and Port of Rotterdam. In 2014, there are new intermodal connections: Swarzedz - Gdańsk/ Gdynia and Swarzedz- Szczecin planned to be opened. CLIP facilities are situated right by the trans-European E20 Paris – Beijing railway corridor and near the A2 Berlin – Warsaw motorway and S5 expressway. Find out more at:

of a black market has resulted in a significant decrease in sales of legal cigarettes and tobacco. From January to May 2013, legal cigarette sales fell by more than 11 per cent. The illegal market for smoking tobacco accounts for about 70 per cent of sales. In September 2010, Imperial Tobacco Group entered into a cooperation with the European anti-fraud agency OLAF and the member states of the European Union, aimed at combating the illicit trade in tobacco products. The company has held professional training sessions for customs and police officers, during which it presents the latest data on the scale and sources of smuggling tobacco products to Poland, as well as showing the best ways to distinguish legal products from illegal. Since 2003, it has organised more than 20 such courses. In 2012, the third edition of the web campaign ‘Stop Counterfeit Tobacco’ was held. This campaign is based on warning banners posted on agricultural websites against buying counterfeit ITPL tobacco brands. In August this year, the company launched a social and information action to warn consumers against buying illegal tobacco. The packaging of Imperial Tobacco tubes included an assortment of labels warning of the dangers and consequences of buying and trading illegal tobacco.

Maintaining good results Despite the difficult market situation caused by a large increase in the excise tax on tobacco products as well as the black market, Imperial Tobacco Polska is doing well.

Mrs Agnieszka Świergiel, President of the Board and CEO of Imperial Tobacco Polska

Profits for the year 2012 (from October 2011 to the end of September 2012) amounted to about PLN 90 million (€23 million), and net sales amounted to approximately PLN 5.8 billion (€1.4 billion). According to estimates for the financial year 2013 (from October 2012 to the end of September 2013) exports of cigarettes cover about 70 per cent of total sales. Cigarettes manufactured in Jankowice are offered throughout Europe as well as in Taiwan and China, but Germany, the Czech Republic, France, Spain, Slovenia, Hungary and Slovakia are the company’s main foreign markets.

Draft of the ‘tobacco directive’ Imperial Tobacco Polska is opposed to the solutions proposed in changes to the Directive 2001/37/EC launched by the European Parliament and the Council of Europe. Based on the provisions of the EU Treaties, the company says that the EU authorities do not have the legal backing to implement many of the proposed changes, since the individual EU member states are best placed to decide on the health of their citizens. In the company’s opinion, many of the proposed solutions, such as banning the sale of menthol cigarettes and slim cigarettes, a ban on a variety of formats, packages and other components of the product, create obstacles for the internal market by eliminating the differences between rival products, which is a restriction of competition and may result in the inflow of products from the black market.

Currently, 38 per cent of cigarettes consumed in Poland are ‘menthols’ and ‘slim’ cigarettes. As a result of the Commission’s proposals, the production of these cigarettes will be discontinued. The new regulation clearly brings benefits to the illegal production and smuggling of cigarettes from countries outside the European Union. It is expensive for Poland, since the country has one of the longest borders in the EU, making it more vulnerable to smuggling. Poland is the second biggest producer of raw tobacco in the EU. The possible introduction of the ‘tobacco directive’ would severely affect the situation of tobacco growers. According to estimates by associations of tobacco growers in Poland, about 60,000 people are employed in the cultivation of tobacco, mainly in areas with unfavourable structural characteristics of farms and the local labour market. In many regions where tobacco factories are located, the official unemployment rate is more than 15 per cent. The estimates by the Adam Smith Centre show that the proposed regulations may bring about unemployment for at least 30,000 people and the state budget costs associated with the payment of six months of unemployment benefits amount to about PLN 137 million (approx. €34 million). According to the Adam Smith Centre report, implementation of the Directive may result in annual loss of revenues from CIT and PIT estimated at n PLN 50 million (€13 million).

Manufacturing plant in Radom – Imperial Tobacco Polska Manufacturing Industry Europe 105

SCIENCE AND STYLE IN CHILDREN’S SHOES Apart from understanding the main fashion trends, the key to success in the footwear industry is to employ the latest scientific research to create good-looking and healthy footwear. Croatian company Ivančica d.d. produces innovative and high-quality children’s footwear that is in tune with aesthetic functionality. Vanja Švačko reports.


ocated in the northern Croatian city of Ivanec, Ivancica was founded in 1946 as a small shoemaker. It started with the production of miners’ shoes, only to be transformed later into a children’s footwear company. A dedication to excellence has enabled the company to place itself amongst the renowned manufacturers in the field. Today Ivančica employs around 1000 people, most of whom have been part of the team for more than 15 years. The Group has four production facilities, which produce about 5000 pairs of footwear daily and more than 200 models per season. The majority of the workers are employed in two plants in Croatia, while the rest of them work in the factory which Ivančica owns in Bosnia Herzegovina. At the end of March this year the company became the majority owner of Bambi d.o.o.

Scientifically backed up brands Ivančica markets two main brands, Froddo and Bambi, of footwear for children from birth to age 12. Since shoemaking for small 106 Industry Europe

children requires the highest standards when it comes to quality, functionality, comfort and design, the expert team first decides upon the best materials such as leather that take care for healthy feet. Its sensitive care for its customers is the key point that makes Ivančica stands out among competitors in the region. Before production starts, the company engages in scientific research. The Froddo production line is a result of collaboration with specialists involved in research in the field of paediatric orthopaedics (Anthropometric measurements of children’s feet), led by Prof. Dr Vrdoljak (MD). In 2009, Froddo was awarded superbrand status. The Bambi brand provides shoes that are made from the finest natural materials. They are approved by orthopaedists and come with certificates that guarantee safety and proper development of children’s feet. The shoes combine comfort and quality, following the imaginative blueprint delivered by the team of Croatian and Italian designers. All details such as pliability

and flexibility of the sole, the insole which supports the foot arch etc. offer maximum mobility and comfort. These qualities are in tune with the most important requirement that the shoe has to adapt to the foot, not the other way around. In addition, both brands are produced in compliance with high manufacturing standards, reflected in rational use of natural resources and care for the environment. For all these reasons the company’s products have become recognised outside Croatia. During an overseas trip Pauly Tong, owner and managing director of the company Kids New Shoes, fell in love with the Froddo brand of children’s shoes because of their high quality and imaginative design. She decided to import them to the UK and Ireland. Since 2007, she has been developing sales to a large group of independent shoe retailers from her base in St Albans, Hertfordshire. The brand continues to grow in strength, recently introducing a brand new range of girls’ school shoes and she

Industry Europe 107

now also supplies Amazon and the Fenwick Department Store as well as her many other regular customers.

Consistent technology support Carefully selected and certified materials are combined with modern technologies. From cutting materials through composition of the upper and bottom parts of the shoe, three types of technologies are used: gluing, waterproofing and the Strobl technique. The safety of the product is also carefully controlled at all stages. The company is continuously investing in new technologies which increase competitiveness of its products. The rest of the investments are aimed at product improvements, innovations and market development.

Well-written marketing plan With its two brands and the retail chain of 36 Froddo and Bambi shops, as well as two on-line shops, Ivančica boasts proactive client service and strong presence on domestic market. The company is also export-oriented, having customers in 19 countries across Europe, Asia and America; it is currently targeting more markets within

MALAGIA s.r.l. Phone: +39 (0)734-840607 Fax: +39 (0)734-840236 E-mail:

Our job is a passion. Our goal is to continue to offer the highest quality of leather, guaranteeing the assistance and experience of a group of people that work with enthusiasm and good spirit of research. PAD. 22 STAND C54

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the EU. To those countries the company is delivering its main brands through agents and distributors, while planning to develop its own retail stores in the nearer future. For the past few years business results indicate an increase in sales in foreign markets. Not only does this stimulate production, but also strengthens the brands. The company is focused on its priority markets such as Germany, the UK and Russia, but intends to expand in the future to the USA as well. The recent Croatian accession to EU is expected to improve flexibility when it comes to delivery schedules. Another major improvement is to be seen in lower prices of transport services. The new economic status of Croatia within the EU also opens up the opportunity for the company to facilitate expansion of its distribution channels, especially internet sales. However, the leadership of Ivančica cannot ignore the fact that easier access to the European market also means easier access to the Croatian market for manufacturers from the EU and other countries with which the EU has trade agreements. In order to keep ahead of the competition, the company has to pursue its main

strategic marketing goal, which is extending the sales to international markets by improving current product lines and developing new ones, as well as developing its position in online marketing. The company believes that its success lies in the ability to continuously adapt and improve their products – children shoes made with the Earth-keeping values and which will provide/allow them n healthy growing/childhood. Visit:




In 18 years Serbian furniture manufacturer and distributor Forma Ideale has moved from being a small family enterprise to a sector leader in south-eastern Europe. The deputy marketing director, Aleksandar Ružesković, tells Colin Chinery about the furnishings for success.


elling point interaction has always been a success factor for leading Serbian furniture manufacturer Forma Ideale. And the interaction is a double-hander – receptiveness to changing market demands and enthusiastic buyer response to Forma Ideal’s standards of quality and design. With a retail network of 23 showrooms across 21 Serbian cities and growing sales across the Central European Free Trade Agreement nations as well as the EU, Russian Federation and Belarus, the Kraguje-

vac-based specialists in wood-based panel furniture has returned doubledigit annual growth rates for each of the past five years. Specialising in the mass production of panel and upholstered furniture, distributed through an extensive retail and wholesale network, Forma Ideale is a brand recognised for modern design, functional properties, quality, and competitive prices. “We are proud to say that today Forma Ideale is a regional leader and a highly ranked company in this part of the

world,” says the deputy marketing director, Aleksandar Ružesković. This is a long way from the small family business set up 18 years ago. Then called EL-EN, its production range was small and sales confined to the trade. But with customer reaction enthusiastic from the outset, the fledgling company quickly expanded its manufacturing facilities. The first retail showrooms opened in 2001, and three years later the fast-growing business changed its name to Forma Ideale.

Functionality plus elegance The Forma Ideale collection of panel and upholstered furniture ranges from living rooms and hallways to kitchens and offices, bedrooms to kids rooms’, sofas and beds to entertainment centres. And from eye-catching functionality to elegant compositions. The success strategy is based on a number of critical advantages, with modern design utilising high-quality European components and product consistency and reliability key factors. So too are an excellent price-quality ratio, practical and efficient flat packaging, and optimal stock levels leading to short lead times. Production facilities are located in Kragujevac and Majdanpek in Serbia, with over 500 employees operating in a 23,000m2 production hall. The production assortment consists of over 250 articles of panel furniture and over 20 articles of upholstered

110 Industry Europe

furniture, with a total production capacity of more than one million pieces a year. Panel furniture manufacture is organised on the basis of serial production using modern technologies. Four production lines include the application of CNC management and developed quality control procedures, as well as protective systems for workers and the environment that meet the highest industry standards. Forma Ideale’s 1200 employees are mostly young, with an average age of 28 at production level and 34 in management. More than one third of employees are women. “The exceptional market position of the company is the result of sincere commitment to professional objectives and respect for market rules,” says Mr Ružesković. ”According to annually conducted researche of consumer preferences, Forma Ideale’s furniture is at the very top with regards to

the functional properties, price-quality ratio and its contemporary design. “Forma Ideale’s furniture assortment offers a simple concept of functional, comfortable and quality furniture of modern design which follows the global trends for interior design.”

Model of success The company’s remarkable success and growth, says Mr Ružesković, is based on the creation of a modern business pattern for the furniture industry in south-eastern Europe. “Strong adherence to the principles of modern business, rapid response to market demands and a high degree of confidence, have all very much contributed to the leading market position of the company. Our leading market position in Serbia and south-eastern Europe is the result of a sincere commitment to professional goals and

compliance to market trends. An excellent quality/price performance and a widespread network of loyal and satisfied partners illustrate Forma Ideale’s strategic business advantages, with customers and partners alike recognising the benefits and potential of our furniture assortment.“ The major chipboard supplier – the world’s leading producer Kronospan – is a leading partner, and its location, just 22km from Forma Ideale’s production facility, opens up excellent prospects for further export expansion to the EU.

Supplier criteria “During the last several years of intensive development, we have undertaken the strict selection of our suppliers. And this – a system based primarily on the level of quality and reliable delivery – has contributed to the selection of suppliers who are now our strategic partners. Long-term partnerships between Forma Ideale and our suppliers are marked by the observance of obligations and a high degree of confidence.” Looking ahead Mr Ružesković says the development strategy includes improving

the company’s position in existing markets as well as penetrating new ones – especially in western Europe. “Our development strategy is essentially based on the stabilisation and growth of our foreign markets sales network and on the expansion and further improvement of customer service in Serbia. And with a wide range of products, excellent price-quality ratio, constant stock and optimal delivery period meeting all necessary requirements, every factor is in line with our brand slogan – n ‘Living well is easy...Forma Ideale’.”

CONTROLLING THE POWER The ETI Group has a strong production base in 13 countries across the world and branch offices in more than 60 countries. With a reputation as one of the leading producers in the field of fuses and an important niche player in the field of switchgear, the group is today a widely trusted company when it comes to the protection and safety of properties and their users. Vanja Švačko reports.


more than half a century’s long history, the ETI Group has managed to gain significant experience in innovating products and solutions for the protection of residential, commercial, industrial and power distribution installations. Established in 1950 in the central Slovenian city of Izlake, the company started making ceramic products, setting up its first electro-porcelain Bergman pipe in 1954. It took them only a decade to engage in the manufacturing of electrotechnical products and to become one of the first to offer safety fuses to its customers. What followed was the development of innovative products such as their first miniature circuit breaker. This initiated the company’s shift towards an electrotechnical range

of goods and the beginning of automation upon development of its first assembly line. Integration with the ceramic factory Svit Kamnik in 1981 shaped the form of future production and today this plant is one of the company’s main manufacturers of a large part of the technical ceramic range.

