Volume 28/3 – 2018
Camozzi ready for Industry 4.0 Continued investment for Smurfit Kappa Festo – Leading the digital revolution
New transport links connecting Europe
Tail wags dog On the Irish border the EU is making a mountain out of a molehill.
he clock is ticking – there are only a few weeks left before the October EU summit and we still have no idea what the British want’. That’s the daily complaint from Brussels, which claims to see a hopelessly divided UK government incapable of making any real progress and living in a fantasy world. The British who voted for Brexit, however, have a bit of a problem with this. We thought we’d told you, two years ago, what we want, they say. We want out of the European Union. That means out of its political and institutional structures, out of its project for ever-closer union, out of the Commission, out of the Council, out of the Parliament, out of the Single Market, out of the Customs Union and out of the jurisdiction of the European Court. What exactly is it, they say, in their British way, about ‘out’ that you don’t understand? Or as Mrs May, patiently, if somewhat tautologically, insists on repeating, Brexit means Brexit. Of course, it’s true that she also repeats her wish for a ‘deep and special partnership’ with the member states of the EU and for as far as possible, ‘frictionless trade’. And there’s the rub. To the Commission that sounds like wanting all the benefits of EU membership without the costs or the obligations. You had a special partnership – so special that you were allowed to stay outside the single currency and outside Schengen – they say, and now you just want to freeload or cherry-pick and that’s not how we work. We are a rules-based organisation and we go by the book. You are now a third country and you’ll just have to line up and wait for whatever arrangements we might be able to conclude together. We’re not, at the moment, even in the mood to talk about aircraft landing rights. OK, say the British, let’s then get on with seeing what kind of Free Trade Agreement we
can work out. You managed one with Canada and though that did take several centuries, the UK and the EU are almost completely aligned on trade regulations already, so it shouldn’t be that hard. Ah, said the EU last year, we can’t talk about anything like that until we have an initial agreement on citizens’ rights, on a financial settlement and on the Irish border. So last December the UK and the EU reached such an agreement on the first two issues – including the UK’s £39 billion divorce bill – and agreed that the ‘technical details’ of the Ireland/Northern Ireland border would be worked out during the subsequent trade talks. And there we have been stuck ever since. The British continue to point out that you can’t sort out the details of the Irish border until you have at least the outline of a trade deal – if it’s a reasonable FTA, the border becomes a minor issue – while Brussels sticks to its position that it will not discuss a trade deal until the border is sorted out. Not just nothing is agreed until everything is agreed but nothing can be agreed until this is agreed. Brussels says it’s their bloody cart and they won’t have it anywhere but before the horse.
Divide and rule To most UK Leavers this is all a whipped-up storm in a teacup. There already is a border on the island of Ireland – Ireland is in the euro and has different VAT rates, for example – but it’s physically invisible and most of the trade across it is in milk and Guinness. Within any likely FTA the issue is easily manageable with a modicum of goodwill on both sides. The UK government has suggested a solution using electronic monitoring and customs clearing (as used on the USA/ Canada border) and trusted trader rules so that there would be no need for lorry stops. The fact that this common-sense solution
has been dismissed as ‘magical thinking’ may not be because the Commission is living in yesterday’s world but because it sees an opportunity here to use the Irish government’s politicking over the border to force the UK into the December Agreement backstop position. That stipulates that in the absence of a trade deal, the UK must ‘maintain full alignment with the rules of the single market and the customs union’ to support North-South cooperation and the Good Friday agreement. Of course, if the UK could be forced to remain inside the single market and the customs union it would be the effective end of Brexit, which is precisely what the UK Remainers have been plotting for and which the EU would doubtless welcome. Hence all those trips to Brussels by Remainer big shots. Naturally the EU understands that the UK might not want to accept a UK/EU customs union, so it has helpfully suggested that to preserve the integrity of the EU single market Northern Ireland separately could stay in the customs union. That way the North could retain complete alignment with EU rules while the rest of the UK diverged. But it is impossible to imagine that Brussels fails to understand that this solution would undermine the constitutional integrity of the UK itself. As Mrs May has said, no British prime minister could contemplate such an outcome. Which leaves the UK thrashing about trying to decide whether it should suggest a customs union, a customs partnership, a customs arrangement or MaxFac or the latest ‘third way’ when all it really needs is a sensible FTA. It might get one yet – a Canada plus would be at least better than a Norway minus or the square root of Switzerland. Otherwise it’s a hard landing and WTO rules and see how n European industry likes that. Industry Europe 1
CONTENTS Editorial Director Peter Mercer
Production Manager Tania Balderson
Editor Victoria Hattersley
Copy Manager Andrew Briggs
Profile Writers Romana Moares Barbara Rossi Dariusz Balcerzyk Edina Beale Philip Yorke Emma-Jane Batey Eugenia Fiusco Piotr Sadowski
Administration Jess White Advertising Manager Stephen Moore Sector Managers Matthew Howe Milada Preslova Anna Dudek-Nocny Eniko Kovacs Michael Hudson Oliver Clements Szidonia Hajdu
Art Director Rob Czerwinski Designer Leon Esterhuizen
1 Opinion Tail wags dog 4 Bill Jamieson Dancing close to the door
Construction Industry 6 8
Bridging Europe’s North-South divide Fehmarnbelt project looks to connect Europe
Construction news The latest from the industry
Metals Industry 10
Trade tensions threaten stability Steel tariffs call for
12 Metals news The latest from the industry
Textiles Industry 14 16
Smart dress The future of wearable tech Textiles news The latest from the industry
IT Support Syed Hassan
18 Winning business New orders and contracts 20 Linking up Combining strengths 22 Moving On Relocations and expansions across Europe 23 Technology spotlight Advances in technology
MSV Exhibition Industry Europe Alkmaar House, Alkmaar Way, Norwich, Norfolk, NR6 6BF, United Kingdom Tel: +44 (0)1603 414444 Fax: +44 (0)1603 779850 Email: email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org Web: https://industryeurope.com Twitter: https://twitter.com/IndustryEurope
Industry in the digital age MSV At the cutting edge TOS VARNSDORF
Aerospace & Defence 32
Positive signs Zodiac Aerospace
Automation & Robotics 35 38 43
Driving e-mobility forward ABB Group Master factory Festo Meeting the needs of industrial automation
Automotive & Heavy Vehicles © Industry Europe 2018 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. INDUSTRY EUROPE LTD.
A Square Root Company
2 Industry Europe
48 52 56 60 64 68 72 76 80
Optimsing in-car acoustic technology ASK Automotive Industries Always on the road Autosan Integrated precision Brovedani Group In the spotlight HELLA Autotechnik Nova Clear vision Hella Slovakia Front Lighting
Performance and sustainability plugged in Geesinknorba
Intelligent machine control technology Komatsu Out in front SOR Libchavy At full speed EXEDY Corporation
Above: ASK Automotive Industries p48
Construction & Engineering 83 90 94
The right profiles Decco Building on knowledge KÉSZ Joinery inspired by perfection Petecki Group
Energy & Utilities
98 Ensuring a smooth flow of energy APS Energia 102 Finishing first Steinemann Technology
Food & Beverage Above: ABB Group p35 Below: Komatsu p72
106 A taste for healthy living Vandemoortele 110 Bacon King Tamási-Hús
Above: Tamási-Hús p110 Below: Growag p126
Home Electronics, Appliances & HVAC 114 118 122
Hoods and hobs for classy kitchens Akpo Budding genius Jabra Driving forward EU plastics initiatives Whirlpool
Logistics & Transport
126 Sitting comfortably Growag 130 Innovation in transportation Waberer’s Group 134 MÁV goes full steam ahead MÁV
Metals, Metalworking & Mining 137 140 143 146 150 154
Long tradition in casting innovation Drawski Shaping the digital future of the CNC industry ORDERFOX Powering sustainability Atlas Copco Abrasive’s smooth operator Ekamant Delivering steel diversity Feralpi Stronger together LINPRA
Paper, Packaging & Printing
Above: Decco p83 Below: APS Energia p98
158 162 168 174 178 181 184 189
Above: ORDERFOX p140 Below: Smurfit Kappa p162
Pre-packed innovation Sarten Green paper production Smurfit Kappa Piteå Sustainable strength Sofidel Diversity – A convertible currency Uteco Group Star performer Starlinger Pioneering biodegradable tubes Emballator Tectubes Driving diversification in speciality papers Sappi Group
A passion for style and performance Albea Group
Textiles, Home & Personal Care 194 Joanna is the name of beauty
Joanna Cosmetic Laboratory
Also in this issue...
199 Advanced mobile innovations Ericsson Hungary Industry Europe 3
Executive Editor of The Scotsman
Dancing close to the door Italy’s election and the migrant crisis have left the French plan for ‘more Europe’ looking ever more implausible.
ost from view in the impenetrable fog that is Brexit Britain are some encouraging signs. Estimates of UK growth in the first quarter have been revised upwards, albeit modestly. Consumer spending and retail sales have also perked up. An upbeat survey from the normally lugubrious Confederation of British Industry suggests the manufacturing sector may be regaining momentum after a sluggish 2018 so far. The orders balance encouragingly improved to a five-month high in June while the balance of manufacturers reporting a rise in output over the previous three months jumped to a 2018 high. And separately, a survey from specialist business bank Aldermore found four-fifths of UK SMEs trading overseas expect to see their exporting business revenues rise by an average nine per cent over the next 12 months. Medium-sized businesses, those with between 50 and 249 employees, are the most confident, with almost nine in ten (89 per cent) saying they expect their export revenues to grow during this period. Small pinpoints of light, admittedly. And it has certainly seemed that the continental economies have been a haven of growth and stability compared to the pessimism that pervades economic assessment in the UK. But it would be mistaken to assume that the skies over the eurozone are cloudless. The Brussels summit last month was supposed to be dominated by French President Emanuel Macron’s ‘grand plan’ to relaunch the euro and put the single currency on stronger foundations. This, said its supporters, was vital for the euro area to strengthen its defences against a downturn. But this was swept off the table by a gruelling overnight debate on migration policy. President Macron had been pushing for a big leap forward on fiscal union with moves to facilitate fiscal transfers, this against a persistent fear that a future economic 4 Industry Europe
slowdown would leave the zone critically illprepared and its weakest members vulnerable to collapse. But despite all the rhetoric about ‘more Europe’, virtually zero progress has been made since the crisis that nearly destroyed monetary union in the 2012 banking crisis. Germany cannot contemplate further Greek bail-out style obligations and across the continent as a whole, populist euro sceptic parties, deeply suspicious of further moves to strengthen Brussels, have been on the rise. But why worry that much? There is no immediate cause for concern. The eurozone economies are chugging along reasonably well. Unemployment has been falling and businesses growing.
Despite all the rhetoric about ‘more Europe’, virtually zero progress has been made since the crisis that nearly destroyed monetary union in the 2012 banking crisis. Political challenges But clouds are building. Growth in the eurozone economy slid to a seasonally adjusted 0.4 per cent over the previous quarter in Q1, down from Q4 2017’s solid 0.7 per cent rise. Exports contracted for the first time since Q4 2012. A slower global recovery and strong euro likely hit overseas sales in the quarter. Government spending also stalled, while fixed investment growth slowed substantially. Several eurozone economies saw momentum wane in the first quarter, including regional giants France and Germany. Meanwhile, salvos have been fired in an escalating trade war with America,
with President Trump imposing a 20 per cent tariff on European car imports. And political challenges are emerging, threatening the common currency area. Italy and Spain have both seen political turbulence in recent weeks, with new, relatively shaky governments installed. The most worrying is Italy, where a government formed by the populist Five Star Movement (M5S) and right-wing League party was instated in June. The two parties are most unlikely allies, but they have united round an economic programme that could blow the eurozone apart. Policies include: A guaranteed income for the poor, at a cost of €17 billion; two ‘flat tax’ rates (15 and 20 per cent), while families would receive a 3000-euro annual tax deduction; scrapping planned sales and excise tax increases next year, worth €12.5 billion; abolishing planned pension reform to raise the retirement age; and modifying the Stability and Growth Pact which sets a budget deficit limit of 3 per cent of GDP. Bear in mind that Italy already holds the world’s third-largest public debt, totalling €2.3 trillion – a debt-to-GDP ratio of 130 per cent, the highest in the eurozone after Greece – and it is not hard to see why European leaders are fearful. Simple – just raise taxes! But the top rate of income tax in Italy is already one of the highest in Europe, well above the 39 per cent average for top rates across the 28 members of the Union. And the number of Italians at risk of poverty is now thought to be 18 million – nearly a third of the entire population. Little wonder that the looming challenge from Italy has led to speculation about the future of the eurozone and how it would weather the next global downturn. Its monetary ammunition is largely exhausted, debt ratios are dangerously high and no fiscal union is in sight. Hardly the best time for Italy to be n dancing close to the door.
SPOJKAR The family-owned SPOJKAR company has over 27 years of experience
GNIOTPOL we have been working on one of our most interest-
in the production of sleeper cabins, spoilers, aerodynamic packages
ing projects based on the external appearance of the SPOJTRAK
and various elements made from laminate and ABS.
cabin. The chassis of the M.ATEGO and MAN TGL became the basis for the end result of this collaboration: the EFFIECENCY CAB EC 25.
Our expertise allows us to achieve high quality production standards.
The creation of this cabin was driven by the need for increased
With a large fleet of machines, we are able to implement new pro-
aerodynamics, reduced fuel consumption and, of course, increased
jects from the initial concept, through design, testing in a virtual
driver comfort. This project was enthusiastically welcomed due to
wind tunnel to the production of models, prototypes and finally the
the achievement of the goals set. As a result, more projects were
completed with the GNIOTPOL company, including fully-equipping
The production of sleeper cabins is a priority for us, and our products
the MAN TGL LX and MERCEDES ATEGO.
are becoming more and more popular among drivers and owners of
Our company works in accordance with the ISO 9001 quality manage-
transport companies. One such product is the SPOJTRAK / DEEPSLEEPER
ment system, but we are constantly striving to achieve new certifications
sleeping module designed for 3.5-tonne vehicles. In addition to a sleeping
to confirm our quality. As a manufacturer of new brands, we have the TUV
cab behind drivers’ seats, the cab has many additional options that make
(Mangement System as per German and International Road Traffic Laws)
the driver’s life more enjoyable (including a TV set) and help to improve
certificate, which confirms the high quality of our products and adapts
the aerodynamics (e.g. additional spoilers, wide side fairing).
our services to international standards.
The streamlined shape and attractive appearance of SPOJTRAK
Today, we are dynamically developing our export activities, especially
caught the attention of the GNIOTPOL TRAILERS company. For
Industry Europe 5
Bridging Europe’s North-South Divide With the Fehmarnbelt project, Europe is looking to bridge the divide between Scandinavia and Germany. Robert Williams reports.
hen the Berlin Wall fell, Europe started rebuilding its lost and moribund east-west transport networks. But old north-south bottlenecks are back in the spotlight. Of the nine ‘Core Network Corridors’ currently earmarked for EU investment, six are more vertical than horizontal. The highlight of this strategy is the ‘Scandinavian-Mediterranean corridor’ stretching from Sweden and Finland, through Denmark, Germany, Austria and Italy to Malta in the south. However, in many ways, Europe’s northsouth divide is more complicated. There are challenging physical barriers, like the Alps and the cold Baltic Sea, as well as deep cultural and economic differences. The greatest progress in developing this North-South link has been at the route’s northern end. The Oresund link, a 16km road-and-rail, bridge-and-tunnel link from Malmo to Copenhagen, which opened in 2000, has knitted the two cities into one region. The next step is to link them to Hamburg with a tunnel bearing two train tracks and a four-lane highway under the Fehmarn Strait (‘Fehmarnbelt’ in German). The Fehmarn Strait in the Baltic Sea is 18km (11 miles) wide and will create a new direct link by railway and road between northern Ger6 Industry Europe
many and Lolland, and to the Danish island of Zealand and Copenhagen. This route is known in German as the Vogelfluglinie and in Danish as Fugleflugtslinjen (literally ‘the bird flight line’ or ‘as the crow flies’ in English). As early as 2000, German and Danish transportation planners pushed for a ‘fixed link’ – either a bridge or a tunnel – across the Fehmarn Strait. A bridge was for years regarded the most likely scheme, but in late 2010 the Danish project planners decided that an immersed tunnel would present fewer construction risks and cost about the same. So the Fehmarn Belt will be crossed by an immersed tunnel, at 17.6km (10.9 miles), the longest ever constructed, and will supersede the 13.5km (8.4-mile) Marmaray Tunnel of the Bosphorus, in Turkey.
Multimodal transport link The Fehmarnbelt project will soon to be the biggest construction site on the continent, and will help create a new regional economy. This programme, jointly funded by the EU and member states, includes railway electrification, port modernisation and the two largest engineering projects in Europe. While it currently takes four and a half hours to travel by train from Hamburg to Copenhagen, and ten hours by train between Stock-
holm and Hamburg, frequent passenger and freight trains will cut down the journey time to just two hours. The Fehmarnbelt link will be built as an immersed tunnel between Rødbyhavn on Lolland and the German island of Fehmarn. This immersed tunnel is made up of hollow concrete elements, cast on land and assembled section by section to form the tunnel. Underwater tunnels are either bored or immersed: tunnel boring is common for deepwater tunnels longer than 4 or 5 kilometres (3.1 mi), while immersion is commonly used for tunnels which cross relatively shallow waters. Immersion involves dredging a trench across the seafloor, laying a foundation bed of sand or gravel, then lowering precast concrete tunnel sections into the excavation and covering it with a protective layer of backfill several metres thick. A trench for the tunnel will first be dug in the seabed. This trench will be up to 60 metres wide, 16 metres deep and 18 kilometres long. In total, some 19 million cubic metres of stone and sand will be excavated from the seabed. This will be used to create about three square kilometres of new land areas on Lolland and on Fehmarn. When the trench in the seabed is ready, the work of putting the tunnel elements in place
can go ahead. Each tunnel element weighs 73,000 tonnes, however it can float in the water because it is hollow and sealed with bulkheads. Large tugboats will tow the elements out into the Fehmarnbelt, where they will be lowered down onto the seabed with a high degree of precision and then assembled. One of the innovative design features is the use of 89 standard 217 metre-long elements (pre-formed tunnel sections) and 10 special 40 metre-long elements, one every 1.8km. These special elements – 45m wide and 13m high – contain two levels: a road and rail deck above a lower installation deck. The installations level provides the space required for all the mechanical, electrical and control systems, such as transformers, switchboard and sumps that are required to operate a road and rail tunnel. Parking access for maintenance vehicles coming from Denmark is available in a special layby outside the emergency lane. Access to the installations level will not interfere with traffic and via this lower level there is unhindered access to all the tunnel tubes. Up to 3000 people will be directly employed in the construction of the Fehmarnbelt tunnel, in an impressive effort that will see the fitting of 89 individual elements
in a trench just below the seabed, where impact to marine life and shipping operations is minimal. The amount of steel used in the tunnel is equivalent to about 50 Eiffel Towers, according to its developers. The Fehmarnbelt link is part of the European TEN-T network, a portfolio of hundreds of projects that aim to boost the cohesion, interconnection and popularity of the transEuropean transport network. It will have a decisive impact on the region, transforming the social and economic relationships between Denmark and Germany, helping to bridge the remaining divide between south and north Europe in the process. When completed, it would be the longest immersed tunnel in the world, its 11-mile submerged section breaking down the sea barrier that separates most of Scandinavia from the rest of Europe.
Challenges to overcome There does remain a barrier that is even more fearsome than the Baltic, before the tunnel construction starts. There are strong legal objections from ferry companies, who argue that an unusually generous model of public funding will turn the tunnel into unfair competition for their vessels. EU funds of 7
billion kroner (€940 million) are being given to the Fehmarn Belt. The fight over state guarantees for the tunnel had a hearing on the arguments in April 2018, and a decision at the EU’s General Court is set to come in the in autumn. It is also true that not everyone is completely sold on the project. Danish reservations are smaller, but in Germany resistance is a little stronger. Beyond its contribution to the tunnel, Germany will lose some jobs in ferry transport and possibly tourism; visitors may well be tempted to forego a stop at German beach towns in favour of going straight on to Denmark. It now seems that the earliest tunnelling can start would be the end of 2020. Nevertheless, it is still a question of when, not if, construction of the tunnel gets started. Legal arguments aside, while the new link’s construction over the next decade is bound to encounter challenges, this project matters because it will help reshape the European map. It will have a decisive impact on the region, transforming the social and economic relationships between Denmark and Germany, helping to bridge (apologies for the pun) the remaining divide between south and north n Europe in the process. Industry Europe 7
New developments in the Construction industry
VINCI inaugurates Leonard:Paris, the open laboratory focused on the future of cities and infrastructure
INCI has opened Leonard:Paris, the new common home of the group’s innovators, in the 12th arrondissement of Paris. Leonard:Paris hosts the VINCI entities focused on transforming the group’s markets and business activities and therefore brings together a one-of-akind cluster of the full range of expertise (scientific, urban, social, entrepreneurial) focusing on the major urban challenges: - Leonard, the Group-wide programme dedicated to innovation, foresight and inventing the group’s future businesses, launched in July 2017. - The Fabrique de la Cité (City Factory), the urban transition think tank set up at the initiative of the group. - The Fondation d’entreprise VINCI pour la Cité (VINCI Foundation for the Community) supports associative projects that provide lasting solutions favouring the social or professional integration of the poorest. - The VINCI-ParisTech Chair in Eco-design of building complexes and infrastructure, the result of the partnership between VINCI and the graduate schools in engineering belonging to the Institut ParisTech.
Showcasing the group’s expertise, Leonard: Paris is a space dedicated to coworking, meetings and discussions between VINCI employees and experts, entrepreneurs, local authorities, customers, partners, students, researchers and representatives of civil society. Xavier Huillard, chairman and chief executive officer of VINCI, said: “This impressive venue in the heart of the Arc of Innovation of eastern Paris, which has been superbly renovated by our teams, reflects the group’s engagement and determination to project itself into the future.” Visit: www.vinci.com
Skanska to build metro station in Espoo, Finland
kanska has signed a contract with Länsimetro Oy to build a metro station in Kivenlahti, Espoo, Finland. The contract is worth €51 million, about SEK 520 million, which will be included in the Nordic order bookings for the second quarter 2018.
Balfour Beatty completes £63 million Rossall Coastal Defence Scheme
alfour Beatty has completed the £63 million Rossall coastal defence scheme for Wyre Council in partnership with the Environment Agency. The scheme will protect the town’s tramway, hospital and schools whilst reducing flood risk to 7500 nearby residential proper-
8 Industry Europe
YIT to build a hydropower plant in Western Norway
The project includes an underground metro station, a maintenance and driving tunnel as well as two entrances above ground. The station is the final one of the second section of the Western metro line that comprises altogether five stations and will be built during 2019– 2023. The total volume of the station will be approximately 31,000 gross square metres. The forecasted daily amount of commuters passing through the station is approximately 11,000. The project is due to be completed in 2022. Visit: www.skanska.com ties through two kilometres of sea defences. To successfully complete the Rossall project, over 10,000 specially manufactured precast concrete units were lifted into position, alongside 86,342 tonnes of rock underlayer and 241,000 tonnes of rock armour sourced from 12 quarries across the north of the UK. The successful delivery of the scheme means the coastline now features a prom-
IT and Sunnfjord Energi AS, a Norwegian power company, have signed an agreement on building a new hydropower plant in the Sogn and Fjordane County in Western Norway. The value of the contract is €32 million. The work will begin in July 2018, and it will be completed in December 2020. The new power plant ‘Jølstra’ will be located close to the city of Førde. The contract covers the construction of a power plant, including water intake, power station and approximately 7 kilometres of tunnel. “We have a strong position in infrastructure construction solutions and services in the Nordic and Baltic countries. This contract is a good example of projects where our special expertise in energy sector construction plays a crucial role,” says Harri Kailasalo, executive vice-president of YIT’s Infrastructure projects segment. The company has earlier built a similar hydro power plant in Norway, and has also built power plants and been involved in power plant projects with foundation engineering or renovation work in Sweden and in Finland. Visit: www.yit.fi enade lined with artwork and a poetry trail, as well as a new ecology park designed by British sculptor Stephen Broadbent. Known as Larkholme Grasslands, the park has been created on a Biological Heritage site which features rare species of flora and fauna. A lagoon area behind the new defences offers additional flood storage and a new wildlife habitat. Visit: www.balfourbeatty.com
NCC to construct office and retail complex in Tampere, Finland
CC is to construct an office and retail complex next to Ratina shopping centre in Tampere, Finland. The customer is Sponda Plc and the value of the project is approximately SEK 260 million. The building will be located right next to the Ratina shopping centre. The total area will be about 13,800 square metres of net floor space.
“We are happy to start this project and the construction work with NCC. The location of the new office and retail complex is excellent with very good services nearby, and will increase the appeal of the Ratina area even more,” says says Ossi Hynynen, CIO, Property Investments at Property Development at Sponda Plc. The new building will be environmentally certified under BREEAM or LEED. Whichever the certification will be, energy efficiency will be one of the focus areas in the building. In addition to sustainability, another important criterion for Sponda Plc is the convertibility of spaces. This will be considered in the planning and construction so that the premises will be as flexible and easily convertible as possible to suit different purposes and end users. Visit: www.ncc.se
Bouygues Construction’s British subsidiary to build a new campus for Cardiff University
IEC has joined forces with other major European construction industry associations to publish The European Construction Industry Manifesto for Digitalisation. The manifesto calls for strong political leadership from the EU, an appropriate regulatory framework on data policy and budgetary focus on digital skills, R&D and IT infrastructure. “The construction industry is vital for the EU economy and its products significantly impact the lifestyle and well-being of citizens. The health of the industry acts like a barometer for economic prosperity,” says Kjetil Tonning, FIEC President. “With its pivotal role, innovation in the construction industry is good news for all of us and digi-
talisation will improve not only the processes and efficiency along the entire value chain, but also our lives as residents, commuters and workers. “Given that digitalisation of the industry has been a key priority in FIEC’s work programme since 2016, this collaboration with other industry associations and emerging partners from outside the industry, is a logical step, aimed at ensuring that the transformation happens smoothly, without some companies being left behind,” continues Tonning. “The joint manifesto shows our commitment to this partnership, which should represent the entire value chain.” Visit: www.fiec.eu
ardiff University, in Wales, has awarded a contract worth £122.6 million (€134 million) to Bouygues UK, a subsidiary of Bouygues Construction, for the construction of its Innovation Campus. The project, which is located in a disused railway yard, will create more than 60 jobs in construction management and technical and trades roles for the local population. Fabienne Viala, chairman of Bouygues UK and UK Country Manager for Bouygues Construction, said: “With our focus on shared innovation, we’re particularly passionate about this project which will turn a disused railway yard into a new space to facilitate creativity, entrepreneurialism and job creation. We have a strong track record in Wales, working with universities and regenerating brownfield sites, and we are pleased to be collaborating with Cardiff University on this unique project that is set to provide a real boost to the local area.” Located at Maindy Park, the Cardiff Innovation Campus will incorporate two high-tech centres. One will house SPARK, the world’s first social science research park, and the Innovation Centre, a creative space for start-ups, spin-outs and partnerships, designed by Hawkins Brown Architects. The other, the Translational Research Facility (TRF), designed by HOK architects, will be home to two leading scientific research establishments: the Institute for Compound Semiconductors and the Cardiff Catalysis Institute. Visit: www.bouygues-uk.com
Special concrete and tailor-made solutions from LafargeHolcim for Switzerland’s highest building
were specifically designed for the challenging construction. Essential for high-rises, the solutions from LafargeHolcim guarantee high-compressive strength and low hydration heat of the concrete used for the massive foundation and core walls – a key requirement to prevent cracks and save on construction costs to avoid additional cooling. For the project, LafargeHolcim is capitalising
on its successful contract for the first Roche Tower (Building 1) and its extensive trackrecord in making sophisticated high-rise buildings possible. Upon completion in 2022, the tower will be the highlight of Basel’s skyline and Switzerland’s highest building, at 205 meters and 50 floors. Visit: www.lafargeholcim.com
Construction Industry Manifesto on Digitalisation
afargeHolcim has started delivering the first materials for the construction of the second Roche Tower (Building 2) in Basel. The company is offering an integrated solution of different materials such as ultra-high performance concrete and services that
Industry Europe 9
Trade tensions threaten stability
While the European metals industry looked fairly strong for most of 2017, US steel tariffs and a growing tendency towards protectionism signal trouble on the horizon. Sean Milmo reports.
he European metals industry had a relatively good year in 2017 with demand, sales, prices and profitability being boosted by buoyant economies in Europe, North America, China and much of the rest of the world. In the wake of strong rises in demand, average global steel prices almost doubled in the second half of the year. Average price increases in non-ferrous metals at around 20 per cent during 2017 were the highest among all commodity sectors. Aluminium prices went up by over 15 per cent, copper by over a quarter and nickel, driven by sharp increases in demand for stainless steel, by over a third in the second half. Prices for metals used in high tech products also soared. Those for cobalt doubled. For some speciality metals supply could not keep up with demand.
Trade disputes However by early 2018 economic confidence began to falter and prices of many metals started to soften. Prices of non-ferrous metals actually went down in the first quarter.
10 Industry Europe
The biggest worry was that a global trend towards protectionism across the world would suddenly accelerate with President Donald Trump’s US government taking the lead. His first target was steel and aluminium on which he introduced 25 per cent and 10 per cent increases in tariffs respectively in March. Then he threatened to slap 20 per cent tariffs on European car imports which would have a double whammy effect on steel and aluminium producers because the automobile sector is one of their main customer industries. A key factor behind the trade tensions, particularly in base metals, was excess production capacity, especially in China. For European metal producers the big fear behind higher tariffs was not just a loss of competiveness in major export markets like the US but that large amounts of metals destined for the US market would be diverted into Europe. When welcoming the success of the European Commission’s negotiation of a temporary exemption for aluminium in March to the US 10 per cent tariff, Gerd
Gotz, director general of European Aluminium, the aluminium producers association, pointed out that the “real problem... is how to tackle Chinese overcapacity.” European Aluminium warned that as a result of higher US tariffs, an additional 20 per cent of primary aluminium and 35 per cent of semifabricated aluminium exports could be redirected into Europe, much of it from China. In 2017 there was a double-digit rise in Chinese semi-fabricated exports into the region. Steel imports into Europe went up by 8 per cent in the first half of the year. Gert van Poelvoorde, president of Eurofer, the European steel producers association, likened the surge to a ‘tsunami’ which if left unchecked would ‘destroy’ the European industry. For the European Union’s steel sector, which with an annual output of 170 million tonnes is the second largest in the world, 2017 was a year of recovery with demand growing by 1.3 per cent, which it predicted could rise to 2.3 per cent in 2018. But all the industry’s recent gains could be put at risk by the ramifications of trade disputes, according to Eurofer.
Tackling excess production Governments under pressure from the metals industry have been taking action to deal with the problem of excess production capacity. The G20 group of leading industrialised nations has set up a Global Forum on Steel Excess Capacity in order to address the root causes of overcapacity. Governments have already agreed to eliminate market-distorting subsidies and other state support measures. The aluminium sector has been urging the creation of a similar body to deal with its difficulties with excess production. Despite international steps to curb overcapacity, the EU has been introducing new measures to counter the trade effects of excess products. These include new ways of calculating anti-dumping duties so that they more effectively curb exports from countries which makes widespread use of state subsidies. Chinese steel imports in Europe went down by 44 per cent in 2017, pushing the Chinese share of finished steel imports in the EU down to 16 per cent against 22 per cent in 2016. Eurofer claimed that the decrease was the result of the EU’s new trade defence tools, such as the anti-dumping initiative.