Expansion through subsidiaries Fifteen years ago ETI embarked upon a new plan of establishing subsidiaries. The first of these were ETI Proplast in Slovenia and ETI Polam in Poland. Today ETI has daughter companies in 11 European countries (such as the former Yugoslav republics, Ukraine, Slovakia, Romania, Lithuania and Germany). As well as establishing subsidiaries, ETI was also pursuing its expansion policy through

various acquisitions, such as a plant in Hildburghausen for the manufacture of miniature circuit breakers and so on. Today the company has three production sites: apart from the ceramic manufacturer Kamnik, Trbovlje deals with special-purpose fuses, while the facility in Izlake, which is also the company’s headquarters, makes the whole range of products including switchgears, fuses and some of the technical ceramic items. Some of the subsidiaries have autonomous production (Bosnian ETI Sarajevo, Slovakian ETI Elb, Polish ETI Polam, German ETI De and Slovenian ETI Proplast) and are basically in charge of semi-finished products and the assembly of goods for the Group or for their own needs. This additional manufacturing area consists of 31,154m2.

ETI thus has a network of manufacturers, more than 1600 employees and a turnover of €95 million.

Product range The ETI Group specialises in a range of products in four main categories: electrotechnical products, technical ceramic products, tools and equipment and specific plastic products. The first category offers solutions for residential, commercial and industrial installations, solutions for energy installations, protection of semiconductors, protection of photovoltaic systems and other renewable energy sources and special fuses. Within the category of technical ceramic goods the company makes electrotechnical ceramics, household appliances

parts, products for the chemical industry and so on. In the tool shop the assembly lines and tools are designed and manufactured for the main production.

Innovating success ETI’s constant dedication to research and improvement of its products within the frame of international standards has resulted in the company pioneering and innovating in almost all areas of its activities. It is a pioneer in the field of protection of photovoltaic systems (protection on the AC and DC side of the plant). The company took part in this year’s Intersolar trade fair, showcasing the products and solutions from ETI Green Protect programme. It also has some new and challenging lines in PV system protection,

as well as being aimed towards the mining industry (cylindrical fuse-links CH14 and NH DC HRC fuse-links). A new universal current-sensitive RCCBs EFI B type and B+ type provide fault and additional protection against direct or indirect contact of live parts, as well as fire protection in the cases of the fire hazard exposure. Special features such as sensitivity to pure sinus residual current make these suitable for protection of various sites, vehicles and machine tools (frequency converters, charging stations for electric vehicles, UPS, computer data centres, electronic equipment on construction sites, test setups in laboratories and so on). ETI has also introduced a unique switchgear product, KZS 1M, with an outstand-

More than 40 years of experience Reliable support for coating development Company GALD deal with galvanic metal plating. Our main service is electroplating of metal and non-metal parts in barrels for automotive industry, household appliances and other. Services: • tin plating • copper plating • nickel plating • silver plating • gold plating

Gald d.o.o. | Poljubinj 89d | 5220 Tolmin | Slovenia +386 5 388 15 29 | |

ing feature combination of miniature circuit breaker and residual current circuit breaker. Because of its complex protective qualities, it is highly recommended in premises such as hospitals and kindergartens. The company also innovates in the area of technology (switchgear and fuses), with solutions being very often designed to meet customers’ specific requests.

Market strategy The political and economic crisis in the former Yugoslavia in the 1990s brought about changes in the status and market orientation of ETI, which finally began to operate under the current name ETI Elektroelement d.d. Although Germany is its largest market, ETI’s presence in eastern European markets

is clearly visible in growing revenues. While in that part of the Europe, as well as in Slovenia and Balkans, the company is selling its products under its well-known ETI brand, in western Europe the company still operates through OEM partners and sells only specific items on demand. As its presence in the European markets continues to grow, the company is looking forward to expanding to the Asian market as well. In the last few years ETI has made pivotal investments in ecological projects (including a wastewater treatment plant in Izlake) and has introduced modern organisational principles of mass production. All these developments make ETI a reliable partner with a plan to combine partnership with wholesalers and active technical support

to users. The company will continue to enlarge the range of its products in addition to strengthening its brand, while expanding n more towards the east. Visit:

Elica SpA is a world leader in the production of cooker hoods. Industry Europe looks at how the company continues to lead the way when it comes to efficiency, innovation and design.



ounded in 1970, Elica has long been synonymous with the design and highquality manufacturing of cooker hoods on a national and international scale. Headquartered in Fabriano in the province of Ancona in central Italy, Elica prides itself on being a ‘Made in Italy’ company with regards to the style and design of its products. Aside from the production of cooker hoods, the group is also a European leader in the design and manufacture of motors for central heating boilers for domestic use.

Investing in new markets and R&D The group has a total of eight production sites – five in Italy and one each in Poland, Germany and Mexico. Already present in global markets including Europe and both South and North America, over the past couple of years Elica has been targeting the growing Asian markets with the establishment of a production facility in India. New product development is very important to Elica and is something into which it puts continuous investment. It has a central R&D department at its headquarters in Fabriano with additional centres in Germany, Poland and Mexico, which cater to their specific local markets. A company spokesperson explained:

“We invest a significant amount as we value R&D as one of the most important aspects of our business. With this commitment to developing new products, we are proud to say that Elica has revolutionised the traditional image of the cooker head sector – it is no longer seen as a simple accessory but a designed object that has improved the standard of kitchens all over the world.” Elica’s commitment to innovation also extends to its eco-friendly product range. As an ISO 14001-certified company, it has developed a range of products that have contributed significantly to the reduction of noise pollution in household kitchens. In 2007, it launched its Space range as the quietest cooker hood in the world. It also has a patent known as Elica Deep Silence which allows for a 40 per cent reduction in noise compared to traditional cooker hoods. A recent addition to the range is the company’s highly innovative L-Original – a new recirculating hood that changes the rules of kitchen air treatment. This is the first hood to employ innovative Cyclone friction technology, which makes it possible to achieve extremely high levels of filter performance compared to traditional hoods, with a grease removal efficiency of over 90 per cent.

Leaders in design As a world conglomerate, Elica has a centralised marketing department comprising of three internal divisions. This includes a design team which has worked alongside eminent international designers such as David Lewis, Gaetano Pesce and Stefano Giovannoni. “At Elica, we consider ourselves not only to be a world leader with regards to market share but also in innovation and design,” adds the spokesperson. A recent example of the company’s focus on unique design is the 35CC cooker hood. This product is composed of two shells in the form of a ‘C’: one external, aesthetic and colourful and the other inside which is functional and made from plain or perforated steel. This offers a unique combination of beauty and functionality in one single product. The hood is available in white, orange, turtledove or lily for the Evoque version; or red, black, yellow and green for the Dynamique version. It comes with high-efficiency lighting thanks to four LEDs that together generate 12 watts, all of which can be controlled with an electronic, rotating touch remote control on the internal shell. The company’s other two marketing divisions are divided into product managerheaded teams dedicated to developing

products for OEM customers and Elica’s own brands respectively. It also attends many exhibitions each year as it has invested a lot in brand building. In January this year (2013), for example, it was present at LivingKitchen, the international kitchen fair in Cologne. Along with its subsidiary company Gutmann, Elica showcased the latest models from its 2012/13 range, including highlights such as Tiffany and Sweet, which have recently received the iF Product Design Award, one of the most prestigious international recognitions in the field of product design. With a workforce of 2300 employees, each year Elica produces approximately 16 million units spread across its cooker hood and motor activities. Around 70 per cent of its annual turnover derives from serving large multinational OEM customers such as Whirlpool, Electrolux, Bosch and Siemens whilst the remaining 30 per cent stems from Elica’s own brands which include acquisitions such as German subsidiary company Gutmann. n

From the left the General Manager Marco, Mearini and the Sales Manager, Sergio Felicissimo

DRIVING IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION Industry Europe speaks to Mr Marco Mearini, managing director of gearbox manufacturer Nord Motoriduttori Srl, about the company, and its future plans. Barbara Rossi reports.

Nord Motoriduttori is a member of the international Group Nord Drivesystems

Nord supplies complete drive units, consisting of a gear unit, an engine of an optimal energy efficiency class and drive electronics.

The modular systems – in the picture: the choice of Nord industrial gear units – which allow customised configurations at a reasonable price, while still offering fast delivery times.

The Plant in San Giovanni in Persiceto: the ‘extension of the new shed will open in September
Figure Nord stand at the SPS IPC Drives in Parma Italy; seen the positive outcome was also confirmed at the fair for 2014


ord was founded in 1965 in Bargteheide, near Hamburg, as a supplier of gearboxes. In-house production was initially limited to gear cases, shafts and flanges, while other components were procured elsewhere. However, Nord soon expanded its range to include all parts for the production of complete gearboxes. Later on, power electronics and electric motors were added to the line-up, so that today the group is a full-scale provider of drive solutions with a deep understanding of the industries that it supplies. Mr Mearini further explains, “Over the years, we have maintained our leadership in gear technology. The innovation with the most lasting impact in this area was the UNICASE housing concept, developed by Nord in Bargteheide in 1981. Before that, multi-part gearbox housings used to be susceptible to oil leaks and to damage, owing to torque and radial forces. Nord was the first manufacturer to make only single-cast enclosures with integrated bearing seats. These are much more compact and have a much greater load-bearing capacity, as well as a longer lifespan.”

As Nord diversified, specialised factories were established, initially in various locations throughout northern Germany. Today, the Nord Drivesystems Group has 35 subsidiaries in different countries and an international network of sales and service partners. Talking about the role his company plays within the Bologna-based Nord Motoriduttori Srl plays within the Nord Group, Mr Mearini says: “Nord Motoriduttori has a special position in the group. We supply the entire Nord Group with asynchronous motors for all mains voltages worldwide, IE1 to IE4 motors, ATEX motors, special variants and motors compliant with the most stringent worldwide standards such as, for example, the Canadian CSA standard or UL for the US market. In 1987, Nord Motoriduttori Srl was founded as a sales office for the Italian market with a staff of just three. In 1996, we opened a gearbox assembly plant. In 1997, the German parent company decided to diversify into electric motors. As Italy is home to many materials suppliers, it was chosen as an ideal site. “In 2003, we moved to a larger site in San Giovanni in Persiceto, near Bolo-

gna. Meanwhile, owing to growing global demand, Nord opened a second motor production plant in Suzhou (China) in 2005, and we have expanded the floor space in San Giovanni by 50 per cent to 15,000m² to make space for additional motor production lines and for the assembly of gear units with a larger output. We now employ a staff of about 170 and have an annual capacity of 500,000 motors and 20,000 geared motors. “The EU energy-efficiency directive that introduced a motor efficiency classification has accelerated a substantial progress to the movement for more efficient drives. We have designed IE1 to IE4 motors so as to enable our customers, who are mostly machinery and equipment manufacturers, to continue producing economically viable solutions that comply with all regulations. And we want to keep their extra engineering effort as minimal as possible. Many recently completed conversions show that Nord drive components with an IE2 or higher rating can be easily integrated. The one-off additional costs for end users are usually redeemed within a short time, since

Nord manufactures engines for all grid voltages in the world, engines from IE1 to IE4, ATEX engines, special variations and engines complying with Canadian standards (CSA), as well as engines with UL certification for the US market.

on average energy costs make up 80 per cent of a drive system’s TCO (total costs of ownership).”

What makes us special Nord supplies drives for applications such as material handling, lifting and conveying technology, as well as for pumps, mixers and fans. These products are for sectors such as the steel, construction, mining, lumber, airport,

Nord manufactures engines for all grid voltages in the world, engines from IE1 to IE4, ATEX engines, special variations and engines complying with Canadian standards (CSA), as well as engines with UL certification for the US market.

textile industries, food and beverage. As a turnkey manufacturer of mechanical, electrical, and electronic drive technology with many years of experience in various industries, Nord supplies complete drive units and configures efficient, reliable drive concepts. The distinguishing features of Nord are high quality standards, state-of-the-art production facilities, and extremely fast deliveries. It can deliver small- to medium-sized geared motors in two to three weeks and larger ones in four weeks. Furthermore, special delivery options are on offer, cutting waiting times down to as little as 24 hours. Moreover, special product lines open up new applications for Nord and provide the market with alternative solutions. For example, it has a growing segment of hygienic drives. Smooth-surface, light-weight aluminum gearboxes are an excellent choice for the beverage, food and chemical industries, as well as for large facilities with many drives, such as warehouses or airport baggage handling systems. Applications such as these also benefit from Nord’s comprehensive distributed electronics program. Nord frequency inverters feature uniform operation across a differentiated but manageable model range and target cost-sen-

sitive segments. Large industrial gear units are another Nord speciality. In fact, Nord is the only manufacturer worldwide to produce even very large industrial gear units with 242,000 Nm output torques in the proven one-piece UNICASE housing. Typical users include mining companies as well as the chemical industry, which needs high torques for mixing high-viscosity liquids. “Developers need an intimate understanding of market trends and a dedication to continuous improvement. Good communication with our customers, who benefit greatly from a competent local or regional presence, is our biggest asset. It is understood that customers rely on us to provide exactly the level of support they require. For example, we supply complete drive units (consisting of a gearbox, a motor with the optimal energy efficiency rating and drive electronics) wired and fully operational, if required. This can save our customers a lot of time and effort. If they opt for plug connectors, installation takes a matter of seconds. And not only that, our fast and expert service team also supports customers from early planning stages all the way through to delivery, assembly and regular maintenance.”

Solid performance Nord is very happy with its performance over the past decade, especially taking into account the challenging state of the European economy. Today, the Nord Drivesystems Group holds a secure second place among providers of full-scale drive solutions. The group wants to strengthen this position. Its strategy consists of various pillars, including continuing with market-driven product developments, close customer relations and full-level customer support. As the degree of automation in many industries increases, the demand for drive equipment keeps shifting from components to full-scale solutions. Nord’s range of products enables the group to configure a suitable drive system for any task, no matter how complex. On top of that, Nord Drivesystems is committed to making its solutions ever more efficient. “Quality, of course, is a knock-out criterion in a competitive market. Nord has earned its standing by always supplying highly efficient and long-life products, systems and excellent services. Just like all Nord companies, Nord Motoriduttori adheres to the same high production and quality assurance standards as n our German global headquarters.”

HIGH EXPERTISE IN GENERATORS Based in the heart of the region of Wallachia, the Czech Republic, TES Vsetín is a leading manufacturer of electrical engines, drives and components that has been serving customers in many countries all over the world. Thanks to the recently opened centre for prototypes that produces and tests generators, the company is set to grow and double its sales.


he company is building on a 90-year tradition of electrical engine production in the Moravian region. It was established in 1994 after the privatisation of a state owned engineering company. The producer had been expanding its market through the mid-1990s, mainly in western European countries. In 2002 TES entered the renewable energy sector when it introduced vertical and horizon-

tal generators for small hydro power plants. Eight years later the company added wind power station generators to its portfolio and became the European leader in this sector. Since 2011 the Czech producer has been part of the Advent International Corporation and last year it merged with the company MEZSERVIS, which manufactures electrical drives, testing stands, switchboards and industrial automation systems.

The production facility covers an area of 100,000m2. Last year 800 employees contributed to the annual sales of CZK 1.5 million and a profit of CZK 100 million which means a 10 per cent growth compared to the previous year.

Focus on renewable resources TES Vsetín delivers generators and related components for the sector leaders in Germany, Switzerland, France, the Netherlands, Industry Europe 123

Austria, Italy, Sweden, Norway, the USA, Russia, Turkey and Thailand. The majority of the company’s products are used in small hydro power plants, wind power plants, co-generation units and reserve resources. Around half of the company’s production serves the growing renewable resources market. Chief executive David Bečvář explains: “We provide comprehensive solutions for energy production and energy consumption. We are experts at purpose-built solutions, from single piece orders to batch production.” The company’s competitive advantages lie in its flexibility, high added value and high quality products and services for a reasonable price. Mr Bečvář adds, “We are renowned for the high quality and high parameters of our products but mainly for our proactive relationship with our customers.” The company operates in the construction sector and production for green sources of energy (100 kVA– 20 MVA generators,

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components, maintenance and repairs). For the traditional energy sector it produces generators and components for diesel sets and reserve resources (100 kVA– 20 MVA). It also manufactures for rolling mills and iron works (100–1500 kW motors and drives), for electrical traction and for shipbuilding. It produces components, generators, engines and drives (100–20 MVA) for mining and other industries. Moreover the company provides installation, reliable maintenance, repairs, upgrading and redesign.

Potential in the East The company exports 80 per cent of its output. The generators for small hydro power plants are sold mainly in Norway, Italy and Austria where there is a high percentage of hydro power plants (in Norway over 99 per cent). The company also focuses on nonEuropean markets e.g. Turkey and North America and its management sees high

potential in the Russian market. It has signed an agreement to deliver 56 generators with a total output over 130 MW for the building, redesign and upgrade of small hydro power plants over the next seven years. The producer has become the sole generator supplier for these plants. It will deliver 27 generators with a total output of 59 MW between 2013 and 2016 plus a further 29 hydro generators with the output of 78.5 MW between 2016 and 2020. The company is going to enlist a local Russian producer in localising future potential projects. Moreover, the Czech manufacturer is discussing the delivery of special testing stations for the heavy transport machinery sector.

Investing in the future The latest news is the opening of a new prototype centre for the production and testing of generators and engines with an output of up to 20 MW. The centre was developed

on a former coal yard on the company’s premises in a mere 10 months. “The centre will allow for our growth and we will be able to double our sales.” The new centre for prototypes provides the facilities for the development and innovation of the producer’s most successful product today – small hydro-power generators. “As we are expanding our product portfolio towards larger electrical engines we had to find a solution to our restricted testing facilities. From now on we are selfreliant when it comes to testing our latest engineering solutions and furthermore other companies can use our centre as well,” states Mr Bečvář.

“Covering an area of of 2311 square metres, the centre houses modern testing technology and cranes with a load capacity up to 80 metric tons. Currently we are testing generators with an output up to 4 MW and we plan to gradually increase the capacity to 20 MW and the topped voltage rating of 13 kV.” Thanks to this investment the company will substantially widen the product range and it will double its market presence worldwide. Further growth is expected. “By 2015 we are predicting that our sales will increase by 15 per cent. We are going to be hiring 50 to 60 new employees to cover the production increase too,” states

the chief executive. This sums up the near future prospects of this traditional Czech company which has found its way to the n leading global customers.

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THE HEALTHY DAIRY ALTERNATIVE AGRO Danmis of Poland is a general partnership limited company which buys, processes and distributes dairy products made from goat’s milk. Demand for such produce has been steadily increasing in Poland over a number of years, and AGRO Danmis is the unquestioned leader in this particular sector of the Polish dairy industry. Piotr Sadowski writes for Industry Europe.

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ver the past couple of years AGRO Danmis has been involved in a major investment programme which focuses on an ongoing upgrading and strengthening of the company’s facilities and production standards. “We have successfully expanded our factory, including adding a brand new line for the production of feta-type cheese using the ultra-filtration technology,” says Tadeusz Dałkowski, sales director at the enterprise. “We are now also capable of pasteurising up to 10,000 litres of milk per day and have, in addition, installed three new storage units for milk, each of which has a 30,000 litre capacity. Furthermore, our recent investments have also included a new UHT production hall, including a new filling and container-closing machine, as well as a brand new line for packaging cheeses and

yoghurts.” As a result of this development, as well as thanks to efficient management and distribution operations, AGRO Danmis has recorded a 40 per cent increase in sales in 2012, in relation to 2011.

Excellent milk and outstanding final products AGRO Danmis collects goat’s milk (as well as cow’s milk) from both its own supply, as well as from dairy farmers. “We keep more than 1000 dairy goats on our farm in Bukowiec, which is the largest goat herd in Poland, as well as 170 cows of the French Montbeliarde breed, which provide milk for the production of hard cheeses as well as feta-type cheeses, called ‘Festina’”, explains Mr Dałkowski. “Our offer consists of over 20 different products and some of the most recently added items include feta-type

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salad cheeses, made from goat’s milk (Festkoz) and cows milk (Festina), available in packs weighing 250, 450 and 900 grams, as well as a brand new sandwich cheese in 150 gram packaging, manufactured using the very high quality ultra-filtration technology.” The company’s geographical location, and that of the dairy farmers from whom it purchases the raw ingredient, as well as the natural, organic way of breeding and feeding goats, makes AGRO Danmis products totally unique on the market, both in terms of their taste and quality, and, most importantly, in terms of their health aspects. “Consumers are increasingly choosing healthy dairy products made from goat’s milk, particularly those with protein intolerance, including many children,” says the company’s sales director. “Furthermore, goat’s milk is also an excellent natural

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source of many important vitamins, so year on year the demand for our products is visibly rising. In addition, our goat’s milk based products are ideal for people who have gastric illnesses or discomforts, as well as for those recuperating after sickness or medical operations.” Over the years, AGRO Danmis has also forged excellent partnerships with dairy farmers, including goat farmers, which is really important, as the supply of goat’s milk in Poland is still fairly limited, despite the fact that the demand for goat’s milk based dairy products is steadily increasing. “Our factory has the capacity for processing up to 20 million litres of milk every year, whereas at the moment we are operating at an output of between four and five million litres per annum,” points out Mr Dałkowski. “This is why it is so important to ensure that we

continue to expand our supplier base and continue supporting and working closely with our existing 20 dairy farmers in the region. It is also worth pointing out that many of these suppliers have been working with us from the very moment that our company began its own business operations, so we really value the long-term, well-established relationships that we have with our farming partners. This is why we also created the Danmis dairy producers group which works to strengthen and develop everyone’s operations.”

Continued expansion AGRO Danmis is a company that is dedicated to ongoing development and growth, and so the investment programme will continue to be implemented. Foreseeable plans include further strengthening of the quality and output

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capacity of the factory, including the addition of a new line for yoghurt production. “We will also invest in ensuring much better working conditions for our staff and have decided to install air conditioning throughout the entire factory,” says Mr Dałkowski. “We would also like to be more environmentally-friendly and will install our own sewage treatment plant. We very much recognise the need to be a socially responsible business.” The company’s growth is also enhanced by the fact that it sells its products to all large retail networks, which recognise the

Plastic-Form, a family company was established in 1956. Since its beginnings the company has manufactured industrial products and packaging for food processing industry. Advanced technology and experience combined with the ability to recognise customers preferences and to introduce new products helped create a modern and dynamically developing company.

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need to make available healthy, goat’s milk based dairy products in their stores. This is particularly important in larger towns and cities, where consumers do not have access to very local produce, as is the case in rural areas, but due to the nature of the faster and busier pace of life, they have to rely on leading retailers to access highquality and healthy products. Thus the AGRO Danmis offering is the ideal answer to satisfy the increasing consumer demand for dairy products made from goat’s milk. “The major area of our operations is Poland, though we

are also strong in exports to eastern European markets, including Lithuania, Latvia, Ukraine, Czech Republic and Slovakia,” explains Mr Dałkowski. “Western European markets, such as Germany, are much more difficult to get into, so we continue to work with our established export destinations, which is not to say that if an interesting offer for sales in new market arises, we will not consider it. Above all, however, we will continue to focus on organic growth and ensure that our access to goat’s milk as the raw ingredient continues n to be expanded.”

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THE TASTE OF NATURE EkoLukta Dairy, from Lukta, is Poland’s only dairy company that has consistently focused on the production of organic food. Quark cheese with a traditional Polish taste is its flagship product.


he production of certified organic food has been our main aim from the very beginning. Other dairy companies offer organic products as an addition to their typical, commercial food offer or they have been only partly adapted to organic production, while EkoLukta has always been focused on the ecological production of dairy products,” explains Mr Robert Saluda, EkoLukta’s president of the board. “EkoLukta Dairy is a small company located in the heart of the area of Warmia and Mazury that is called the Green Lungs of Poland due to the unspoiled nature that creates the excellent conditions for the development of ecological industries. Our history is very short: EkoLukta was founded in October 2007 in order to purchase the assets of the bankrupt company from the receiver. At the end of October, the agreement was signed and production started in late January 2008, after the company had been granted the authorisation from the

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national veterinary services. In February, 2008, the approved certification body confirmed the compliance of the production process in our factory with Council Regulation (EEC) 2092/91. Since then we have presented our products with the special sign of organic farming. It is now in line with Council Regulation (EC) No 834/2007 on organic production and labelling organic products”, says Mr Saluda.

Health above all else Mr Saluda has spent many years working in a large dairy corporation and knows the food industry very well. He is quite convinced that organic food is the future in Poland. “Seeing increasing demand for healthy, natural food, based on traditional recipes, we strive to meet the expectations of our customers. Health above all else is our idea,” declares Mr Saluda.

The EkoLukta organic dairy products are made from pasteurised milk. The raw material comes exclusively from certified organic farms located in the area of Warmia and Mazury. Organic milk used by EkoLukta does not contain GMO contamination or pesticide residues, whose use is expressly prohibited in organic farming. Synthetic additives and adjuvants, such as dyes, preservatives, antioxidants and coating agents, are not used in the production process. The products are manufactured exclusively from natural ingredients. The entire manufacturing process, from breeding and feeding cows, milk transport, production and packaging to sale, is strictly controlled. The unique taste and smell are obtained by selecting suitable strains of bacteria, not genetically modified. Production is carried out only with the use of traditional methods. Most of the activities

such as pouring, moulding and pressing of curd, cutting the curd cheese, butter moulding, and packaging of many products is done by hand. The manufacturing technology and high biological quality of the raw material ensure that the final products have a higher nutritional value and increased mineral content, especially when it comes to trace elements and vitamins.

Preparing foreign markets EkoLukta employs 20 people. The company’s monthly production is estimated as 40–50 tonnes. According to Mr Saluda, EkoLukta is profitable and its annual sales growth is 20–30 per cent. So far, the company’s entire output is sold domestically. “We have many inquiries from all over the world, from east and west, even from the Far East. The reason why we still

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do not export our products lies in economies of scale. We need much more raw milk to offer our products for export markets. We are working on this problem, looking for a solution that would not cause the loss of our

high quality. This is a very important question for us, as exports are our priority for further development,” explains Mr Saluda.

Quark and other dairy products Quark cheese (also called curd cheese or cottage cheese) is the company’s flagship product. It is made with no additives, preservatives and dyes, and is offered as full-fat quark that contains 9 per cent fat, as semi-skimmed quark with 4.5 per cent fat and as low fat quark, which is produced from skimmed milk and is devoid of fat. “Top quality raw material, a lower level of acidity compared to the national standards of both the raw material used and the final product, along with manual production mean that the product has the unique taste, aroma and texture of traditional Polish, farm cottage cheese”, says Mr Saluda.

EkoLukta is also a producer of flavoured cheese, which is a source of high-value protein. It contains large amounts of calcium, A and D vitamins and vitamins of the B group. Excellent taste and nutritional values make it perfect as a complete meal, as snacks, or a dessert, as well as an ingredient of other products (pancakes, cheesecake). Semi-hard cheese is another of EkoLukta’s product offered. It is matured for 4–6 weeks. Suitable strains of bacteria cause the unique taste of the cheese. The company’s butter is produced exclusively from organic cream and is rich in vitamins, particularly from the A, D, E and K groups. Organic cream is soured with pure cultures of lactic acid bacteria and is excellent for salads and soups, while natural yogurt from EkoLukta contains bacteria that have a positive effect on the digestive system. It is easily absorbed by the body and is recommended for people who can not drink milk. It is also offered with natural, organic fruits. Natural yoghurt has no sugar, whereas fruit yogurt has a small amount of cane sugar as an ingredient n of fruits.