In the wake of the latest US tariff-raising activities and new metals trade barriers being erected by countries like Mexico, India and South Africa, Eurofer has been calling for the EU to take even tougher trade defence action.
Combining strengths In the long term the industrial strategies emerging across Europe have been encouraging metals sectors to build up thriving value chains which can depend on supplies from Europe-based commodity metals producers adequately protected from trade conflicts. The objective is that metals manufacturers along value chains, particularly those which have expanded into high tech sectors like electronics and aerospace, would be less vulnerable to the results of protectionist trade policies. Innovation and technological advances would help increase the international competiveness of these producers. One of the strategies behind the merger of the European operations of India’s Tata Steel and Germany’s thyssenkrupp is that the new company would be able to maintain technological leadership in flat steel production. The overall aim in the sector is that it would be built on a foundation of sustain-
ability with low carbon emissions, a high level of environmental protection and a big contribution to the circular economy through the recyclability of its products. Eurofer has, for example, been developing an EU masterplan for the development of a low-carbon European steel value chain. European Aluminium has a vision of a sector of primary producers and manufacturers of semi-fabrication aluminium using rolling and extrusion processes and recycling operators directed towards the fulfilment of a circular economy. The majority of the plants involved in extrusion and recycling are SMEs, many of them based in aluminium-based clusters. “With its capacity for endless recyclability, aluminium has all the properties needed to become the circular material of choice,” says Kjetil Ebbesberg, the association’s chairman. However to realise its full potential for recyclability the aluminium sector must find ways of curbing the large amounts of aluminium scrap exported outside Europe each year. “(The EU) must take measures to prevent aluminium scrap for recycling leaking from Europe,” says Mr Ebbesberg. That will be yet another issue n requiring trade measures.
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New developments in the Metals industry
ArcelorMittal breaks ground on pioneering carbon capture installation A
rcelorMittal has begun construction of new premises at its site in Ghent, Belgium, to house a pioneering new installation which will convert carbon-containing gas from its blast furnaces into bioethanol. If successful, the new concept has the potential to revolutionise blast furnace carbon emissions capture and support the decarbonisation of the transport sector. The technology in the gas conversion process was pioneered by Chicago-based company
LanzaTech, with whom ArcelorMittal has entered a long-term partnership. The technology licensed by LanzaTech uses microbes that feed on carbon monoxide to produce bioethanol. The bioethanol will be used as transport fuel or potentially in the production of plastics. This is the first installation of its kind on an industrial scale in Europe and once complete, annual production of bioethanol at Ghent is expected to reach around 80 million litres, which will yield an annual CO2 saving equivalent to putting 100,000 electric cars on the road. The new installation will create up to 500 construction jobs over the next two years and 20 to 30 new permanent direct jobs. Commissioning and first production is expected by mid-2020. Visit: www.arcelormittal.com
Construction begins on HYBRIT fossil-free steel plant
he HYBRIT initiative, a joint venture company owned by SSAB, LKAB and Vattenfall, has started construction on the first pilot plant for creating fossil-free steel in Luleå, Sweden. SSAB, LKAB, and Vattenfall have, alongside the Swedish Energy Agency, invested SEK 1,4 billion in the pilot plant. This means that the HYBRIT initiative has now
Outotec to supply Boliden’s sulphuric acid plant in Sweden
utotec has agreed with the Swedenbased mining company Boliden on the design and delivery of an absorption section to be built for the sulphuric acid plant at the Rönnskär smelter. The order has been booked in Outotec’s 2018 secondquarter order intake. Typically orders of this
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entered its second phase. The goal is fossil-free, ore-based steel production, on an industrial scale. The plant is expected to be ready by 2020 and its completion opens the possibility for fullscale testing and development of the technique to produce steel by using hydrogen instead of coal and coke. This could lead to a historical shift in production techniques, with water as a by-product instead of carbon dioxide emissions. “By testing in pilot scale, we can leave the small-scale laboratory environment and instead mimic the coming industrial process, and prepare for efficient production. We are very happy to be able to enter the next phase and get one step closer to our target of fossil-free steel production, with all its environmental benefits,” says Mårten Görnerup, CEO of HYBRIT. Visit: www.hybritdevelopment.com size and scope are valued at over €10 million. The Boliden Rönnskär plant is one of the world’s most efficient copper smelters. The new absorption section designed by Outotec will be able to process the future gas volume from the upstream smelting process with high energy recovery. Outotec’s deliveries will take place in the second half of 2019.
Mantella announced as Swedish Steel Prize winner 2018
he winner of the prestigious International Swedish Steel Prize has been announced, and this year the honour goes to Italy-based Mantella Srl for its innovative Stratosphere 3.0 rear-tipping semi-trailer. The Stratosphere 3.0 has a chassis with the same weight as an aluminium frame, but with superior mechanical properties. It has outstanding wear resistance, greater fatigue life and offers weight reduction of around 30% compared to previous trailer chassis on the market. “Mantella has come up with a unique design that represents an entirely new generation in tipper and body solutions. Skilled design work, smart production methods and fully utilising the advantages of high-strength and wear-resistant steel made it possible,” says Eva Petursson, Chair of the Swedish Steel Prize jury and Head of SSAB’s Strategic R&D. The chassis is made entirely of high-strength steel with formed Z-beams instead of the classic welded I profile. Eliminating the welded beams gives vital improvements in fatigue resistance as well as production efficiency. It also provides an increase in load capacity, while maintaining a low weight. Additionally, the body of the Stratosphere 3.0 is made from wear-resistant steel, guaranteeing excellent durability over time. Visit: www.steelprize.com “We are extremely pleased that our longterm partner Boliden awarded us this order. Outotec’s advanced absorption solution will safeguard the future capacity of the sulphuric acid plant and meet all of the current and planned European environmental requirements,” says Kalle Härkki, head of Outotec’s Metals, Energy & Water business unit. Visit: www.outotec.com
Rio Tinto to begin work on Koodaideri iron ore mine in 2019
ining giant Rio Tinto has announced it will begin developing its Koodaideri iron ore mine in Western Australia’s Pilbara region next
year, highlighting parallel plans to de-bottleneck rail capacity, which should increase it to 360 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) in 2019. The company expects to mine its first iron ore from the project, which it says is one of the world’s most technologically advanced, in 2021. “The Koodaideri orebody is 50km long and 5km wide. It will be a new production hub which will be a key feature for the Pilbara for many years to come,” said Rio Tinto iron ore chief executive Chris Salisbury. He also noted the mine would be the first one to take full advantage of automation in trucking and drilling. Visit: www.riotinto.com
Ruukki to construct world’s largest indoor ski centre
ith the steel framed structure and load-bearing sheets designed and manufactured by Ruukki, the installation of the world’s largest indoor ski centre in Norway has commenced in Lørenskog near Oslo. The steel structure used to complete the architectural creation is based entirely on Ruukki’s own design. “Over the past two years we have worked closely with the customer and taken the project forward. The design, manufacture and installation of the structures have all progressed to schedule. This is real testimony to what can be achieved with close, well-functioning collaboration at an early stage,” explains Petri Nieminen, SVP, Ruukki Building Systems. The ski centre is spread over six storeys and houses a snow-covered area of around 40,000m2
– the same size as five football pitches. The downhill ski slope is 505 metres long and 100 metres wide at its widest point. The height difference is 90 metres. The slope will be equipped with three ski lifts with a combined capacity of 5000 skiers and hour. The ski track will comprise 120 components and weigh about 400 tonnes. Visit: www.ruukki.com
Polymetal International announces start-up of Kyzyl mine
the start-up of the concentrator one quarter ahead of the original schedule announced in 2014, and one month earlier compared with the January 2018 updated plan. Mining activities have reached full design capacity with 315 kt of ore stockpiled ahead of start-up. The grade control programme demonstrated robust reconciliation with the reserve model with both ore
olymetal International plc has announced the start-up of the new Kyzyl mine in Kazakhstan, ahead of schedule and below budget. Following the completion of all construction and commissioning activities, Kyzyl successfully produced its first gold concentrate on 25 June. Polymetal has achieved
Tata Steel Europe and POSCO sign auto steel partnership
ata Steel Europe and South Korean steelmaker POSCO have signed an agreement to develop a new generation of steel products for automakers and other manufacturers to access. The deal will allow Tata Steel Europe to access Physical Vapour Deposition (PVD) technology, an innovative process that allow steels to be given anticorrosion coatings without the current requirement to heat them during the hot-dip galvanising process. This has the potential to allow for an increase in the number of steel products on which specific anticorrosion coatings can be used. In exchange the agreement means POSCO will be able to produce Tata Steel Europe’s patented MagiZinc. MagiZinc is an innovative hot-dip galvanised coating providing enhanced corrosion protection even in harsh environments. Its formulation allows it to outperform conventional galvanised steel, which is why the coating has been widely adopted by the EU automotive and construction industry since its market introduction in 2009. Collaboration with POSCO represents the next phase in Tata Steel Europe’s ambition to support customers by making the MagiZinc® product available globally. Visit: www.tatasteeleurope.com
grade and gold contained tracking slightly above plan. First concentrate deliveries to off-takers are scheduled for the end of July. “Polymetal is delighted and proud to successfully complete the largest development project in the company’s history ahead of time and below budget,” said Vitaly Nesis, Group CEO of Polymetal. Visit: www.polymetalinternational.com Industry Europe 13
Prof. Dr. Andreas Greiner (left) and Prof. Dr. Seema Agarwal (right) with equipment for electrospinning at the University of Bayreuth. Credit- Christian Wißler
We’ve been hearing a lot about smart textiles recently. From fabrics to regulate body temperature to those that can release medication into the skin, in the future the clothes we wear will no longer be just an aesthetic statement. Industry Europe looks at just some of the innovations in this field over the past year.
the Internet of Things, everything is connected – and this includes what we wear. According to a 2016 report by the technology consultancy Cientifica, the smart textiles industry – dubbed ‘Fashion’s Fourth Industrial Revolution’ – will be worth more than $130 billion by 2025. Recognising that tomorrow’s consumer will expect more from their clothes, textile manufacturers and research institutions are investing in the latest technologies to develop fabrics combining technological components that can monitor external stimiuli, translate this into data and respond accordingly. Special functions of the most recent ‘ultrasmart’ textiles can include regulating body temperature, releasing medication into the
Image credit - Dr Elias Torres Alonso, University of Exeter 14 Industry Europe
skin or even controlling the vibration of muscles during exercise. In addition, there are also more aesthetic applications for smart textiles, such as those that can change colour, light up or even display pictures or video. To give some idea of the areas researchers and manufacturers are focusing on, here are just some of the more interesting stories from the world of technical textile technology over the past year.
Heated clothing technology At this year’s ISPO Munich trade show, DuPont Advanced Materials announced the launch of Intexar Heat, a powered smart clothing technology for on-body heating. “Intexar Heat is a revolutionary stretchable ink and film that when powered, creates a comfortable warmth,” said Michael Burrows, Global Business Manager, DuPont Advanced Materials. “Our team has worked hard to develop a heater that feels like fabric, doesn’t rely on cables, thick wires or big batteries, and can stand up to very cold environments. From outdoor enthusiasts to industrial workers, Intexar Heat can help conquer the elements in comfort, increasing focus and improving performance.”
Formosa Taffeta Company was the first textiles manufacturer to incorporate the Intexar Heat technology as part of its Permawarm line. Permawarm delivers clothing brands a complete garment heater system including the Intexar heater, connectors and control software.
Comfortable conductors Up to now, textiles that are capable of conducting electricity have tended to be rigid, uncomfortable and generally impractical for everyday use. However, researchers at the University of Bayreuth, Donghua University in Shanghai and Nanjing Forestry University think they may have come up with a solution to this with the development of new, more wearable conductive nonwoven materials. The materials developed by Prof. Dr Andreas Greiner’s team from the University of Bayreuth and their Chinese partners are flexible, and can thus adapt to movements and changes in posture. Furthermore, they are air-permeable, meaning they allow the skin to ‘breathe’ normally. These properties have been achieved through a unique production process: rather than inserting metal wires into finished textiles, the scientists modified the
Steffen Reich M.Sc, doctoral student at the University of Bayreuth, producing a dispersion with tiny silver wires. Photo- Christian Wißler.
classic method of electro-spinning – used in nonwovens production for years. They found the resulting nonwoven material exhibits a very high degree of electrical conductivity. This research, they say, could pave the way for comfortable garments with many technological functions. They could, for example, convert sunlight to warmth or contain sensors for fitness training. Elsewhere, engineers at the University of Exeter in the UK are also threading circuitry into clothes to create comfortable devices that could make electronic fashion the future of the textiles industry. Dr Ana Neves, a researcher at the university who specialises in wearable electronics, thinks bulky design is partly to blame for the lack of comfort in current wearable tech. “The user needs to feel comfortable,” she said. “Most smart textiles still rely on integrating conventional electronics onto fabrics, attaching them to the surface and removing them when the textile needs to be washed.” As part of the E-TEX project, Dr Neves and her colleagues are building devices directly into the fibres of textiles using flexible and lightweight components. A t-shirt, for example, could be designed to monitor
the wearer’s heartbeat without the need for embedded electronics. The idea for the project came about in 2014 when Dr Neves developed a technique to make textile fibres conduct electricity by coating them with graphene. She then decided to apply the method to incorporate electronics into clothing. The properties of graphene are ideal for use in textiles. The semi-metal is just a few atoms thick, making it extremely lightweight, and it can be bent and even stretched while remaining robust. It is also transparent, which makes it suitable for light-emitting displays. Furthermore, applying a coating to fabrics should be easy to integrate into existing clothing production. “If we simply add a step or two, the chances of this type of technology being adopted will be significantly higher than if we tell a manufacturer that they need to completely reformulate their production lines,” said Dr Neves.
a groundbreaking biodegradable fibre format for drug delivery, nerve regeneration and tissue engineering. ELUTE can directly replace standard fibres used in standard biodegradable textiles and deliver medication directly at the site of the implanted fibre. For device developers, this means they can use the sophisticated drug delivery capabilities of absorbable fibres. In future, the wider incorporation of such drug-loaded fibres into new or existing medical devices can result in faster healing, improved patient compliance and lower negative outcomes. The fibres can be used in regenerative medicine and medical devices such as cardiac stents, orthopedic sutures, peripheral vascular n stents and many more besides.
Medical applications There have also been great advances in recent years in the area of smart textiles for healthcare. For example, the US company TissueGen is the developer of ELUTE fibre, DuPont’s Intexar stretchable ink and film Industry Europe 15
New developments in the Textiles industry
Trevira invests in new textile equipment
revira GmbH’s owner Indorama Ventures has approved various large projects at its Guben site. The approved investments will be in the form of equipment that will affect all processes (polycondensation, spinning and textile processing) at the Guben site where Trevira GmbH produces filament specialties for the textile industry. A total investment of around €7.5 million is planned. These investments will generate additional quantitative growth and optimise processes and procedures at Trevira GmbH’s site in Guben where flat and texturised fila-
ment yarns are produced for automotive interiors, technical textiles, apparel, and home textiles. CEO Klaus Holz: “These investments are an extremely important signal. They are a reiteration of the long-term commitment of our parent company IVL to Trevira GmbH.” The head of the Filament BU, Edo Lieven added: “We are very excited about the investments in the new equipment. The Guben site and the Filament BU will be strengthened by these projects.” Visit: www.trevira.de
Elastic fibre set to revolutionise smart clothes
PFL scientists have found a fast and simple way to make super-elastic, multi-material, highperformance fibres. Its fibres have already been used as sensors on robotic fingers and in clothing. This breakthrough method opens the door to new kinds of smart textiles and medical implants. It’s a whole new way of thinking about sensors. The tiny fibres developed at EPFL are made of elastomer and can incorporate materials like
electrodes and nanocomposite polymers. The fibres can detect even the slightest pressure and strain and can withstand deformation of close to 500% before recovering their initial shape. All that makes them perfect for applications in smart clothing and prostheses, and for creating artificial nerves for robots. The fibers were developed at EPFL’s Laboratory of Photonic Materials and Fiber Devices (FIMAP),
headed by Fabien Sorin at the School of Engineering. The scientists came up with a fast and easy method for embedding different kinds of microstructures in super-elastic fibres. For instance, by adding electrodes at strategic locations, they turned the fibres into ultra-sensitive sensors. What’s more, their method can be used to produce hundreds of meters of fibre in a short amount of time. Visit: www.actu.epfl.ch
NIRI invests in nonwoven technology T he Nonwovens Innovation & Research Institute (NIRI) has invested significantly in a range of new equipment, made possible by a move from the University of Leeds campus to a new facility, and giving NIRI even greater scope to help companies develop better-performing products and processes. The Institute’s investment reflects the expansion of nonwoven technologies across multiple sectors, and responds to ever-increasing demands for product development and enhancement, cost reduction and quality improvement, identification and evaluation of new markets, and the reduction of environmental impact. The investment in new
Lenzing’s VEOCEL furthers sustainability in nonwovens
he Lenzing Group has introduced VEOCEL™, a new nonwoven speciality brand. Positioned as a premium brand of nonwoven fibres for daily care rituals, Veocel provides the nonwoven industry with fibres that are certified clean and safe, biodegradable, from botanic origin and
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facilities includes a range of equipment, all of which is helping NIRI’s clients through the increased ability to manufacture and test new products. Dr Matthew Tipper, Business Director at NIRI, comments on the investment, “With over 10 years’ track record in successful R&D, helping clients develop and improve products and processes across numerous sectors, this further investment in testing and production equipment enhances our extensive facilities, building on our research excellence and further helping realise the business imperatives of our industry collaborators and commercial clients.” Visit: www.nonwovens-innovation.com produced in an environmentally responsible production process. Offerings under the Veocel brand cover a broad range of applications for everyday use, from baby care, beauty and body care to intimate care and surface cleaning. Such applications are categorised under branded offers Veocel Beauty, Veocel Body, Veocel Intimate and Veocel Surface.
The introduction of Veocel is a key milestone of Lenzing’s new brand strategy to transform from a B2B fibre producer to a business-tobusiness-to-consumer (B2B2C) brand. Coupled with ongoing co-branding, joint marketing and brand education initiatives, Veocel will enable Lenzing to shift its focus beyond fibre types to product application. Visit: www.lenzing.com
INDUSTRYNEWS ORGANOTEX wins Scandinavian Outdoor Awards Sustainability prize
rganoClick’s new biodegradable and fluorocarbon-free textile impregnation for consumers, the ORGANOTEX® Textile waterproofing, has awarded first prize in the Sustainability category at the Scandinavian Outdoor Awards. A total of 20 products from Scandinavian outdoor brands were nominated for the competition. Two winners were selected within the main categories ‘Overall’ and ‘Sustainability’ and recognitions were also given to products within five sub-categories.
According to the jury: “Water repellence plays an important role for outdoor garments. OrganoTex Textile Waterproofing is an eco-friendly, PFOC-free and fully biodegradable way of keeping your clothing highly water repellent.” “Our launch of ORGANOTEX® Textile waterproofing for consumers has been very successful, with the Swedish Naturkompaniet as our first reseller,” says Mårten Hellberg, CEO of OrganoClick. Visit: www.organoclick.com
H&M group enters virtual reality
collaboration with Google, H&M group has developed a pioneering voice app for H&M Home. Additionally, the H&M group brand Monki has partnered up with HoloMe to explore a unique creation of high definition human holograms in Augmented Reality, which are currently being introduced. H&M group, in partnership with Google Assistant, is developing H&M Home Stylist, a voice application that will provide personal styling suggestions, mood
boards and inspiration for every room in the home. Monki and HoloMe have partnered up for an avant-garde test of high-definition human holograms in Augmented Reality, accessible through a smartphone or tablet. Images of nine selected Monki outfits are enhanced with effects in 3D, allowing the viewer to monitor the garments in great details and experience the holograms as being present in the room. Visit: www.hm.com
Metsä Group to build demo plant for textile fibres
etsä Group has established a new innovation company, Metsä Spring Ltd. The company will, together with partner organisations, invest in new endeavours with the target to identify and develop new business opportunities in sustainable forest-based bioeconomy and circular economy. Its first project will be a greenfield demo plant with a capacity of about 500 tonnes of staple fibre per year. The current methods of producing textile fibres typically come with a large environmental footprint and the textile market is thus seeking
new, more sustainable alternatives. The environmentally-friendly production method developed by Metsä Group is based on direct dissolution using novel compounds for the pulp dissolution stage. In contrast to the methods used commercially today, Metsä Group’s method relies on wet paper-grade pulp as the raw material. “It is important to develop new bioproducts that expand the current product portfolio of the forest industry. Textile fibre is a very promising product and a natural first project for Metsä Spring. The company wants to be an active and respected
KappAhl joins the Sustainable Apparel Coalition
need to be made in our industry. With the SAC, we can harmonise our approaches to sustainability with other players in the industry, enabling us to pull together and make a greater difference,” says KappAhl’s CEO, Danny Feltmann. KappAhl is now in the process of developing its working methods using the SAC’s Higg Index suite of tools. The objective is to set clear standards for the entire industry to measure
appAhl has become the next company to join the Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC) in order to help accelerate sustainable development in working methods and solutions within the fashion industry. “We are committed to continuing to play an active role in driving the system changes that
player in developing new business concepts for various stages of the forest-based value chains,” says CEO Niklas von Weymarn. Visit: www.metsagroup.com
and assess the sustainability performance of suppliers and products. “A harmonised approach within the industry will have a positive impact on our entire value chain and bring greater transparency to the industry. This is the route to achieving a sustainable fashion industry,” says Fredrika Klarén, head of Sustainability at KappAhl. Visit: www.kappahl.com Industry Europe 17
New contracts and orders in industry
ZF and Mobileye provide new camera tech to automotive OEM
KAUP provides Otto GRAF with unique handling solution
erman forklift attachment manufacturer KAUP has received a contract to provide GRAF with a unqiue solution. GRAF is a specialist supplier of rainwater harvesting systems. The company develops, produces and sells a comprehensive range of products in the field of water resource management, providing solutions for global challenges such as water protection and flood prevention. The product range in the area of rainwater utilisation
utomotive camera supplier ZF has announced it will team with Mobileye, an Intel company, to launch the S-Cam4 family of advanced cameras in 2018. The two companies have joined forces to provide this innovative camera technology to a major automotive OEM, resulting in the largest automotive camera contract in ZF’s history. The ZF S-Cam4 camera family includes a single lens, mono-camera designed to help meet updated test protocols such as EuroNCAP pedestrian triggered automatic emergency braking (AEB). The innovative camera family also includes a premium three-lens TriCam4 version to support advanced semi-automated driving functions, adding a telephoto lens for improved long-distance sensing capabilities and a fish-eye lens for improved shortrange sensing with a wider field of view. “The combination of ZF and Mobileye demonstrates that advanced camera technology is yielding great benefits to drivers and society,” said Aine Denari, senior vice-president, Advanced Driver Assist Systems at ZF. “We are pleased to continue to deliver the world’s most advanced camera technologies that can help lead to reduced accidents while paving the way for automated driving.” Visit: www.zf.com
APP’s Gasplasma technology chosen for waste-to-jet-fuel project
dvanced Plasma Power (APP) has been chosen by leading renewable fuels company Velocys as the preferred gasification technology provider to support its project to produce sustainable aviation fuel from waste. The project, which has recently secured £4.9 million of funding, 18 Industry Europe
extends from rain barrels for private build and extensions, to multiple-plot developments and underground tanks that can hold up to 122,000 litres. During the tank production process, it is necessary to move and transport the large, but relatively light, tank segments around the production facility in Dachstein, Germany. These large underground storage tanks consist of a number of ridged segments with a diameter of 2.5m. In order to move the tanks safely the company contacted KAUP to provide a solution. Following a full site survey, KAUP was tasked to design and manufacture a bespoke specialist forklift truck attachment that can be positioned between the grooves of the various sized tanks and lift them without the tanks rolling. Visit: www.kaup.de
Siemens expands air cargo centre in Saudi Arabia
iemens Postal, Parcel & Airport Logistics (SPPAL) has received an extensive order to expand and modernise a large airfreight centre at King Abdulaziz International Airport in Jeddah (Saudi Arabia). The terminal belongs to Saudi Airlines Cargo Company (SACC), the country’s leading cargo airline. Jeddah is Saudi Arabia’s most important port city on the Red Sea. Siemens is equipping the terminal with state-of-the-art cargo logistics and intelligent software for a considerable increase in capacity. The contract also covers long-term maintenance of the systems. In Jeddah, Siemens is expanding the cargo capacity at King Abdulaziz International Airport (KAIA) in two phases to arrive at a final volume of 820,000 tonnes per year. Siemens is implementing a fully automated storage system with has the support of industry partners and the Department for Transport. APP’s Gasplasma® process is a clean, modular and scalable advanced waste-toenergy and-fuels technology which delivers high efficiencies whilst minimising visual and environmental impact. The process is an innovative combination of two well-established technologies – gasification and plasma treat-
700 positions for unit load devices (ULDs) and six elevating transfer vehicles (ETVs). Siemens is also setting up a large air-conditioned area with over 170 storage positions for perishable goods in dedicated refrigerated and deep-freeze rooms. The intelligent Siemens software Cargo Compact is responsible for control of the entire warehouse system. Visit: www.siemens.com/logistics
ment – both of which have decades of proven commercial operation. Velocys and its partners are currently developing the engineering and business case for the project. Once complete, the fuel produced at the plant would contribute to reducing carbon emissions and improving local air quality around major airports. Visit: www.advancedplasmapower.com
TechnipFMC wins contract for fertiliser plants in India
echnipFMC, alongside L&T Hydrocarbon Engineering (LTHE), has been awarded a contract by Hindustan Urvarak and Rasayan Limited (HURL) for engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning (EPCC) contracts for two state-of-the-art, natural gas based fertiliser complexes in eastern India. HURL is a joint venture between three Indian public sector companies: IOCL, NTPC and CIL. The two fertiliser plants, located at Barauni in the state of Bihar and in Sindri in the state of Jharkhand, are each capable of producing 2200 tonnes per day ammonia (tpd) and 3850 tpd urea. Both projects will be executed on an EPCC lump sum turnkey (LSTK) basis and will be carried out concurrently. The consortium, under the leadership of TechnipFMC, is responsible for licensing, basic engineering, detailed engineering, construction and commissioning of the two complexes within a period of 36 months. Visit: www.technip.com
BAE wins amphibious vehicle contract from US Marines
AE has won a $198 million contract to provide an initial 30 wheeled amphibious combat vehicles (ACV) from the US Marine Corps to transport Marines from ship to shore under hostile conditions. The contract includes options for a total of 204 vehicles worth up to a potential $1.2 billion. BAE has already produced 16 prototype vehicles and conducted its own extensive risk mitigation testing and evaluation for land mobility, survivability, and swim capabilities. The confirmation of the award will now move the programme forward from the prototype phase to low-rate production, due to start this year. Work on the programme will be performed at the company’s
facilities in Aiken, South Carolina; Sterling Heights, Michigan; Minneapolis; Stafford; San Jose, California; and York, Pennsylvania. According to Dean Medland, vice-president and general manager of Combat Vehicles Amphibious and International at BAE Systems: “We are well positioned and ready to build the future of amphibious fighting vehicles for the Marine Corps, having already produced 16 prototypes. Through this award, we are proud to continue our partnership with the Marine Corps by providing a best-in-class vehicle to support its mission through mobility, survivability and lethality.” Visit: www.baesystems.com
Alfa Laval wins SEK 60 million offshore order
lfa Laval – a world leader in heat transfer, centrifugal separation and fluid handling – has won an order to supply Framo pumping systems to an oil platform in the North Sea. The order has a value of approximately SEK 60 million. It is booked in the Pumping Systems unit of the Marine Division, with deliveries scheduled for 2018. The order comprises offshore pumping systems, which will supply water to the onboard fire extinguishing system.