Bioveri” is a company that has been well known for 15 years as a producer of organic sesame bars. It has also imported for 5 years organic ingredients with ecological certificates. Full list of the ingredients is included in our documentation evidence and shown on our website. Please contact us if you have any questions. tel. 048 42/ 715 30 06 • tel. 049 (0) 2305 12 179 •

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CONTINUED GROWTH FOR FOREST PRODUCTS LEADER Karl Hedin is a Nordic leader in the manufacture of specialist wood packaging and forestry products. Industry Europe looks at how the company adds value to the timber it processes at its saw and planing mills in Sweden and Estonia, and how it utilises the latest technology to improve productivity and efficiency for its customers.

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arl Hedin is a family-owned business and one of Scandinavia’s largest sawmill operators and specialist wood packaging companies. The diverse forestry trading group has manufacturing facilities in Sweden and Estonia. Its raw material division supplies its Swedish sawmills with timber, and the sawmills subsequently supply the packaging factories and planing mills with sawn timber. In turn, the company’s planing mills supply builders’ merchants with construction, impregnated and primed timber products. The Karl Hedin Group was founded at the beginning of the 1900s and has grown to become one of Sweden’s largest and most respected forestry products companies with over 850 employees and a turnover of approximately SEK 2.8 billion. The company also has a chain of 33 builders’ merchants located throughout Sweden. In addition, it has also been involved in sawmill production in the Baltic States since the 1990s.

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Today the Karl Hedin Group operates five specialist packaging plants in central Sweden with its main focus on the production of pallets for the forestry industry. The company also supplies pallets and boxes for the steel and manufacturing industries, where it has the capacity to produce both large and heavy packaging items.

Know-how and the latest technology Karl Hedin has always strived to get as much value as possible out of the timber that it processes, which is one of the reasons why forest owners stay so loyal to the company. Over the years, Karl Hedin has accumulated extensive experience in the forestry sector and its knowledge stretches back many generations. The company’s strength lies in its ability to combine old forestry knowledge and principles with new knowledge and technology. In addition, Karl Hedin has its own team of designers and it plans to strengthen these further as well as its

sales organisation with more design competence and drawing capacity. The company also offers its customers a range of IT connections for more efficient ordering and invoicing. The company produces a wide range of timber products and by-products. This includes roof trusses, which are produced at its Rattvik factory where a number of standard designs are produced although specially designed roof trusses can also be made to order at the plant. Construction timber plays a big part in the company’s product portfolio with joists of varying sizes as well as tongue and groove products being manufactured, all of which are planed by AB Karl Hedin. The company’s impregnated assortment includes a large number of decking boards, and all these products are pressure-treated with a solution that does not contain either the traditional harmful chrome or arsenic constituents. Internal and external panelling is another product that is manufactured by Karl Hedin,

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and production is carried out in accordance with strict Swedish building standards with a wide range of profiles available. An important by-product made by the company is Stable Litter, which is clean and dust free and made from wood shavings collected from its planning mills. This product is packed and sold in bales.

Diversity in sawmill production AB Karl Hedin operates three dedicated sawmills in Sweden at Karbenning, Krylbo and Sater. Here it has the means to process the whole tree handling operation for both small and large diameter logs. In Sater the company processes large pine logs of the highest quality and in Karbenning it processes both standard pine timber as well as spruce for construction timber products. Whilst in Krylbo it processes pine and spruce blocks in smaller dimensions of up to three metres wide, which are also used for construction applications. As a result of its wide product mix, the company can maximise the timber yield and therefore increase forest owners’ returns compared to those harvesting timber only for wood pulp production purposes. At its specialised sawmill in Toftan, Estonia, the company specialises in pine timber and processes all lengths of pine up to 40cm in diameter. The key products manufactured

include joinery timber, glue-jointed goods and construction products for both its domestic and export markets.

Flexible wood packaging AB Karl Hedin is one of Sweden’s largest manufacturers of specialist wood packaging products and operates five modern plants in central Sweden. At its Skultuna packaging plant the company produces packaging products made of wood, cardboard and different types of laminate. Two of the main products manufactured are barrier bags and ply-boxes. The barrier bags are made of

laminated plastic either alone or in combination with aluminium. The Skultana factory uses VCI-based material, which is a material that provides excellent protection against corrosion. This forms a perfect barrier that provides the protection that guarantees that the product will reach the customer in the same condition as when it left the factory. The company’s ply-box product is made of plywood and comes folded for easy mounting for the packing or shipping of products. The ply-box is available in different styles, from composite to moveable sides or ends and with a thickness of six or eight millimetres. n

IN PARTNERSHIP WITH NATURE Spačva d.d., one of Croatia’s leading wood companies, benefits from a unique location that helps to ensure that production is in compliance with the highest environmental standards. Mr Moris Puljiz, the company’s sales director, talked about Spačva and its business strategies with Vanja Švačko. 136 Industry Europe


he proximity of Spačva’s forest resource, one of the largest integrated oak woods in Europe, covering approximately 51,000 acres, defines the business strategy of the company that has more than 50 years of experience in the wood industry. In the first three decades of its existence the company was working on the saw mill materials, prefabricated wooden houses, windows, wood packaging etc. Production of some lines stopped in the 1980s and a factory producing veneers was opened instead. Mr Puljiz said, “Today we have five factories: a saw mill, parquet production, a veneer factory, a final product factory and a bio fuels factory, with capacity to process annually about 75,000m3 of oak and ash logs. Currently we employ 700 people, but our ambition is to have again 1000 employees as we had before the economic crisis.”

Internationally recognised Many regions of the former Yugoslavia boast large forest areas and so competition in the wood industry is strong. Spačva invests in knowledge and technology for wood processing in order to stay ahead of the competition. Its current position in south-east Europe has improved after the recent Croatian accession to EU. Mr Puljiz explained, “Membership of the EU helps us in getting new customers because the old technical difficulties in trading are

eliminated. For example, Spačva’s forest base spreads to Serbia which uses the same raw material in its wood industry as we do. However, many customers are coming to us due to significantly simplified market regulations within the EU as well as because of the good quality of our products. More benefits will be seen in years to come.” The most important market for Spačva is still Germany, although a large quantity of products is exported to France, Poland, Belgium and the Netherlands. Apart from

Competitive advantages All the company’s final products are made of solid wood. The oak used in the production has received international recognition and is formally known as Slavonian oak. “One of our most profitable products is country flooring, a substitute for multilayer floor but made of solid wood, as are our doors. Country flooring is traditionally two metres long, but we are working on flooring of three to six meters. Currently there is a trend in interior design for a natural look and that is exactly where our products fit in,” explained Mr Puljiz. High-quality materials are what the company’s products, especially parquet and flooring, are internationally recognised for. Other advantages include: genuine veneer made of oak and ash timber, firewood (briquette and pellets) produced from dry wood and sawdust that enables the exploitation of by-products and offers a better and cheaper alternative to heating with gas or oil. Industry Europe 137

western Europe, the company is present in the countries of the former Yugoslavia, Turkey, Romania and Bulgaria. There is a clear plan to expand to the Russian market as well in the Middle East, which is becoming a favourable market for the wood industry. “We are slowly returning to the UK as well,” added Mr Puljiz, “which was before our main market for the country flooring. After a short gap in trading, the interest for our various wooden products started growing again shortly before the London Olympic Games.”

Supplier network Spačva has a long list of partners from the region. Given that the company uses its own raw materials, it does not have to import much (apart from some spare parts). “Our largest supplier, which accounts for 55 per cent of all supply costs, is Hrvatske šume d.o.o.,” said Mr Puljiz. “The Slovenian company Intercet d.o.o. supplies us with the woodworking machin-

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ery. WoodCare Denmark provides us with products for basic treatment and maintenance of the wood surfaces, while we buy cardboard packaging from Duropack Belišće.” Among other suppliers are Axel Wirth Maschinen GmbH, Noži Ravne d.o.o., IKS Klingelnberg GmbH, Euro Janković, Crnov Commerce d.o.o., Transport etc. All Spačva’s products have ISO 9001:2008 certification, FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certification, CE marking, Real Wood label and the company is member of FEP (The European Federation of the Parquet Industry).

Environmental ethics Living among such rich natural resources is a privilege but a responsibility as well. With its long tradition in industry, Spačva is a promoter of the importance of environmental awareness. “To become commercially usable, Slavonian oak needs to grow for 120 years. Our entire production cycle is based on exploitation of

this material. Consequently, our business strategy is to focus on learning how to value and appreciate the longevity of its maturation and how to use it economically, in compliance with ecological standards,” explained Mr Puljiz. Therefore in manufacturing, the whole product is used: from the initial stages of processing logs, through the usage of wooden waste for thermal energy within the system, up to the production of fuel briquettes and palettes that are renewable energy sources. In accordance with this business orientation, Spačva has clear plans for the future. “Our strategy is to position ourselves in south-east Europe as a leading manufacturer in the wood industry. We are a large company with production facilities that allow us to concentrate on organic growth. We want to keep the image of a company that processes the best quality oak and bases its programme on the products n made from the finest solid wood.” Visit:

Bonnet Neve is a European leader in the design and manufacture of refrigerated display cabinets. Industry Europe looks at its range of energy-efficient products designed for the world’s fresh food and beverage hypermarket retailers.



onnet Neve was created as the result of a merger between two prestigious French brands, Bonnet and Neve, more than 20 years ago. Since that time Bonnet Neve has built up an enviable reputation for its advanced range of energy-efficient refrigerated cabinets, technical products and dedicated customer services. The company is part of the EPTA Group, which was established by the Nocivelli family in 1986. Today the group is a global leader in its field and comprises many leading international brands, including the Italian company Costan Refrigerazione, Intercold of Austria, BKT of Germany, George Barker of the UK and Argentinian brand leader Costan Market. Bonnet Neve’s core expertise lies in the design, production and installation of refrigerated display units, production units and cold rooms. All the company’s products offer maximum energy efficiency and display ratios, as well as optimising merchandising opportunities and ergonomics. Its eco-friendly and super-efficient products are backed by advanced design, the latest manufacturing processes, global technical support services and an unrivalled distribution network. Commitment to these core attributes is the reason for the company’s ongoing global success.

Product innovation Bonnet Neve has been continuously investing in new technology and the development of innovative, energy efficient products. During the past decade it has been responsible for developing some of the most successful refrigeration products ever launched in the industry. For example, in 2006 it unveiled its Effica 2000 and Effica 1500 models, both of which enjoyed record global sales for its ‘Compact Line’ series. These represented excellent value and provided unique display and storage solutions for small food retailers and service stations. Other successes followed shortly afterwards with the introduction of Bonnet Neve’s Cosmos 3ECO and the Duetto refrigerated island, designed for the storage of cold meats, dairy products and other chilled cabinet merchandise. In keeping with its strategy to offer even greater operational value and energy saving features, two years ago Bonnet Neve launched another ‘first’ onto the market. The new product quickly attracted media interest and was announced as the all-new refrigerator compressor pack EptaBerg ‘Power Unlimited model’. This was developed especially by Bonnet Neve to offer energy savings and greater flexibility for large displays of food in supermarkets and hypermarkets.

Last year (2012) saw the launch of a new range of well freezers with integrated covers. The Cosmos 4 ECO and Galaxie 4 ECO are innovative solutions designed to offer optimum visibility and easy access to the products displayed, whilst guaranteeing maximum energy conservation. They feature a push-pull system that ensures easy access: a simple push is all it takes to open two-thirds of the top, even on both sides of the cabinet at the same time. In July this year, Bonnet Neve introduced its brand new display cabinet, Eyris. Completely transparent, Eyris features wide panoramic glass surfaces and is extremely flexible and modular, which means it can be adapted to all kinds of stores. An additional advantage is its ease of installation, which has been achieved thanks to an integrated condenser unit that simplifies operations. It is also an eco-smart solution which uses propane (R290) in order to reduce energy consumption.

Pioneering eco-technology At the heart of every product from Bonnet Neve is the dedicated research and development that has been devoted to ensuring that the final product is not only offering the best possible display solutions, but also has

the best-in-class environmental outcomes. Bonnet Neve’s ‘eco-production’ display cabinets are designed for use with foam insulation that contains no high GWP blowing agent. These units are manufactured at four factories distributed throughout western Europe in order to minimise transportation mileage and the resulting negative effects on the environment. Supporting this eco-friendly culture, the company’s extensive innovation centre integrates the latest energy-saving technologies to meet the most stringent European eco-legislation. As the leader in zero HFC technology, it has more than 50 CO2 trans-critical systems installed in Europe. When buying components, Bonnet Neve also takes into consideration the life-cycle benefits of its products and favours the use of local suppliers whenever possible. In addition, as you would expect, Bonnet Neve is fully RoHS and WEEE compliant. The company believes that Bonnet Neve’s success hinges on the quality of its innovative design and manufacturing processes and the well defined distribution of its product ranges. The company’s future strategy is to continually outperform the competition in terms of costeffectiveness, eco-sustainability, product excellence and service reliability. n

The A-frame installation of the crane for Seajack Leviathan


OFFSHORE OPERATIONS Kenz Cranes is a global leader in the design and manufacture of high-specification, tailor-made cranes for the offshore oil and gas industry. Philip Yorke talked to Robert de Rijcke, the company’s commercial director, about its move into new markets and the delivery of its latest advanced-technology 400t cranes.


he Kenz Figee Group of the Netherlands has more than two centuries of cranebuilding history, making it the oldest manufacturer of cranes in the world. This technologically advanced and customer-orientated engineering and construction company has earned a reputation for designing and producing high-precision, tailor-made lifting appliances for the offshore industry. Today the Business Unit Kenz Cranes provides a global crane-building centre of excellence serving the world’s offshore markets with high-precision, technically advanced hoisting devices that are

unique to each of its customers’ specifications. The world’s biggest names in offshore exploration rely on Kenz Cranes, including BP, Shell, Total and Woodside, in addition to other leading offshore exploration specialists, such as Nobel, Transocean, Subsea 7 and Seadrill.