“I am very pleased to announce this large order for our Framo pumping systems. Their proven capacity and reliability makes them highly suitable for the tough conditions offshore,” says Peter Leifland, president of the Marine Division. Framo, an Alfa Laval brand, has unique pumping solutions for different applications: cargo, oil and gas production and offshore supply. Visit: www.alfalaval.com
UNGERER signs new contract with Jiangsu Yongjin
Metal Technology located in Nantong City, Jiangsu province in China. The company produces mainly AISI 300 and 400 series precision stainless steel plates with a maximum width of 1280mm and a thickness range of 0.1mm–1.5 mm. It is currently forecasting to increase its annual processing to a capacity of 1,250,000 tonnes. The equipment will be fully pre-assembled
iangsu Yongjin Metal Technology, based in Nantong, China, has awarded UNGERER Technology GmbH a contract to supply one high efficiency stretch bend levelling line for processing precision stainless steel. Jiangsu Yongjin Metal Technology is a wholly owned subsidiary of Zhejiang Yongjin
and tested inside UNGERER’s workshop in Pforzheim, Germany, before shipping to the customer’s plant. All the automation and power components, sub-assemblies and cables will be routed and wired in one comprehensive container-cabinet. Thus, the full onsite setup and commissioning time will take no more than one month in total. Visit: www.redex-group.com Industry Europe 19
ORDERFOX.com and Autodesk form groundbreaking collaboration
RDERFOX.com, the online platform linking CNC buyers and manufacturers, has announced a new collaboration with the manufacturing software leader Autodesk, making visualisation and procurement even easier. ORDERFOX.com is focused on providing its members with a more efficient way to conduct daily business. To this end, ORDERFOX.com community members now have an even greater benefit – the integration of the Autodesk Forge platform viewing functionality. The Viewer now provides community members with the ability to view and process potential business opportunities without additional software installed. Furthermore, as a benefit for existing and new users of Autodesk Fusion 360, Autodesk Inventor and Autodesk AutoCAD software, they will be able to access all of the features of the ORDERFOX.com platform within their chosen software. Anyone who uploads computer-aided design (CAD) data to ‘advertise a job’ can now have it converted directly into a 3D model within the Autodesk cloud, and it is then viewable on ORDERFOX. com. Metadata regarding the design files can also be securely embedded with the Viewer in more than 60 formats, while the data can be used and retrieved directly within the user’s browser, without having to install any additional software. Visit: www.orderfox.com
Corbion acquires Bunge’s stake in SB Renewable Oils
orbion NV has completed the acquisition of Bunge Ltd’s stake in the SB Renewable Oils joint venture. Corbion has acquired Bunge’s 49.9% stake in SB Renewable Oils, a joint venture that operates a facility in Brazil, specialising in the production of algae ingredients,
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Leoni and PARC collaborate on digital transformation
eoni, a global provider of energy and data management solutions, and the research and development company PARC, a Xerox company, have announced a strategic partnership that will enable Leoni’s digitalisation solutions. With the support of PARC’s groundbreaking technologies in the fields of condition-based maintenance (CBM), system analysis, artificial intelligence (AI) and embedded sensor technology, Leoni will drive its digital transformation forward. Technologies such as predictive maintenance and condition-based maintenance with the help of intelligent data analysis are now regarded as important drivers of Industry 4.0 and digital mobility projects. These technologies can help prevent unplanned system outages and increase availability of systems by evaluating all system components throughout their life-cycle and identifying individual components for replacement well ahead of performance degradation or failure. The initial focus of this partnership will be to customise and demonstrate PARC’s CBM and advanced system analytics for Leoni’s smart cable systems. PARC’s model-based approach delivers high predictive accuracy and negligible false alarm rates enabling Leoni solutions to support their customers with actionable data and design optimisation, as well as the ability to smartly monitor and manage their systems. Visit: www.leoni.com
Inwido acquires Finnish Profin Oy
nwido, Europe’s largest supplier of windows, has signed an agreement to acquire Profin Group, a Finnish family business focusing on premium sliding doors and windows. Founded in 1977, the company has some 60 employees and a turnover of SEK 120 million. Inwido acquires 100% of the shares and closing is expected to occur 1 July 2018. Profin is a family business with its roots in Northern Finland. The company combines traditional craftsmanship and modern technology to create high quality products that are designed to withstand the harsh climate of the north: sliding doors, windows and doors. Over the past decade, Profin has become synonymous with high-quality sliding doors and is the market leader in this segment in Finland. In addition to its home market Finland, Profin also exports to several other EU countries, Japan and Russia. such as Omega 3 rich oil, for aquaculture and animal feed. Corbion now is the 100% owner of the plant in Orindiúva, which employs around 170 staff. “We are delighted to welcome the team in Orindiúva as part of our global family. They are a pivotal part of our Algae Ingredients business, the innovative platform we acquired last year. We are strongly commit-
“Profin complements our Finnish brands very well with a more premium position on the market. A key opportunity has been discovered in the fast growing luxury segment dominated by panorama window sizes and sliding doors currently only operated in Finland by Inwido’s existing brand Klas1 and Profin,” says Håkan Jeppsson, president and CEO at Inwido. Visit: www.inwido.com
ted to developing this line of business,” said Tjerk de Ruiter, CEO of Corbion. As the SB Renewable Oils plant is located adjacent to one of Bunge’s sugar mills, longterm supply agreements have been secured regarding sugar and utilities. Approval from the relevant regulatory bodies in Brazil has been obtained. Visit: www.corbion.com
LINKINGUP Spanish coding & marking specialist moves into UK J.W. Ostendorf arcelona-based Macsa ID, a manufacturer of provider of industrial laser systems in the UK. The becomes part of Bscoring high performance laser coding, marking and significant investment made by Macsa ID will take systems for the food, beverage, packagthe business to the next level and enable Macsa ID the Hempel Group ing, pharmaceutical, chemical, aerospace and UK Ltd to be a full service provider of coding and automotive markets, has made its first move into the UK with the acquisition of a majority stake in UK company Halo Lasers. Halo Lasers has been renamed Macsa ID UK Ltd and will continue to operate from its base in Shefford, Bedfordshire. In addition to existing Halo laser units and workstations, newly-established Macsa ID UK Ltd will offer the full range of Macsa ID Fiber, YAG and CO2 laser coding and marking equipment. Neil Greatorex, managing director at Macsa ID UK comments: “Since its inception in 2012, Halo Lasers quickly established itself as a major
marking solutions for a wide range of industries.” Visit: www.macsa.com
Porsche takes a stake in the Croatian company Rimac
orsche AG has invested in the technology and electric sports car company Rimac Automobili by taking a minority shareholding of 10%. The company develops and produces electric vehicle components and manufactures electric super sports cars. As part of its electrifi-
cation efforts, Porsche is seeking a development partnership with the young company. Rimac recently presented the latest version of its electric hypercar, the ‘C Two’, at the Geneva Motor Show. The two-seater produces around 2000 hp and reaches a top speed of 412 kilometres per hour. It has a range of 650 kilometres (NEDC Cycle), and achieves an 80% battery charge in 30 minutes through a 250 kW fast charging system. Furthermore, the company engineers and manufactures high-performance electric vehicle powertrain systems and battery systems. “By developing the purely electric two-seaters super sports cars, like the ‘Concept One’ or ‘C Two’, as well as core vehicle systems, Rimac has impressively demonstrated its credentials in the field of electromobility,” says Lutz Meschke, deputy chairman of the executive board and member of the executive board for Finance and IT at Porsche. Visit: www.porsche.com
AkzoNobel to achieve number one position in Romania
rative paints, adhesives and mortars, including one of the largest decorative paints factories in the region, with capacity for further expansion. The business generated revenue of around €45 million in 2017 and is the only player with both a leading product portfolio for consumers as well as professional segments in the Romanian market, including the brands Savana, APLA and InnenWeiss.
kzoNobel has entered into an agreement to acquire 100% of the shares of Fabryo Corporation S.R.L. (Fabryo), becoming the leader in the Romanian decorative paints market. The transaction includes two production facilities and six distribution centres for deco-
empel Group, the parent company of Crown Paints, has signed an agreement to acquire a 65% stake in leading German paint manufacturer J.W. Ostendorf (JWO) in a move to significantly bolster its global decorative business. Operating throughout 20 European and five non-European countries, family-owned JWO is one of Germany’s leading decorative paint manufacturers and is the only private label specialist in Europe. The deal also brings with it the appointment of Joe Devitt, CEO of Crown Paints, as the new top executive in Hempel Decorative Europe, responsible for bringing Crown Paints and JWO together. Whilst both businesses will continue to trade independently, as a decorative business of the Hempel Group they will have a leading position in the European Market. Joe Devitt comments: “Both businesses are passionate about paint and about serving our customers. We share many business values and our market coverage, know-how and production facilities are extremely complementary. The joint venture is well placed to drive consolidation in the highly competitive market of decorative paints and I am looking forward to working with JWO to further enhance our product offering throughout Europe.” Visit: www.hempel.com
Thierry Vanlancker, chief executive officer of AkzoNobel, said: “This acquisition provides AkzoNobel with the number one position in a fast growing market and will contribute to delivering our Winning Together: 15 by 20 Strategy. Fabryo has a proven track record when it comes to growth and profitability. Visit: www.akzonobel.com Industry Europe 21
MOVINGON Volkswagen Group China’s mega-factory in Foshan will strengthen e-mobility strategy in China
hrough the completion of the Foshan Plant Phase II, the Foshan production site’s capacity will double from 300,000 to 600,000 cars annually. As the first SUV-model of the Volkswagen brand built by FAW-Volkswagen, the T-Roc successfully rolled off the line in April this year. Together with the Audi Q2L, which will also start production this year, it is a vital building block in the fast growing SUV segment. Moreover, among the new FAW-Volkswagen factories in Qingdao and Tianjin, Foshan will play a key part in Roadmap E. Vehicles currently produced on the MQB platform will soon be electrified. By 2020, the MEB architecture will be introduced to the production line, alongside the production of MEB battery systems, which will also be located in Foshan. The newest electric models with the latest technologies of Volkswagen and Audi will be produced at the Foshan Plant. “Through this mega-factory at the South China base of FAW-Volkswagen, we are fulfilling our promise to electrify China,” said Prof. Dr. Jochem Heizmann, member of the board of management of Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft as well as president and CEO of Volkswagen Group China. “Foshan is an important milestone on the way to becoming a people-centric provider of sustainable mobility.” Visit: www.volkswagen.com
Tiger Trailers expands territory with new 168,000FT² factory
onstruction of a new £22 million Tiger Trailers factory has begun in Winsford, Cheshire. Joint managing directors John and Steven Cartwright say the business is outgrowing its current production facility, and the new site will speed up delivery times and enable it to branch out into new
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Relocations and expansions across Europe
New Port Training Centre at Port of Fos, France opened A
new centre, dedicated to the training of port operations personnel, has been designed and developed in the Port of Fos, by the companies that make up GemFos, GemForm and IFMMP (CarFos, EuroFos, Nicolas Frères, Seayard and Somarsid), in close contact with social partners. It allows both training for entry into the profession and training throughout the working life of dockworkers. This new centre aims to become the showcase for port training in the Mediterranean and beyond. Alongside new training rooms with a strong maritime character (since they were designed in containers), Port of Fos companies have acquired two state-of-the-art simulators to train their operators of gantry cranes, straddle carriers, cranes, etc. These two immersive simulators, custom developed by the company Acreos for the port of
Fos, allow users to learn how to manoeuvre the controls of a straddle carrier, gantry cranes, and soon a crane or a loader, in a productive, efficient and safe environment. These state-of-the-art harbour handling equipment operator training simulators are capable of reproducing the operating environment in near real-life conditions. Visit: www.acreos.eu
Renault opens full-electric vehicle concept store in central Berlin
enault has opened a new Renault Electric Vehicle Experience Centre in Berlin, Germany, as it continues to expand its network of urban concept stores. The first EV Experience Centre opened in February in Stockholm to showcase electric motoring to the public.
This new concept store, which is unique in Germany, is a partnership with local distributor Renault Autohaus König. It is located in Berlin’s historic city centre near the Gendarmenmarkt square. The aim of the store is to engage with customers and answer frequently-asked questions about electric cars, while promoting the benefits of driving such vehicles. Visitors can enjoy a physical and digital experience providing information about the brand’s range of electric cars, charging infrastructure and charging systems, local legislation and subsidies, conditions of purchase and EV-related services. Customers will also be able to test-drive an electric car and place an order at the store. Visit: www.grouperenault.com
sectors – including the country’s booming home delivery vehicle market, as well as temperature-controlled bodies and trailers. Tiger has grown quickly from a turnover of £1.98m in 2014 to £31.51m in 2017, with the new factory providing it with the capability to reach £60m – £70m after three years. “Our pace of growth has been pretty remarkable for a UK-based manufacturer,
driven by customer demand both domestically and within Europe. We’re confident about what the future holds, and excited about the wider opportunities the new factory will bring – including options to extend beyond our current dry freight product range,” joint managing director Steven Cartwright adds. Visit: www.gk.news/tigertrailers
Advances in technology across industry
Fortum participating in developing electric aviation in Finland
ortum is participating in the Helsinki Electric Airplane Association’s project that is testing an electrically-powered airplane. The first serial produced electric airplane purchased in Finland, the Pipistrel Alpha Electro, is scheduled to take its maiden flight in Finland on 31 July 2018 at 10am at the Helsinki-Malmi Airport.
“We believe that the electrification of transportation is one of the most effective ways to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. We have been a pioneer in the development and expansion of the charging infrastructure for electric vehicles in the Nordic countries. Now we want to apply the experience we’ve gained about the EV charging infrastructure in the development of the rapidly evolving electric aviation,” says Heli Antila, chief technology officer, Fortum. The use of electricity in aviation reduces emissions into the atmosphere and noise around airports. The solution is to use fully electric motors in small airplanes and hybrid technology in bigger passenger airplanes. In addition to collecting research data, the Pipistrel Alpha Electro electric airplane will be used diversely in pilot training. Visit: www.fortum.com
Heason Technology delivers EtherCAT motion solution for Swift TG’s novel WindSurf Vertical Axis Wind Turbine
wift TG Energy Scotland Ltd (STGES), the renewables technology division of the SWIFT TG Group, has developed an innovative active-pitch Vertical Axis Wind Turbine (VAWT) called WindSurf – where multi-axis EtherCAT motion control executes CFD derived algorithms to dynamically position aerofoil blades in real-time – offering increased efficiency and operability over similar technologies, as well as challenging the location siting limitations of the Horizontal Axis Wind Turbine (HAWT). Heason Technology, the leading motion systems designer and manufacturer, has worked closely with STGES’s engineers from the initial WindSurf design concept and through the project’s development stages – providing prototype systems and application support for a tightly synchronised six-axis EtherCAT system that manages all of the motion control, maths functions and I/O interfacing as a single stand-alone solution. The basics for the WindSurf VAWT comprises five individual 6 metre-high vertical aerofoils that are arranged and supported on upper and lower ‘spider arms’ that drive the generator. Each aerofoil’s angular pitch position is referenced and synchronised to the overall assembly’s rotation axis to create maximum rotation of the VAWT. Imagine Ferris wheel physics but rather than the passive geometry of other VAWTs, where the blades assume position through wind pressure, the WindSurf’s aerofoils are positioned independently by a
direct-drive servo motor and encoder to determine optimal pitch. Furthermore, the angular position for each aerofoil is calculated and dynamically set in real-time from the motion controller using the complex algorithms predetermined by the STGES’s CFD software modelled control strategy. Visit: www.swifttgenergy.com
Towards an authentically human intelligent habitat
hat information is it possible and desirable to share? What future legislative framework for these data is required? Organised by the CNRS, Montpellier University, and Paul Valéry Montpellier 3 University, the Human at Home (HUT) project will look into these questions thanks to an ‘observatory apartment’ that will be inhabited from October 2018. In autumn 2018, two volunteer students will move into an ‘observatory apartment’, which will be studied by around 60 researchers. The questions that these legal experts, economists, electronics engineers, computer scientists, architects, and specialists in language, behaviour, marketing, and health are asking can only be explored in a meaningful way by studying a permanent living space. While they will not set foot in the apartment, the researchers will exploit the precious data produced by the ‘HUTmates’. In practical terms, pressure sensors in the floors and movement sensors in some rooms will be used to evaluate the occupants’ movements and actions in their living space. This information may be of interest to both architects (to identify any areas that are avoided by the inhabitants, and to optimize layout) and health professionals (movements and postures can be indicators of wellbeing or discomfort). Sensors for pollution, for the opening of cupboards and windows, as well as for water and electricity use will make it possible, for instance, to imagine new services. Linguists and cognitive scientists will study the occupants’ interactions with so-called ‘intelligent’ systems. The first residents will move out of the apartment in summer 2019. The house will then be ‘reformatted’ according to the first results and new avenues of research, before again being offered for free to two other volunteer students. Visit: www.cnrs.fr Industry Europe 23
the Digital Age
The Brno International Engineering Fair (MSV) is the largest and most important engineering exhibition in central Europe and each year includes a cutting-edge supporting programme of conferences, seminars and workshops on current technical, business and economic topics. The main topic of this year’s jubilee 60th MSV is a theme concerning manufacturers across all sectors: Industry 4.0.
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the first week of October the jubilee 60th MSV will take place at the Brno Exhibition Centre together with five other specialised trade fairs: the 11th IMT International Trade Fair of Machine Tools and Forming Machines, the 17th FOND-EX International Foundry Fair, the 24th WELDING International Welding Technology Fair, the 7th PROFINTECH International Trade Fair for Surface Treatment Technologies and the 6th PLASTEX International Trade Fair of Plastics, Rubber and Composites. The organisers expect more than 1600 exhibitors and at least 80,000 professional visitors to attend. In addition to other important anniversaries, Brno also marks 90 years since the opening of the exhibition centre and the organisation of the Exhibition of Contemporary Culture in Czechoslovakia. On the occasion of MSV 2018, an exhibition will be held to commemorate all these anniversaries, but above all, the 60-year history of engineering fairs.
Six decades of business promotion The largest and most important domestic fair will celebrate the jubilee in excellent form. The Czech economy is doing well, the industry
is moving at full speed and participation in MSV has been increasing dramatically in recent years. More than half of the companies are coming from abroad and MSV is attracting more and more professional visitors from both the surrounding and more distant countries. This year’s trade fair should be equally busy – projections for 2018 assume continued economic growth, which will be reflected in exhibitors’ presentations. The main theme of MSV 2018 is ‘Industry 4.0 – Automation, Robotics, Digitisation’. No surprise there, since the Brno Fair has been focusing on the upcoming fourth Industrial Revolution since 2015, when the National Industry 4.0 Initiative was announced here. Over the past few years, Industry 4.0 has been increasingly moving from conference rooms to expositions that show specific labour-saving solutions to increase work productivity and add additional value. This year, more innovative solutions for large manufacturers but also for small and medium-sized businesses are expected to be showcased. The cross-section AUTOMATION project also focuses on this topic; it will be held for the eleventh time at this year’s MSV. Last year, approxiIndustry Europe 25
mately 300 companies took part, presenting the use of industrial automation, information technology and production process management across all trade fair sectors.
FOND-EX 2018 – new trends in foundry production Together with the 60th jubilee International Engineering Fair, the 17th International FOND-EX Foundry Fair will also take place this year. A showcase of the latest technology will show trends in the industry, with constantly improving casting quality and manufacturing productivity. Foundries struggling with the shortage of workers will be looking for innovative solutions linked to the arrival of Industry 4.0. The foundry industry, as a traditional industry in the Czech Republic, has been undergoing a significant change. Casting manufacturers respond to growing demand from customers for higher quality castings, whether in terms of material composition, precision or physical properties. Grey cast iron is increasingly replacing ball-grain cast iron, and
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trends in the automotive sector call for thin-walled pressure-cast aluminium castings. Facing imminent lack of labour, foundries have to invest more intensely in new technologies that increase the quality of production, reduce physical labour, and replace workers to some extent. Automation, robotisation, and digitisation of production are the orders of the day, opening new opportunities thanks to advances in 3D printing of both sand moulds and metal parts. There is a material shift in structural components, through which ferrous metals are increasingly replaced by non-ferrous, but also by plastics, carbon fibres and composites. All these changes call for growth in workers’ skills, which, together with new production facilities, can offset a steady decline in the total number of foundry staff. The FONDEX Foundry Fair traditionally enjoys special attention and the number of registered exhibitors in 2018 suggests it will be a very n busy week in Brno in October. For more information please refer to https://www.bvv.cz/en/msv/
WHR 13 Q at the customer’s premises
At the cutting edge TOS VARNSDORF is the world’s leading manufacturer of machine tools, specialising in the production of medium class horizontal milling and boring machines and machining centres. This year, the company commemorates its 115th anniversary. Sales Director Miloš Holakovský spoke to Romana Moares about the company’s latest products, new opportunities as well as challenges ahead.
OS VARNSDORF, founded in 1903, boasts a manufacturing tradition going back over a century. Its top quality products reflect the know-how and experience of generations of technicians and skilled workers as well as a continuous focus on innovation. The company’s solutions are employed for the machining of components for the transport, mining, construction and energy industries, as well as for general mechanical engineering in all sophisticated markets including Europe, Russia and China. “The company is doing well. In the first six months of this year, we have signed contracts for the delivery of 65 machines worth CZK 900 million, which is more than the forecast, and have exceeded plans of received orders as well,” says Mr Holakovský. “The orders are coming from all traditional destinations, and we have also won a new customer in Saudi Arabia recently. Now, in the middle of 2018, it is clear that the targeted CZK 1.7 billion in sales will be achieved.” Industry Europe 27
Building of the WHT 130 C machining centre
Milling of external trapezoidal thread on WHQ 13 CNC
Innovation driven Headquartered in the north part of the Czech Republic at the German border, TOS VARNSDORF has a stable product portfolio, consisting of horizontal milling and boring machines, floor type horizontal boring mills, machining centres and special tools. “The product offering has not changed much in the last two years,” notes Milos Holakovský. “What has changed, however, is the innovative shift toward more productive, multi-functional and sophisticated machine tools with a wide range of add-ons.” In the last few years, the company’s R&D has been focused primarily on machining centres. In 2017, it introduced a new, highly efficient WHT 110 C machining centre, a horizontal machining device suitable for the most demanding operations that require accurate drilling, thread cutting, boring and turning or milling. The machines of the WHT line are designed to satisfy the needs of even the most demanding applications in areas such as aviation, power engineering, excavation operations,
WHR 13 MC at the customer’s premises
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WHtec 130 machining centre
crude oil and mechanical engineering. “These ‘multi-tasking’ machines are suitable for single-part as well as series production,” Mr Holakovský explains, adding that in June 2018, the company introduced a larger machine from this line, marketed as WHT 130. He adds that the latest machine to emerge from TOS VARNSDORF’s product development department is a gantry milling centre with stationary gantry and X-axis moving table. “The assembly of the machine will take place in the second half of 2018 and the testing will be completed in early 2019.”
A clear way forward TOS Varnsdorf’s network of subsidiaries, providing spare parts, warranty and post-warranty service as well as sales, is one of its competitive advantages. “We have subsidiaries in all major global markets, i.e. in China, Russia and the USA. Service and spare parts availability tend to be the decisive factors for customers when
WHT 110 C machining centre
choosing a new machine. The immediate availability of spare parts and the professional approach of our staff help to open doors to new customers as well as satisfy the needs of existing customers,” Mr Holakovský points out. About 55 per cent of TOS VARNSDORF’s machines are sold within Europe, with 20 per cent sold to the Russian Federation and 25 per cent to the markets of China, India and North America. Mr Holakovský confirms that the machine tool market is booming at the moment, which is reflected in the company’s financial performance. “Just recently we have signed a contract for the delivery of 14 machines to the Polish company FAMET Kedzierzyn Kožle
worth €7.2 million – the biggest ever delivery since 1999, when 13 machines were sold to Belarus.” It would seem that TOS VARNSDORF’s growth is not hindered by any challenges. Still, human resources and skills development are issues that the company has to address intensively, just like any other European manufacturer today. Two years ago, TOS VARNSDORF opened its own secondary technical school, which is now being extended. “The school has gained a very good reputation amongst students, their parents as well as the general public, and it is now being developed further to create a superior educational facility,” says Mr Holakovský. “At the moment, we are reconstructing an
RETOS VARNSDORF s.r.o. RETOS VARNSDORF s.r.o. is a traditional Czech company. We are located at the premises, where in 1915 under the name „Arno Plauert, Maschinenfabrik“ the first horizontal boring mills were produced. In 1993, RETOS VARNSDORF was founded as a repair factory for TOS VARNSDORF machines. Our products benefit from the experience, know-how and the network in the region. Today, we produce and sell world-wide horizontal boring mills of our own design. We have specialised in specific boring mills and continue to cooperate closely with TOS.
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MSV Exhibition WRD 150 Q at the customer’s premises
old production hall to be turned into a modern training centre with a sports hall and a school canteen, and also plan to extend the current offering of engineering courses.” This will, no doubt, support the company’s development towards a lean and highly efficient operating model, capable of providing a flexible and speedy response to customers’ requirements worldwide. “We strive to secure sustainable company development. We establish subsidiaries and joint ventures in remote markets to be as close to customers as possible. I believe that service will become a core element of our competitiveness. Technical parameters will of course remain important, but in this technologically advanced day and age, n they hardly constitute a differentiating factor,” he concludes.
Technology workstation WRD 150 DUO – parallel machining of one work piece by two machines
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Aerospace & Defence
Positive signs Zodiac Aerospace is a French aerospace group that is a global leader in the design and supply of integrated interior aircraft cabins, galleys and on-board safety systems. The company continues to achieve double digit growth thanks to its continuous investment in state-of-the-art plant. This is particularly true in the Czech Republic, where its facility specialises in the manufacture of integrated galleys for aircraft such as the Airbus A320, A330 and its wide bodied variant, the A380. Philip Yorke reports.
odiac Aerospace was founded in 1896 and today is among the world’s top companies specialising in the manufacture of aircraft interiors, equipment and systems. The Zodiac Aerospace Group employs over 35,000 people worldwide and was established in the Czech Republic in 2008. This was via its acquisition of Driessen Aerospace, a leading aircraft interiors company that had been operating one of its three manufacturing units in Plzen, Czech Republic since 2011. Following this important strategic acquisition, the company has benefited from strong growth and is now the sole supplier of galley systems for the Airbus 320 narrow bodied aircraft. Currently Zodiac Galleys Europe employs around 1000 people in its engineering, supply-chain, manufacturing and assembly sectors and since 2011 has tripled in size and turnover.
Serving the world Zodiac Galleys Europe serves virtually all the world’s airlines, as well as leasing companies and airframe manufacturers, and has gained global market leadership through its combination of product excellence and dedicated customer services. In addition, the company is acknowledged as a leader in design innovation and ultra-lightweight structures. Zodiac Galleys Europe’s highly automated production lines produce its well-known modular A320 Mayflex galleys, ACP SFE galleys, stowages, and partition walls, as well as A330 galleys and lower deck mobile crew rests. The Zodiac Aerospace Group invests continuously in research and development and in close cooperation with Airbus has created an additional row of six seats for airline passengers, which has achieved a positive increase in airline operator revenues. The company operates a highly efficient supply chain that has been refined over many years and is therefore able to deliver a continuous, reliable and sustainable performance for its customers.
To a large extent, Zodiac Galleys Europe’s suppliers are composed of selected Czech component manufacturers. For example, the company works in close cooperation with Quitner & Simek for the manufacture of harnesses and electrical panels. This also provides a good example of how a supplier is encouraged to be involved at the initial development stage, and then right through testing to final implementation.
Defining today’s environmental protection Zodiac Aerospace has defined a precise framework for the management of its environmental footprint, which applies to all aspects of its manufacturing and logistics operations. This involves a regular reporting and exchange of information between operational sites and elements in addition to involving other professionals in order to promote and disseminate best practice protocols. The planned actions taken by the Zodiac Aerospace Group are designed to promote environmental protection across the board and come under two inter-connected structures: A global structure linked to ISO 10014, within which the group encourages its various manufacturing sites to deploy effective environmental management systems that meet the latest international standards. In the case where sites are already certified, they are obliged to continue to make further progress. Local structures within the sites also commit to reducing their waste production and to recovering over 80 per cent of waste whilst in the process of recycling at least 45 per cent. In addition, cutting greenhouse gas emissions, in particular through the reduction of energy consumption and reducing its consumption of water is a company priority. These protocols are enshrined in a Health & Safety Environment Policy, which is monitored within a reporting system that continuously measures progress made. In its lifecycle analysis of its products, the tool, ‘Eco-Design’ has been implemented by the company in several key entities and enables the environmental impact of a product to be proactively determined throughout its lifecycle. This valuable tool, encourages entities to select materials, parts and packaging based upon key environmental parameters, including reduced weight, recyclability and environmentally friendly dismantling. Industry Europe 33
A global perspective Zodiac Aerospace and its affiliates have developed a global approach to sustainable development, by integrating performance, preservation of the environment, health & safety and personal wellbeing. Today Zodiac Aerospace is facing more air transport challenges than ever before and this involves greater safety, more efficient and more environmentally friendly production processes and operations. This trend is marked with continuous demands for innovative solutions that not only reduce the environmental impact of its own operations but also, more broadly, that of air transport operations as a whole. The Health, Safety & Environment Policy of Zodiac Aerospace is organised around three distinct pillars: 1, Environmental performance; 2, Health and Security performance; and 3, Industrial Risk Management. Since 2011 the company has been a founding member of the IAEG (International Aerospace Environmental Group) with the aim of helping companies involved in this sector to take better account of increasingly complex and stringent environmental constraints and thereby promote a common approach throughout the industry.
Revolutionary design One of the company’s many innovative design solutions for aircraft interiors, has created a new benchmark in the reduction of maintenance costs and operational efficiency with a revolutionary new aircraft lavatory. The Zodiac Aerospace ‘Revolution’ toilet offers operators significant benefits, including reduced weight, improved reliability and maintainability as well as more efficient overall airline operations and a better in-flight experience for travellers. The ‘Revolution’ is the world’s most advanced and efficient lavatory. It was developed inhouse by Zodiac Water & Waste Systems. The unique ‘Revolution’ toilet is designed to reduce troublesome toilet issues and maintenance costs, owing to its unique, innovative and modular design. On February 7th 2018 Zodiac Aerospace Services announced that Singapore Airlines has selected the new ‘Revolution’ Toilet to retro-fit their Being 777 fleet. Bruno Delile, CEO of Zodiac Aerospace Services, said, “We are very proud that Singapore Airlines has our new ‘Revolution’ Toilet on its 777 fleet. This product has a very innovative modular design that leads to improved reliability and maintainability as well as reduced weight and lower maintenance costs.” Delile added, “Furthermore, today all Airbus A320 CEO &NEO and A380 aircraft are now delivered line-fit with Zodiac Aeropsace’s ‘Rev34 Industry Europe
olution’ toilet. Major multi-platform operators have already started to implement the modification on their Boeing and Airbus fleets.” Contracts signed to replace existing lavatories are covered by the company’s ‘Power By the Hour’ (PBH) maintenance programme n over a 10-year period. For more details of Zodiac Aerospace’s latest innovative products and services visit: www.zodiacaerospace.com
Automation & Robotics
Driving e-mobility forward
The ABB Group is a Swedish-Swiss multinational corporation headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland. The company is a global technology leader in electrification products, robotics, industrial automation and power grids. It is serving customers in utilities, manufacturing industries and transport infrastructure globally. Today ABB is writing the future of digitalisation and driving forward the revolutions in energy and digitalisation. Philip Yorke reports.
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BB is one of the largest engineering companies in the world with extensive operations in more than 100 countries and a workforce of over 135,000 people worldwide. The company is traded on stock exchanges in Switzerland and the US and is also recognised as one of the most admired companies in the world. ABB’s history goes back to the late 19th century when the Swedish General Electrical Company (ASEA) was founded in 1883 by Ludvig Fredholm in Vasteras, Sweden as a manufacturer of electrical lighting and generators. The ABB conglomerate resulted from the merger in 1988 of the Swedish corporation ASEA and the Swiss company, Brown, Boverie and Cie, which was a leading engineering group producing AC and DC motors, generators, steam turbines and transformers.
Pioneering E-vehicle mobility Today ABB is paving the way to sustainable mobility worldwide through its innovative e-vehicle technology, where fast-charging for e-vehicles is becoming an integral part of the new transport ecosystem. For this year’s annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, ABB became part of a long-term partnership to provide e-infrastructure for public and private transportation. Davos residents and the Economic Forum guests can experience the pioneering Tosa bus for themselves. This award-winning bus was developed by ABB in Switzerland, is already in use in Geneva and will soon be operational in the French City of Nantes. It can re-charge its battery in just 20 seconds while passengers embark and disembark. The idea is to run the pilot system under extreme weather conditions in Davos in order to gain valuable insights from the project into operational efficiency under such harsh conditions. “The shift to electric vehicles is no longer a question of if, but rather of 36 Industry Europe
when, and how quickly,” said ABB CEO Ulrich Spiesshofer. “EVs are becoming increasingly attractive to motorists. As well as being ecologically responsible, they’re becoming less expensive to buy and maintain.”
Sun-to-socket solar solutions In a different product sector, ABB’s new string inverter significantly reduces Opex and Capex costs for solar installations. The company’s range of cloud-connected three-phase string inverter solutions for costefficient, decentralised photovoltaic systems are now available. As the solar market shifts towards new, more cost-effective platforms ABB is capable of offering extreme, high-power string inverters that maximise return on investment (ROI) and are designed to reduce Capex and Opex costs for both installers and developers. Suitable for both large-scale commercial and industrial ground-mounted and rooftop applications, the PVS 100/120 offers a six-in-one, sun-to-socket solution that is proven to deliver scalability, flexibility, productive plant management and ease of installation. ABB’s Global Product Manager for String Utility, Marco Trova, said: “Our new PVS 100/120 string inverter range offers the ability to interact with the solar plant system like no other, through high-power consolidation of physical parts and products along with digitalisation.” The product’s smart product design features include secure access via a cover key, PV quick connectors and configuration via Wi-Fi to eliminate the risk of water ingress and further reduce the installation time for cabling, fuse and SPD checks.
Boosting clean-energy supply In January this year ABB won a $40 million contract to strengthen and upgrade Indonesia’s power grid. This significant power plant upgrade
Automation & Robotics
and expansion boosts clean energy supply to the greater Jakarta area. In order to improve the efficiency of the existing plant and provide clean energy to the greater Jakarta area, the existing 1150 MW gas-fuelled generator will be converted to a 1800 MW combined-cycle power plant. Indonesia is the world’s fourth most populous country and one of the fastest growing economies in Asia. This has spurred the demand for electricity and, according to PLN, demand is projected to grow at around 8.5 per cent per annum until 2015. In response, the government has outlined a plan to add 35,000 MW of power generation capacity to the grid. Indonesia plans to have 99.7 per cent of all households in the country connected to the nation’s electricity grid by 2025. The Muara Tawar upgrade and conversion to a combined cycle power plant will contribute significantly towards achieving these goals.