Focus on special solutions Unlike its global competitors, Kenz Cranes’ focus is clearly on the individual needs and challenges presented by its customers. So instead of making standard, traditional offshore cranes, the company specialises in new-build

cranes that match precisely the customer’s individual requirements. Kenz Cranes works in close partnership with its clients to achieve the most efficient, reliable and cost-effective outcomes. In an industry where environmental conditions are tough and often hazardous and where time and space is at a premium, Kenz Cranes provides innovative designs that offer built-in quality, safety and reliability. The company develops assembles, tests and commissions a wide range of offshore cranes for fixed platforms, submersibles, jackups and multipurpose vessels with hook loads

Two newly built 80mt boom hoist offshore pedestal cranes for the semi-submersible Aker Spitsbergen

Seajacks Leviathan: Newly built 400mt boom hoist offshore pedestal crane for the Seajacks Leviathan

Newly built 100mt ram luffing offshore crane for the Noordhoek Constructor

Hall 3 of the Kenz Cranes workshop

that range from 2.5 tonnes to 500 tonnes. These cranes are built in strict accordance with international standards and this includes specific customer requirements certified by the recognised authorities. Today the company is delivering precision cranes and unparalleled service around the globe, from the North Sea to West Africa, and from the Gulf of Mexico to Asia and the Pacific. Mr De Rijcke said, “We produce custommade cranes to the very highest standards for the world’s top oil and gas producers and subsea companies. Our cranes are built to

have a service life of more than 30 years and to offer easy servicing and minimal maintenance. We are also unique in terms of our service offering with over fifty specialists working on the surface side at any one time to facilitate high-end upgrades and to complete annual maintenance schedules. These specialists are working specifically through the business unit Kenz Crane Services. In addition to this, our engineering division specialises in hoisting and lifting equipment and has had its roots in the heavy-duty crane industry since 1960. We can therefore offer

complete crane upgrades and conversions for both our own supplied equipment as well as for the equipment of other brands. “We also offer the latest technical features, such as our Remote Access System (RAS) which means it is possible to log-in from our office to a vessel in Nigeria or Australia for fact finding or upgrading. This can be done remotely without us needing to visit the vessel concerned. In addition to this our Active Heave Compensation System (AHC) and Impact Limited Device system (ILD) is also available to customers. These new

An aerial shot of the construction quay in Zaandam

facilities are all driven by our service department, which is available on a 24/7 basis. Mr De Rijcke added, “Interestingly the offshore market is changing in so far as the big oil and gas companies are now seeking to rely upon the world’s shipyards

to provide their entire offshore operations package. This means that gradually our customer base is changing as in the future the shipyards will be placing the orders for our products. However, we still expect to be working directly with most of our big global

Two newly built 70mt boom hoist offshore pedestal cranes for the BP Magnus platform

customers on a one-to-one basis and are extending our global reach. We recently opened new offices in Perth, Australia and in Singapore and will shortly be looking to establish a presence in South America and the Middle East.”

Increasing presence in Asian markets With the manufacturing of offshore platforms becoming more focused on the Asian shipyards, the recent joint venture between Kenz Cranes and PH Hydraulics of Singapore makes sound strategic sense. The new joint venture will offer dedicated equipment for fixed platforms, FPSO’s, jack-ups, submersibles and multipurpose vessels. PH Hydraulics & Engineering is one of Asia’s leading equipment manufacturers for the offshore oil and gas industry and like Kenz Cranes, has a strong name in the provision of tailor-made offshore solutions. This joint venture will consolidate Kenz Cranes’ position as a key supplier of high-quality, cost-effective equipment in the Asian market.

New cranes serving the offshore wind-turbine industry Following its successful delivery of the replacement crane for Seajacks Leviathan in 2012, Kenz Cranes has received a

repeat order for another 400 tonne crane to be used for the installation of offshore wind turbines. The new high-specification crane was built according to Seajacks’ Hydra detailed specifications and the company also engineered the crane’s pedestal foundation. As this particular crane is provided with an EX rated boom and designed to operate during floating conditions as well as in deep water subsea operations, it is also ideally suited for operations in the oil & gas industry. Furthermore, Kenz Cranes recently delivered a set of three identical boom hoist cranes to BP. These custom-built cranes with a hoisting capacity of 55 tonnes each will be installed on BP’s new Clair Ridge Platforms, which are scheduled to be installed in 2013 and will come on stream in 2016. Kenz Cranes received the order from Amec, operating as EPC contractor for the Clair Ridge project. Following testing at Kenz Cranes’ facility at Zaandam, Amec’s final approval was given on 13 May this year and the cranes have since been transported to a shipyard in South Korea n for final installation on the two platforms. For further details of Kenz Cranes’ innovative products and engineering services visit:

Newly built 100mt ram luffing offshore pedestal crane with Active Heave Compensation for the construction and diving vessel Constructor

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stablished in Finland in 1942 by Evert Stigzelius, international materials handling manufacturer Rocla has grown considerably and has become a leading name in electric warehouse trucks and automated guided vehicles. Its long history gives Rocla a strong foundation from which it has built a considerable reputation for high-quality products and services, with a particular strength in adding value to its clients’ offer through skill automation. Since 2008, Rocla has been a part of the European Mitsubishi family, following its acquisition by the Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Group. Rocla continues to be a separate brand for forklift trucks in Finland, and for automation services in most of Europe.

Strong foundation With the four core values of Rocla being ‘innovation, responsibility, fast in action and focus on results’, the company is guided by a continued dedication to going above and

beyond what is expected. It appreciates feedback from its customers and suppliers and develops and renews its operations in accordance with that information. Working to the strict ISO 9001:2008 quality standards, Rocla is managed as one tight-knit company. Rocla employs 400 people in Finland with a further 140 employees in subsidiaries worldwide. The head office is based in Järvenpää, near the Finnish capital Helsinki, and is easily accessible by road, rail, sea and air. A company spokesperson told Industry Europe how the history of the company supports its activities today: “The forklift business has always been our traditional activity, and we have been able to build our portfolio by utilising our extensive process understanding. We began offering automation solutions to our clients back in 1983, so we’ve been incorporating this still-modern technology for nearly 30 years! Our impressive history of delivering automation solutions is certainly a key advan-

Finnish-based international materials handling company Rocla has evolved from a small familyowned company into a world-class manufacturer. Industry Europe finds out about its activities and its prospects for future growth.

tage, and one which our clients appreciate as it shows that we have an excellent understanding of their processes.”

Commercial advantage Understanding customers is what continues to set Rocla apart from the competition, and the unique forklift/automation package it offers is one of the key ingredients in its long-term success. The company spokesperson explained, “The future of the forklift business is in the automation of the industry on a global scale. This is essentially what Rocla has brought to the Mitsubishi family, and what will cement our continued success. Having been involved in automation since 1983, our knowledge centre in Finland is an incredibly powerful asset, and one which is already bringing great results to Mitsubishi across Europe.” It is clear that Rocla is dedicated to keeping at the forefront of the changing trends of the materials handling industry. It

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is keen to be both proactive and reactive to the needs of its customers, with the main thrust of its offer centred on sharing its knowledge of automation.

Impressive product portfolio The product range offered by Rocla in the domestic market is focused on its warehouse trucks and CAT counterbalance trucks, which are widely considered to be among the best-built trucks in the industry. The company is also one of the world’s leading suppliers of AGV systems and has maintained this position since the early 1980s. In addition to trucks, Rocla’s services provide added value to its clients in the form of a wide range of services that help to maintain their fleet. 148 Industry Europe

As the only developers and providers of what Rocla call ‘intralogistic solutions’, the companys delivers an ‘intelligent combination of automation and warehouse trucks that saves time, reduces costs and increases productivity’. This is achieved by analysing the customers’ processes using tools such as the Rocla Visual Assistant and the new Rocla ATX, an automated truck for pallet transfers, and then delivering the most suitable solution. Rocla AGVs are a durable, flexible and modular solution with short delivery and ROI times. They use a common platform with features such as functional modularity, serial manufacture and award-winning design. The modular structure of Rocla’s AGV family combines tried-and-tested technology and functionality with the ability to meet specific customer demands.

Furthermore, since the spring of 2013 Rocla has been manufacturing electric counterbalance trucks in Finland for the first time in its history. This includes both Cat Lift Trucks and Mitsubishi Forklift trucks. This was owing to the fact that Mitsubishi Heavy Industries had shut down its factory in Holland and moved the manufacturing of electric counterbalance trucks to Rocla. This has allowed Rocla to increase its annual production by about 2500 trucks. Rocla expects to enjoy continued success as it utilises the opportunities of being part of the Mitsubishi family, while working to further develop its methods for educating customers and potential customers about the cost- and time-saving advantages of n introducing increased automation.

CONSTANT INNOVATION IN LINEAR TECHNOLOGY Schneeberger is a global leader in the development of linear guide technology products for the mechanical engineering industry. Philip Yorke talked to Adrian Fuscher, the company’s president, about its latest products and its move into new niche market sectors.

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chneeberger was founded in Switzerland in 1923 and is a privately owned company managed by its third generation family. The world’s first linear guideways were conceived and developed by Scneeberger almost 90 years ago, establishing the foundation for the advanced linear technology systems that exist today. The company’s original guidelines for the construction of linear aims defined the modern criteria for load-bearing capacity, reliability and economy, thus setting the industry standards that are still subscribed to throughout the world today. The spirit of innovation, technically superior products and uncompromising quality remain the company’s key maxims. Today Schneeberger is a global operator that employs more than 800 people worldwide,

with offices and manufacturing facilities in Switzerland, Italy, USA, Japan, China, the Czech Republic, India, Germany and, more recently, Singapore and Korea.

Raising the bar on quality and efficiency Today Schneebereger offers a diverse range of quality products and services to its global OEM customers in the machine tool, solar energy and semiconductor industries, as well as to those in the electronic and medical technology sectors. The company develops and manufactures linear bearings, profiled guideways, measuring systems, gear racks and slides. In addition, it produces positioning systems and mineral casting products. Schneeberger’s capacity for innovation and technical development allows it to develop complex miniature guideways for

a number of niche markets, including micromanufacturing and machining, biotechnology, medical technology nano-technology, robotics and optical industries. The company continues to lead the world in its specialised high-technology disciplines through continuous investment in R&D and the development of new manufacturing technology. Mr Fuscher said, “At the heart of everything we do is innovation, and our new smaller bearings are a good example of this; they have been developed especially for handling automation applications, which is a big market and a growth segment for us. We are also planning to expand our capacity by doubling the facilities that are involved in electrical applications and rail and carriage products. Another key focus is our investment in high levels of automation and reduc-

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ing all the tasks that are labour-intensive to minimise our production costs and maintain our competitive edge.” “We are market leaders in monorail roller technology especially in Germany and Japan and our latest feedback system is also unique in monorail systems technology. Mechatronics application technology is another area where we lead the field and this is all part of our drive towards providing more integrated business systems. Today our semiconductor business remains our biggest business sector and represents 75 per cent of sales, with industry, life sciences and others making up the balance”. Mr Fuscher added, “In terms of our geographical reach, Asia remains our main target market when it comes to our future growth prospects. This region is currently 152 Industry Europe

contributing 40 per cent to our revenues with Europe providing around 50 per cent and North America representing approximately 10 per cent. We can see what the world economy is telling us and we believe that India will surpass China when it comes to growth potential over the next few years. Our future drivers for growth will clearly be the Asian markets, as well as our new technology offerings in mechatronics, the Minirail commodity markets and our lowcost production technology.”

Extending the boundaries of linear technology Positioning systems used in particularly demanding branches of industry such as semiconductor technology, medical engineering, and solar technology must

guarantee the highest level of precision and reliability while maintaining an extremely high degree of cleanliness. Schneeberger Linear Technology is able to meet these requirements effectively by providing customer-specific solutions. This is possible thanks to the investments made in its new clean room designed specifically for the production of these systems in accordance with ISO 14446 Class 6. This clean room is used exclusively for the production of positioning systems which must meet the most stringent cleanliness requirements. If extremely high accuracy is consistently required in the most compact spaces, the Schneeberger MINIRAIL is the number-one option. MINIRAIL guideways always ensure that linear movements are carried out extremely quickly and precisely. Preferred

areas of application include the semiconductor microelectronics, medical, measuring, laser and nanotechnology industries. Eight rail widths and four carriage lengths are also available. The user can choose between two accuracy and preload classes. At the other end of the scale, Schneeberger’s Gear racks allow linear movements to be carried out along almost limitless stretches. In this regard, they are well-suited for use in large machines and systems in which enormous axial forces must be transferred. Even dirty working environments do not present a problem. Schneeberger provides cost-efficient solutions for all applications. The uses for Schneeberger gear racks in practice are just as multifaceted as the product range. Their use in standard machine tools operating in dirty working environments, for example, is equally as common as their application in precision n measuring machines.

DURALLOY® more than only coatings

Duralloy is a specialist and leading manufacturer in the area of thin dense/structural chromium coating technology. Duralloy offers individual solutions for functional plating needs in different industries like the automotive sector, industrial gears, machine tools, textile machines, printing machines, hydraulics, medical technology, bearing technology and linear guide rails. Linear systems are typical applications of Duralloy

Germany Duralloy Süd GmbH Eckweg 6, D - 78048 Villingen-Schwenningen Sales service: Helmut Grotenrath Phone: +49 (0) 7721 40444-10 E-mail: Fax: +49 (0) 7721 40444-29


Great Britain

Duralloy AG Schweiz Acorn Surface Technology Ltd. Industriepark Altgraben, CH-4624 Härkingen Clover Street - Kirkby in Ashfield, UK - Nottinghamshire NG17 7LJ Sales service: Albert Rölli Sales service: David Cox Phone: +41 (0) 62 3888000 E-mail: Phone: +44 (0) 1623 753107 E-mail: Fax: +41 (0) 62 3888008 Fax: +44 (0) 1623 754538

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SPECIAL STEELS A NEW DIMENSION ABS is a global leader in the development and manufacture of special steels. Philip Yorke talked to Andrea Landini, the CEO of ABS Sisak d.o.o. about its latest innovative products, its ongoing investments in new plant and its recent move into the Croatian market.


he roots of ABS can be traced back to 1813 when the first water-powered forge was established in Udine, Italy. The company’s initial iron-processing plant was originally dedicated to the production of agricultural equipment and was later expanded to cater for the manufacture of industrial steel products. Its early successes resulted in its ability to invest in a programme of constant improvement and technological advancement. ABS subsequently integrated these new processes resulting in the construction of a new foundry and steel mill, as well as new rolling mills, heat treatment plants and cold-finishing facilities. The ABS brand itself was established in 1988, following the merger of two of Italy’s most successful and long-established steelmaking companies: Officine Bertoli, founded in

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1813 and Safau, established in 1934. In June 2012 ABS acquired a leading steel producer in Croatia, which is the only ‘melt-shop’ in the country and which provides a major foothold in the Balkans for ABS. Together with the considerable resources and know-how of the Danieli Group, ABS’s parent company, the Croatian operation can guarantee its customers unparalleled quality and service, backed up by steel products that are designed to meet the most demanding industrial challenges. As a major European steel producer, ABS is one of the oldest and best qualified businesses in the industry, and its continuous product research and process technology innovation has enabled it to achieve a leadership position in the field of speciality steels. Today ABS delivers exceptional steel products of any dimension to a broad range of indus-

tries. These include companies involved in the manufacture of automotive products, trucks, earth-moving equipment, wind turbines and railway structures as well as military vehicles and oil and gas plants. This is in addition to those involved in nuclear power, agricultural equipment and industrial vehicles.

Product and process innovation driving sales For ABS, the establishment of its modern research centre in Metz, France, the ABS Centre Métallurgique or ACM, demonstrates its solid commitment to product

and process innovation. The on-going and close collaboration between ACM and its customers is a fundamental resource for the identification of innovative processes and products that are designed to meet the most demanding requirements of its big OEM customers. The company’s highly qualified and experienced R&D team also works closely with leading European universities and other major research centres. Mr Landini said, “We specialise in the manufacture of low-carbon and mediumcarbon steels and are able to achieve exceptionally high purity thanks to our high-

tech processes and advanced technology. Our biggest customers come from the oil and gas industries where consistent, high quality steel is essential for their hazardous operations and where extreme conditions and pressures prevail. “As the only major producer of special steels in Croatia we need to remain ‘lean’ and to maintain the high standards that ABS is well known for worldwide. “We expect to reach our target output of 300,000 tonnes per year of high quality steel within the next two years. In Croatia we currently employ around 150 people and step by

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Since 1987, CARBOFER TECNOLOGIE S.p.A. has operated in the Metallurgy field. With primary technical staff involved research activity, processing and marketing of certified and granted products, we are able to offer an excellent assistance service to our customers. Our activity take place mostly in the following fields: • Raw materials for steel-plants • Steel CARBOFER TECNOLOGIE S.p.A. is certified according to the UNI EN ISO 14001:2004 standard for Environment Care.

CARBOFER TECNOLOGIE S.p.A. Sede Legale: Via delle Grazie, 20 - 25122 Brescia (BS) Sede Via delle Sorti,1 - 25050 Pian Camuno (BS) Tel: +39 0364531891 - Fax: +39 0364533808 E-mail: - Web: P.IVA/CF/RI 01832030983 BS - Cap. soc. € 503.430,20 i.v. Sistema di Gestione Ambientale Certificato UNI EN ISO 14001:2004

step will grow our business there. We will be investing in new pant including state-of-theart casting machinery and a vacuum plant as well as expanding our existing tool shop facilities. We offer flexibility in all our operations to achieve short lead times as part of a complete and robust service offering.” Mr Landini added, “We are also very aware of our obligations when it comes to protecting the environment and the safety of our employees. We are therefore deeply involved in every aspect of sustainability. Our on-going investments in health and safety and in our production processes, demonstrate our clear commitment in this important area.”

Advanced casting and melting lines In Croatia, as in other ABS facilities, the melting process is fed by scrap metal which is carefully selected under NFA norms, the company steelmaking standard. The addition of additives and ferroalloys is performed by automated systems connected to the plant’s process supervision and monitoring equipment. Depending upon the different cycles involved, production is finalised with the refining process outside the melting furnace and with vacuum degassing in order to achieve particularly low hydrogen content. When it comes to casting lines, ABS can produce ingots cast by bottom pouring, on

mobile or fixed plates, as well as offering continuous casting processes. ABS as a group is also able to carry out a range of heat treatments, including quenching and tempering and normalisation, as well as special annealing cycles and stabilisation. These treatments are carried out with completely automated furnaces, with either gas or electric heating and with air or water quenching, depending upon the n desired end products. For further information about ABS and its advanced special steels visit:

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Fast-growing Finnish mining and tunnelling company Normet is active in 19 countries. Industry Europe’s Emma-Jane Batey spoke to Gary Clench, general manager Normet Africa, to see how the Group is rapidly expanding across Africa.


he global market leader in its mining and tunnelling segments, Finnish-based technology, machinery and chemicals company Normet employs over 700 people worldwide. With operations in 27 locations, including its own sales and service companies on five continents, the Group’s net sales were €170 million in 2011. Normet provides advanced solutions for selected customer processes in underground mining and tunnel construction environments, with a clear focus on life-time care and high quality. Gary Clench said, “Normet is committed to delivering excellent, reliable service to our customers worldwide. As we continue to grow, our reputation grows with us. With our increasingly global presence highlighting how we must offer a local service with local knowledge, we can call upon our strength as a global business to make that happen.”

Famous name Well-known as a mining and tunnelling equipment and chemicals group, Normet is growing steadily and strategically. Mr Clench heads up the company’s operations in Africa, which has

been going from strength to strength in the year since it was established. He continued, “Our strategy is to stay close to our customers – wherever they are in the world. As one of the most important mining markets in the world, it is important that Normet has a presence in sub-Saharan Africa. We have continued to strengthen our presence across Africa since opening our own sales and after-sales support office in Johannesburg.” Normet Africa offers exceptional service and back-up to its customers across subSaharan Africa, ‘from Tanzania downwards’, with all the hard rock mining applications covered. Mr Clench continued, “As mining and tunnelling markets in Africa are growing, our own entity and resources will allow for a more focused market approach and growth strategy. We have our own sales personnel for equipment and spare parts together with technical support and service personnel to support our existing and new customers.” The Johannesburg office for Normet Africa is destined to provide a complete ‘one stop shop’ for its customers across the continent. Offering new machine sales, the ability to

rebuild machines, spare parts and technical assistance, Normet Africa also manufactures a range of chemicals locally and exports them throughout sub-Saharan Africa. Mr Clench explained how the investment in Normet Africa highlights the Group’s commitment to the region. He said, “We believe our long-term commitment to our new and existing customers throughout sub-Saharan Africa is clear from our investment in building up our own resources and presence in Africa. With local production for construction chemicals now up to speed, we can respond more flexibly and effectively to our customers’ needs. We can also share our extensive

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knowledge of the concrete spraying process and therefore add value to our products through expert advice.”

TAM integration The manufacture of chemicals is largely thanks to Normet’s now-complete integration of the construction chemicals company TAM International (TAM). Starting in April 2010 when Normet acquired 40 per cent of the manufacturer and supplier, Normet now wholly owns TAM. By acquiring the remaining 60 per cent in June 2012, Normet has combined with TAM to offer a boosted underground equipment range, additional product solutions

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packages and an enhanced technically orientated customer support provision. Today, TAM is involved in many major and prestigious tunnelling projects in Taiwan, Hong Kong and the UK, with active mining projects in countries including Australia, Sweden and Ireland. With TAM’s growth between the first and final stages of the acquisitions proving significant, Normet is certainly excited about the future. Mr Clench said, “Now that TAM is fully integrated into Normet’s own construction chemical business line, it makes us one of the leading specialist suppliers of process solutions to the global underground mining and tunnelling sector. The integration

of TAM has brought additional experience, competence, personnel and resources which cement our position as a reliable long-term partner for our customers.” Mr Clench is also clear that the rapid development of the mining and tunnelling sector in sub-Saharan Africa represents exciting opportunities for growth in the region. One area where Mr Clench is sure that Normet will see increased opportunities is in shotcreteing, a process where Normet excels. He added, “We’re making a real breakthrough when it comes to shotcreting, which is great for us and for our customers. The shotcreting market in Africa is booming and we are already known as a supplier for shotcreting machinery, equipment and chemicals, particularly with the TAM brand on board. We’re finding that rock stabilisation is a growing sector for us, so products including polyurethane injections are in demand. In the near future we will also be able to offer anything to do with concrete n transportation as a support service.”


CABLE SOLUTIONS Murrplastik is a global leader in the manufacture and supply of injection moulded cable management systems for machine automation, robotics and maritime applications. Philip Yorke talked to Marco Braeuss, the company’s CEO, about its broad product expertise and latest innovative products.


urrplastik is a privately owned family business that was founded in Germany over 30 years ago and has since grown to become the world leader in injection moulded cable management systems. Murrplastik is a fully integrated ISO 9001 company that provides a wide range of manufacturing, engineering, product development and design services to industry. The company’s sales, distribution and customer-care service organisation spans more than 40 countries worldwide. Murrplastik has a major facility in North America located in Hatfield, Philadelphia, which is designed to serve the company’s US, Canadian and Mexican markets, as well as manufacturing facilities in China to serve the Asian markets.

Customer-specific solutions Murrplastik works in close partnership with its customers to provide unrivalled, productspecific solutions across its diverse range of

business sectors. Murrplastik Systemtechnik is able to design and adapt any of the company’s broad range of products to meet any individual challenge. For example, the Murrflex Flexible Conduit System has been designed to contain high-quality flexible conduits that make up a complete system to allow easy and simple assembly. Furthermore, the conduit comes in a wide variety of different plastics which offer the flexibility to suit various applications and environments, and these can be tailored to a customer’s specific requirements. The company’s latest line of IP 68 rated fittings is also a unique two-piece fitting system, which incorporates fully integrated gaskets and seals coupled with an antivibration feature. This one-of-a-kind fitting is available in NPT, PG and metric, plastic or metal threads. Marco Braeuss said, “Product development and innovation have

always been high priorities at Murrpkastik and we have more than 100 patents currently in force. We also have 12 designers in our labs as part of our comprehensive product development team near Stuttgart and we are in the process of doubling the size of our facilities here at our head office. “This will enable us to focus on a number of outstanding new products that we have developed, such as our latest ‘Pulsar’ laser marking system which represents the future for marking in industry. Another important development is our friction-free Magnetic Ride Technology which meets a growing need for special applications in the glass industry and which can also be applied to any industry where environmental and health issues are important.” Mr Braeuss added, “We also work closely in partnership with the TKD Group and RKT

of Hamburg, and we see these successful partnerships as the way forward for our company in the future. We have strong, longstanding relationships with our key suppliers, including CMS Chemicals and Agfaplast who supply our high-quality raw materials. “What’s more, our client base includes some of the world’s biggest, blue-chip companies, such as Siemens, Bombardier and ABB. We also supply products to the automotive industry via tier one and tier two component suppliers for major OEMs such as VW/Audi. “Whilst our biggest market remains the EU we are seeing strong growth in the EMEA countries as well as in the emerging markets of Asia and South America. We now have two manufacturing facilities in China, one in Beijing and the other in Shanghai. We believe that our global

success is due partly to the fact that as a family-owned independent company we are able to be more flexible and to make quicker decisions to help our customers to become more efficient and more profitable. And although we are a global company, we act locally, with the help of our partners and distributors overseas. “We are also very much a socially responsible company in all aspects of our business activities. As well as being environmentally aware, we try to put back something into society itself. Our CEO, who is the daughter of our founder, recently established educational facilities in Sri Lanka. This is to help deprived children get a good education, something that they would otherwise miss out on.”

Cost-effective quality and diversity Across Murrplastik’s broad spectrum of products, certain features remain constant. These include the company’s commitment to providing high-quality, innovative products at cost effective prices, and the offer of unrivalled customer service and support worldwide. For example, when it comes to Murrplastik’s cable entry and holding systems, pre-assembled cables and pneumatic lines can be quickly and cost-effectively routed and secured. The direct integration of parts into existing standards, or compatibility with leading control cabinet manufacturers can offer significant cost savings to customers. In addition, Murrplastik Systemtechnik has launched new suction tubing brackets for its cable drag chains which also add

significant value to its product range. These drag chain systems offer the smart solution as they supply mobile equipment with both power and data. Thanks to Murrplastik’s modular system it is now simple to ensure the safe routing of this kind of suction tubing, which can be used for the removal of airborne particulates or welding gases in the workplace. In woodworking too, waste in the form of chippings and sawdust can be efficiently removed. Since many different diameters of Murrplastik’s tubing are available, these value-added brackets can be n supplied in several different sizes. For further information about Murplastik’s latest innovative products and services visit:

TOTAL TOOLING Hungarian-based expert in technical rubber production, plastic production and foam conversion, T-Plasztik, is expanding its offer to provide a ‘one-stop shop’ for its customers. Emma-Jane Batey spoke to the marketing director, Albert Szabo, to learn more.


stablished in Hungary over 20 years ago and still 100 per cent owned by the founding families, T-Plasztik continues to move forward. Its main activities are plastic injection, rubber injection, technical foam conversion and foam for furniture, with all its products manufactured on site in Hungary. T-Plasztik achieved a €18.4 million turnover in 2012,with an increase to €20 million expected for 2013. Packaging Europe spoke to marketing director Albert Szabo to see how this has been achieved. He said, “I think one of the key areas where we excel

is our reliable quality. Customers know that they can rely on T-Plasztik products, as well as knowing that they can rely on our service. It means it’s easy to do business with us as we say what we mean and always meet our customers’ demands.”

Reliable quality, reliable products This reliability is backed up by a broad range of products, which in turn is suitable for a wide range of applications. Mr Szabo continued, “We are experts in our products and thankfully our products appeal to a wide customer base.

This is certainly an advantage when it comes to staying strong and profitable, particularly during difficult economic times, because we do not have to rely on any one sector. We have a healthy balance of customers in sectors including automotive, household appliances and other business commodities.” The T-Plasztik product range of plastic injection, rubber injection, technical foam conversion and foam for furniture is achieved thanks to the company’s ongoing investment in stateof-the-art machinery. It currently operates 21 rubber injection machines and 26 plastic injec-

tion machines, from 50 to 900 tonnes, bought from leading brands including Maplan, Desma, Rutil for rubber injection and Krauss Maffei, Arburg and Chen Hsong for plastic injection.