Ground-breaking driverless buses Another major ABB project involves the energising of Singapore’s autonomous electric bus project, which further underscores its leading role in sustainable global transport solutions. Together with Volvo Buses, ABB will provide its state-of-the-art Heavy Vehicle Chargers (HVC) 300P for the forthcoming project to deliver two autonomous driving electric buses for the island beginning early in 2019. With this new project ABB is taking another step towards globally sustainable mobility, just days after announcing its title sponsorship of n the world’s first fully electric, international FIA motorsport series. For further details of ABB’s latest innovative products and services visit: www.abb.com
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MASTER Factory The fourth industrial revolution relies heavily on digitalisation and requires production technologies and future-orientated professionals. Festo is leading the way in automation and its production site in Hungary is now opening up opportunities for small and medium firms to join the digital revolution. Edina Beale reports.
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Automation & Robotics
esto is a German multinational industrial control and automation company based in Esslingen am Neckar. The company was set up by Gottlieb Stoll and Albert Fezer in 1925 to produce wood processing machines. Later, pneumatic technology, which is closely related to automation technology, was brought in from the USA by one of the founders. Festo soon realised that there was little knowledge about automation technology in Germany at the time, leading to the establishment of Didactic in 1965 to provide technical education services whilst introducing this new production technology to the market. Since the founding of the family business, quality and innovation have been the highest priorities and its philosophy is to ‘maintain the same quality anywhere in the world’. Over 300 patents and more than 80 awards for its products and business practice prove that these principles are worth focusing on. Today Festo is present in 61 countries and employs 20,000 people worldwide.
Second largest production plant in Europe Festo was established in Hungary in 1982 but the company only began production in 1992 with 30 people. In the past 10 years, over €100 million has been invested to extend the size of this plant, and today it employs 1400 people. In Europe, Festo-AM Gyártó Kft is the Festo’s second largest production plant after its German site. The group manufactures products in Hungary that are not produced anywhere else in the world and therefore the majority of product development is also carried out at the Budapest
plant. Production is only semi-automated, as products are manufactured in small quantities. Core products include pneumatic engines and equipment, compressed air preparation units and handling systems. Vacuum technology, cylinders and valves for movement and operations are also important areas of production. Although Festo serves a wide range of industries with these products today, the main target markets are the automotive, food and electronics and – more recently – the chemical and pharmaceutical markets.
Education and consultancy services Besides production, Festo operates an educational unit and consultancy business at its Budapest site. “We stand on three legs: as a manufacturer, as an education provider and as a professional consultancy business to serve all industrial partners with our products and their applications,” explains Mr Márton Szövényi-Lux, managing director of Festo Kft. “This is lucky because we see all parts of the process: what product we need in order to become more efficient, and how we need to educate people in order for them to learn how to use this product. Furthermore, our engineering consultants are able to provide our partners with high quality advice as their knowledge is based on in-house experience.”
Industry 4.0 initiative Festo is a member of the German Federal Government’s ‘Industry 4.0’ initiative, and is involved in all key standards associations and programmes on this topic. Recently Festo in Hungary has been selected
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to become one of the five Master Factories that will facilitate small- and medium-sized companies in Hungary to get involved in the multinational and digital industry. From the spring of 2018 the firm will welcome company managers in its Budapest production site where various automation solutions will be presented with the aim of helping them think about their own processes and how they can improve on them. “We believe that managers need to take a different approach in order to see the importance of joining this futuristic world,” says Mr Szövényi-Lux. “Our task first is to convince them that they are capable of introducing these technologies step by step into their operations.” Workplace requirements have changed over the last decade and education today is vital. It is no longer the case that a
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person can learn a profession at a young age and work throughout their lives with the same skillset. “Today employees at all levels must train themselves continuously. Festo is the world leader in technical education and that is the basic pillar of this programme. It is important that we already have a tool system that is able to teach the technologies of Industry 4.0 and provide practical learning opportunities. “We expect 1700 visitors in the next two years. ‘Industry 4.0’ is related to digital technology and this is developing so fast that in our second host year we may have to replace some of the technologies. This is a flexible project in which we will have to be prepared daily in order to stay completely up-to-date.”
Automation & Robotics
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Special know-how Festo normally invests 8 per cent of its turnover every year into research and development. “What is fantastic about Festo is that the group is continuously thinking about the future and making long-term strategic plans to maintain its leadership,” says Mr Szövényi-Lux. “They consider our opinion, no matter what the size of our country. They look at what added value we bring to the company and what ideas we have. Some unique solutions that our engineers have recently developed are now being transferred to the US and Chinese factories. Here in Hungary our know-how and extensive experience is so valuable now that we could hold n our own anywhere in the world.”
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Automation & Robotics
Founded in 1964, Camozzi Automation has become a leading provider of first-class industrial automation products and solutions. Mr Sebastian Bicelli, the company’s strategic marketing manager, spoke to Romana Moares about the new challenges and opportunities arising from today’s changing marketplace.
Meeting the needs of industrial automation Industry Europe 43
taly-based Camozzi Automation operates in three main sectors, providing solutions for industrial automation, components and systems for the control of liquid and gaseous fluids and applications dedicated to the transport industry. Employing about 1700 people, the company has a strong Italian base and a solid international presence in more than 75 countries throughout the world, supported by 24 subsidiaries and service centres and an extensive network of exclusive distributors. “Camozzi is present in all main markets and operates six production plants, of which two are located in northern Italy and four abroad, designing and producing for their local markets using the same ‘lean’ operating methods as the Italian factories,” says Mr Bicelli. Camozzi’s product portfolio includes pneumatic components for industrial automation-actuators, grippers, components and accessories for vacuum technology, sensors, electro valves, solenoid valves, elements for air treatment, systems and special products. The company’s multi-technology approach is to analyse each individual application and develop solutions based on selecting the most appropriate pneumatic, electric or proportional technology. Focus on innovation has always been a central priority for Camozzi.
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In line with the latest trends “Last year, our product development was primarily focused on pneumatic grippers, motivated by the growing demand for robots and automated systems. The entire product range has been further expanded to supply our customers with the right mix of performance, reliability and flexibility. The Camozzi grippers are designed to have a compact design, with robust materials while minimising its overall weight,” says Mr Bicelli. “The aspects of sustainability and energy efficiency have become cornerstones when starting to develop a product,” he continues. “On the one hand there is a trend towards miniaturisation of components, which are consequently lighter and consume less energy (e.g. the solenoid valves, such as the Series K8 solenoid valve). On the other hand, where it is not possible to reduce the size due to regulatory or other constraints, we try to reduce the unnecessary masses and parts, also thanks to sophisticated simulations like FEM, CFD, thermal and electromagnetic analyses.” To respond to market needs, Camozzi recently added the C_Electrics division to its capability. The division develops solutions that include electromechanical cylinders and axes with auxiliary motors
and drives. Possessing a broad range of accessory components, the C_Electrics products can be combined into various configurations to provide users with the utmost flexibility. “The C_Electrics division was created to satisfy those customers that need more flexible motion control solutions as compared to pneumatic actuation. From the beginning, the goal was to retain the know-how – therefore, organic growth was chosen, both from a design and a production point of view,” explains Mr Bicelli.
Robotised workshops The one trend that drives most companies’ development is the much discussed concept of Industry 4.0., which is slowly but surely changing the way they operate. “An example of the new development may be the adoption of industrial communication protocols in order to communicate with the company management, or the introduction of sensors inside components to increase their flexibility and diagnostic capacity with the aim of minimising machine downtimes,” says Mr Bicelli. “There is also a trend towards the supply of complete plug & play solutions that involve several technologies, including electronics and communication systems to the outside.”
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He affirms that to Camozzi, Industry 4.0 also means flexibility; therefore, in addition to sensorisation and digital monitoring of machines, the company is implementing production systems through cooperative robots, or ‘cobots’. “Flexibility means being able to produce any component quickly and automatically. We have installed a cobot in one of the lines that assemble products with a very high level of variability in small lots. The assembly system is equipped with sensors and communication systems that transmit all data collected, in real time, to a cloud platform, where they are subsequently processed to obtain useful information in order to optimise and monitor the process. Additionally, the use of a cobot allows the operator to avoid very repetitive and exhausting activities, such as the handling of certain items or the screwing of components.”
Smart future With its strong international footprint, about 80 per cent of Camozzi’s turnover is generated in the export markets and its strategy of increased internationalisation is still ongoing. Most products are sold to industrialised countries including Italy, with two countries gaining increasing momentum: China and Russia. “Despite being consid-
Automation & Robotics
ered emerging economies, they are in all respects huge markets for industrial automation,” Mr Bicelli points out. In addition to increasing its share in the export markets, the second area of strategic development for Camozzi is consolidation in areas such as the fluid control sectors – both in the medical field and the industrial sector – as well as in the field of mobile automation. “In this regard, Camozzi has recently inaugurated the C_Applications department, which aims to integrate different technologies into more complex systems that can be customised to offer intelligent solutions that increase productivity and reduce assembly and setup times for automatic machines,” says Mr Bicelli. “The last pillar of the strategic vision is represented by smart technologies, i.e. the introduction of intelligence inside components, a path started some years ago but which will occupy our product development department for the next n decades,” he concludes.
Camozzi Automation strategic marketing manager, Sebastian Bicelli Industry Europe 47
Optimsing in-car acoustic technology
ASK Automotive Industries is a global leader in the manufacture of in-car loudspeaker systems, audio amplifiers, antennas and cables. The company has seen consistent growth thanks to its innovative products, built-in flexibility and strategic acquisitions. Almost every major car producer relies on ASK integrated products for optimal in-car acoustic performance. Philip Yorke reports.
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Automotive & Heavy Vehicles
research, mainly targeted at the development of ANC (Active Noise Control) and AVC (Active Vibration Control systems). This was in addition to the development of non-conventional loud-speakers and audio systems designed to be able to operate in extreme conditions and in hostile global environments.
Increasing global footprint
he ASK Group is a multinational company with manufacturing facilities in Europe, the USA, Asia, South America and Africa. Today over 3000 people work for the group worldwide, many of which are dedicated to research and development. In 2017 the ASK Group recorded sales of more than €250 million. The group was formed by the amalgamation of three medium sized companies in Italy that were already working in harmony as business partners. In the 1990s, thanks to the vision of its founders Mr Totini and Mr Paterlimnui, the companies decided to increase their collaboration and unify their combined strengths, thereby forming one single, strong group: ASK Automotive. Early in 2008, the directors of the group recognised the strategic importance of setting up a department focused solely on advanced
Wherever there is a major passenger car manufacturer located in the world, there will be an ASK Automotive facility of some kind nearby. The company continues to expand and increase its production capabilities in line with the continuing strong growth of the automotive market. The most recent example concerns the company’s US operation where it has announced its incorporation of ASK USA Inc. The formalisation took place in October 2017 in Detroit, Michigan, USA. The new company added to other ASK subsidiaries already operating in Brazil, China, Germany, Poland and Tunisia, with the aim to better control the US market. This is of primary interest to the ASK Group as it will provide valuable technical and commercial support for customers in the region. Thanks to this new opening, which is strongly supported by the parent company, JVC- Kenwood Corporation, the ASK Group has achieved its goal of endorsing its position as a group with a true global presence.
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Innovation driving sales The ASK Group’s audio systems set the standards for others in the field. The high quality of its sound systems depends not only on its technological features but also on the company’s unrivalled experience acquired over several decades. Today the company is able to work on both individual components and the entire sound system landscape. New technological advances developed by the ASK Group have been largely responsible for its increased sales performance worldwide. When it comes to new product planning, development begins with association with the automaker’s engineers and designers in order to optimise system architecture and achieve optimal audio excellence. The company employs X-AQT – Extended Acoustic
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Quality Testing – to measure the results of its new creations. The ASK Automotive Group’s advanced X-AQT tool measures and visualises the dynamic frequency response of a vehicle’s acoustics as perceived by human ears, and also measures the dynamic interference of a variety of loudspeakers in different places. This is whilst considering the most diverse and harsh environmental conditions known on the planet. This helps to determine the control phase of signals in order to refine the sound staging and speech intelligibility. The high tech amplifiers produced by the group also benefit from the same dedicated research programmes and testing procedures. In order to produce amplifiers that range from Hi-Fi to High End, the company draws upon its comprehensive and highly specialised expertise. The group’s portfolio includes both analogue and digital
Automotive & Heavy Vehicles
(DSP) amplifiers ranging from models with four channels and 80 watt output, to ones with as many as 26 channels and a total of 15,000 watt output power at 1 per cent THD. As a first-tier supplier ASK is a practised expert in integrating its amplifiers into automotive networks including ‘CAN’, ‘Ethernet’ and ‘MOST’ acoustic systems.
Prioritising the environment The ASK Group describes its approach to environmental protection as a ‘Priority Strategic Purpose’ for the company. Its strategic vision is to combine its production activities with natural and social needs and to prevent pollution and attenuate all negative environmental impacts. Key environmental protocols include developing and applying technical solutions and methodologies to significantly reduce negative environmental impacts such as atmospheric emissions and waste management. The company also systematically monitors n energy efficiency at all its manufacturing plants. For further details of the ASK Group’s innovative products and services visit: www.askgroup.com
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the road Autosan, headquartered in Sanok, is Poland’s leading bus producers, its name has been well known to many generations of Poles. Dariusz Balcerzyk talks to Michał Stachura, president of the board of management at Autosan, to find out more. Mr Michał Stachura, President of the Management Board
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Automotive & Heavy Vehicles
utosan sp. z o.o. continues the 186-year tradition of Autosan, one the oldest companies in Poland. The story of the bus factory in Sanok, a town located in south-eastern Poland, goes back as far as 1832, when a small boiler plant was founded by two entrepreneurs: Mr Walenty Lipinski and Mr Mateusz Beksinski. Soon the workshop expanded its production into locksmith and blacksmith services and transformed into a large factory by building new production halls and warehouses. At the end of the 19th century the company was the greatest manufacturer of rail-coaches, freight and tram cars in Poland. In addition to coaches, machinery and equipment for the oil and spirits industry, it manufactured steam machines, boilers, cisterns, steel bridge constructions and foundry products. In the late 1920s Autosan launched its first buses with wooden skeletons on the Lancia chassis; in 1949 it made its first trams for Warsaw. In 1957 a new tourist bus was designed by Mr Zdzislaw Beksinski. Sadly, this vehicle never went into mass production due to its overly innovative design. It is worth noting that Zdzislaw Beksinski was a famous Polish painter, sculptor, photographer and illustrator. Not many people know that for 10 years of his professional life the artist had been associated with Autosan bus factory. It was his great-grandfather Mateusz who was one of the founders of the boiler workshop, which was the forerunner of the later factory for wagons and buses. The following years saw the expansion of the company; however, the political and economic transformations that took place in Poland in the late 20th century placed Autosan in very difficult conditions. As a result, in September 2013, the then management board of the
company submitted a bankruptcy application. In October 2013, the court appointed a bankruptcy trustee for Autosan, thus enabling the company to continue its economic activity. On March 30, 2016, Autosan was taken over by a consortium consisting of PIT-RADWAR and Huta Stalowa Wola, both members of Polska Grupa Zbrojeniowa (the Polish Armaments Group). PGZ is a leading manufacturer of army equipment and brings together more than 60 companies. Thus, Autosan is backed by the PGZ’s economic potential (the group’s annual sales are estimated at PLN 5 billion, which is more than €1 billion) and its know-how. The company recommenced its activities under the name of Autosan sp. z o.o. (limited liability company).
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Drabpol Drabpol is a family-owned company with only Polish capital, which has existed since 1983. Drabpol offers innovative systemic solutions in the field of construction and production works for the manufacturers of bus, truck, rail and special vehicles. The company specializes in proprietary solutions on dashboard displays, visualization of all data necessary for a driver. Drabpol develops inner system integration solutions recommended for vehicles and systems within customer range of activities. Company implements also complete solutions for electric propulsion systems. Drabpol is supplying not only bus market complete systems: electric motors, inverters, controllers and software, but configures as well the whole system – from hardware supply to software adjustment, from supplying of components to writing dedicated software in CAN – BUS standards, motor control software and visualization of the system performance on the dashboard of the driver.
GLASPO GLASPO has all the benefits of a modern, high-tech company with extensive experience. Present on the Polish market since 1991, we produce glass panes and windows for the automotive, transport, construction and household appliances industries. Our well-established brand means our products can be found both on the domestic market and abroad. Owing to our continuous development and improvement efforts, we offer the best possible solutions to both domestic and business customers. We have gained the trust of such brands as Samsung, Whirlpool, Zetor, Pesa, Solaris, Ursus and Autosan. We manufacturing the highest quality solutions at our cutting-edge machine park. We have our own transport fleet and cooperate with the best couriers, enabling us to reach the majority of our customers in Poland within 24 hours. Our 20,000m2 warehouse facilities mean that our products are available for immediate delivery. In the case of specialist orders, we can be even more flexible with timescales. For all orders and enquiries, we kindly request you contact our marketing department.
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By creating pioneering software solutions for a dashboard, Drabpol has developed an uncompromising and the only system of graphic and systemic personalization on the Polish market- FAPsafety+. The system allows to create solutions which are dedicated or comply with the requirements of the clients – municipal bus operators or bus manufacturers. Drabpol is a VAR company (Value Added Reseller). What distinguishes Drabpol is technical and technological assistance in project implementation. Drabpol provides: technical consulting, sales, installation, trainings, maintenance and after-sales service; offers support for design, technology and construction offices as well as IT departments. Within the whole area of Poland, Drabpol has been organizing a network of authorized service canters providing full service in the field of tachographs, tire pressure and temperature control systems, air conditioners and chillers.
Automotive & Heavy Vehicles
Born again “In 2016, we acquired a recognisable brand, modern infrastructure and experienced employees. As a result, Autosan was then born again,” says Mr Michal Stachura, the company’s president of the board. “Now, Autosan stands for state-of-the-art technical and technological solutions, caring for people and the environment. Our key values are: experience and dynamism, reliability and economy. Autosan is competent, friendly, trustworthy and fully Polish. This is the brand you can rely on.” To date, close to 115,000 vehicles have left the company’s factory gates. Its current product offer includes a wide range of buses, designed for cities, suburban areas and intercity passenger traffic, as well as buses for special applications. For 2018, the company has already secured new orders for 150 buses (its profitability starts at an annual production of 110–120 buses). Furthermore, it expects to increase its annual production to 600 buses by 2020. Exports make up around 10 per cent of Autosan’s total sales, with Germany, Scandinavia, Estonia and southern Europe its main foreign markets. The company’s business profile also includes the production of military equipment (such as special truck bodies, and cabins for communication and radiolocation equipment) and rail stock components (complex
steel welded structures including entire rail vehicle sections, components such as cabins, roofs, walls, handrails, tunnels, portals, etc). These two departments account for around 20–25 per cent of its overall sales.
Modern buses “Despite this, bus production remains our main activity,” points out Mr Stachura. “Our offer includes the entire range of city buses (9-metre, 10-metre and 12-metre long), intercity buses (9- and 10-metre long) and special buses (eg: fire brigade buses, school buses, buses for the transport of detainees and prisoners under escort, buses designed for driver training centres). Our vehicles are made of high quality stainless steel and aluminium and are painted using the highest quality paints on the market. Their engines meet the Euro 6 standard and come from such recognised producers as Cummins and IVECO. “Our components and solutions are purchased from international manufacturers such as Voith, ZF, Allison and ZIEHL-ABEGG to name just a few. Moreover, our offer also includes ecological vehicles: electric buses (in April 2018 we will deliver four such buses to one of German cities) and hydrogen-powered buses. I am proud to say that we are well n prepared for the challenges posed by the modern bus market.”
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Integrated precision Brovedani is a global leader in the development and manufacture of precision components for the automotive industry. The company continues to see strong growth due to its commitment to innovation and its renowned high precision engineering. Philip Yorke reports on a company that is spearheading the move into the digital age and the latest integrated production technologies.
he Brovedani Group was founded in Tagliamento, Italy in 1947 and consists of three companies and six state-of-the-art plants, two of which are located in Italy, with others based in Mexico and Slovakia. The group currently employs more than 1,100 people and in 2017 recorded sales of around €120 million. This multinational company primarily focuses on components for the automotive industry, offering specialised solutions for fuel injection pumps, as well as for petrol direct injection systems and diesel common rail systems. In addition, it designs and manufactures components for air conditioning systems, starter motors and vehicle chassis. The group benefits from its integrated organisational structure and innovative culture. As a result, it has become the component supplier of choice for global brands such as Bosch, Continental, Denso, Delphi and Eaton, among many others. 56 Industry Europe
Innovative solutions The Brovedani Group has invested consistently in advanced manufacturing and control system technology for its mass production of sophisticated, high precision mechanical components. The company’s cutting edge engineering departments develop dedicated products that involve the design and construction of custom-built machines with integrated, multi-functional technologies. It also designs complete production lines for outsourced products, which further endorses Brovedani as a valued world-class partner dedicated to meeting – and exceeding – its customers’ needs.
Solid progress The Brovedani Group took another strategic step forward when it implemented new Solid Edge Software in collaboration with its
Automotive & Heavy Vehicles
Siemens PLM Software partner, CCS, which has been supporting Brovedani from the start of the data exchange project. Following this move, the company acquired additional licenses for the use of Solid Edge technology, choosing different configurations according to its specific requirements. To design industrial equipment, Brovedani requires full manufacturing licenses, which are also required for sheet metal, cabling and other functional items. However, design and drafting licenses are both very useful for handling small drawings and for machine design. As a result, Solid Edge technology will
become a corporate standard and will now be extended to enhance the company’s plants in Italy, Slovakia and Mexico. The benefits realised by Brovedani using Solid Edge technology are tangible and measurable. There are around 3000–4000 components and around 800 2D drawings required for each machine, making each one a unique creation. The level of customisation is therefore very high at Brovedani. “Our decision to apply 3D to the design and development of standalone machines was pioneering,” the company told Industry Europe.
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“However, there are few standard components that are common to all machines and here, the use of Solid Edge technology makes it much easier to re-use our data.” The company added that it now achieves savings of around 30 per cent as part of its overall productivity costs.
Digital crossroads At the dawn of the third millennium the digital revolution is in full flood and is manifested in the industry’s acceptance of its 4.0 business principles. This new business tool is particularly relevant to the Brovedani Group as it stands with other global players at the digital
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crossroads. Today the sharing of data via cloud and the increasing availability of ‘open data’ streamlines communications and enhances efficiency. Calculating the capacity of machines that are capable of analysing data, coupled with the ability to modify presses autonomously, is also a major advantage. This is encapsulated in the industry phrase, ‘Machine learning’. Furthermore, interaction between man and machines with touch-screen interfaces and augmented reality is also a valuable tool in the constant challenge to achieve a more efficient and more sustainable business.
Automotive & Heavy Vehicles
Optimising industrial automation Recently the Brovedani Group announced the merger between the Italian Company, FreTor Srl and the ‘Brovedani Technology Centre’ division. The company sees this as an important move, creating a major player in the sector of industrial automation and digitalisation. It has also been announced that this synergistic corporate integration with FreTor will be managed by the parent company, the Brovedani Group. However, FreTor’s existing management team will continue to maintain their active role within the new corporate structure. The purpose of the merger is to grow the business operations of FreTor by extending its already considerable know-how in other industrial sectors and geographical markets, whilst drawing on the managerial skills and the international dimension of the Brovedani Group. This significant merger between these two state-of-the-art companies was handled in association with the Milan-based company Special Affairs Srl, which acted as an exclusive advisor in relation to industrial n governance matters and the financial aspects of the merger. For further details of the Brovedani Group’s innovative products and services visit: www.bovadanigroup.com
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In the spotlight HELLA Autotechnik Nova, based in the Czech Republic, develops, produces and distributes headlamps and rear group lamps for the automotive industry. Since its establishment some 25 years ago, the company has experienced remarkable development and has become a prominent member of the global group. Romana Moares reports.
ELLA Autotechnik Nova is part of the HELLA Group, a familyowned company that is one of the 100 largest German industrial companies as well as the top 40 automotive suppliers worldwide. Since its establishment in 1899, HELLA has introduced a wide range of innovative solutions ranging from the first acetylene gas lamps in 1908 and headlights with asymmetrical light distribution in 1957 to the first ever batch of full-LED headlamps produced in 2008, and MultiBeam high definition headlamps in 2017. The Group currently employs over 40,000 people in more than 125 locations in 35 countries and in the last financial year achieved total sales of €6.6 billion. 60 Industry Europe
HELLA’s activities in the Czech Republic started in 1992 with the commissioning of its production plant in Mohelnice. Now, Hella Autotechnik is not only a manufacturing facility but primarily a technical centre with a wide range of specialists and experts engaged in the development of lighting technology for the automotive industry. The company employs more than 3600 core and agency staff and its product range includes rear group lamps, halogen and xenon lamps, adaptive light-beam headlamps (AFS/ACOL), and premium LED headlamps. In terms of volume, key customers are the traditional German carmakers.
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Technical excellence In the Mohelnice development centre, the first headlamps for the Skoda Felicia were produced, soon followed by further, more complex products including adaptive lighting systems (AFS/ACOL), and recently the innovative full-LED headlamps for premium car manufacturers. Today, the facility is the most important technical centre in the entire company, apart from the Hella headquarters in Germany. “In cooperation with automobile manufacturers, we bring together our know-how, cutting-edge production technologies, and human potential in Mohelnice, and transform them into new products,” says Tomáš Látal, the head of the local Program Office. Since the establishment of the test centre in 2003, the company has also been self-sufficient in the field of testing. In 2008, the administrative centre for Central and Eastern Europe was established, bringing together IT, business, and purchasing services. In 2011, HELLA opened a new Czech branch in the city of Ostrava. In this development centre, three product groups are developed, specifically headlamps, rear combination lamps, and electronics. “It is the complexity of our activities that makes us unique on the global scale. As one of very few companies in the field of automotive lighting, we have the capacity to cover the whole development process in one location, including a draft concept, detailed design, simulations, production of tools and related technologies, testing, final certification, and handover to batch production,” says Mr Látal. “We also have a specialised department for design, implementation, and renovation of the assembly lines. Each year, approximately ten complete production lines are designed and supplied to the other plants – the work of two hundred experts from the fields of process engineering, electrical engineering, project management, and mechanical design.” 62 Industry Europe
Automotive & Heavy Vehicles
New products, new future Mr Látal believes that the future offers enormous growth potential in terms of technology, financial capital, and especially knowledge. “Cooperation with universities is crucial for us. We think about the future and know that qualified and motivated employees are the key to our success. We select potential candidates from the ranks of university students and for those who pass our selection process, we offer special trainee positions, providing an insight into the company’s activities and an opportunity to gain valuable experience. Secondary school and university students participate in short-term professional experience programmes as well as long-term internships throughout all departments of the company.” He further points out that the automotive industry is undergoing fundamental changes, with the most prominent trends being autonomous driving, efficiency & electrification, connectivity & digitalisation and individualisation. Improving comfort and safety by incorporating automation and artificial intelligence into the driver’s common activities is increasingly emphasised.
“We are preparing ourselves for the arrival of new functions focused on the interaction between vehicles and the environment, infrastructure, and pedestrians. For example, the nextgeneration headlamps will be able to delineate the ideal track for driving through a bend using a light beam, warn drivers about an obstruction on the road by displaying a warning sign in front of the vehicle, delineate a ‘safe zone’ around a cyclist who is being passed, project a warning sign about wet or icy road surfaces… The possibilities are literally endless,” he says. “In upcoming years, we will focus on competence and capacity development in the field of electronics, human potential development, increasing efficiency of key processes and outsourcing activities such as simulations, CAD/CAM designs, or testing. These will be qualitative changes in which our main goal is to transfer the routine work with lower added value to low-cost locations and to develop our ability to plan, organise and control the work stages from an n expert position,” Mr Látal concludes.
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Clear vision Hella Slovakia Front Lighting is one of the two Slovak subsidiaries of the German HELLA Group, the leading European manufacturer of innovative products and modular systems in the field of lighting technology and electronics for the automotive sector. The Slovak factory makes headlamps for passenger cars and trucks mainly for the European market and its customer base includes all major automotive brands. Romana Moares reports.
he HELLA Group develops and produces components and systems for lighting technology and electronics for car manufacturers and other vendors, focusing on the central trends in the automotive industry – environmental protection, safety and comfort. This is reflected in products such as intelligent battery sensors, radar driver assistance systems as well as adaptive lighting systems. The Group is the technology leader responsible for introducing many innovative products, such as the first LED headlamps and the 64 Industry Europe
first non-glare xenon headlamps. It is the world leader in the development of 24 GHz radar sensors that are used in walkway assistants and other functions.
15 years of continued growth HELLA Slovakia Front-Lighting, located in Kočovce near Nové Mesto nad Váhom (western Slovakia), was built as a green field development. The brand new facility started production in 2003, its core business
Automotive & Heavy Vehicles
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being the production of headlamps for passenger cars and trucks for mainly European car makers. The first years of the new factory were marked by a close cooperation with the Mohelnice sister company in the Czech Republic and cooperation on joint projects. However, less than five years on, the assembly plant developed into a fully fledged production facility, initially supplying its products primarily to truck makers (Scania, Renault, Daimler). The customer base soon expanded to include passenger car makers, including Peugeot and Citroën. The parent company’s trust and confidence in the Slovak plant was demonstrated by transferring production of front head lamps for the Mercedes A Class from Germany in the summer of 2011, to be followed by other contracts for Mercedes. Since then, the company has been steadily growing and now holds, together with its Czech sister company, a leading position within the Group. Annual output is around 2.5 million head lamps. Over half of the output is fitted in Mercedes passenger cars and trucks; other customers include Kia and Hyundai, Volvo, Peugeot, Volkswagen, Scania, Nissan as well as Škoda. Only 10–20 per cent of total production output remains in Slovakia, the rest is exported. The key export market is Germany, accounting for over 50 per cent of the company’s sales, but HELLA Slovakia Front Lighting is also successful in Sweden, the Netherlands, Spain, Czech Republic, Belgium as well as in the United States and Brazil.
Project 2020 In terms of the product portfolio, the LED lights will play an increasingly significant part – not only because they are environmentally friendly, but also because their ‘daylight effect’ increases the driver’s comfort. At the same time, the LEDs offer a wide range of design options and 66 Industry Europe
Automotive & Heavy Vehicles
help automobile manufacturers to create a unique style for their brands. Further developments in the field of adaptive lighting will certainly be reflected in LEDs in the future. Hella has already indicated a range of options when introducing the first AFS (adaptive front lighting system) headlamps. Another trend in the development of LED headlights is the shift towards optimised power consumption, the so-called EcoLED systems, providing an added advantage of optimum cost. Although LEDs are currently being used mainly to illuminate large areas, they will also serve the opposite function in the future, i.e. targeted spotlights, allowing specific lighting of certain types of objects, such as children at the edge of the road. As a result, drivers
will notice potential risks much sooner and will be able to react more quickly to them. In line with the current market development, the company plans to further expand with its Project 2020. This will include an increase of total output up to 3.6 million units per annum. In Europe, the HELLA Group is the Number One in its sector and the Slovak factory heavily contributes to this status. The plan is to reinforce its position in the American and Asian markets, and make the best use of new, emerging opportunities. Given the company’s dynamic development, Hella Slovakia Front-Lighting has proven that n it can certainly meet the challenge.
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sustainability plugged in
Geesinknorba is a market leader in the design and manufacture of refuse collection vehicles and waste compactors that continues to create innovative, sustainable answers to urban waste management. Philip Yorke reports on some of the company’s most recent breakthrough technology, including its advanced, all electric, plug-in refuse collection vehicles.
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Automotive & Heavy Vehicles
eesinknorba’s history goes back to 1875 when it was founded in the Netherlands by Jacobus Geesink. The company started out as a coach-builder and shipped its first refuse collection vehicle (RCV) in 1915. However it wasn’t until the year 2000 that Geesink acquired the Swedish manufacturer, Norba, which was founded even earlier in 1870 and subsequently became one of the leading companies in its field. Today Geesinknorba is focused on the development, production, sales and service of innovative refuse collection vehicles, as well as portable and static compactors. Geesink’s products are marketed throughout Europe through its dedicated branch offices in the Netherlands, France, Germany, Italy and Spain. This is in addition to its facilities located in Sweden, Romania and the United Kingdom. The company also offers its diverse range of waste processing products to customers further afield through its global network of carefully selected distributors.
On track Geesinknorba has recently addressed the long-term problem of bin collection vehicles holding up traffic, often due to them being unable to negotiate narrow roads and driveways. Therefore the company
teamed up with DAF Trucks and the NRG Group to launch an allnew, narrow track Refuse Collecting Vehicle. Together they identified a growing niche market for more efficient and more manoeuvrable vehicles, especially in the UK, where there are a huge number of narrow urban roads and cul-de-sacs. The new vehicle from the company has a narrow 17m3 body fitted with a powerful Geesinknorba trade bin lift, which is mounted on a DAF LF280 chassis with an additional mid-steer axle to give a gross vehicle weight of just 22.5 tonnes. The result is a narrow, highly manoeuvrable RCV with a payload of almost ten tonnes, depending on the waste stream collected. Another way of looking at it is that it combines the collection capacity of much larger vehicles with the speed on an urban round of much smaller vehicles, thus enabling it to move through busy traffic and tight city streets with ease. The mid-steer axle also gives the narrow track vehicle a turning circle that beats all others and the new cab is also designed to offer excellent visibility. Along with a highly competitive price and low operating costs, it makes the new narrow track RCV a most attractive proposition for operators worldwide.
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New Li-On Power technology Recently Geesinknorba announced the launch of its next generation of refuse collection vehicles. The new ‘Li-On Power Pro’ benefits from the latest Lithium-Ion battery technology to power the entire operations of its new RCV. This is a major milestone and a world first. The company estimates that a typical, conventionally powered RCV will consume around 70 litres of diesel a day, which in turn leads to annual emissions of 52 tonnes of CO2 as well as a considerable amount of other noxious gases. By contrast, the
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all-electric vehicle produces zero emissions; instead, its batteries are charged by electricity which operators can take from entirely renewable sources. Furthermore, the new all-electric, plug-in RCV produces virtually no noise at all, therefore making it ideal for operators collecting waste early in the morning or later at night. This model thereby extends the working hours of vehicles, which can lead to a significant reduction in fleet size. Mike Hill, UK Business Director of Geesinknorba UK, said, “How a vehicle is used will determine precisely
Automotive & Heavy Vehicles
how long it can run between re-charges, but our new all-electric plug-in vehicle has sufficient battery power to easily cover a typical day’s urban collections on a single charge. Whilst the weight and space of batteries is a significant factor, battery powered vehicles do not require heavy diesel engines, fuel tanks or the weight of other liquids that they must carry. All these benefits contribute to making the new vehicle eminently viable in urban environments.”
Innovation underground In Norway Geesinknorba has recently delivered an innovative rearloader to the Norwegian company, BIR Transport, based in Bergen. The company’s latest GPM IV rear loader with advanced crane and chute provides the ideal solution for the emptying of underground
containers, bottom dischargers or bags. This new, innovative system brings many benefits to operators, such as no spillage due to the chute’s clever design. Disposing of refuse through the chute can be done effortlessly and discharged into a large hopper. This unit is very easy to use and also speeds up the collection process. Due to the high loading capacity of the new narrow track model it is capable of processing more waste than ever before. Consequently operators need to spend less time on transporting the processed waste to landfill sites or to incinerators, which in turn leaves more n time to collect refuse. For further details of Geesinknorba’s latest innovative products and services visit: www.geesinknorba.com
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Komatsu’s unrivalled intelligent machine control technology takes centre stage at the Intermat Trade Fair in Paris in April this year. Komatsu’s growing range of MR5 utility excavators will be showcased along with its latest ultra-short-tail excavators and the all-new PC80 MR-5 mini excavator. Philip Yorke reports.
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omastsu Italia SpA designs and manufactures construction equipment, including backhoe loaders, skid steer loaders, mini excavator crawlers and wheeled mini-excavators. Komatsu Italia is an integral part of the giant multinational conglomerate Komatsu Limited, a Japanese corporation that manufactures equipment for the mining, construction and military sectors. In addition, it produces high-tech industrial equipment such as press machines, lasers and thermoelectric generators. Komatsu Asia Pacific’s parent company, Komatsu Limited, was founded in 1921 and its headquarters are located in Tokyo, Japan. Komatsu Italia was founded in 1985 in Italy while Komatsu Europe was founded in Belgium and recently celebrated 50 years of trading. In 2017 the Komatsu Group recorded consolidated sales of more than US$ 18 billion and currently employs almost 50,000 people worldwide.
Cost-effective versatility In January 2018 Komatsu Europe announced the unveiling of its new PC228 USLXC-11, ultra-short-tail excavator, which offers major advances in lifting performance with a 6 per cent lower fuel con-
sumption and improved operator comfort. Other features include increased safety systems and industry-leading in-cab noise levels. Its special rounded cab design is more compact than on a conventional excavator, allowing it to rotate within its own counterweight swing radius. This latest Komatsu model can manoeuvre with ease in the most space-constrained workplaces. Designed and equipped for maximum productivity and control, the latest models cost-effectively carry out digging, trenching, landscaping, site preparation and any other task demanded by customers. “This new ultra-short-tail excavator does so much more than simply meeting the stringent EU Stage 5 emission regulations; it also offers significant advances in leaner fuel consumption, lift capacity and a more flexible working envelope. The model’s 3G communications improve operator comfort and include a range of important new safety features. The new, larger diameter boom raise cylinders also provide much improved lifting capabilities, and with its improved hydraulics, offer smoother operation and levelling,” said Paul Dickenson, product manager at Komatsu Europe International. It is worth noting that the latest KOMTRAX telematics and the Komatsu Care® maintenance programme offer top fleet management and support, designed to protect the machine against misuse and to guarantee optimal efficiency and uptime.
Showstopper As the European leader for construction, utility and mining equipment, Komatsu will have a major presence at the forthcoming Intermat 2018 trade show in Paris. At this major international exposition,
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Komatsu will present a range of its latest innovations, products and services. With more than 30 Komatsu machines displayed on an indoor 3200m2 stand in Hall 5B and its unique intelligent technologies demonstrated live on a 2500m2 outdoor area, it is bound to be a showstopper. Komatsu’s unique intelligent machine control technology will be on display with its automated tilt bucket, as well as a D61 PXi-24 dozer will be representative of the revolution that took the industry by storm in 2013, whose technology has now become a reference for customers worldwide. The latest Komatsu Intelligent Machine Control technology boosts the efficiency of Komatsu machines and places them among the most competitive in the world. 74 Industry Europe
Mini marvel Recently Komatsu announced the launch of its new PC80 MR-5 mini excavator, which offers superb design, excellent comfort and superior safety and performance. With an integrated and tight tailswing radius, a swing boom that hugs the machine and operating weights that range from 8000 to 8240kg, the new model is ideal for work in confined areas and urban environments. The new PC80 MR-5 is designed for improved versatility, manoeuvrability, comfort and the lowest possible operating costs. Komatsu’s ‘mini marvel’ offers reliable and tough design solutions that have yet further reduced machine downtime. The auto-decelerator and idle shut-down now both come as standard, and they
Automotive & Heavy Vehicles
help to reduce fuel consumption, increase residual value and provide much lower service costs. In addition, newly developed hydraulic electronic controls optimise machine performance and reduce fuel consumption and operating costs – whatever the task might be.
Focus on innovation “Komatsu high technology equipment is renowned for its productivity, reliability, economical operation, ease of use and safety,” said Mas Morishita, CEO and managing director of KEISA. “As leaders in the industry, both in action and in thought, Komatsu Europe follows our brand’s long-standing philosophy, with a constant focus on
innovation. We offer unique and unrivalled products, and provide top quality services to our customers to allow them to perform better and to achieve their goals.” Komatsu Europe is also the centre for Komatsu Europe Parts Operations (KEPO). A 60,000 m2 warehouse holds over 200,000 different references for Komatsu spare parts, which can be quickly dispatched to Komatsu distributors throughout Europe and other n world markets. For further details of Komatsu Italy’s latest innovative products and services visit: www.komatsu.eu
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Out in front
SOR Libchavy, a leading Czech bus manufacturer, has been a key player in its sector for over 25 years. Most of its buses are sold in the Czech and Slovak markets, but the company has a much wider, international reach. Focus on innovation, a ‘green’ operation and passenger safety and comfort are only a few of the attributes that have driven SOR’s success and growth.
OR Libchavy is the second largest manufacturer of buses and coaches in the Czech Republic with a long tradition of engineering production. In 1995 the company started to develop and make buses, launching its flagship urban low-entry buses in 2008. A year later, SOR won the biggest public tender for standard and articulated buses for the largest city bus operator in the Czech Republic, the Prague Municipal Transport company. Other prime customers soon followed, including the Arriva Group Czech and Slovak Republics, ČSAD Invest Group and Municipal Transport Bratislava.
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By the end of 2017, SOR Libchavy had produced almost 7700 vehicles, more than half of which were destined for the Czech Republic, and employed more than 650 people, making it one of the biggest employers in the region.
Eco friendly and efficient The company’s management pursues a long-term strategy of developing and manufacturing buses that are safe, eco-friendly and cost-effective. This is achieved primarily by the light vehicle
Automotive & Heavy Vehicles
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structure with maximum unification across all bus models. SOR operates a state-of-the-art plant equipped with the latest technology including polyurethane bonding, laser cutting and robotic welding. The company has been a holder of the 9001 ISO Quality Certificate since 2001. The SOR buses are continuously upgraded in terms of function and design, reflecting not just customers’ requirements but also rising safety standards and the need to improve passenger comfort. Currently SOR Libchavy manufactures buses of 8.5m, 9.5m, 10,5m, 12 m, 12.5m and 18m in length, designed for urban, intercity and long distance transport. They are equipped with engines meeting the EURO VI standards. The customer may select the type of drive – either compressed natural gas (CNG) or electric. Both auto-
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matic and mechanical gearboxes are available, as well as independent axles, retarders, disk brakes, air-conditioning and other features. The company has also developed two experimental hybrid buses. The key advantages of SOR buses include low unladen weight, low average fuel consumption (14.5 per cent lower than that of other vehicles on the market throughout the vehicle’s service life), higher specific output and effectively designed vehicle interior, including the driver’s cabin. All SOR buses are equipped with disk brakes on all axles. The lower part of the chassis structure is made from stainless steel profiles, and the body shell is made from plastic materials. Stainless steel materials are used for the bottom part of the bus at places most prone to corrosion (underneath the vehicle floor, step plates,
Automotive & Heavy Vehicles
area around wheels, etc.). Parts subject to external stress are supplied by manufacturers guaranteeing long service life, including in harsh conditions.
Steering forward About 40 per cent of the company’s total sales are generated in the export markets, particularly in Slovakia. Other key markets include Poland, Estonia, Russia, Denmark and other European countries. SOR has several distribution and service subsidiaries in Poland, Bulgaria and Slovakia. Last year, the company achieved another significant success abroad when it was awarded its biggest contract to date in the Bulgarian market, for the delivery of 27 new diesel buses for the town of Sliven within the ‘Integrated Municipal Transport Project’. The contract, worth €5.5
million, covers 21 40-seat buses and six 60-seat buses. SOR was the only company whose bid met all the tender requirements. Further afield, SOR also signed a contract for 400 buses to be delivered to Iran. The company’s local (i.e. Czech and Slovak) markets are also booming: early this year, the first four of 18 electric buses were delivered to Bratislava, with another 14 coming by mid-year, where they will replace diesel buses. More recently, the company delivered the first 20 NS12 electric buses to the Municipal Transport Company of Hradec Králové (Czech Republic) featuring full-body air conditioning, five-pole pantograph, WiFi and USB sockets. Given the trend in Europe towards smaller buses, particularly in the peripheries, it is a safe bet to say that SOR Libchavy is on its way to achieving its strategic goal of becoming a leading bus manufacturer in Europe, renowned for quality, reliability and customer friendliness. n
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At full speed The Japanese DYNAX Corporation completed a major investment in Hungary in 2016 to expand its European manufacturing base in response to increasing customer demands. Two years on, the company is doing better than ever before and further capacity extension is under consideration. Romana Moares reports.
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Automotive & Heavy Vehicles
ounded in Japan by Kazuma Adachi more than 60 years ago, EXEDY Corporation, formerly known as DAIKIN Manufacturing, is one of the world’s largest original equipment manual transmission and automatic transmission component manufacturers, supplying the leading passenger, light commercial, truck and motorbike makers. The company has two business segments. The portfolio of its manual transmission related segment includes clutch discs, clutch covers and two-mass flywheels, while the automatic transmission related segment provides torque converters and automatic transmission parts. The company supplies all Japanese, some European and some North American passenger and commercial vehicle manufacturers, and has developed a reputation for unrivalled quality and reliability. DYNAX Corporation, a fully-owned subsidiary of EXEDY, is the world’s largest wet friction material manufacturer. DYNAX produces and sells friction plates and other parts like reaction plates for passenger cars, trucks and heavy-duty vehicles. Its products support a wide range of worldwide OEM customers, including European
customers, in automotive power train, construction and agricultural vehicles. DYNAX is continuously engaged in the advancement of state-of-the-art wet friction technology for material development, process optimisation, and functional testing.
Modern manufacturing base EXEDY DYNAX Europe (EDE) based in Tatabanya in north-west Hungary, is the only European manufacturing base of the two Japanese companies. Executive vice-president Elza Saitova reported: “The Hungarian company was founded in 1993 by EXEDY as a small factory for manual clutch production to supply local OEM makers, employing less than 20 people. Since then, we have increased staff numbers ten times and substantially expanded our product portfolio and production capacity.” A major milestone came in 2015 when the company’s management announced its plans to expand production of DYNAX’s paper-based friction plates. The investment, worth HUF 7.3 billion, included the purchase of approximately 37,000 m2 of the surround-
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ing land, making the total area of the land 57,000m2, with sufficient space available for further expansion. The total area of the plant was extended to more than 12,000m2. The number of production lines increased to nine, boosting EDE’s friction plate manufacturing capabilities to 41 million units per year. The extended plant was commissioned in 2016, creating 150 new jobs.
Wet friction torque transfer Products from the Hungarian factory are mainly shipped to European manufacturers. The key product is the friction plate, which has different specifications to suit customers’ needs for torque transfer and fuel economy. Friction plates are used as torque transfer and braking devices in several applications including automatic transmissions, torque converters, AWD and 4-wheel drive couplings, and wet brakes. Reaction plates are used in conjunction with friction plates as the reactionary element. In addition to transmitting the reaction torque, they assist with absorbing heat as a result of speed change. DYNAX uses specially made high quality steel to ensure durability, and has several processes in place that control surface finish to maintain friction requirements. “The R&D facility is located in Japan and product innovation is one of the company’s priorities. The emphasis is always on supplying products that fully meet or exceed the customers’ requirements and needs. At the moment, the automotive market is still growing and is expected to do so for some time, which of course will boost our development,” Ms Saitova reflects.
New potential She further pointed out that although the company uses international suppliers that are approved for the whole group, localisation is also a big topic. Each year contracts are awarded to local suppliers, as long as they meet the requirements for quality, reliability and cost-effectiveness. 82 Industry Europe
However, as with most European manufacturers, the Hungarian plant does have to face the challenge of a lack of technically skilled people. “Attracting and retaining the right type of human resources is a critical aspect of any successful operation and admittedly an issue that we are dealing with on a daily basis. Particularly in the Tatabanya region with a lot of industrial manufacturers, it is the recruits who can afford to be selective, not the employers,” says Ms Saitova. Still, in terms of the plant’s development potential, prospects look good. “We are in negotiations with different customers about increasing the volumes, or potentially introducing new products, so another factory extension looks fairly likely. There is enough space here on our current premises and we believe that we will be able n support this development,” she concludes.
Construction & ENGINEERING
The right profiles Decco S.A., a company headquartered in Warsaw, is one of Poland’s leading producers of PVC profile systems for windows and doors. Dariusz Balcerzyk talks to Tomasz Janik, the company’s chairman, to learn more.
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understand the needs of window manufacturers very well, since we used to make windows ourselves. This way we learned how to make top-shelf profiles,” says Tomasz Janik, chairman of Decco S.A. – a company that is at the forefront of the Polish market when it comes to high-quality PVC door and window profiles. Initially, as Mr Janik has explained, the company was made window systems in-house. In 2004, however, it expanded its business operations with the production of profile systems. Two years later Decco sold the windows division of its business and focused on manufacturing PVC profile systems. Following this, the company developed dynamically and to become the biggest Polish producer of its kind. In 2017, it processed 17,000 tonnes of PVC. “Our products are appreciated by both woodworkers and final users of windows and doors. Our professional team, advanced machinery, continuous research and meticulous quality control along with the whole range of certificates and prizes make our PVC profiles the best brand ambassadors for Decco,” adds Mr. Janik. Decco employs 170 people, and its production facility, located in Suwalki district in north-east Poland, is highly automated; it is composed out of 12 modern production lines, research laboratories, a mixing room, logistics centre and high bay warehouse.
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Outward-looking Exports make up about 50 per cent of the company’s total sales. Its systems are present in around 30 European countries, mainly across central, eastern and southern Europe. Its products are also increasingly popular in western part of the Old Continent. Decco has even prepared a EURO+ profile system created specifically for window manufacturers who export their products to western Europe. The system is functional and easy to install, suitable for installation in old buildings. It has three types of renovation frames including one with central gasket, and a ‘French window’ style. “We are currently seeing a lot of interest in our products from such markets as Germany and France. In the future, we also plan to enter the US market,” says Mr Janik.
Range of profiles Decco adheres to the principle that the right windows and doors can only be made from the right profiles. Such profiles guarantee a window’s stability and durability, and protect a house from heat loss. Moreover, they act as a design feature. The company’s range of products includes a wide variety of profiles, starting from a ‘Decco 71’, which is functional, universal and elegant and can be made with a frame width of 81mm. The profile in the ‘Decco
Construction & ENGINEERING
Huzap - machines and devices of the highest quality Mixing line installation In the field of mixing line installation, Huzap offers a comprehensive range of new mixing lines, as well as the modernisation, reconstruction or extension of existing lines. Each of these installations is unique and suited to the customer’s local market conditions, their needs and required efficiency standards.
All plant components are process-controlled using the S7 controller and the WINCC visualisation program. In addition, all recipes, stock level of raw materials, working states of weights and mixer combinations are controlled via the Product Management System program. The control program varies for each individual installation, depending on the needs of the client.
In the field of PVC processing, any mixing plant (raw materials) can be divided into six segments:
When it comes to the raw material control system, there are customers who regularly change their prescription and are thus required to guarantee the high quality of their mix on an ongoing basis. For these, Huzap offers an automatic system cleaning module during the production of the last batch from each prescription and following its completion through the additional cleaning of filtration systems, emptying and cleaning of the mixer and Dryblend transport pipelines.
1. Storage, transport and weighing of the main raw materials, such as PVC powders and chalk. 2. A system for storing, dosing and weighing additives such as modifiers, plasticisers, etc. 3. Dosing the smallest additives (eg pigments through the system cassette dispenser), ensuring bags are precisely weighed before adding to the mixer. 4. Storage, dosing and weighing of plasticisers in the case of soft PVC production. 5. Combination of hot and cooling mixer. 6. Taking over the ready Dryblend PVC mixture and its transport for storage silos with or without homogenisation, to the BIG-BAG bag filling station, or for direct transport to the extruder halls. Huzap also works directly with the raw material when it comes to the installation of extruders using Dryblend PVC in the vacuum system. The offer also includes spiral conveyors with the possibility of adding regenerate and additional homogenisation of the weighing system when it comes to prescription, order number, extruder, etc.
Special performance For the second part of the process mentioned above – the storage, dosing and weighing of additives – Huzap also offers safer, explosion-proof versions.
Huzap’s offer also includes: For PVC processing, Huzap offers fully automated equipment for large tanks that meets all legal requirements: BIG-BAG bags, Octabin cartons or containers; products such as Dryblend PVC and various types of PVC granulates. In addition, it offers complete, automatic filling devices according to legal requirements, in open or vented bags for all types of PVC granulates.
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From left to right: Tomasz Janik, Kazimierz Janik and Wojciech Janik
82’ system is the perfect choice for those who seek the highest thermal performance to meet the latest building requirements, and excellent design at reasonable prices. ‘Decco 83’ is a profile with extreme thermal parameters. The third gasket and wide shaft packs with a warm frame make this profile second to none in the market. A wide range of glass packages are available, from 23mm to 54mm. ‘Thermicco’ is the best 8-chamber system on the market, with unmatched thermal insulation properties. Customers appreciate also the elegance of the profile.
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This product is recommended with 3-shaft packages. All systems are made from PVC in pure white. The company’s flagship product is the HST system. “We rolled it out this year. We offer two types of HST system: Decco HST 83 Panoramicco and Decco HST 100 Standard. The first is the one with the lowest HST leaf on the market. It causes visual lightness of the structure and more light inside. The second one is more similar to the systems already available on the market,” says Mr Janik.
Construction & ENGINEERING
Another new thing solution is the warm threshold – an entire door and balcony structure sealing system consisting of threshold profiles, drip caps, draught excluders and accessories. The shape of this product is modern and original.
Growth and development Decco’s development is based mainly on the company’s own resources. “We do not take loans, rather we finance our investments with our own funds. Only recently we have applied for funding from the European Union. This project is called ‘Competitive growth of Decco S.A. by enhancing the design management capabilities’ and is a part of the Eastern Poland Operational programme 1.4 ‘formula for competition’ – phase II. The aim of the project is to introduce a new range of PVC joinery profiles to Decco’s offering, characterised by a number of changes, including the introduction of the glazing bead profile and improved window profile construction. This new product is the result of recommendations contained in the Design Strategy developed by the Institute of Industrial Design. “To implement the suggested activities, we are verifying our existing product offer by extending profile systems that meet the requirements
of new legal norms for profiles and additional products, including glazing beads. We are developing new, distinctive products with innovative profile design,” explains Mr Janik. Decco has also implemented a project co-financed by the European Union under the Operational Programme Eastern Poland 2014–2020, called ‘Implementation of the R&D work results by launching the production of PVC profiles with increased operational and utility parameters’. “Ensuring our company has a reputation for offering solutions of the highest quality and reliability is one of our main goals. Hence, we place particular emphasis on research and continuous quality control. Besides constant monitoring of the production process by our integrated IT system, the highest quality standards are guaranteed by our laboratory, which controls the profile’s colour, impact resistance, thermal shrinkage and weld strength. Furthermore, our profiles are tested by independent laboratories in Poland and abroad. As to the above-mentioned project, this is concerned with carrying out investments in fixed assets to implement the results of our R&D efforts. The goal of the project is to achieve a significant competitive advantage and increase the company’s potenn tial by diversifying its commercial offer,” concludes Mr Janik. http://decco.eu
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Building on knowledge
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Construction & ENGINEERING
The Hungarian KÉSZ group has gradually grown from a family business to a holding company that is today present in many different sectors of the building industry in Hungary as well as in the surrounding countries. Due to its emphasis on quality and accuracy, KÉSZ has quickly built up valuable relationships with prominent car manufacturers whilst transforming its company structure to serve the relevant market needs. Edina Beale reports.
he KÉSZ Group is a Hungarian construction and business development company that has been in operation since 1982. The company was established by its current owner and managing director, Mr Mihály Varga. The firm today employs more than 1700 staff and achieves a turnover of around €200 million every year. Owing to its various subdivisions, KÉSZ is present on the market in many different sectors of the building industry; these include construction, production of building structures, property development, operation and maintenance, fleet management and environmental industry. The Hungarian firm is able to offer turnkey projects; from planning and design to implementation and operation, it is able to carry out the complete project using its own resources. KÉSZ has its own production capacities to manufacture steel in the Kecskemét factory and to produce reinforced concrete at its Szeged site. It also manufactures switch boards and metal sheet products to meet the needs of its partners. Nearly 80 per cent of its portfolio is for the private sector; around 20 per cent of its projects are governmental assignments.
lishment of Mercedes Benz in Hungary, these projects mainly included the production of technological structures and the export of building structures. When Mercedes announced it would be building a factory in Kecskemét in 2009, KÉSZ was the only fully Hungarian firm to take part in this huge building project. The company was contracted to construct the factory’s 30,000m2 lacquering plant and the car-body warehouse facility based on German design. KÉSZ managed to achieve such high levels of rationalisation
Building the Mercedes factory KÉSZ puts great emphasis on quality and accuracy. When it comes to the automotive sector, it understands international standards and health and safety regulations, making it the ideal partner for this industry. The group has been manufacturing steel structures for car manufacturers all over the world for the past 15–20 years. Before the estabIndustry Europe 91
during the preparation process that Mercedes saved significant time and money; as a result, it was also hired to build the main office too. From then on, work has been continuously coming in as KÉSZ has been able to provide a wide range of products and services for Mercedes needed during this serious development project. The Mercedes factory development was followed by Audi’s investment in Hungary, and once again KÉSZ was hired to demonstrate its skills and expertise in this major project.
Transforming to meet market needs KÉSZ has continuously transformed its company structure to meet market needs, and when orders began pouring in from abroad it has
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established foreign subsidiaries. Global automotive supplier Magna hired KÉSZ to carry out projects in Serbia and Russia, and then to build built two factories in Russia. In Szentgotthárd, the company built a production hall, a showroom and a testing track for Allison Transmission and completed an SMR factory in Mosonszolnok. Modine, Pepper&Fuchs, Continental and FCI also trusted its expert knowledge. Next, a new wave of orders came from tire factories, among them Hankook, Bridgestone, Apollo and MOL. The extensive experience and strong reputation KÉSZ has built up in the car industry has also served it well elsewhere. It was contracted to build half of the Lego factory in Nyiregyháza and new facilities for Procter & Gamble. It developed the SkyCourt for Budapest Airport, for
Construction & ENGINEERING
which it has also recently built a new passenger pier and rolling roads as well as repairing the runway and doing reconstruction tiling work at the T2 A terminal. But it is also clear that KÉSZ does not intend to rely solely on its automotive clients. It has established an innovation centre in Kecskemét and also serves the FMCG, logistics and municipal construction sectors in addition to its auto industry projects. Following its success in central and eastern Europe, KÉSZ has extended its
activities in western Europe, too. In 2016 it opened a Germany subsidiary, KEMAG Deutschland GmbH, as it expects to see dynamic development in this market in the next few years. At present, more than 15 per cent of the company’s turnover comes from its foreign subsidiaries, which is highly unusual for a Hungarian company in this sector. KÉSZ is proud of its skilled workforce and believes that the key to its success is its in-house expert knowledge, as reflected in n the motto: ‘We build on knowledge’.
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Construction & ENGINEERING
Petecki Group, headquartered in Lodz, Poland, is a leading European manufacturer of windows and doors that is setting new trends and standards in the woodwork industry. Dariusz Balceryk talks to Grzegorz Sałek, General Director of the group, to find out more about its products and services.
etecki was established in 1995 by Mr and Mrs Petecki. Initially, it was a small manufacturer of windows and doors; however, the owners’ intention from the beginning was to create a modern, innovative company that sets new trends and creates new standards in window and door joinery. In 2000 they erected a new production facility in Lansk, near Lodz, which is still the largest plant in the Petecki Group (since that time the group has grown by two more factories). The facility is also one of the most progressive in Europe. In 2001, the group’s total production reached 500,000 windows. The following years saw the growth of its distribution network as well as the expansion of its production profile with further plants. At the same time, it was gradually acquiring new certificates and prizes to confirm its high quality standards. Today, Petecki’s daily output is around 5000 windows. In addition, it manufactures doors, gates, façades and blinds. The group consists of four production plants, and more than 1000 qualified employees. Exports account for 80 per cent of total sales. Petecki windows are supplied to markets such as France, Italy, Germany, the
Czech Republic, Slovakia, South Korea and Sweden. The company’s know-how and the scale of its business ventures have enabled it to adapt to the specific market demands of any country.
Wide product offering The Petecki Group’s range of products is rich and diverse; however, PVC windows, aluminium windows and roller blinds are particularly popular with customers. Over the past few months, the company’s offer has been enhanced by two innovative products: windows coated with a unique Spectral coating; and the Excellent Line 76 MD windows that have set a new trend in glazing. Petecki’s PVC windows combine modernity, innovative design and elegance. They are characterised by safety, excellent energy efficiency as well as innovation and ease of use. Aluminium is one of the most durable building materials, being almost maintenancefree and highly insulating. Petecki’s doors, both PVC and aluminium, are also a perfect combination of aesthetic values and functionality, including excellent Industry Europe 95
thermal and acoustic insulation parameters, unique look, high quality and safety. PVC doors are designed for single-family housing, with an emphasis on energy-efficient and passive houses. Aluminium doors have excellent insulating and static properties. They guarantee unlimited possibilities for arranging and designing space. They are durable and resistant to most weather conditions. A wide range of colours, a multitude of compositions and original design ensure they can meet any architectural requirements. Petecki’s doors can also come with increased protection against burglary and greater resistance against unwanted external factors. Its anti-burglary products have the appropriate certificates to show that they have been subjected to specialised and precise anti-burglary tests. The group’s offer also includes specialised doors (such as fire doors) incorporating solutions from renowned system providers. The company is also a well-recognised producer of aluminium façade systems. Owing to the composition of aluminium, it is possible to create spatial structures of various shapes, which ensures high flexibility for investors and architects. The universal façade profile guarantees maximum light access and creates a unique atmosphere inside the building, as well as an elegant exterior appearance. Petecki can boast the widest offer on the market when it comes to the production of various types of gates, including segmented, industrial and garage gates. Their particular strengths include: cor-
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rosion resistance, unlimited choice of colours, modern and timeless design, convenient and simple operation, durability and reliability, safety and energy efficiency. Last but not least, Petecki is a manufacturer of exterior aluminium blinds. On hot days, these can prevent overheating of the rooms, and in winter they constitute an additional insulation barrier. They also provide privacy and can be a difficult barrier to uninvited guests. The blinds can be controlled manually or can be a part of integrated ‘smart home’ solutions.
Quality and excellence Quality and excellence are the driving principles behind the Petecki Group. This applies both to its product offering and its business partners. Safety and functionality are among the most important features of the company’s products. The use of high-quality materials and strict quality assessment tests allows it to launch products that fully satisfy the most demanding customers. The group cooperates only with trusted and renowned suppliers in the industry. Manufacturers of window profiles, suppliers of elements, sales partners – all are very carefully selected. These are companies with the highest technical knowledge, which all contribute to Petecki’s ongoing success. Visit: www.petecki.eu
Construction & ENGINEERING
Yawal S.A. Yawal S.A. is a leading supplier of architectural systems of aluminium profiles in Poland. It owns this position due to the rich experience from over 27 years of its existence, as well as a wide range of innovative solutions. Systems from our offer are environmentally friendly, energy saving structures intended for construction of windows, doors, facades, etc. Requirements for contemporary architecture are changing very quickly, that is why in addition to standard range of aluminium profiles in the company’s catalogue, Yawal S.A. also offers the possibility to create customized unique construction solutions, intended for implementation in commercial, industrial and residential buildings. The company’s systems are present in all European markets. At present, partners and clients of Yawal S.A. include several hundred domestic and foreign entities. The highest quality of the company products is ensured by great class team of specialist, as well as constantly upgraded and modern machine park of Yawal group. Our mission: ‘We create a beautiful and safe world with passion through comprehensive and innovative solutions’
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Piotr Szewczyk President of the Board
APS Energia, a company from Stanislawow Pierwszy, Poland, is a global designer and producer of uninterruptible power supply systems for industrial applications. Dariusz Balcerzyk talks to Piotr Szewczyk, chairman of the board, to find out more.