In-house tooling In addition to the excellent manufacturing equipment, T-Plasztik is also about to launch its own tool workshop. Mr Szabo explained,

“Our latest major investment in machinery is for our very own tool workshop. We have made the strategic decision to operate our own tool workshop in house to ensure that we can provide our customers with everything they need – from start to finish. We are now starting the tooling ourselves and we can deliver a full service from design to finished product.”

Mr Szabo is clear that this new tool workshop is a real benefit for its existing and potential customers. He added, “The workshop is the perfect addition to our offer. We have long had the expertise in plastics but needed to work with partners to deliver the full service. Now, everything our customers need is available here at T-Plasztik. Customers can now come to us with their ideas and we can turn that idea into a reality. We have our own tool design team that works with the customers, listening to their ideas and how the customer needs the product to perform, then we make drawings and prototypes and do the required testing to ensure that the product is exactly what the customer wants. We design the tool specifically for each customer, so we know it’s exactly right, every time. All from here in Hungary!”

Growth is good T-Plasztik is ambitious when it comes to geographical growth too, with plans for ‘aggressive expansion’ in the coming years. The automotive industry is a particular focus for the company, with being closely audited in connection with the strict demands of this sector. Its plastic and foam products are already used widely in the automotive industry, particularly in the domestic auto manufacturing arena. Mr Szabo said, “We currently employ about 400

people and we have one location with several manufacturing plants. As we see strong growth in the coming years, we are open minded about new locations, new plants and more highly-skilled employees. The automotive industry offers some really exciting possibilities for us in the future, especially as we have worked in this field for some time already. We can grow as our customers grow, both in terms of locations and product offer.” As T-Plasztik looks forward to continued success, Mr Szabo reiterated how the company’s ambitious spirit is helping to lead it into its next chapter. He concluded, “Hungary is seeing lots of positive changes at the moment, and will continue to do so, and I am proud to say that we are more than prepared to maximise the possibilities that are set to come our way. With more than 20 years’ experience in serving our customers across Europe, we are well-positioned to take n advantage of the opportunities.”

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SUSTAINABILITY IN HIGH PERFORMANCE FIBREBASED MATERIALS Long-established manufacturer of high performance fibre-based materials, Ahlstrom, is focused on sustainability, economic, social and environmental. Emma-Jane Batey spoke to Anna Wessman, Ahlstrom’s vice-president of sustainability, to learn more.

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stablished in Finland in 1851, Ahlstrom has evolved from a diversified conglomerate into a focused specialist. Its core activities are dedicated to the manufacture of high-performance fibre-based materials, speciality nonwovens and papers, from natural and synthetic fibres. The company supplies these materials to industrial customers for further processing, with applications across a range of industries including construction, automotive, healthcare, food and beverages, energy and water.

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Ahlstrom has four key business areas, Advanced Filtration, Building and Energy, Food and Medical and Transportation Filtration all offering value added fibre-based materials to their customers. It enjoys a wide customer base; none of Ahlstrom’s customers have a dominating position, with its ten biggest customers constituting just 20 per cent of net sales. This gives the company a very strong, well-balanced position across market segments and has proved to be a profitable strategy during the economic downturn. In 2012, Ahlstrom employed over 5000 people worldwide and its net sales amounted to approximately €1.6 billion. This year after the Label and Processing business area demerger the sales are some €1 billion with over 3800 employees. With operations in more than 20 countries on six continents, it truly is a worldwide company.

Green and global Recognising the global megatrends of environmental awareness, resource scarcity and demographics and urbanisation, its unique expertise in fibres, chemistry and materials technology enable Ahlstrom to create products with sustainability as a driver. Vice-president for sustainability, Anna Wessman, is dedicated to ensuring that the whole company works in as responsible a manner as possible, for the benefit of the environment, the business and its people, both employees and customers. Ms Wessman spoke to Industry Europe about how this is being achieved. She said, “We have a leading market position in all the sectors where we are active and we have been established for over 160 years. With sustainability in mind, we make products that protect people, purify air and liquids and provide surface and structure to our customers’ products. As all

human activity has an impact on the environment, we only want to make products with purpose, such that are truly needed by people. With them we help our customers to achieve their own sustainability goals.” Economic responsibility at Ahlstrom is characterised by its responsible business conduct. As a company, it observes the law of the host country, offers local job opportunities, pays local and national taxes and brings prosperity to the region. Ahlstrom’s social responsibility is also a natural part of how the company operates, with safety, taking care of employees and offering excellent training and personal development all central issues. Furthermore, the products with purpose are made in order to have a favourable social impact. Environmental responsibility is certainly an area where Ahlstrom shines. Passionate about both finding innovative ways to enhance

• Rygene-Smith & Thommesen is a Termomechanical pulp mill established in 1883 • Capacity approx 40.000 ton TMP on a 3 shift system • Freeness from 100 LWC up to 400 CFS • Brightness up to ISO 68 • Certified according to PEFC and FSC standard • Located in southern Norway

its green performance and to minimise the environmental impact of its operations, Ahlstrom’s focus is throughout its entire process. Ms Wessman continued, “Our environmental responsibility programme starts in product development where 80 per cent of the environmental impacts of products are determined. We are committed to EcoDesign. All our plants are environmentally certified. We only buy pulp from companies that are certified, so that we can guarantee that the whole of our value chain is committed to sustainability too.”

Identifying excellence Ahlstrom has identified five key performance indicators that support its sustainability programme and reflect its targets with regard to reduced environmental impact. Water intake, electrical efficiency, fuel energy, waste to landfill and CO2 emissions are all major areas of importance, with each area given substantial concentration. Ms Wessman pointed out,

“We have set ourselves a zero waste to landfill target to be achieved by 2015.” With 91 per cent of its fibre raw materials coming from renewable sources in 2012 and all its wood fibre suppliers having thirdparty certification in their forests, responsible sourcing and knowing the origin of the fibres is an important issue. Ahlstrom’s vision is to be inspiring people, passionate about new ideas and growing with customers. Ms Wessman added, “We are continually driven to create sustainable and profitable relationships with our customers. By offering competitively priced, value added products to our customers across the world we will continue to grow and succeed. As all of our products are developed and manufactured in as sustainable a manner as possible, our customers can work with us safe in the knowledge that we can positively contribute to their own sustainability aims n and help them stay ahead.”

Lenzing Lenzing is the global market leader and expert in the production of man-made cellulose fibers benefiting from 75 years of experience in fiber production. The renewable raw material wood is the basis for Lenzing fibers. The choice of TENCEL® and Lenzing Viscose® combines enhanced performance, comfort and environmental responsibility from the outset. Lenzing is dedicated to continuous development of fiber properties and ecological sustainability is a specific target in all innovation efforts. Wolfgang Plasser, VP Nonwoven Fibers, comments: “It is our aim to create value for our customers by focusing on consistent quality, innovation, reliable partnerships and sustainability achieved through long-term thinking.”


FOR LOGISTICS LEADER Hungarian transport logistics group Waberer’s Holding Zrt is the market-leading logistics service provider in Hungary and central eastern Europe. The companies within the group provide a global range of logistics services and it constantly expands its fleet to meet increasing demands. Industry Europe looks at its activities.

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oad transportation is the simplest and most secure form of logistics; however, without flexibility and efficiency a company cannot succeed in this industry. In order to provide more flexible customer service and to improve operational efficiency, in 2010, Waberer’s changed its company structure and shared out the majority of its fleet of 2300 vehicles to smaller individual enterprises holding 60–100 trucks each. As the company reacts quickly to changing market needs, the most advanced information technology systems and tools have also been implemented to run the new type of operations efficiently. Whilst the mediumsized companies operate as individual enterprises, they are still backed up by the holding’s incredible financial power and provided with the support of its international business network system. The year 2012 marked another chance for Waberer’s when four companies within the Group – Waberer’s International Pte.

Co., Delta Sped Ltd, Interszerviz Ltd and Inforatio Ltd – merged with Waberer’s Holding, thereby becoming Waberer’s International Pte. Co. In 2013, the Hungarian Competition Authority approved the merger of Waberer’s Logistics Ltd and Szemerey Transport Inc. The companies will continue to operate under a common ownership structure led by a unified management. They are respectively Hungary’s leading logistics enterprise and the market leader in domestic refrigerated freight and distribution. Their combined logistics fleet, now under unified management, is able to satisfy all logistical needs related to refrigerated, fresh and dry goods to the highest standards.

Company history Established in 1948, Waberer’s predecessor Volan was previously a state-owned road cargo transportation company which was privatised in 1994 by entrepreneur György

Wáberer and his associates. As a result of the turnaround strategy implemented by the new management in 1994, the company established new foundations and began a series of acquisitions to extend its product and service portfolio. In 2001 the company partnered with MAV (Hungarian State Railways) and began to develop the BILK (Budapest Intermodal Logistics Centre), central Europe’s largest forwarding and logistics centre. As a result of the acquisition of Hungarocamion Co. in 2002, the company became a market leader in Hungary and gained a significant presence in eastern and central Europe. In 2003 the company was once again restructured, changing its name to Waberer’s and introducing its unique customer service system, Waberer’s Optimum Solution. In 2005 the company began its regional expansion by establishing subsidiaries in Slovakia, Poland, Romania and Spain. Today Waberer’s Holding is the sixth largest road haulage company in Europe, offering a wide

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portfolio which includes national and international transportation, international forwarding, logistics, customs services, property development and vehicle repair.

Sustaining growth Waberer’s mid-term plan is to double its sales revenues by organic growth and through acquisitions. The company aims to achieve organic growth by continuously improving efficiency and by enhancing the exploitation of all markets. To this end, it has been taking over medium-sized transportation companies in countries including the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania and Poland.

The year 2012 was a successful one for Waberer’s, with revenue reaching €377.5 million. At the end of 2012 it upgraded its fleet with the purchase of 700 new trucks and 500 new trailers, and expanded its size by 130 vehicles. Furthermore, the acquisition of internationally successful Hungarian-owned Transport Hungaria Ltd was completed and it purchased the majority share of Szemerey Transport Inc., a homeland market leader in refrigerated freight. Its business plan for the next year will be more ambitious still. Another priority for the company will be the continued expansion of its fleet capacities. Its main supplier is Volvo, but many

vehicles are provided by the two other leading vehicle manufacturers, DAF and MAN. More than 90 per cent of the multifunctional trailers are supplied by Schmitz, whilst the rest are manufactured by Krone and Schwarzmüller. Reviewing its business on a regular basis and being prepared to make tough decisions have ensured that Waberer’s has not only survived the recession but has actually increased its profits and provided new jobs. Excellent service and an effective communication plan have allowed it to increase prices, whilst other companies have ceased trading or struggled to meet their costs. n

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As one of the top three European logistics providers, DSV Road’s continued dedication to operating an efficient, effective and ecologically responsible fleet is keeping the company at the top of its game.


or leading logistics provider DSV Road, the figures speak for themselves. More than 10,000 employees in 34 offices worldwide, over 17,000 modern trucks ready to deliver parcels and products anywhere in the world, and a nearly 36-year history of exceeding customer expectations. It’s no wonder that DSV Road is enjoying strong growth at a time when many companies are struggling in challenging economic circumstances.

A company spokesperson told Industry Europe why he believes this strong performance is continuing: “We offer attractive and flexible logistics solutions that meet the exact needs of our customers wherever they are in the world. As a full-service logistics provider, we are committed to ensuring our service is totally transparent, both in terms of operation, costs and online tracking, making it easier to work with DSV Road than ever before.”

Based in Denmark, DSV Road is a key part of the global DSV Group and accounts for the employment of around 80 per cent of the group’s workforce. The underlying promise of the company is to be better at forwarding business at every step of the way, a promise which is integral to the ongoing training and development of its staff. In July this year (2013) DSV signed an agreement to acquire the entire share capital

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of Ontime Logistics AS, which has activities in Norway, Sweden and Denmark. Ontime Logistics offers transport and logistics services primarily related to road transport. The company has 220 employees and eight offices in Norway, five in Sweden and two in Denmark. This acquisition is expected to add to its already strong position in the Norwegian road market.

Ecological importance One important aspect of improvement at DSV Road is the company’s enhanced environmental commitment. The DSV ECO Transport policy is continually moving forward; over 60 per cent of DSV Road vehicles and the vehicles used by its network of carefully selected subcontractors are now classified as Euro IV or V (emission standard V is currently the highest classification available for trucks). The company spokesperson added, “As a business that is reliant on transportation, we believe that the ecological responsibility of our fleet is of paramount importance to our continued success. It’s not just good for the environment, it’s good for business. That is why we introduced the DSV ECO Transport policy, and our size and smart approach enables us to offer economies of scale and constant streamlining of transport and logistics.”

Total service The full-service aspect of DSV Road provides short delivery times for groupage, part and full loads and all manner of special transports.

In cooperation with its partner divisions DSV Air & Sea and DSV Solutions, the company offers comprehensive multi-modal transport and logistics solutions across the world. Its service incorporates all aspects of logistics from forwarding, packing, sorting and labelling to stock management, with all services being developed and honed to ensure the best possible results for the customer. According to the spokesperson, “It’s all about designing solutions to fit the individual needs of our customers, particularly as so many customers are active globally. For each and every customer we make sure that our forwarding and freight service is perfectly in

tune with what they need, whether it’s domestic logistics, across Europe or worldwide. We work with both small businesses with one-off assignments and major multinational businesses that use DSV Road to outsource their entire logistics management. We value all our customers and work hard to deliver a personalised service.” The DSV Road service portfolio relies on its large network of local offices, all staffed by skilled employees who really know the locality and the logistics industry. For groupage services, a 24-hour domestic and cross-border service is available and delivery within one to five days across Europe. Direct pick-up and

delivery of shipments of more than 1500kg in full loads or part loads is available throughout Europe, with all services supported by the company’s comprehensive online support. DSV Road’s e-services have been developed to offer all the information that its customers need quickly, with easy-access Track & Trace showing the latest update for every shipment. Customers can also book their shipments online, saving them time and cutting administration demands in the DSV Road office, which allows time and cost savings to be passed on to the customer. The company’s e-service tools allow it to provide the best possible service to its customers as it helps to speed up bookings with transparent communication that’s available 24/7. It sees its strong market position across Europe and customisable e-services as playing an important part in its future success. Over the past year or so it has been looking at n expansion into new markets.