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Energy & Utilities
PS Energia SA, headquartered in Stanislawow Pierwszy on the outskirts of Warsaw, is a renowned manufacturer of a wide range of power applications used in the heating, oil & gas, nuclear energy, telecommunications, medicine and many other industries. It also implements the RTC (railway traffic control) power systems. Ensuring the reliability and stability of energy supplies is the company’s main goal. APS Energia was founded in 1995 by four graduates from the Warsaw University of Technology. “At that time, we had no money to develop the company. Our whole potential was the knowledge we had in our heads,” says Mr Szewczyk. “However, we were lucky enough to sign our very first contract with a customer from the Netherlands for the design of plasma power supplies. We were successfully selling this to the Netherlands, Germany, USA, Japan, Taiwan and other countries. Since then, we have recorded continuous growth and development, starting from the creation of new products, through implementation of new technologies, to building strong relationships with customers and expansion into new markets.”
Holding the power In 2007 the company focused on the production of uninterruptible power supply systems. Today, it has a 60 per cent share of the market in Poland. The APS Energia Group’s main customers are companies from the energy industry and oil & gas industry.
The group consists of eight companies, with APS Energia SA acting as its parent company, and ENAP SA (whose main activities are services for delivery, mounting works and commissioning of control & instrumentation systems) and six foreign branches (in Russia, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Ukraine, the Czech Republic and Turkey). The group employs 380 people, including 300 in Poland and 60 in Russia. Its entire production is carried out in three factories: two in Poland and one in Russia (located in Yekaterinburg). The group’s annual sales in 2016 were estimated as PLN 83.5 million (around €20 million), and net profits exceeded PLN 2.5 million (around €600,000). Exports make up 40–45 per cent of the group’s total sales. APS Energia’s foreign partners include the markets of eastern Europe (Russia, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Lithuania, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Georgia), the markets of the European Union (Czech Republic, Slovakia, Spain, Netherlands, Macedonia) as well as global markets (Saudi Arabia, Australia, Iraq, South Africa, Egypt, Kuwait).
Wide scope of services APS Energia offers emergency power systems and AC and DC receivers, rectifiers, uninterruptible power sources, inverters, frequency converters, active filters, power system surveillance systems and fuel cells. Devices manufactured by APS Energia use the latest technological solutions. These are converter systems based on IGBT technology, which is the most advanced technology for power transistors for processing energy. With full power
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rectifier systems, they are still used in the least unreliable SCR systems – thyristors. The use of proven signal processors and precise electronic components has allowed the company to create electronic control systems perfectly matched to the respective devices. The systems offered by APS Energia can be powered by different electricity sources, including chemical batteries, photovoltaic panels, wind turbines, fuel cells and other sources able to generate electricity. “The majority of our customers are those for whom a reliable operation and high technical parameters are top priorities. Among them are nuclear power plants in Russia, India and Ukraine. Our equipment for these nuclear power companies has excellent technical parameters,
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guaranteeing resistance to difficult conditions, both electromagnetic and external. High tolerance for electromagnetic interference and a specially designed reinforced enclosure with high seismic resistance are particularly important for this equipment,” explains Mr Szewczyk. “The emergency power systems offered by us ensure the continuity of production processes and the possibility of operation in the event of primary power supply failure. We help our clients to eliminate the risk of losses in this scenario. The best technical specifications, modern technology and innovative solutions keep us ahead of the competition, and enable us to achieve better results, where mass products have no chance to satisfy the customers. We provide emergency power systems tailored to the needs and expectations of the specific client.”
Energy & Utilities
APS Energia delivers its products to major international integrators, such as: Siemens, ABB or Gazprom’s subcompanies. In terms of the RTC power systems it supplies such rolling stock manufacturers as H. Cegielski. It is also proud of its long-term cooperation with two underground railway systems: the Warsaw Metro and the Moscow Metro.
Strongest resources “Our intellectual resources are our greatest assets. This is important as our plan is to be the number one company in eastern and central Europe in this highly specialised and sophisticated market,” says Mr Szewczyk.
To achieve this, APS Energia has developed a research and development centre. The cost of this investment exceeded PLN 25 million (about €600,000) and was co-financed by EU funds. The R&D centre investigates new technologies and develops new devices based on the latest scientific achievements. The company collaborates with the Warsaw University of Technology and other universities and research centres in Poland and abroad (including MIT). The high quality of APS Energia’s products and services is confirmed by internationally recognised certificates and meets the requirements of international standards of safety and electromagnetic compatibility, as well as the EU directives n (CE mark).
New Cut New Cut company was founded at the beginning of 2009 and is located in Warsaw, Poland. It was founded by people with many years of experience in the processing of sheets, tubes and profiles, such as: laser steel cutting, edge press bending, manual and automatic welding, application of varnish and anti-corrosion coatings. We work with international companies from the energy, railway and car industries. New Cut is accredited by TÜV SÜD ISO 9001: 2008, DIN EN 15085-2 CL1 and ISO 3834. We invite you to cooperate with email@example.com.
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Steinemann Technology is a global leader in the development and manufacture of high quality sanding machines and abrasives. Renowned for its innovative and groundbreaking finishing technologies, the company continues to lead the field in its chosen disciplines. In February this year Steinemann announced the expansion of its US headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina. Philip Yorke reports.
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Energy & Utilities
teinmann Technology finishes first when it comes to the art of producing innovative sanders, high quality abrasives and quality control systems. Founded in Switzerland in 1917, it is a global leader in the manufacture of sanding machinery for the panel industry and UV varnishing systems for the graphics industry. The company offers optimal finishing backed by its unrivalled experience and legendary Swiss Precision engineering. The Steinemann Group is headquartered in St. Gallen Switzerland and has major overseas operations in Asia, (Malaysia), China (Shanghai), South America (Brazil) and the USA (North Carolina). In addition, Steinemann operates regional offices in a further 42 countries worldwide.
Innovative varnishing systems Steinemann’s innovative varnishing systems and print enhancement equipment have captured the imagination of the printing and graphics industries. Whether it is for spot, full flood, varnish or foil finishing the company leads the field. This is also true when it comes to the manufacture of labels, brochures, posters, packages or any other printed materials. The company’s varnishing systems guarantee the highest quality, performance and efficiency. Its two different models cover a very broad spectrum of performance and applications. For example, the company’s dmax systems are advanced digital inkjet solutions for spot and relief varnishing and represent a milestone in the development of digital finishing, thus setting new standards in productivity and versatility. Capable of handling 10,000 sheets per hour, the dmax systems offer the ideal com-
plement to professional printers in all fields including web2print and book printing. Steinemann has over 40 years’ experience as a global leader in high-end finishing systems and has an enviable reputation for its innovation, consistent high quality and low maintenance products. These unique machines are the products of choice for printers worldwide. Even the compact entry-level model, the dmax 76c, is faster and more productive than any other system on the market. Steinemann’s state-of-the-art coating machine is the Colibri, which offers full-flood varnishing systems with a roller coater for high quality UV varnishing and is the result of decades of continuous development. This advanced system is capable of handling up to 12,000 sheets per hour for a wide range of applications including packaging and commercial printing. Due to their unique sheet cleaning unit, Colibri systems deliver constant, high quality and high gloss results, even with minimum varnish applications.
Global growth markets The global demand for composite panels continues to rise unabated and this is particularly true of the North American market. With several new generation mills due to open later this year, Steinemann has taken the opportunity to expand its US headquarters and warehousing in order to continue offering the most dedicated support for its customers in all aspects of their sanding operations. “We are unique in the industry, as we are the only sander manufacturer which can supply and support both the sander the abrasive consumables used in the process of manufacturing composite panels.
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GMO NORAM GMO NORAM Sp. z o.o is a family company, which was founded in 1994 and operates on the Polish and European foundry markets. We offer our clients a full range of services in the field of castings production from ferrous alloys and non-ferrous metals, starting from the development of foundry technology, to modelling and casting. We offer raw (unworked) castings as well as machined castings supplied as ready-made parts for assembly. Castings are made both manually and using machine-forming technologies. We specialise in making single castings, both small and medium series. Our cooperation with Steinemann began in 2004 and continues to this day. We mainly supply them with large grey cast iron brake discs and coupling halves made from spheroidal cast iron. All products for Steinemann are delivered fully machined, varnished and ready for assembly. Our cooperation with Steinemann is developing dynamically and we are currently their main casting supplier when it comes to the above products.
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Energy & Utilities
We are very pleased to announce the expansion of our North American headquarters and warehouse facilities. Our abrasive belt business has doubled in the past year, so the expansion of our warehouse will provide us with the opportunity to maintain a larger stock on-hand and to ensure that we continue to meet the needs of our many customers,” said Dan Murphy, President of Steinemann USA.
dredths of a millimetre. One of the key quality features of Steinemann drums is their special ultra-hard coating. The harder the coating, the n lower the wear – and the longer its service life. For further details of Steinemann’s innovative sanders and varnishing systems visit: www.steinemann.com
Partners in performance Over the years Steinemann has built up strong partnerships with other leading European companies, including SwissMEM, Schmid Rhyner AG, Kurz, and Sturm-sfs, among many others. Recently it announced a new addition to its carefully selected partners with Repserve S.A.S of Columbia, South America, as exclusive partners of Steinemann Technology sanders and abrasive consumables. “The timing in bringing an agent such as Repserve on is perfect. Our customer base continues to grow in South and Central America and being close to our customers is a key priority for Steinemann. Repserve is well respected in the panel industry and brings many years of customer knowledge and relationships,” commented Murphy. It was announced that Repserve will cover the countries of Guatemala, Honduras, Costa Rica, Panama, Ecuador, Peru, Venezuela and Columbia.
Unmatched surface quality Steinemann has always strived to achieve the highest possible standards when it comes to surface quality. The company’s contact drums in the calibration process are at the heart of its wide-belt sander. Even minor deviations in the rotational accuracy or balance of the drums can result in a critical impairment of surface quality. Therefore high quality precision engineering and sensitive balancing are essential. With speeds of up to 1500rpm, working widths of up to 3.3 metres and an output of up to 200kW per unit, the drums have to withstand very demanding parameters. This must be achieved without any vibration and at an accuracy level in the region of hunIndustry Europe 105
A taste for
healthy living The Vandemoortele Group is a European brand leader that manufactures and markets high quality food products. The company’s product portfolio includes margarines, oils and dressings, as well as pastry and patisserie products. Philip Yorke reports.
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andemoortele is a well-established family-run food group with Belgian roots and a European perspective. The company occupies a leading position in its two core business activities; bakery products and lipids. In 2017 it recorded revenues of more than €1.4 billion with over 5200 employees working in 35 production facilities and 17 commercial sites across 12 European countries. Vandemoortele is a premier household name in Europe with its margarines, oils, dressings, breads, donuts, pastries and patisserie products, which find their way into the lives of millions of people every day. The company manufactures and markets high-quality food products focused on its two main business sectors: frozen bakery products and margarines and fats (lipids). In the bakery products sector, the company offers a wide range of frozen bread products, pastries, American products and patisserie for professional users in the bakery and food service industries. This is in addition to supplying a wide range of food retailers, who rely on the high quality and convenience of Vandemoortele’s products. In Lipids, the company targets European professional users with a broad portfolio of products with exceptional taste and flavour. The company also appeals to European retailers with private label margarines and frying fats. In addition, it has a number of strong consumer brands of its own, including Vandemoortele, Vitelma, Diamant, Reddy and Gouda Glorie.
Cheery Chupa Chups launch Vandemoortele recently announced that it was partnering with another leading foods group, Perfetti Van Melle, in order to create a brand new range of donuts under the iconic international lollipop brand, Chupa Chups. The new product will leverage the sweet flavours of its lollipops, with the colourful and playful designs that are associated with the brand. These cheerful and fun donuts have just been launched in France, Belgium and the Netherlands, with other
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countries set to roll out later in the year. Once launched, the new donuts will be available across all major distribution channels, as well as online. The final agreement was brokered recently by Perfetti Van Melle’s brand extension agency, Beanstalk. Founded in 1958, Chupa Chups is an iconic brand that has become part of Europe’s popular culture. It is also globally renowned for its colourful imagery and unique flavour profile, which in turn lends itself well to brand extensions outside its core confectionery area. Marta Ballesteros, licencing area manager for Perfetti Van Melle, said, “We are very pleased to partner with Vandemoortele. We share the same values of product excellence and a dynamic approach to the market. This is a great project that will bring innovative new products across Europe and our loyal consumers will enjoy the sponge texture of the donut with the crunchy, Chupa Chups on top.” Vandemoortele’s licencing area manager, Eddy Van Blanken, said, “We are delighted to cooperate with Chupa Chups, whose fun and Colourful DNA and iconic taste gives us the opportunity to innovate in the donut market. We look forward to engaging our consumers with a unique combination of the well-known Chupa Chups flavours and delicious Vandemoortele donuts.” This important licencing agreement was brokered by the global branding company, Beanstalk, which is headquartered in New York and has regional offices worldwide. Beanstalk offers a broad range of consultancy services including brand representation, retail partnerships and creative services as well as legal and financial consultancy among many others.
Expanding own-brand options Tapping into the unrivalled experience and know-how of the Vandemoortele Group is something that more and more companies are considering. The company is able to compliment other brands with
Food and Beverage
innovative recipes and research options that can create exceptional products and greater operational production efficiency. As a leading European food group, Vandemoortele is fully aware of its important role in the procurement of raw materials such as palm oil. In 2009 the company became a member of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) and thus committed to source 100 per cent sustainable palm oil. It is also committed to using only traceable NDPE (no deforestation, no peat and no exploitation) palm oils in its supply chain. Being active in many different channels allows Vandemoortele to share knowledge and consumer insights that can result in fat-free alternatives that balance functionality, taste and healthier choices.
Progress in sustainable palm oil
the RSPO in 2009 it has used only certified RSPO palm oil for its own retail brands and many of its production sites have been certified using RSPO ‘Mass Balance and Segregated’ certified sustainable palm oil. In 2013, recognising the importance of traceability in helping to bring transformation in the palm oil industry, Vandemoortele also became a member of the French Alliance for Sustainable Palm Oil, and is an active participant in many other initiatives to promote the uptake of sustainable palm oil internationally. With a clear focus on improving its progress towards achieving its sustainability charter’s obligations, Vandemoortele’s latest report confirms that it reached 98.5 per cent traceability to mill level for all the palm oil it purchased in 2017. It will continue to work towards achieving 100 per cent of its palm oil volumes covered by suppliers committed to an NDPE policy (no deforestation, no peat, no exploitation).
Vandemoortele’s margarines, fats and frozen bakery products are sold by leading retailers and restaurants across the EU and as a privately owned business the company considers its values, including trust and integrity, as central to the way that it operates. Since becoming part of
For further details of Vandemoortele’s high quality consumer products and value-added consultancy services visit: www.vandemoortele.com
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Bacon king Tamási-Hús Kft in Hungary is a highly specialised company focusing on raw bacon, cooked belly and crispy bacon. Its wide assortment of products is distributed under the Gierlinger’s Premium Bacon brand across Europe. Due to its consistently high quality standards, Tamási-Hús has been leading the domestic market for many years and has become the Austrian Gierlinger Group’s top producer. Edina Beale reports. 110 Industry Europe
Food and Beverage
amási-Hús kft was established in Tamási, Hungary in 2005. The Austrian bacon specialist Gierlinger Holding Gmbh invested 1.5 billion forint to set up its second foreign subsidiary, which began production in 2007. It took a few years for the factory to build up sales but by 2010 it was ready to enlarge its capacity and increase production. In 2012 further investment was needed to improve facilities and TamásiHús has updated its technology to meet customer requirements and to achieve the expected growth. Thanks to these investments the factory
has greatly increased its domestic sales in 2013, and as a result of this achieved a 7.6 billion turnover, which represented 20 per cent growth compared to the previous year. Since then the company has seen steady development; its production site and office premises in Tamási have been extended and modernised to meet the need for increased production and growing staff level. At present Tamási-Hús employs around 250 people and has a 15.9 billion forint annual turnover.
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Premium products Owing to its outstanding product quality, Tamási-Hús has been a market leader in the bacon segment in Hungary for many years. Its management is committed to providing maximum quality starting from the raw materials and ingredients through to processing and packaging. The factory uses the best raw materials from foreign suppliers. In addition to German, Austrian and Polish meat the factory sources 10 per cent of its produce from the domestic market. The company puts a great deal of emphasis on maintaining its premium quality standards. Gierlinger Holding believes that in addition to outstanding taste the most convenient portion sizes and practical packaging are just as important when it comes to quality. The factory specialises in sliced and cubed bacon production, including smoked, smokedboiled and roasted varieties. Its speciality is the crispy bacon – produced by contact roasting technology that is mostly seen in burgers in fast food restaurants. Apart from its regular technological upgrades, Tamási-Hús is IFS and BRC certified and consistently applies the HACCP concept.
Strong support No doubt the clear direction and strong financial support provided by the parent company has greatly contributed to the success of TamásiHús. Headquartered in Ottensheim, Austria, Gierlinger Holding GmbH was founded in 2000 as a meat merchant wholesaler. The company sells its bacon and meat products through distributors in Europe and operates four production sites. Today Tamási-Hús Kft in Hungary is the top producer of the company’s crispy bacon products. The group established its first subsidiary in 2004 in Romania to produce Viennese products from chicken, turkey, pork and veal and various meat skewers. This was followed by the new venture in Hun112 Industry Europe
Food and Beverage
gary where production started in 2007. In recent years the group has opened two more sites. In 2016 a new production facility in Andorf, Austria was set up to manufacture Austria’s traditional pork Schnitzel. The factory uses Austrian pork loin, which is then breaded with flour, whole egg and breadcrumbs to taste like homemade Schnitzel. In May 2016 the Gierlinger group began operating on a 44,000m2 site in Serbia with a production area of 14,000m2. After one and half years of reconstruction and modernisation the Serbian subsidiary was implemented with the specialist technology to offer a wide product range including bacon, ham, sausages, spare ribs and spreads.
Good prospects Currently Tamási-Hús Kft exports 60 per cent of its production to the Scandinavian countries, UK, Germany, France, Italy and Austria.
Products are distributed to popular fast food chains such as Burger King, KFC and renowned supermarket chains including the Rewe group, Auchan, Metro, Spar and Lidl. Its emphasis on modern technology and the financial support of the parent company will enable Tamási-Hús Kft to maintain its high quality standard and extend its product range. Mr. Johann Gierlinger, owner of the Gierlinger Holding GmbH, sums up the company’s aims and objectives for the coming years: “We are continuously investing into new technologies in order to modernise our production and increase our capacities. At present we are extending our production hall and office facilities as well as building social facilities for our staff at our operation in Tamási, Hungary. We aim to achieve growth in our existing markets and intend to launch new products in the n near future.”
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Hoods and hobs for
classy kitchens Akpo is Poland’s leading manufacturer of kitchen hoods and hobs. Next year, it will celebrate its 30th anniversary, as Dariusz Balcerzyk reports.
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Home Electronics, Appliances & HVAC
kpo has been operating on the Polish market since 1989. Initially, it manufactured hoods in its premises in Izabelin, a small village on the outskirts of Warsaw. These hoods were made only for local customers; however, the political and economic transformations that took place in Poland at the turn of the 1980s and 1990s created an extremely favourable opportunity for the company’s dynamic development. Removing the barriers to international trade has given Akpo a chance to go forward and compete on foreign markets. The company made the most of this opportunity and has achieved international success. Today, Akpo sells the most advanced kitchen products to more than 30 countries around the world. Its products are available, among other places, in Germany, France, Russia, Ukraine, the Czech Republic and central and eastern Europe. It has also entered such markets as Scandinavia, where it debuted as an equipment supplier to some of the largest store chains there. In addition, it has recently seen a significant increase in sales in the Benelux countries (Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg). As a result, the company’s production in 2017 increased by 20 per cent compared to the previous year. Office and production plant is located in the village of Sonsk near Ciechanow in northern-central Poland. Today, its production plant
covers an area of 5 ha; warehouses, paint shops and production halls cover a total area of more than 10,000m². Akpo employs almost 300 highly skilled people, many of whom have been working for the company from its very beginning. They supervise each step of the product development process. It all starts with market research, the results of which are transmitted to the R&D department. It is there that modern design is combined with innovative technology. The final stage is serial production, which is preceded by numerous tests conducted both at its in-house laboratory and at certified external specialist centres.
Investing in growth Akpo is constantly investing in its own development. In the last two years, impressive production halls, a laboratory, a design office as well as new warehouses and a logistics department have been put in place. The hoods and hobs are made with the use of a worldclass specialised equipment (press brakes and punching machines, laser cutting machines or 3D welding robots). Certainly, it is not only about cost reduction, but about maintaining 100 per cent quality control over the finished product and, thus, over service costs. The company has a range of more than 100 standard forms, from which it produces ready-made plastic components. It has
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just purchased a new machine for grinding the hoods and is planning further investments in the machinery park at the beginning of 2018. This will allow it to increase production by a dozen or so per cent once again. In 2018 Akpo production is set to go up to 400,000 units of hoods and several thousand hobs.
Vast range of hobs and hoods Currently, the company produces about 100 versions of hoods in different colours and sizes. Its vast range of products includes chimney hoods, traditionally located directly above the stove, in the heart of the room. This is why it is so important for these products to be not only
BELTRADE Sp. z o.o. Today’s business environment requires the ability to effectively work with suppliers around the globe while minimizing response time, inventories, and risk. Unfortunately, many factors such as language, government regulations, cultural differences and costs make finding and managing a global network of suppliers a difficult task. BELTRADE specializes in eliminating these barriers and finding suppliers that can offer you a competitive advantage. We support our clients to reach their targets, we take care of Supply Chain, we create partnerships, we study the market and commercial strategies. Through our network we are able to introduce and evaluate the best suppliers for our clients. We take care of every phase of sourcing process, from research to negotiation, from assessment to mass production
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functional but also aesthetically pleasing to users. Akpo also makes island hoods, which are some of the most important elements of the modern kitchen. Economy hoods are the proof that high quality can go hand in hand with efficiency. Free standing hoods (also called builtin hoods) are designed to be mounted under or directly inside kitchen cabinets. They are a perfect solution for rooms with little space. Akpo also manufactures ceramic hobs, which are easy to use and are characterised by aesthetic appearance and low power consumption. The company’s induction hobs are safer, more efficient and faster than traditional stoves. Akpo cooperates with many partners, which contribute to the innovative character of the company. This approach translates into successes and business opportunities for all partners taking part in this cooperation. For example, the new production halls were supplied with the latest German machines, known for their quality and reliability: a laser cutters, press brakes and fully automated injection moulding machines for producing plastic components. Akpo’s priority is maintaining the highest quality production standards at all times. To achieve this, the company takes advantage of the experience and expertise of its team, along with innovative solutions and cutting-edge technologies used in the process of production. Its products meet all the requirements of EN ISO 9001:2000 standards, and each of the hoods coming off the line has the ‘CE’ mark, meaning they can be sold both within the Euron pean Union and beyond. www.akpo.pl
WUTKOWSKI Sp. z o.o. S. K. Wutkowski’s experience in glass production and processing dates back to 1997. Our company’s main priority is continuous investment in the latest technological solutions from the world’s leading brands. Thanks to this strategy, our stateof-the-art machine park, combined with the skills of our experienced employees, allows us to offer the highest quality product that distinguishes us from the standard solutions offered on the European markets. We provide glass components to companies from the furniture, construction and architectural woodwork industries. Our recently-installed laminating line has enabled us to expand our circle of customers in the construction industry. Furthermore, we do not forget our retail clients who are looking for oftencomplex bespoke solutions. Since 2009, we have been constantly developing our production of glass components for the needs of the home appliances industry. On the European market, our products are distinguished by their quality, durability and colour stability. It is these features that have enabled us to become a long-term, reliable partner to Akpo. Over the years of our cooperation, we have been able to discover new opportunities together, and thus broaden our horizons.
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Budding genius Jabra is part of the GN Group and a global leader in the development and manufacture of communications and sound solutions. The company’s broad product portfolio includes sports ear buds, corded and wireless headsets as well as portable and use-in-office speakerphones. Philip Yorke reports on a company that is maintaining its pole market position through the constant development of innovative products that not only meet, but exceed market demands. 118 Industry Europe
he Jabra Corporation is a subsidiary of GN Netcom, which has its roots in the Norcom Electronics Corporation of America, founded in 1983 by entrepreneur Elwood Norris. In 2006 GN Netcom consolidated its contact centre and office headset division under the Jabra Brand and this was followed by the restructuring of the company in 2008. This strategic move resulted in a greater focus on business-to-business and consumer markets, respectively. Today the company continues to focus on new product development, innovation and investment in new technology. This focus has helped the company to build upon, and extend its lead in the headset marketplace. Jabra’s head office is located in Copenhagen, Denmark from where it manages its diverse global operations.
Home Electronics, Appliances & HVAC
Total solutions In March 2018, Jabra expanded its Elite product range franchise. This is a leading range of headphones and earbuds engineered for superior sound and designed to combine the best voice and music experience. These unique neckband and wireless earbuds are engineered to provide two levels of noise cancellation including Jabra’s leading ‘Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) solution, thereby challenging existing earbud solutions currently available on the market. The Jabra Elite 65e offers pure conversation quality with its three-microphone technology that creates a highly efficient noise-blocking zone, ensuring that the user’s voice is conveyed with crystal-clear clarity. Drawing on the GN Group’s unrivalled audio, headset and hearingaid expertise, the Elite franchise is engineered to meet the needs of those users looking not only for outstanding music quality and voice capabilities, but also for people who are using voice assistants. With the latest Elite 65 the user can instantly connect to Alexa, Siri®, or Google Assistant™, thereby providing instant access to the information needed, whether it is for setting appointments, finding nearby events or having messages read back to the user. Furthermore, Bluetooth 5.0 allows consumers to seamlessly connect the earbuds to a smartphone. This device can be used all day, wherever it may be located, and provides a battery that lasts up to eight hours when using ANC, and an amazing 13 hours without it. The senior vice-president at Jabra said, “The Jabra Elite 65e is perfect for the on-the-go user that wants all levels of invasive noise blocked out, thus allowing great conversations and music. We are well-known for our
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advanced noise cancellation capabilities in the enterprise scene, and it is this professional engineering that allows us to offer an unrivalled solution for consumers.”
Evolving innovation Earlier this year, Jabra announced the launch of its Evolve 75e range, the world’s first professional UC-Certified wireless earbuds. The company has been a pioneer in sound for around-the-neck wireless earbud design in the workplace. The new product’s Active Noise Cancelling (ANC) and ‘busy-light’ technology, allows users to fully concentrate at work. This new edition to the market-leading Evolve range of headsets for professional use is Skype-for-business certified and offers up to 14 hours of battery life on a single charge. Recent research has revealed that the majority of today’s ‘flexible’ workers (78 per cent) say that their personal productivity at the office is impacted by noise and interruptions. The new product is the ultimate business tool for both sound and freedom, thus helping to maintain collaboration, concentration and productivity in busy, open plan offices without the need for designated quiet rooms. In addition, the Jabra Evolve earbuds have smart controls for work and play. Five buttons allow for quick control of calls and music, including a smart button for one-touch access to all major virtual assistants, including Siri, Google Now, Cortana and Bixby. The vibrating neckband also gives silent notifications to make sure that users don’t disturb others and that incoming calls are never missed. “The Jabra Evolve 75e delivers professional quality sound for calls and music that lasts as long as you need in a wireless earbud design. These first professional UC-Certified wireless earbuds meet the needs of today’s mobile, and increasingly connected worker, who demands the same user experience from both consumer and professional solutions,” commented Holger Reisinger, SVP at Jabra. 120 Industry Europe
A fitness tracking ‘first’ Not long ago, Jabra announced the launch of its next generation of wireless sports headphones with a fitness tracking feature – a world first. The company unveiled its Jabra sports pulse and Jabra Sport Coach special editions with improvements in fit, sound, durability and a range of other smart new sports features. Just like the company’s existing line-up of Jabra sports headphones, the new editions offer quality calls, music for motivation and intelligent in-ear coaching to help enhance training effectiveness. In addition, these next generation versions deliver innovation in all areas, with passive noise cancellation, a broader choice of fitting options, improved durability and n many other unique, intelligent sports features. For further details of Jabra’s latest innovative products and services visit: www.jabra.com
Driving forward EU
plastics initiatives Whirlpool is a valued brand worldwide and has long been recognised for its commitment to protecting the environment. Today Whirlpool Europe is spearheading the drive to reduce waste and boost the uptake of recycled plastics. Philip Yorke reports on the new developments that are setting an example to all manufacturing industries worldwide, including Whirlpool’s recent acquisition of the Indesit brand.
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he Whirlpool Corporation was founded in the US in 1911 and has since had a major influence on improving the lives of millions of families worldwide. Innovation and a number of strategic acquisitions have driven the company to the number one spot in the development and manufacture of energy-saving home appliances. One of the most important of these was the purchase of 60 per cent of the shares in the Indesit company of Italy for €1 billion in 2014. In December 2017, Whirlpool completed a successful mandatory tender offer for the remaining shares and delisted Indesit from the Italian Stock exchange. As a result, Indesit is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Whirlpool Italia Holdings SrI. Indesit remains one of Europe’s flagship companies, employing over 17,000 people and with revenues of more than €3 billion. Founded in 1975 by Vittorio Merloni, it was listed on the Italian stock exchange in 1986. Today the Whirlpool Corporation is a true global player and features in the Fortune 500. It is also one of the world’s largest and most successful companies, employing around 100,000 people, with revenues of over US$ 21.25 billion.
New recycling pledge On 5 June this year, Whirlpool EMEA announced it had successfully responded to the EU Commission’s invitation to come forward with voluntary pledges on reducing plastic waste and boosting the uptake of recycled plastics. This latest EU initiative is included in the wider Plastics Strategy adopted by the European Commission in
January 2018, which aims at promoting a more circular economy and greater protection of the environment. The objective is to ensure that by the year 2025 ten million tonnes of recycled plastics find their way into new products on the EU market. In this context, the company has decided to work with its industry partners to ensure the adoption of recycling solutions for components for washing machines, refrigerators and dishwashers in the coming seven years. This pledge also includes the use of polypropylene with mineral filler and polystyrene, in compliance with the ROHS and REACH regulations. The new, voluntary pledge by Whirlpool comes along with the celebrations of the World Environment Day, which this year is dedicated to the global cause ‘Beat Plastic Pollution’. The goal is to protect the environment while at the same time laying foundations for a new global plastic economy.
Award winning Edge Whirlpool has recently been honoured with the ‘2018 Digital Edge 50 Award’, from IDG Enterprises. This prestigious award is a recognised honour of digital innovation. Through digital technologies such as mobile, analytics, AI and the Internet of Things, award winners see business results that indicate a true ‘Digital Edge’. Selected by a panel of industry experts and business technology executives, winning applications are driving greater customer engagement, higher sales conversions and new products, as well as revenue and profit growth.
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ROLD Leader manufacturer of components for household appliances, ROLD has been an international point of reference for over fifty years and is today recognized among the most important producers for its high quality components, entirely manufactured in Italy. The product portfolio of Rold includes electrical appliances such as closing devices, door safety locks, switches and push-button panels designed for the Home and Professional Appliance market (washing machines, dishwashers, tumble dryers, fridges and ovens, coffee machines..). Around 10% of our turnover is re-invested in research, oriented towards the newest materials and technologies, such as Connected and Smart Devices, IoT and HMI. With know- how and efficiency Rold is proudly supporting worldwide Whirlpool, one of our most important and strategic customers, ready to join efforts to face the future together.
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The Whirlpool Cloud Project, launched in 2016, will allow the company to deploy connected products around the globe, delivering advanced appliance features more quickly by reducing digital capability cycle times. From leveraging over-the-air automatic updates to products that cook based upon information provided via the barcode on a packaged food item, the Internet of Things has introduced a new digital dimension to the company’s traditional home care products. “We are honoured to be recognised for bringing consumerfocused innovation to our products, simplifying the lives of our customers,” said Mike Heim, corporate vice-president and global chief information officer at Whirlpool Corporation. “With a quickly expanding portfolio of connected products, we saw the need for a secure technology platform solution that could keep pace with innovating for what really matters in day-to-day life, allowing consumers to personalise their in-home experience in a way that helps them care for their families. We are proud of this project and the team behind it.”
“The new advertising aims to be thought-provoking but also warm and empathetic. Family life is changing and we want to demonstrate that Indesit is a brand that understands the daily challenges facing our consumers and offering real solutions to help them succeed,” commented n Alexandra Rusu, head of marketing Indesit Brand EMEA. For further details of the latest Whirlpool products and its digital technologies visit: www.whirlpoolcorp.com
Togetherness Over the past year Indesit has been making a powerful stand on the issue of sharing domestic labour more fairly with its compelling ‘doittogether’ campaign. While society has made great strides forward in equal rights, housework remains an area where there is still a huge distance to travel. The hashtag #doittogether has demonstrated that Indesit is a brand with truly authentic purpose and has proved to be a major success at bringing the company closer to its consumers. In addition to capturing the consumer’s imagination, it has aligned the Indesit brand and products with an attractive and progressive vision of family life. Next year Indesit will continue to aim to get families thinking about how fairly they share the chores and the steps they can take to make a change for the better.
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Polish company Growag, based in Grodzisk Wielkopolski, is a manufacturer of railway passenger seats and shock absorbers. In 2017, it celebrated its 45th anniversary. Mr Marek Stein, Growag’s president of the board, talks to Dariusz Balcerzyk about how the company has developed during these years, where it is now and where it will be in the future.
rowag was founded in 1972. From the very outset, it has been manufacturing passenger seats for railway cars and shock absorbers for railway car bogies, and special appliances, as well as providing a wide range of services for the railway and other industries. The company has seen dynamic development in the last few years. “Nowadays we are proud to be a respected player in the railway market in Poland and abroad. Our efforts and even sacrifices contributed to creating a modern enterprise that has earned the trust of its customers, to whom we can offer products of highest quality,” says Mr Stein. Today, Growag employs more than 120 people. All production is carried out in its Grodzisk Wielkopolski factory, which is in western Poland, some 20 minutes away by car from the A2 highway to Germany. In recent years, the company has experienced significant annual growth: production volumes were up by 29 per cent in 2017 compared to 2016. Exports are a very important part of Growag’s total sales, with the Czech Republic, Belarus, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Hungary, Romania, Italy and Ukraine its main foreign markets.
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“Actually, we are just building our strong position on foreign markets, especially in western Europe. The main problem we face with exports does not lie in the quality of our products, which is very high, but in how to convince customers from western Europe to establish cooperation with a company from Poland, since they are used to cooperating with large, global companies. Therefore, we must work much harder than our competition – and we do. Our plan is to increase the share of the exports in the next few years by up to 50 per cent of our total sales; by 2021–2023 we intend to be one of the leading European producers of railway seats,” points out Mr Stein. “Growag is a leading supplier of passenger seats and shock absorbers, meeting the strictest quality standards for high technology products and services. We hold an ISO 9001:2015 certificate and successfully implemented the requirements of PN-EN 15085-2:2007 standard, level CL1, which is an excellent proof of the skills and unique performance of our specialists. In 2015 we also received the Quality of the Year award in the product category for our Xeon seats. In 2013 Growag was certified by IRIS.”
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Growag delivers its products to all major rolling stock manufacturers, including Stadler, Siemens, Newag, Pesa, FPS, Hyundai Rotem, CAF, Solaris, Grivita and many others, as well as its own customers.
Classy seats Growag specialises in manufacturing upholstered passenger seats for both 1st and 2nd class rail cars for long-distance travel, including sleeping cars. It has around 48 per cent of Poland’s railway passenger seats market and is an undisputed leader in the regional transport segment. Regional transport is the fastest growing segment of the railway market. As a complement to its IC compartment car furnishing, Growag manufactures seating solutions for business class compartments, ensuring perfect travelling conditions for business clients and facilitating business meetings or work on the move. For its products,
Growag guarantees high durability, perfect ergonomics and compliance with the strictest fire safety standards. “Our seats offer the highest travelling comfort with additional features such as seat cushion and backrest adjustment (horizontal and angle). All our products follow the latest trends and are based on customers’ requirements. We also offer special versions for carriages with or without compartments. In addition, we propose light and ergonomic passenger seats dedicated to electric multiple units, rail buses or metro carriages. Our innovative product line comprises beds and couches for sleeping cars on long-distance trains,” adds Mr Stein. The XEON line of seats, used for regional railways, represents one of the company’s flagship products. It’s Growag’s bestseller. The main advantages of this type of seat are its high quality and wide variety, meeting all clients’ expectations.
Geo Globe Polska Geo Globe Polska are one of the leaders in the international market using the technology of vacuum thermoforming. We use for the production material ABS, PE, PS, PP, PMMA, PC. The thermoforming technology used in our company enables the production of high quality details and repeatable shape. We produce different types of packaging solutions and separators for transportation, medical and building equipment covers, complete car bodies and internal fittings vehicles. Special products are parts of internal linings and seats for public transport produced in thermoforming technology. These parts are made of special materials.
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Shock absorbers Growag is also one of Poland’s leading manufacturers of shock absorbers, which comply with the highest quality standards. These are designed for use in passenger rail carriages, electric and diesel multiple units, locomotives, metro trains and tramways. In addition, Growag provides maintenance services for nearly all types of shock absorbers. The majority of passenger rail cars, locomotives and tramways used in Poland feature Growag products. The company’s hydraulic shock absorbers are available in single- and double-action versions. The orientation on rail car trucks can range from vertical to any angle up to 70° from the vertical. The additional shock absorber dome enables horizontal installation. Mr Stein concludes: “Railway seats are very complicated constructions, as ergonomics and strength and are subject to very
restrictive regulations – for example in terms of fire regulations. Thanks to their innovative design, our sets allow us to mount more seats in the units and reduce the total weight of the vehicle at the same time. Each seat is manufactured with special attention to all those details that make traveling so much more comfortable and enjoyable. Moreover, XEON seats can be customised according to customers’ specific requirements. We are working on a project for modern premium segment seats, which is co-financed by EU funds. The new seats will be launched at the end of 2018. Our additional advantages are flexibility and customer-oriented approach, rapid model-based prototyping and development, competitive price/quality n ratio and timely implementation of projects.” http://www.growag.pl
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Innovation in transportation In recent years, transport and logistics companies have had to keep pace with significant technological changes. The Waberer’s Group is not only a key transport road operator in Europe, but is leading the way in innovation, too. Regular fleet extension and the implementation of the latest IT solutions are now necessary investments in order to achieve efficient operation and sustain growth. Edina Beale reports.
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he Waberer’s Group made a huge step forward in 2017 when it successfully completed one of Hungary’s biggest stock market entries. Following this, it used the capital derived from the sale of stock to acquire the Polish road transport company Link and began the integration process as part of its strategy to achieve growth in the European market. In addition to this, new technological solutions have been introduced that have enabled Waberer’s to use their resources more efficiently.
Winner of SAP Innovation Award The Waberer’s group implemented the SAP business operation system in January 2017 in order to replace the previously used Oracle system. As a result of this investment, the management of
the firm’s 56 subsidiaries has become much more efficient and, thanks to the big data technology the business decision process has been significantly accelerated. This innovative investment has provided the basis for Waberer’s current vehicle fleet of 4300 trucks and enabled more efficient management of the financial and purchasing processes. A year after the implementation, Waberer’s received the SAP Innovation Award for the extensive modernisation of its management system. The company regularly tests and uses the latest innovations for international logistics. On many occasions the group has introduced its own system developments to optimise resources while continuously modernising its business information systems and transferring these professional systems onto SAP elements. This has led to more
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efficient business operations and increased the company’s competitiveness. Waberer’s is the first Hungarian company in history to win such high profile recognition from SAP.
The youngest vehicle fleet in Europe In addition to developing its own innovations, Waberer’s is also very keen to take part in its partner’s research and development activities. It has, for example, made successful tests in the area of truck platooning and tested intermodal freight transport using multiple modes of transportation. Furthermore, the Waberer’s group operates the youngest and most environmentally friendly vehicle fleet in Europe. In early 2018, HUF 19 billion was invested into the extension and modernisation of its international fleet park headquartered in Budapest. The company has signed contracts with four manufacturers to deliver more than 1000 vehicles in 2018. DAF and Volvo will manufacture 700 semitrailers, while 384 truck trailers will be delivered to Waberer’s by Kögel and Schmitz before October this year. The selected Euro 6-C emission trailers are powered by the new generation of diesel engines. These vehicles are equipped with highly innovative ideas that make the driver more comfortable and the journey safer. These extras include parking heater and parking cooler, adaptive and predictive cruise con132 Industry Europe
trol and lane departure warning system. Since Waberer’s modernises its vehicle fleet every year, it always meets environmental requirements with regards to carbon dioxide emissions. Significant emphasis is also placed on using the most modern on-board computing and fleet management tablet. Waberer’s has recently purchased the best working tablet available on the market today when it purchased 3100 DriverLinc Lights from Astrata.
International acquisitions In addition to organic growth, the company has been gradually increasing its international outreach through acquisitions. In addition to last year’s Link acquisition, in 2014 the company established a subsidiary in Suffolk, England. Waberer’s has been serving the British Isles and continental Europe for decades, with an ever-increasing market share. Six months before Waberer’s UK was established a similar company began operation in France, near Paris. Waberer’s International Pte.Co. has established local companies in Europe’s most important trade hubs, in the proximity of its customers, while also increasing the number of employees at Waberer’s Deutschland, Waberer’s Polska and Waberer’s Slovakia, which are already in operation. These sites refine the Waberer’s service portfolio in order to completely satisfy the country-specific needs of customers.
Logistics & Transport
Winning strategy According to Ferenc Lajkó, chief executive of Waberer’s International Zrt, there is no need to change a winning strategy: “In 2017 we successfully introduced new information technology solutions, which enabled us to use our resources more efficiently. At the same time we continued our collaborations with our partners in order to test and implement new technologies in our operations. “I am certain that it will be the right strategy for Waberer’s to continue to focus on our competitive advantages based on our size and efficiency, whilst opening up the technology based operations and aiming to lead the way in the consolidation of the industry. In 2018 we will continue our efforts to integrate into the Polish market and we intend to extend our vehicle fleet there by a three-digit number. At the same time, we plan to make more acquisitions in order to extend our contract logistics services segment. In addition to this, we will continuously make efforts to extend our information technology and other operational systems in order to further increase our n efficiency and profitability.”
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Since 2010 the Hungarian Railway Company has gone through a dynamic development – its passenger capacities, customer service and economic strength have been greatly enhanced. Now the MÁV group is preparing for the domestic passenger market opening in 2023 by modernising its fleet with its own design of IC+ rail coaches while focusing on passenger comfort. Edina Beale reports.
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he primary body of the state-owned Hungarian Railway Company, MÁV group has been playing a significant role in the Hungarian society and economy for one and a half centuries. In 2011 the Hungarian Parliament signed a long-term public utility contract with the MÁV group that enabled the company to maintain a steady operation and provided the opportunity to achieve the goals set in its mid-term strategic plan. The Hungarian government’s railway strategy has brought success in recent years, with its focus on railway reconstructions, vehicle modernisations and new DMU purchases. According to statistics the number of passengers is growing in Budapest’s suburbs and the focus will remain on the suburbs to improve customer services by operating the modern DMUs and keeping convenient timetables. By the end of 2017 the MÁV group has managed to reduce its previous 300 billion forint debt stock to 50 billion forint. The Hungarian government has promised to increase the salaries of railway workers by 30 per cent between 2017 and 2019 – in 2017 the Hungarian railway workers received a 13 per cent pay rise, and this year their salaries are expected to increase by an additional 12 per cent. In accordance with the three-year agreement in 2019 a further 5 per cent pay rise is expected. In addition to its improved performance, MÁV Zrt has achieved considerable success with its reconstruction programmes and has won prestigious awards for its outstanding industrial design in railway architecture. In 2014, the company won the Brunel prize for reconstructing the Budapest-Újszász railway line’s rail stations and in 2017 it received the Pro Architectura prize in the building category for its high quality architectural development activity in railway development projects.
in the Budapest suburbs. The busiest railway lines, in which trains are expected to carry around 600 passengers in rush hours, will be replaced by large capacity DMUs that will provide a total of 22,800 seats by 2025.
New InterCity family range In recent years MÁV-Start has been working on a massive project in their Szolnok site to manufacture new generation railway coaches. The new InterCity passenger vehicle family range, named IC+, is designed and developed by the company’s own engineers. The product comprises 53,000 parts and its manufacturing process requires 5500 working hours. The very first product of this new family range, which is suitable for international transportation, will be completed this summer. Relying on the close cooperation of 250 professionals and engineers and the same number of subcontractors, the company plans to manufacture 20 of these new coaches by the end of 2018 and intends to assemble another 70 IC+ for domestic transportation. Three quarters of these 70 vehicles will be assembled in 2019 and the rest will follow in 2020.
Focus on passenger comfort The new fleet is expected to attract passengers as IC+ carriages are practical and comfortable, while some are family friendly and wheelchair accessible. Premium cabins will also be available for people who wish to travel in peace and quiet. Ten of the coaches that will travel abroad are second-class and could travel at 200km/h and ten coaches are accessible by
Preparing for market opening Currently the MÁV group, together with its 30 affiliates, operates most of the public railway network in Hungary, around 7000km of railway line. It manages the country’s most significant railway stations and most train stations too. However, in accordance with the fourth railway package set by the EU, from 2020 and from 2023, EU members must gradually open their domestic railway passenger market. From then on foreign state companies and private firms can compete for domestic contracts with MÁV Zrt. MÁV-Start Zrt, the passenger transport division of MÁV Group, is aiming to increase its seat capacities by 7.6 per cent by 2025 Industry Europe 135
wheelchairs or have many different room functions, while travelling a maximum speed of 200km/h. The second-class coaches have already been approved by the railway companies of Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Austria, Germany, Slovenia, Switzerland, Poland and Romania, with other permissions due to be authorised soon. Needless to say, all coaches are also air-conditioned. The energy required to operate laptops and mobile devices is provided by electric and USB connectors and wireless internet access is available. The audio-visual passenger information system on board is operated by a GPS system and provides passengers with up-to-date information about the train’s position while camera surveillance ensures their safety.
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Due to the continuous railway line reconstructions in Hungary, many important lines are now suitable for 160km/h speed of travel and therefore domestic transportation will be able to use these new models. As the number of IC+ coaches being manufactured increases, MÁV will gradually extend its IC network in order to involve more and more areas in the high quality railway service. As a result of recent investments it is possible that MÁV-Start will manufacture 40–50 IC+ coaches every year and therefore will start replacing outdated vehicles with these new ones to improve passenger comfort. MÁV-Start intends to continue the serial production of the IC+ coaches as it needs at least 300 new IC+ coaches before n the passenger transportation market opens in 2023.
Metals, Metalworking & Mining
Long tradition in
casting innovation Drawski S.A. is a cast iron foundry from Drawski Młyn, Poland. It specialises in casting grey, ductile and white cast iron. The company prides itself on its continuous activity going back to the middle of the 19th century.
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ounded by Ferdinand Sattler in the 1854 in Drawski Młyn, in the north-west part of the Wielkopolska Province, the foundry was developed from the local primitive steel mill and blacksmith workshop. In 1923, the foundry was acquired by Ludwik Kemblinski, a specialist in the casting industry, who invested in the production of iron castings made from malleable black cast iron, at that time a little-known process in Europe. Thus, he became the first and only manufacturer of this type of casting in Poland. After the Second World War the company was nationalised and in 1951 the production of castings made from malleable cast iron was resumed. In 1967 the company’s biggest investment – the construction of JATŻEL-3000 induction furnaces – was completed. This allowed the foundry to establish the production of ductile cast iron class ZcC 3510 and pearlite ductile cast iron, not made in Poland up to that point. The 1970s was the decade when the company broke its record for castings production that exceeded 9000 tonnes. In 1996, the foundry was transformed into the sole-shareholder company of the State Treasury. In the second half of the 1990s it invested in a modern foundry moulding machine from HWS, a leading German manufacturer of moulding machines. In the years 2004–2016 the machines and equipment for the production of high-grade spheroidal cast iron were purchased. The automatic moulding line Disamatic, supplied by the Danish company Disa, was another major investment for Drawski, and the DISA MATCH line concluded the modernisation of the moulding plant. The horizontal DISA MATCH line was a successful and very valuable investment. According to Ryszard Kielczyk, Drawski’s chairman of the board, “Drawski was the third foundry in the world and the first in Europe to use the latest fully automated moulding machine and mould handling
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line. This was followed by a new shot-blasting machine and automatic painting line. In total, we have invested PLN 26 million (€6.2 million) in new technologies.”
21st century foundry In 2003, Drawski became a joint stock company with a majority participation (96.5 per cent of total shares) of DrawInvest, one of whose shareholders is Mr Kielczyk. Since that time the company has grown rapidly, in large part due to the continuous investments in new machines and technologies. It also cooperates with the industry’s leading suppliers, which contributes to the ongoing strengthening of the company and translates into successes for all partners taking part in the cooperation. “Our modern technologies and quality management systems enable us to produce a reliable product and the Environment Management System supports our efforts to run the environmental programmes,” says Mr Kielczyk. “We are currently implementing an innovative project to develop an inoculation method for spheroidal castings on a vertical line. The project includes the construction of the new production hall and purchase of new electric furnaces. The cost of this investment is PLN 11 million (€2.6 million).” Drawski holds the Integrated Quality and Environment Management System PN-EN ISO 9001:2008, and PN-EN ISO 14001:2004 approved by TÜV Management Service GmbH Münich. Furthermore, the company has been awarded by the Polish Foundrymen Association and the Polish Chamber of Commerce for its achievements in production, economy and ecology. “In terms of the production volume, we are a medium-sized foundry with annual production estimated at 10,000 tonnes of castings, including 2500 tonnes sold abroad. The castings are predominantly used
Metals, Metalworking & Mining
in the machinery and agriculture industries, also some are used in the water-supply-and-sewage, railway and mining sectors. The foundry can cast both small and big batches,” adds Mr Kielczyk. “Our annual net profit is PLN 1.5 million. About 28–30 per cent of our castings are sold abroad, mainly to Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Great Britain, Ireland, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands, France and Spain.”
Following the trends Drawski has always followed the latest trends in the world of castings. The company participates in all industry-relevant meetings and congresses where it can learn new technologies, exchange knowledge and opinions and meet new customers or partners. On 8 December 2017 it took part in an International Conference, ‘3D Printing for casting engineering’, during the Polish Foundry Day. “3D printing is increasingly used in the foundry industry. This technology not only speeds up the formation of foundry moulds, but also provides the opportunity to create more complex shapes. It accelerates the entire production process, because prototyping using 3D printing is much faster,” explains Mr Kielczyk. On 23–27 September 2018, Drawski will be present at the most important and spectacular event within the international foundry industry, the 73rd World Foundry Congress (WFC), held in Krakow, Poland, with the motto: ‘Creative Foundry’. The themes of the conference will include: materials, technologies, digitalisation, management and ecology. The WFC sessions will take place in a modern convention centre with a view of the Royal Castle in Krakow. The congress will be accompanied by a special exhibition dedicated to creative and innovative solutions in: foundry engineering technologies, castings, materials, casting production, instrumentation, machines and foundry
devices, as well as management solutions. The 22nd International Fair of Technologies for Foundry METAL will be another accompanying event, presenting the most important companies from the foundry sector, including suppliers of raw materials, machines and components from more than 20 countries. “It is a great honour for the Polish foundry industry to be the organiser of this event. It’s been a quarter of a century since we last had the privilege of hosting members of the World Foundry Organisation in Poland. It is no surprise then, that we are extremely excited to once again have the pleasure of greeting in Krakow about a thousand professionals from around the world,” says Mr Kielczyk who is himself, as the vice-president n of the STOP Board, one of the organisers of the congress.
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Shaping the digital future
of the CNC industry
ORDERFOX.com is the largest global Internet platform for companies within the CNC industry, connecting manufacturers and buyers and highlighting new opportunities simply and quickly, by using intelligent filter functions. With this solution, community members can actively manage the challenges of the progressing digitalisation and Industry 4.0.
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Metals, Metalworking & Mining
ith ORDERFOX.com, the Liechtensteiner digital experts of ORDERFOX AG launched a unique, globally oriented online platform for the metalworking industry. The world´s largest CNC related database provides CNC manufacturers, buyers and their related industries with potential new business opportunities, while using intelligent filter functions to search for just the right buyers and CNC manufacturers that fit within their specified requirements. They can specify their search criteria by selecting areas related to materials, workpiece size, technology, certification requirements, location and even the type of delivery. “Since we launched ORDERFOX.com at the beginning of June in 2017, we have had a very intense and exciting year,” says Mr Bernd Schuler, Managing Director of ORDERFOX AG. “We decided to ‘jump in’ and show the world who we are and what we do with a booth at EMO 2017 in Hannover. We knew right away we had something special, as the feedback from the market was extremely positive. As people started to realise through demos at the show what the ORDERFOX.com platform was about and what it was capable of, they got hooked.” Currently ORDERFOX.com has more than 2600 registered users from 69 countries. It is the largest search engine specifically designed for the CNC industry, with more than 800,000 produced CNC parts to date. The platform continues to grow globally, with
steadily rising attention from companies as both CNC manufacturers and buyers see the relevance and benefits for their operations. “Since the start in June 2017, ORDERFOX.com has transformed the platform into 25 language versions, added a Global Tradeshow & Event Calendar, a Knowledge & Trends section, the Autodesk ForgeTM Viewer as well as the recently added Machinery Exchange for New and Used Machines to the platform,” explains Mr Schuler. “In addition, we are developing a Career Centre and an Innovative Communication Tool, all scheduled to be launched in 2018. ORDERFOX.com also just expanded into the Woodworking Industry, with additional industries to follow. This offers a lot of additional market potential for the CNC industry and related companies.”
Unique of its kind What make this particular platform so different from similar tools? “ORDERFOX.com has been developed based on many years of industry know-how and a sound understanding of CNC-related global markets. As mentioned earlier, the members can search for and find the right production partners and resources either locally or globally, with the biggest differentiator being that it is 100 per cent free to use,” explains Mr Schuler. He further points out that the platform follows a global usability strategy, and offers localised versions in 25 languages, so each
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user can work within their local language, as well as other countryspecific characteristics – such as the different measurement systems (imperial versus metric). “ORDERFOX.com is the ‘Internet of the CNC Industry’ for a reason, and that is because what we offer to the CNC Industrial sector has not been done before. We make searching for specific information, partners and resources easy and efficient, without the unnecessary hurdles of basic and general web searches. With the addition of resources like our global Trade Show & Event Calendar for example, members have the ability to include in-house events viewable globally into the platform and publicise their events for free.” Another specific feature is the Knowledge & Trends area, providing content through developed partnerships, related to important industry news, research and specialist articles. As Mr Schuler points out, new features are added on a regular basis. “In the Free Global Machinery Exchange that has just been launched members can quickly and easily find the right new or used machine with the help of the Advanced Search and Intelligent Filter functions. Members can not only search but also advertise their own machines within the latest free feature accessible on the platform.”
Valued partnerships The majority of members are currently located in Europe, as this is where the platform was launched first, before expanding to Asia and the USA in late 2017. However, both of the latter regions are growing fast. “It is crucial that we provide a network for the industry on a global scale, as we see ORDERFOX.com as truly a borderless platform designed to connect manufacturing companies and the procurement industry partners around the world,” says Mr Schuler. 142 Industry Europe
He confirms that effective cooperation is the way forward – as demonstrated by the recently signed partnership with the global player Autodesk. “For shaping the digital future of the CNC industry ORDERFOX.com offers great business potential and invites companies worldwide to become strategic partners. The global player Autodesk® has already recognised the endless possibilities, and this brings vast benefits to both parties – including added value for customers and users of both companies,” Mr Schuler comments. “As mentioned earlier, we are the ‘Internet of the CNC Industry’ and welcome any industry participants that bring value to our members, regardless if they are buyers, CNC manufacturers, suppliers, associations, magazines or any other type of operators. If such partnerships bring value to our members, we are more than happy to entertain those,” he concludes.
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Powering sustainability Atlas Copco is a global leader in the development of compressors, power plant and vacuum technology for the construction and mining industries. The multinational conglomerate is driven by its long-term commitment to sustainability. This can range from reducing the emissions of ocean going vessels to advanced, heavy hydraulic systems for the mining and construction industries. Philip Yorke reports.
he Atlas Copco Group is a Swedish multinational company that was founded in Nacka, Sweden in 1873 by Edvard Franckel. In the beginning the company focused on the manufacture of equipment for state railroad operations. Today the group is comprised of some of the world’s most respected industrial brands and operates more than 100 production facilities in over 20 countries worldwide. It is the world’s leading producer of construction and mining equipment. In 2017 it recorded consolidated sales in excess of SEK 120 billion and employed more than 46,000 people.
Pioneering heavy-duty hydraulics Recently Atlas Copco has announced the launch of what it says is the first 700kg class solid body breaker on the market. The group is renowned for being one of the world’s top 100 most innovative compa-
nies by Thomson Reuters. The company developed the SB702, which is a solid body hydraulic breaker that can easily be attached to a variety of carriers. The new product is unique in that it has no tie rods, no side plates and no hammer box; however it does boast an advanced integrated accumulator. The company, which recently celebrated its 140th anniversary, says it is the only product of its kind on the market. The new SB702 is also extremely durable and easy to maintain with very low running costs. This is mainly due to its high performance and lower weight, thus making it possible to run on smaller excavators and save on machine costs. In addition to its broad range of capabilities, the SB702 uses double tool retainer bars to minimise stress and wear on working tools. The product’s excellent energy recovery profile also boosts its productivity output. The company told Industry Europe that while the product’s Industry Europe 143
impact remains constant, the breaker increases blow frequency, which in turn increases its percussive performance. This enhances efficiency, enabling higher productivity gains combined with lower fuel consumption.
New division announced Recently Atlas Copco set up a new division for construction equipment, which will be separate from its mining and drilling operations. The Construction Technique division will cover portable compressors and generators, road construction equipment and construction tools. The new division will include drilling products, crushing, loading and hauling, and exploration equipment. Two other recently introduced divisions are Compressor Technique, which includes stationary equipment for air and gas and related services, and Industrial Technique. “With more focused business areas, each will have a strong platform from which they can develop the offering for their customers,” said the group president
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and CEO Ronnie Leten. “The modified structure also allows us to capture the sales and service synergies between our construction businesses and capitalise on the future growth of construction projects around the world, especially in the emerging markets.”
Doubly efficient In 2017 Atlas Copco announced that the group will be split into two companies in 2018. Epiroc AB of the Atlas Copco Group will be listed on the stock exchange this year and has already been operating as an independent business. In future Epiroc will be focused on mining and civil engineering customers, whilst Atlas Copco will concentrate on its industrial customer base. The parent company believes that the new arrangement will increase efficiency and productivity while strengthening yet further its leading position by delivering sustainable productivity solutions for all customers worldwide.
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“With this new set-up, Epiroc will be much more focused on our core industry, with the ability to advance our innovations at a quicker pace. Epiroc is devoted to providing customers with products and services that enhance their productivity, energy efficiency, safety and ergonomics. We are a new company that has over 144 years of mining experience,” said Jason Smith, General Manager, Epiroc customer centre. “With its cutting-edge technology, Epiroc develops and produces innovative drill rigs, rock excavation and construction equipment and provides world-class service and consumables. Epiroc was founded in Stockholm, Sweden and serves customers in more than 150 countries.”
Lower emissions on the high seas Powering large cruise ships and merchant vessels requires an enormous amount of energy, and shipping companies are always looking for ways to reduce fuel costs, as well as their carbon footprint. One recent innovation, developed by Silverstream Technologies of London, is an air lubrication system that incorporates Atlas Copco’s air compressor and blower technology to reduce hull drag and improve efficiency. Silverstream is the n first company to offer fuel savings using this patented system. For further details of the Atlas Copco Group’s innovative products and services visit: www.atlascopco.com
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kamant is a privately owned company and one of the world’s leading producers of coated abrasives for the wood and metal industries. Founded in Sweden in 1928, Ekamant has seen solid growth as a result of its continuous investment programme and a dedication to new product development. Over the years it has established a broad portfolio of high-tech products that are designed for a wide variety of industrial applications. Today the core focus of the Swedish company’s growth strategy is its consistent commitment to innovation and quality. This has been instrumental in protecting it from increasing overseas competition from emerging markets such as Asia and the Far East. Working in close collaboration with its global customers, Ekamant has been able to develop a wide range of unique technologies, which not only
Ekamant is a global leader in the development and manufacture of coated abrasive products for the wood and metal industries. Its commitment to producing innovative, ground-breaking products has kept it at the forefront of the industry despite strong competition from Asian producers. Celebrating 90 years of trading this year, Ekamant is set to continue its positive pattern of sales growth in a buoyant international marketplace. Philip Yorke reports.
provides its customers with a competitive edge, but also helps to make each one more profitable. Today the company is represented in more than 60 countries and employs over 600 people worldwide.
Advanced anti-static technology As the clear brand leader in the field of abrasives for the woodworking industry, it will come as no surprise that Ekamant has developed technologies that significantly advance sanding performance and finishing. Ekamant Antistatex® generates no electrical charges. The result is that any sanding dust follows the sanding belt and is carried out by the company’s built-in dust extractors. As a result, no sanding dust adheres to any part of the workplace, thus resulting in a better and cleaner wood surface which in turn makes it easier and cheaper to lacquer.
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Furthermore, due to the absence of suspended sanding particles in the atmosphere, there is no need to clean the machine often. This saves operators both time and money. Conventional sanding belts generate significant electrical charges that may cause health issues and even a fire or a dust explosion within the sanding machine itself. As a result, it guarantees a much safer working environment in addition to a healthier and safer operational environment for all.
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New bonding system Ekamant’s broad product portfolio covers abrasives for sanding, polishing and cutting and also encompasses an unrivalled range of solutions for metal work, automotive and composite applications. These range from sanding to aluminium and lacquer polishing. Its products are available in a variety of belt, sheet, grinder disc and roll options. In addition to its standard range of products and in tandem with its continuous commitment to innovation, Ekamant has developed a new range of abrasive brush products and finishing concepts – Eka-Brite – for polishing options, foam-backed abrasives and machine accessories. This is in order to complement its standard ranges, as well as other non-woven products for cleaning and polishing operations. Ekamant metal products are ideal for all types of metal grinding, and here you can find products for everything for the preparation of non-ferrous metals to hard carbon steels. EKA Black is a new product designed for special applications mainly for use with stainless steels. It combines the capacity for high rates of material removal with the ability to present an excellent surface finish with an even scratch pattern. Ekamant’s latest Antistatex® bonding system provides a fully antistatic effect which reduces clogging of the products and minimises dust load on the sanding surface. Another advanced metal sanding product from Ekamant is the EKA 1000Z. This is a Zirconia product that is specially designed for sanding stainless steel, mild steel, aluminium alloys and many other non-ferrous metals.