UNLOCKING POTENTIAL Manufacturer and supplier of hardware Axa Stenman Industries is proud to be ‘unlocking the future’ for its largely Europe-based customers. Emma-Jane Batey spoke to the product manager, Mark Grefhorst, to find out more.


he roots of the Netherlands-based hardware manufacturer and supplier Axa Stenman Industries reach back to 1902, with the company’s two complementary business areas of bicycle components and window and door components, both utilising its long-held expertise in metals and plastics. The two different business lines primarily operate separately, but they have the shared strength of the panEuropean production sites and the support functions of the Dutch head office. Product manager for the bicycle components business, Mark Grefhorst, spoke to Industry Europe about how the company consistently delivers on its promise of ‘unlocking the future’. He said, “We are a Europe-based company that uses our European production facilities to produce some of the safest, most

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secure locks for bicycles, doors and windows. With our two business areas relatively separate, there is certainly a common thread of high-quality European production and a focus on safety and security in everything we do.”

Cooperation is key The two separate production lines both sell directly to manufacturers as well as to wholesalers to their respective retail markets. Mr Grefhorst continued, “Our customers are primarily manufacturers who use our products in their production. Axa Stenman is always investing in new and ongoing partnerships with our customers in order to maintain a very high level of cooperation with customers and suppliers. This is so important for our business, and it’s an area that is continually improving too. We are keen to understand how our customers’ businesses are changing and how Axa Stenman can help.”

A large operation, Axa Stenman has production sites in the Netherlands, France and Poland as well as several dedicated sales offices and agents in various countries including Germany, Poland and France. Mr Grefhorst added, “All our production sites enjoy state-ofthe-art equipment and machinery that allows us to develop and manufacture products of the highest quality, using predominately Europeanmade parts and materials. We are currently focused on maximising the efficiency of all our plants so that we can be sure that we are operating in the most effective way for a solid balance of cost and quality.” The core products offered by Axa Stenman from its bicycle business area are locks, chain guards and dress guards and lights. For the window and door business area, its core products are hinges of various types and handles/openers for both professional and personal applications. The professional

applications also include access management products for hospitals and schools, where Axa Stenman works with long-time partner ASSA on systems and solutions that meet the challenges of this sector. Axa Stenman also works with a number of well-known partners and suppliers across both its product groups, with names including large-scale European manufacturers of cylinders and raw material suppliers of plastic and metals.

Growth and development In terms of geographical footprint, the proudly European company Axa Stenman is actually growing both in Europe and beyond. Mr Grefhorst explained, “We are increasingly moving beyond European borders, which is exciting for us. We are of course keeping our dedication to production in Europe, as well as using almost all European parts, and we

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are finding that this is appealing to customers outside Europe. With the guaranteed quality and performance of our products in both the bicycle and doors and windows business areas, customers certainly value and appreciate our dedication to delivering the highest quality in everything we do.” Axa Stenman’s growth outside of Europe is largely concentrated in Asia, with Mr Grefhorst explaining that many of the world’s main bicycle manufacturers are relocating at least part of their production to this part of the world. He added, “We are very happy to follow our customers wherever they go in the world. We will always deliver our European quality components to anywhere in the world. In fact, we are continually looking for opportunities to expand and develop; while we do have a specific target market for new business, we are always open to opportunities.” With Axa Stenman’s current core markets of Benelux, Germany and across eastern Europe all performing well, its open-mindedness towards new opportunities highlights how this ambitious company aims to grow in the coming years. Mr Grefhorst concluded, “We see our future growth as maintaining our excellent performance throughout Europe as well as making the most of the interesting and exciting opportunities we see in new markets, particularly in Asia. This organic expansion will be supported by our long-term appreciation of the importance of innovation; by continually innovating our existing products and staying close to our customers in order to develop new products, we are sure that our success story will continue.” conti n

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FROM WASTE IL Recycling is a Swedish recycling company with operations in Sweden and Poland. It has been working to supply manufacturers in various industries with raw materials for over 60 years. Industry Europe looks at how the company works to improve efficiency.


ince its establishment over 60 years ago, IL Recycling has grown into one of the world’s largest full-service recycling and waste management companies, handling virtually all kinds of materials. IL is a recycling company with national operations in Sweden as well as several locations in Poland – in Warsaw, Poznan, Gorzow and Katowice, where it uses the local brand name First Recycling. A company spokesperson says: “IL Recycling has four owners, all Swedenbased paper mills. They are Fiskeby Board, SCA, Smurfit Kappa and Stora Enso. We were originally created by our paper mill owners to provide them with recycled fibre

– but for some recycled products, the best sales opportunities are to be found outside Sweden. In that case, we make sure that we find suitable customers abroad and arrange transport. For example, we export highgrade fibres to Germany, Italy and Spain.”

Fields of expertise IL Recycling’s 700+ employees have expertise covering the entire recycling process, from analysis, collection and transport of residual products to sorting, processing and delivery of recycled raw materials to industry. IL Recycling provides the vessels and containers for sorting and recycling, and handles the transport from the collection

points to the recycling plants. IL Recycling also has the very latest technology in place, enabling it to offer the smartest solutions for efficient and above all profitable recycling. IL’s core activities are paper and plastic, although other kinds of materials are also processed via business partners. Common materials and items that the company collects and processes include batteries, glass packaging, plastic packaging, metal packaging, corrugated board, electrical waste, light bulbs, newspapers and scrap metal. The company handles waste left over from all kinds of operations, viewing waste as a valuable resource that often goes unused simply for lack of time or expertise. As well as

the environmental benefits, the more that is recycled the better the waste management economics as well. This is because when sorting at source is introduced it reduces the volume of unsorted waste – one of the most expensive things to dispose of. Another important activity for IL Recycling is trade in raw materials on both the Swedish and the international market. The raw materials it trades are recycled fibres, metals, scrap, plastic and others. IL Recycling is part of an international network of leading trading companies in the recycling sector, which enables it to reach customers all over the world. A further field of activity is the confidential processing of sensitive or secret material such as paper documents or worn-out hard disks. This confidential service, operating

under the name of Reisswolf, has the highest security level in the industry. Finally, IL Recycling has municipal cleaning contracts in a number of municipalities in Sweden.

Growth in Poland

With 16 plants in Sweden and four in Poland, IL Recycling is the leading operator on the Swedish recycling market, and expects to become the leading operator on the Polish market. Its core activities in Poland are paper and plastic, although other kinds of material are also processed via business partners. The company spokesperson says: “At IL Recycling we believe that there are major possibilities of contributing to increasing recycling in Poland. IL Recycling Polska is striving to lead the way and to drive continued develop-

ment, and sees good opportunities for growth in this dynamic market. Another field in which we expect growth is the energy sector, with energy plants. It is currently our fastest growing field, which achieved a growth rate of 10 per cent for 2012.”

Investments In 2011, IL Recycling introduced the collection of biological waste for the production of biogas in large parts of Svealand, (south-central Sweden) and opened a new scrap metal plant in northern Sweden. The company is also in the process of replacing three smaller plants south of the capital Stockholm by one single bigger plant, north of the city. This is due to be n completed by the end of 2013.

CREATIVE GLASS SOLUTIONS Glass processing specialist Yorim offers ‘fast, creative, solutions-orientated’ glass to customers across Europe from its strategically placed facilities in Turkey. Emma-Jane Batey spoke to the general manager Fabrizio Missich, to see how the company continues to grow.


stablished in 1992 to meet the demands of the architectural glass industry, glass processing company Yorim today is a leader in glass processing technologies. One of three companies which together create the Cam Merkezi Sanayi ve Ticaret AS family, whose promise of ‘exclusivity in glass’ is delivered by Yorim, Yorsan (‘creative services in glass’) and Yorglas (‘aesthetic touches in glass’). Yorim has two state-of-the-art facilities in Turkey, in Bolu and Gebze, with a total of 33,000m2 production space. The company 192 Industry Europe

primarily provides glass processing technologies to the food display and white goods sectors, with key clients including MetalFrio, FrigoGlass and Carrier for its food display glass and Bosch Siemens, Electrolux and Turkey’s Arcelik for white goods glass requirements.

Invest in success General manager Fabrizio Missich explained how Yorim’s recent investment in its white goods production site has further increased its capabilities. He said, “At the end of 2012 we completed the development programme

at our Bolu site and this is where we produce our glass for white goods. Here, we process glass for applications such as domestic fridges and oven doors, so it is imperative that our glass is as safe, reliable and resilient as possible. Our heavy investment in this facility has given us a boost and certainly increased the performance of our white goods business unit.” A key aspect of this recent investment in the white goods glass processing unit is the increased automation now possible. Mr Missich is clear that it is Yorim’s long-term experi-

ence and knowledge of the glass processing industry that helps set it apart from the competition and this investment has enhanced this benefit. He explained, “We now have one of the best facilities in Europe for glass processing. That, coupled with our unrivalled knowledge of glass processing, gives us a real edge. Yorim’s knowledge, technology and people creates our advantage.” Both the upgraded Bolu facility and the Gebze site are working to the strictest European safety standards. Granted the ISO 9001,BS6206 and EN12150-1 certificates since 2004, Yorim works with leading companies across Europe. Mr Missich continued, “We work with many big players, and being able to deliver the right product at the right quality is important to our continued success. With our automated production facilities taking much of their technologies from the automotive industry, we know that we are doing something a bit different from other players in the glass processing industry.”

Increase in demand Further investment plans for 2013 will also see the Bolu site upgraded, with the expectation that its processing capacity will double. Mr Missich explained that there is already the space and the demand for this increase, so the new machines to be installed in 2014 will be put to good use straight away. He continued, “We are currently processing at least 60,000 tonnes of glass each year, with that figure likely to double as our investment in both the Bolu and Gebze sites take effect. Thanks to the exceptional skills and knowledge of our nearly 280-strong

workforce and our strong belief in the profitable benefits of clever automation, we predict that we can meet the demands of our new capacity without increasing costs.”

Continued growth Yorim promises to deliver ‘fast, creative, solutions-orientated’ glass products from its glass processing centres, with more than 50 per cent of production exported. As a proud ‘solutions partner’ to its customers, Yorim is looking to grow throughout Europe in the coming years, with Mr Missich appreciating that its strategic Turkish locations make for effective transport across the continent. He said, “We will certainly continue to grow in the coming years. Even though we can say that the European market is not especially great at the moment, as a leading player that has made clever recent investments to increase production capacity through enhanced automation, we will definitely be taking market share in 2014.” Staying within its core food display and white goods sectors, Yorim expects growth in its present European markets as well as in new markets. Mr Missich concluded, “We will grow in Europe and beyond. We are already working with leading customers in the Middle East, North Africa and South America and we can see many exciting opportunities in these regions. Our location is good for growth in Europe as well as these new regions, so as we take market share from European competitors and win new customers outside of Europe we know that we can meet whatever demands the customer has – wherever they are and whatever glass technology solution n they require.” Industry Europe 193

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Articles inside

Creative glass solutions Yorim

pages 192-198

Creating value from waste IL Recycling

pages 188-191

Unlocking potential Axa Stenman

pages 184-187

Sustainability in high performance fibre-based materials Ahlstrom

pages 168-173

Continuous expansion for logistics leader

pages 174-179

Flexible logistics solutions DSV

pages 180-183

Total tooling T-Plasztik

pages 164-167

Integrated single-source cable solutions Murrplastik

pages 161-163

Special steels – a new dimension ABS

pages 154-157

In partnership with nature Spačva

pages 136-138

Constant innovation in linear technology

pages 150-153

Continued growth for forest products leader

pages 133-135

Energy-efficient cooling Bonnet Neve

pages 139-141

Innovation in automation Rocla

pages 146-149

Special solutions for offshore operations Kenz Figee

pages 142-145

Underground solutions Normet

pages 158-160

The healthy dairy alternative AGRO Danmis

pages 126-129

The taste of nature EkoLukta

pages 130-132

High expertise in generators TES Vsetín

pages 123-125

Driving in the right direction Nord Motoriduttori

pages 118-122

Controlling the power ETI Group

pages 112-114

A breath of fresh air Elica

pages 115-117

Design, comfort and value in contemporary furniture Forma Ideale

pages 109-111

Science and style in children’s shoes Ivančica

pages 106-108

A supermarket giant Tesco

pages 99-101

Leading the way in hygienic disposables Ontex

pages 82-98

Fighting illegal trading Imperial Tobacco

pages 102-105

Colourful market leader Flügger

pages 78-81

Clever design Reynaers

pages 66-72

The true all-rounder of construction specialists

pages 62-65

Building a sustainable future Skanska

pages 73-77

Building for a sustainable future KLH Massivholz

pages 58-61

Dynamic development Alutech

pages 48-53

Technology and art in steel structures Cimolai

pages 54-57

Forging ahead with high-precision hand tools Unior

pages 45-47

Electric vehicles driving growth Lear Corporation

pages 32-35

Chemistry and engineering: A successful marriage

pages 28-31

Driven by electronic innovation Meta System

pages 36-41

Taking care of your vehicle Ravaglioli

pages 42-44

Winning business New orders and contracts

pages 14-15

Industry people Appointments

page 19

Focus on Germany Allan Hall reports from Berlin

page 22

Moving on Relocations and expansions

page 18

Bill Jamieson Oh, to break out of the euro bathtub

page 4

Marseille’s new museum

pages 12-13

Linking up Combining strengths

pages 16-17

Technology spotlight Advances in technology

page 20
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