Metals, Metalworking & Mining
With the growing demand for polished wood flooring Ekamant has also developed a high-performance abrasive with an aluminium oxide grain coating. This is perfect for sanding floors from hardwood species such as oak, cherry, walnut and beech. As these floors have become more popular Akamant has produced its ‘ClearCut’ range in order to meet the increasing demand for hardwood flooring.
Ekamant told industry Europe that the next 12 months will see an increasing focus on the development of a range of new products and services. This is in addition to maintaining close collaboration with its selected partners in order to increase levels of service and n product offerings to the market. For further details of Ekamant’s latest innovative products and services visit: www.ekamant.com
Ekamant operates from its main site in Sweden, which has been significantly upgraded recently to meet the higher demands of the marketplace. Today the company’s strategy is to make more customer-orientated products, by fine-tuning its standard products to match more closely its customers’ needs throughout its conversion plants around the world. Today Ekamant has established synergies between modern technology, highly skilled employees and strictly regulated raw materials. This enables it to guarantee that the highest quality is maintained from materials to the finished product. The global market for Ekamant remains positive, however the company is seeing more and more low-cost products coming to market and it confronts these challenges by delivering more innovative and effective high-tech products delivered direct to its distributors and customer base worldwide.
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Delivering steel diversity Feralpi is a leading European manufacturer of steel for the construction industry. The company operates an international and diversified industrial group that produces more than two million tonnes of steel and over 3 million tonnes of rolled products a year. The Feralpi Group continues to focus on the manufacture of high quality steel products whilst setting new standards in sustainability and the development of new and environmentally friendly solutions. Philip Yorke reports.
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he Feralpi Group was founded in Lonato del Garda in Italy in 1968, located close to the northern town of Brescia. Today it employs around 1500 people and in 2016 recorded sales of more than one billion euros. Over a period of 50 years the company has seen consistent growth and expanded into many foreign markets to meet the challenges of an increasingly competitive global iron and steel industry. The group has grown through a strategy of diversification and the acquisition of numerous specialised, complimentary businesses. In addition to its production of rolled bars it is also involved in special steels, cold working, structural steelwork, the environment and fish farming. Furthermore it offers a wide range of financial and share management consultancy services. From the outset, Feralpi has focused not only on producing the world’s best steel for the construction industry, but has striven to do so in the most sustainable way possible. This has been achieved by reducing energy consumption and harmful emissions, as well as by employing the latest ‘green’ technology, which is based upon its own in-house research and development.
Focus on core business The Feralpi Group remains focused on its production of construction steel for an international market that stretches from Europe to North Africa. The company’s steel production sites are not only located in Italy, but also in Germany, the Czech Republic, Hungary and France. Feralpi’s core business involves the production of rebar products in the form of bars and coils, as well as wire rod. Its traditional product range includes the manufacture of wire rod products, drawn products, electro-welded mesh, pylons, spacers and profiles.
Following the acquisition of Caleotto SpA and Arlenco SpA in 2015, the group’s product portfolio expanded to include wire rod made of special steels for use in drawing mills. In addition, its associate company, Co Ge. Me. Steel produces rolled steel products for enclosures, parapets, handrails, and architectural features for furnishing buildings in general.
French Connection The Feralpi Group’s Turni based company, Presider, has significantly increased its presence in France with the construction of a new stateof-the-art plant in Paris. This will greatly strengthen its export capabilities, especially to Europe, France and eastern Europe. The new factory covers a total surface area of more than 37,000 square metres, of which over 8000 square metres are covered. This is where the latest production facilities are installed to manufacture high tensile steel products on site for major French infrastructure projects. Thanks to its new facilities and headquarters in Paris, the company is able to better serve some of the most important current French infrastructure programmes, such as the Grand Paris express, the new network project that consists of four regional subway lines that loop around Paris with a total length of over 200 kilometres. Presider’s CEO Pietro Pirlo said, “The investment made in Paris is a testament to the strength that is the DNA of the company. The development of Presider has always been based not only on service, but also on its close vicinity to the customer. “After gaining a foothold in the market, we generally choose to establish ourselves in the area with our own production facilities. We did this in Pomezia, in Rome for central and southern Italy and in Maclodio in Northern Italy. We are now going to complete Industry Europe 151
our corporate structure by giving concrete form to our process of business internationalisation. Our partnership with other Feralpi Group companies strengthens our downstream production, thereby guaranteeing the final customer a comprehensive range of high quality finished products.”
More than steel These days the Feralpi Group is much more than a high quality steel producer for the construction industry. With its subsidiary Nuova Defim Orsogril, the group can also offer the national and international
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markets mesh, gratings, and fencing, as well as the production and installation of pre-shaped round bars and structural steelwork through its group companies: Presider and Metalurgica Piemontese La Vorazioni. As a result of a major investment programme by the Algerian government in its infrastructure, the Feralpi Group established ‘Feralpi Algerie’, which is now headquartered in Orano, Algeria. From here the company directs its operations in Algeria in order to meet the growing demands of the government for major improvements in its infrastructure and communications networks.
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Putting safety first Safety and Corporate Responsibility are cornerstones of Feralpi’s growth and development strategy. In fact its first safety and sustainability report was initiated in 2004. Safety and innovation together drive the company, which not only measures its own performance, but also takes into consideration the positive impact its work has on the environment and its local communities. Concerning safety and environmental issues, the group’s compliance with best possible performance ratings is certified annually by independent institutions such as TUV, the German quality certification body, and ARPA, the Italian Protection Agency. The group’s on-going commitment to protecting the environment was recognised recently with its accreditation to the ICMQ – Eco Gold Certification, and the Recycled Content Certification (97 per cent), which indicates the amount of steel re-used in the melting n process at the end of its lifetime. For further details of the Feralpi Group’s diverse range of products and services visit: www.feralpigroup.com
ACQUATEC,, strengthened by its staff professionalism, is able to offer its clients a complete and tailored service for water cycle integral management, from drilling and lifting to treatment and distribution, as well as offering advice on customised system design together with a punctual and efficient maintenance service, which has undergone all the ISO 9001 Quality System verification processes. In terms of supply of new applications we offer a consultancy and analysis service, research and system configuration and construction. With regard to existing systems we are able to renovate them guaranteeing, during the replacement of the various components, a perfect interchangeability with the obsolete parts and, in this service, we also include the rebuilding of the existing low and medium voltage transformer rooms according to legislation. 25039 - Travagliato (Brescia) Via Averolda, 25/27 Tel. (030) 662261-2 Fax (030) 662263 www.acquatec.it
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Stronger together As an independent business organization, the Engineering Industries Association of Lithuania, LINPRA, represents the interests of companies from different engineering sectors with the aim of improving the business environment and increasing competitiveness. Romana Moares spoke to the Association’s director, Mr Darius Lasionis, about how it helps its members to handle new challenges in the evolving marketplace. Darius Lasionis - Interim Director of LINPRA
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he engineering sector is an important branch of Lithuania’s economy, employing some 54,000 people and generating a turnover of €3.6 billion. It encompasses over 2000 companies operating across a range of different sectors including metal products, machinery and equipment, electro-mechanics and electronics, plastics and rubber, laser equipment and others. Mr Lasionis summarises LINPRA’s mission: “Our aim is to empower local companies to increase their effectiveness and sales, and on the international level, to contribute to the recognition of Lithuanian engineering companies as modern and reliable partners.”
Valued support Lithuania is an export-oriented country, with over 70 per cent of its output sold in the international markets, mainly the EU. Most products are shipped to Germany, followed by Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Poland and the UK. Therefore, maintaining and increasing international competitiveness is crucial. But that is not the only priority for LINPRA. “In addition to increasing the volume of exports, our priorities include a general improvement of the business environment,
enhanced synergy between scientists and engineers, promotion of vocational training and, last but not least, encouraging companies to take advantage of the new Industrial Revolution, Industry 4.0,” says Mr Lasionis. “We help companies to implement projects improving their competences and increasing the skills required. Training in Industry 4.0-related topics is provided by LINPRA’s subsidiary InTechCentras, the Smart Manufacturing Competence Centre. The Centre is the official representative of the German Innovation Centre Industry 4.0 in Lithuania and provides a three-level training course completed with an ‘Industry 4.0 Driving License’.” He further explains that LINPRA’s activities are broadly defined as either ‘short-term’ or ‘long-term’. On the short-term basis, members can benefit from involvement in various projects, networking between members, information sharing, and participation in various industry events as well as training courses and seminars. LINPRA also represents its members’ interests and helps them resolve various issues, provides the latest industry information and assists with participation in exhibitions and business missions abroad.
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“In the long term, our strategy is to lobby on the political level, seeking to promote engineering business interests in terms of science and business cooperation, education systems, business regulations etc.,” adds Mr Lasionis.
Star players The director admitted that a lot remains to be done to boost further technological development, but pointed out that there are a growing number of innovative, progressive companies that may serve as examples for others. One such company is Terekas, offering the most flexible PET stretch blow moulding solutions. The company makes universal blowers with variable production speeds that are designed for ultra-flexible bottle production. “One of the companies that has embraced the Industry 4.0 concept is Novameta, a producer of stainless steel equipment for professional kitchens sold in 18 different countries,” says Mr Lasionis. “They started the digitalisation process in 2005 and now are expanding digitalisation to cover all company processes from production to sales and installation.” Selteka, an exclusive electronic manufacturing services supplier, is another example of a growing business. Selteka provides circuit board assembly services (EMS) for 49 customers from different European and Asian countries, responding flexibly to market changes and cooperating with scientists. The results of this cooperation include unique lighting solutions and focus on human-centric lighting, tailored to improve the biological responses of the human body to light. “With sustainability in mind, one must not forget SoliTek – an international photovoltaic solar cell and modular manufacturer and supplier of solar energy solutions. SoliTek manufactures PV prod-
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ucts for buildings, especially rooftops – one of the most demanding segments – requiring products to be safe, strong, aesthetically appealing and long-lasting. Their glass-glass modules are incredibly wear-resistant and are made using only renewable energy,” adds Mr Lasionis.
Focus on international presence As a result of increased international trade and growing production output, Lithuania’s engineering industry has doubled its exports in the last decade. “Our engineering industry is highly competitive in terms of cost and quality and is well-integrated into the global supply chains,” claims Mr Lasionis. However, he admits that several challenges remain, including lower-than-EU-average productivity, an ongoing human resources drain to richer countries and insufficient cooperation between business and science. In this challenging and evolving business environment, LINPRA’s strategy is to further enhance the international footprint of Lithuanian engineering. “We would like to encourage foreign companies to visit Lithuania to help break the stereotypes and negative attitudes associated with ‘eastern Europe’, to retrieve or upscale the image of Lithuania as a country with reliable and professional business culture – as was confirmed, for example, by the latest investments of Hella and Continental. “And as I mentioned before, one of our key topics is Industry 4.0 – we prompt our members to use all the support the EU provides in terms of automation and digitalisation, and encourage cooperation between companies to strengthen the value chains. In this context, we would like to cordially invite all potential stakeholders and those interested to attend the Industry 4.0 Conference in Vilnius to be held n in May 2018,” concludes Mr Lasionis.
Pre-packed innovation Sarten is one of Europe’s great success stories in the field of packaging. For over 45 years the family-owned company has achieved rapid growth thanks to its dedication to innovation in product design and its manufacturing processes. Philip Yorke reports on the company’s next dynamic chapter: its strategy to increase its regional presence and to achieve its target to exceed $100 million in export sales in 2018.
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PAPER, PACKAGING & PRINTING
nnovation is an over-used word in the packaging industry, but it is well deserved in the case of Sarten Ambalaj of Turkey. Since it began operations at its Corlu plant in 1972, it has adopted a dynamic growth strategy that shows no sign of abating. Initially, in order to meet the growing demands of the Turkish market, Sarten established a number of high-tech manufacturing plants. Following consistent, year-on-year growth since the 1970s, it now operates 18 state-of-the-art facilities built at strategic locations close to its clients’ diverse operations. Today Sarten continues to set the highest standards for metal and plastic packaging, as well as for the design and manufacture of food processing equipment and mould-making machinery. It is the clear market leader and technological frontrunner in its region. This is largely due to its creative approach and application of packaging science, as well as its extensive R&D facilities located at its Silivri Plant in Turkey. This modern facility also provides precision moulds for its own factories, thus in turn constantly enhancing its technological leadership. In 2017 Sarten recorded revenues of US$85 million in export sales alone. The target for 2018 for its export sales is US$100
million. Currently the bulk of its overseas sales are destined for the EU, the Middle East and North African markets. The company’s significant on-going investments are in parallel to its stated vision, ‘To be the region’s leading packaging company’, with a continuous programme of investments in new technologies and sustainable products and processes.
Star performer At the recent 8th ‘Metallic Stars of Export’ award ceremony organised by the Istanbul Ferrous and non-ferrous Metal Exporters Association, more than 70 successful European export companies in 14 different categories were recognised and honoured for their achievements. On this occasion Sarten won the Grand Prize for innovation and export sales. Sarten CEO Zeki Saribekir said, “We are very pleased to win the grand prize once again. I would like to thank everyone who contributed. Great effort and hard work lay behind this success. “At Sarten, we produce healthy and high quality metal and plastic packaging for our customers in a variety of sectors such as canned, cooking oil, agricultural pesticides, mineral oil, paint and cosmetics.
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We are positioning Sarten as the ‘Supermarket of Packaging’. We reflect on this motto in every step of our business to provide our industry with high quality and fast solutions at an affordable price. We continue to work on cost-decreasing projects, investments in automation, and increasing production capacity in required areas, as well as major investments in new plant. Our adventure, which started in Corlu in 1972, is still going strong and is based on the same high principles of innovation and sustainability.”
Increased global presence Sarten continues to extend its global reach as well as increasing its sales in traditional markets such as the Middle East, North Africa, Russia and the EU. The success of its two marketing companies established in Romania and Serbia have recently opened the way for other marketing companies to be established in countries where Sarten’s presence is low. New customers are attracted to Sarten owing to its rare combination of low price and high quality, as well as its unrivalled range of products. For example, the company sells its aerosol cans to its clients in the UK who appreciate the high quality and tailor-made services. Its products go to UK fillers and can be seen on the shelves of major retailers such as Boots and Asda.
Canned quality More than 80 per cent of Sarten’s extensive range of products are classed as metal packaging. The company produces high-quality cans for a broad range of food products in diameters ranging from 70g right up to 10kg; it also produces cans for paint, edible oils and agricultural chemicals. Specially shaped cans are created and used by clients to add a distinctive on-shelf appeal to food products. Sarten’s twist-off metal caps are another important product line, primarily designed for the food and beverage markets. In addition,
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its high quality necked-in aerosol cans are used for a wide range of health and home care products. In the area of plastic packaging, Sarten makes single-layer and co-extruded bottles, injection and blow-moulded PP bottles and PET bottles, among other things. Its plastic injection buckets for food and paint products are all available with tamper-evident lids, and these are capable of carrying volumes that range from 2.5 to 30 litres. Sarten also offers in-mould labelling lines for products such as margarine and ice-cream and many of the world’s biggest brands are listed among its customers. These include Unilever, Nestlé and Colgate Palmolive in the food sector, and Mobil, Shell and BP in the n petrochemical sector. For further details of Sarten’s innovative products and services visit: www.sarten.com.tr
Green paper production Smurfit Kappa Piteå is the largest paper mill in the Smurfit Kappa Group and one of Sweden’s leading companies in the paper-based packaging sector. Romana Moares spoke to company director Per Sward about the mill’s latest investment in production capacity, its environmental focus and expected growth in line with increasing demand for greener products.
murfit Kappa Piteå, situated in the north of Sweden, is a part of the Paper Division Europe of the Smurfit Kappa Group (SKG), a leading global manufacturer with approximately 46,000 employees in 35 countries and a turnover of €8.6 billion in 2017. As a whole, SKG manufactures a diverse range of corrugated case-making materials in various locations worldwide. Established in the late 1950s, the Piteå mill has evolved into a large, modern factory employing the latest technology and vigorously pursuing a sustainability policy. Environmental considerations have been on the company’s priority list for some time: in 2004, a biological wastewater treatment plant was commissioned, followed by the largest single investment in the mill’s history to include a new biomass boiler, enabling sustained high-volume production with significantly lower carbon dioxide emissions. “In the bio boiler, various residual products from materials such as bark and sludge are burned, generating energy used in production. Under normal operational conditions, the plant uses no fossil fuels, which is largely due to the bio boiler that acts as the mill’s energy source,” says Mr Sward. “Today, we cover more than half of our electricity needs
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through our own generation and also provide more than 90 per cent of the district heating in the Piteå municipality. Sustainability is an integral part of our development – we use renewable raw materials and do all we can to leave as limited a carbon footprint as possible. All our raw materials come from managed forestry, which is something that has a long tradition here in Sweden and that the Swedes do very well.” Per Sward confirms that the company has invested heavily in technology in the last five years, aiming not only at machine renewal but also at increased capacity. “The mill employs 510 people at the moment. For 2018, annual production volume is forecast at 718,000 tonnes at full operation, with a view to gradually increasing the volume to 750,000 tonnes over the next five years.”
Kraftliner for packaging Smurfit Kappa Piteå produces kraftliner, which is mainly used for surface layers in packages made of high-grade corrugated cardboard. The raw material of kraftliner is entirely or mostly wood, which produces paper of excellent strength, moisture resistance and printability. Kraftliner is also classified as clean paper (chemically and biologically clean), suitable for
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PAPER, PACKAGING & PRINTING Marotech GmbH Marotech GmbH is one of the leading manufacturers of anti-slip mats and other load securing mediums in Germany. Supporting Smurfit Kappa for over a decade with high quality products to secure the transport of their paper rolls, a great partnership with trust and reliability has grown.
Marotech’s new BIO anti-slip mats for the one-way transports on european roads are made of organic coated cardboards and have a waterproof surface. It’s a clear commitment to their own sustainability plans and those for their advanced clients like Smurfit Kappa.
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the food sector. The mill produces brown and surface white kraftliner in four different paper grades. In addition to Piteå, the product is made in two other SKG mills, in France and Austria. “Over the last few years, we have improved our cooperation with our sister companies in France and Austria to make full use of group synergies and to improve cost-effectiveness across the mills. 60 per cent of our output is supplied to internal customers within the Smurfit Kappa Group, while the rest is shipped directly to external customers, i.e. packaging producers who then ship the boxes to final clients such as Coca-Cola, Unilever but also to a wide network of smaller companies,” explains Mr Sward. Mr Sward confirms that demand for paper packaging is increasing. “We are experiencing the rising popularity of sustainable products replacing plastics, reflecting the growing focus on environmental protection worldwide. Another driver pushing volumes up comes from e-commerce – kraftliner is a product that is strong and resilient, withstanding multiple shipping, and is very well suited to this type of packaging, so its potential in this particular sector is huge.”
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Per Sward, company director
Cutting-edge philosophy “Europe is our main market, and the largest volume is sold here in Scandinavia, Germany, the UK and the Netherlands,” says Mr Sward, affirming that improving product characteristics to reflect current market preferences is a never-ending process. “We have a product development team here in Piteå looking at ways to further increase customer satisfaction, anticipating their future needs. At the moment, we are looking at digital printing, i.e. how we can develop our products to fit digital printing requirements which will soon be a widespread operation.” In line with this development, Smurfit Kappa recently installed a revolutionary new industrial-grade digital printing machine, the HP PageWide C500, in its Austrian plant – the first commercial HP Single Pass printing press in Europe. “We have always striven to provide market-leading solutions to our customers and will continue to do so,” confirms Mr Sward. “Faced with increasing competition, this, together with further enhancing our n brand image, is something that will carry us into the future.” Industry Europe 167
Sustainable strength Sofidel is a privately held Italian company that has grown to become a global leader in the manufacture of tissue paper for a broad range of applications. The company’s success is based on a number of key factors that include a dedicated commitment to sustainability, innovation and strategic acquisitions. Philip Yorke reports on a company that continues to set new sustainability standards and gain market share worldwide. Luigi Lazzareschi, CEO of the Sofitel Group. 168 Industry Europe
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he Sofidel Group was founded in Italy in1966 and is now a major global player in the tissue paper production market for hygienic and domestic products. The company’s product portfolio includes toilet paper, napkins, kitchen paper, handkerchiefs and tissues. From its headquarters in Porccari, Italy, Sofidel coordinates the activities of its 19 subsidiary companies located throughout Europe and the United States. Together these plants produce more than one million tonnes of paper each year. The group’s paper mills are designed for the production of tissue paper parent reels, and paper converting plants that make a range of finished products. It also operates fully integrated plants for paper conversion, as well as modern offices that cover sales, logistics and customer services.
Rewarding sustainability For the second year running, the group has hosted its special Sofidel Suppliers Sustainability award. This was created to recognise and reward the most eco-friendly partners in the group’s supply chain for their commitment to the environmental and social welfare considerations. This important award ceremony was held in London and presented by the group to its suppliers who have distinguished themselves through their efforts towards a more eco-friendly and sus-
tainable future. The award ceremony was designed to encourage, spread and build on best practice and the improvement activities carried out by the group’s suppliers each year. Almost 400 suppliers from Europe and North America took part in the hugely successful Sofidel Supplier awards in London. “Promoting sustainable and responsible growth also means that within our vision, we are raising awareness and promoting the involvement of our partners so that we can do more and do it better,” said Luigi Lazzareschi, CEO of the Sofitel Group. “We’re convinced that building a sustainable future involves a widespread, common commitment, and a need to support each player within their area and according to their role, to embrace new and better responsibilities.” Sofidel has instituted three distinct award categories. Best Supplier, Best Improver and Best Sustainable Project. The Best Supplier is for companies that have achieved the highest score according to the TenP platform. The award winners were: Pulp Producers Category – Sulzano Pulp and Paper Europe; procurement and purchasing – Valmet; Logistics Services – Kuehne + Nagel; Marketing and Sales – Vizeum Deutschlasnd GmbH. Best Improver was awarded to companies that have made the greatest improvement to their results by undertaking new environmen-
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tal and social sustainability procedures. The award winners were: Pulp Producers – Zellstoff und Paperfabrik Rosenthal GmbH; Procurement and Purchasing – Windsor Engineering (Hull) Ltd; Logistics services – LK Walter Int Transportation AG. The Best Sustainable Project accolade is for companies that have implemented particularly important environmental and social responsibility initiatives. The award winners were: Large Enterprises – Fibra Int. Trade GmbH and Sklark Packaging Int; Medium/Small enterprises – Dasara Transport SpA and Group SGP.
Sofidel has always focused on sustainability as a strategic lever for its development and growth, setting itself the goal of reducing the environmental impact to a minimum and maximising benefits for society.
Sustainable mobility In another ‘first’, Sofidel has teamed up with Nissan to help deliver greater sustainable mobility. The first corporate car-sharing service through a Nissan management platform based on an app named ‘Glide’ was activated with four Nissan LEAF vehicles and eight electric charging stations in Sofidel plants in Italy to support employees’ corporate and private needs. Sofidel is the first private business in Italy to adopt a car-sharing system based on a Nissan-owned management platform using the ‘Glide’ app, which allows simple geo-location of vehicle and quick identification of their availability. As part of the original agreement with Nissan Italia through a Nissan CFL Dealer, Sofidel employees can also take advantage of specific incentives for purchasing electric cars from the same company, together with the possibility of recharging the vehicle in the two plants free of charge for a year.
Building on success Sofidel’s success in North America has been underscored by its recent strategic decision to make a major investment in a new manufacturing facility at a greenfield site in Oklahoma. The state-ofthe-art integrated plant will provide both tissue production equipment and converting facilities. It will be located in Inola, Rogers County near the town of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Thanks to its south-central position in the US, the location offers well-established logistics connections, as well as affordable sources of energy and an expert local workforce. 170 Industry Europe
“I am glad to announce this new greenfield investment – the second one, after the first that we made in Ohio. This new investment will support our growth in the USA significantly, especially as the American market is one of the crucial ones for our group,” added Luigi Lazzareschi, CEO of the Sofidel Group. This major investment includes the installation of two advanced tissue paper machines with an overall production capacity of over 120,000 tonnes per year each, in addition to the related converting lines. One of the machines will be dedicated mainly to the production of toilet tissue, whilethe second one will be used to produce paper towels. In total, Sofidel is committed to investing more than $360 million over three years between 2018–2020 and the new facility will be completed early in 2020. When completed, the plant will employ n over 300 full-time workers. For further details of Sofidel’s innovative products and services visit: www.sofidel.com 172 Industry Europe
Diversity – a convertible currency The Uteco Group is a global market leader in the design and manufacture of converting and printing machines and their related technologies. Its advanced, innovative products keep the company at the forefront of the industry. The Uteco Group recently doubled its turnover thanks to the launch of a stream of unique, high-tech solutions, as Philip Yorke reports.
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he Uteco Group was founded in Italy in 1985 and its commitment to innovation and quality has resulted in the company becoming a global leader in its chosen disciplines, with a turnover of almost €100 million. Today the company offers a diverse range of advanced machinery and equipment for the converting and printing industries that includes the use of flexible film and paper for packaging, and countless other applications for the food, beverage and security industries. In addition, the group offers highly specialised solutions to the automotive, aerospace and nano-technology industries. Its broad portfolio also includes flexo printers, rotogravure machines, coater-laminators, and roto-offset equipment as well as many other niche market products and services. The Uteco Group is a truly global player with facilities in Europe, and Atlanta, Georgia (USA). It has also established a manufacturing facility in partnership with Kohli of India, to supply the fast-growing Asian markets with specially designed machinery. Recently the Uteco Group also set up a new office to cover sales in the Asia Pacific countries.
New digital solutions At the most recent Label Expo international trade show, Uteco was able to showcase its latest and most innovative printing machines: the Gaia Onyx XS and the NXS 300. The new Gaia machine is a flexible, modular inkjet digital press, specially designed for high quality printing on flexible substrates. This ground-breaking equipment has been developed in association with ‘ebeam Technologies’ and ‘INX Digital’. All brands of inks are compatible with the Gaia range, and can be used strategically to better satisfy the different requirements of both cus-
tomers and markets. The new machine utilises EB’s latest polymerisation technologies. In addition, thanks to INX Digital’s latest solutions, there is zero migration of food inks. The all-new digital Gaia combines the abilities of the Uteco Group with the unrivalled digital experience of INX Technologies and the innovative know-how of ebeam Technologies. Recently Uteco introduced its new entry-level model, with printing speeds of up to 25m/min, 720X360dpi resolution and the opportunity to customise the entire printing process with the addition of inline units such as flexographic options. This model is followed by a deluxe version with a printing engine capable of 1200X1200dpi, up to 100m/min. In both examples the machines are modular and therefore available in different printing widths. Other main benefits of the Onyx range include a new, patented, triple energy-saving ventilation system, fully flexible configuration, and no ladders or stairs to access upper decks for easy and quick sleeve-change, as well as the most simplified maintenance operations.
Delivering the future today The Uteco Group has always been at the cutting edge when it comes to innovative technologies and is currently investing heavily in Industry 4.0. There is a special focus on R&D and taking a global lead in the race for the future that involves UDAA systems (Uteco’s Data Acquisition & Analysis). Uteco’s senior engineer Alessio Garonzi said, “We first introduced the UDAA in 2016 in Dusseldorf at Drupa, the most important trade fair in our industry, and we recorded lots of interest from numerous visitors and customers. This flexible system is interconnected with the printing machine, and collects all data related to the printing process, including consumables and the overall efficiency of the machine. This also makes the data readily available to the customer and, in doing so, contributes to the analysis, improvement and optimisation of the whole production process.”
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The Uteco Data Acquisition Analysis system consists of four key modules: the Ink Module is concerned with consumption measurement and operational history; the OEE Module measures the machine’s progress and efficiency parameters; the Energy Module is designed to measure energy consumption and operational efficiency; and finally, the Data Logger Module is the machine’s process data management control system. Each module can automatically generate reports and process results in
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real time on the basis of the data acquired by the machine. The data is centralised on a controller and PC, and is available to the customer in a variety of formats.
Unique, ‘zero-impact’ technology Thanks to its huge, on-going investments in innovation and resources, Uteco Converting SpA, in collaboration with the biggest brand owners in various packaging sectors, the company has developed a unique multiprocess solution that has zero impact on the environment. This unique solution is based upon four processes that are integrated into the same machine and covers printing, coating, laminating and slitting operations. These innovative processes were developed thanks to the inclusion of a number of Uteco’s patented technologies and obtained through the latest electron beam technology. This technology provides a big step forward and can be utilised with water-based, solvent-based or UV inks and is completely safe for human operations. Furthermore, this technology guarantees no contamination at any stage of production and the inks and coatings do not require photoinitiators, which in turn means there are no migration problems. Thanks to the use of Uteco’s patented solution, Thermilox®, production speeds n of up to 400m/min can be achieved. For further details of the Uteco Group’s latest innovative products and services visit: www.Uteco.com
Star performer Starlinger Recycling is a global leader in the design and production of machinery for the recycling and refining of an infinite range of modern plastics. The company’s advanced Reco-Star systems are unique, world-class products. Starlinger is also a global leader in the manufacture of woven plastic sacks. Philip Yorke reports.
tarlinger was founded in Austria over 25 years ago and from the outset has been a globally orientated company. Today, plastics are recycled worldwide and many countries operate collection and re-use programmes for production and post-consumer waste. The company’s dedicated customer orientation helps it to develop innovative, tailor-made production facilities, which are designed to meet the needs of widely varying regional requirements. These can include broad differences in the recipes of polymers, additives and production processes, as well as in throughput quantities and the many types of individual manufacturing industries. The company’s worldwide sales and service-support network and technical consulting services help its customers to achieve optimum results throughout many different manufacturing processes. In addition, as a truly multinational company, Starlinger employs multi-lingual teams that are able to communicate directly with customers in their own language.
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Innovation by design Innovation has been at the heart of Starlinger’s culture from the outset and today, at a time when raw material prices are soaring, high quality granulate has become a significant cost-saving alternative to that of virgin plastic material. Developing solutions to meet the ongoing challenges involved in the recycling of production and postconsumer waste means that the company is constantly adapting its technologies in order to meet continuous changes in the nature of incoming materials. Starlinger must also take into account the potential uses of the final recycled product. This means not only providing solutions for the optimisation of precision engineered recycling lines, but also for the big consumer brand manufacturers that rely on Starlinger for high levels of recycled product purity and flexibility. For example, Starlinger’s well-known RecoSTAR direct series has been specifically designed for the recycling of medium and large quantities of heavy ‘regrind’ materials such as PE, PS, PA and PC. With the Reco-Star
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direct series, a feeding hopper delivers material directly to the extruder without the need for being pre-cut or compressed. The rate of feeding is controlled automatically and the entire innovative system is designed to ensure that any problems of over- or under-loading are eliminated. Solid foreign substances are easily filtered with the RecoStar direct machines by a continuous melt-filter that is available with or without a back-flushing system. Another key advantage of the system is that no heating or other treatment of the material is necessary before entering the extrusion process. A clear and easy-to-use touch-screen monitor ensures a comfortable starting and stopping process throughout the continuous operation of the recycling line. Starlinger’s RecoSTAR direct series is comprised of five machine sizes which together can cover an output range of between 130 and 1200kg/h. Each machine can also be equipped with degassing, high vacuum and a back-flushing filter as well as any one of three different pelletising systems.
Unrivalled service Outstanding after sales service is an important facet of Starlinger’s success story. From the initial offer to the project planning and order handling phase, and on to the installation and commissioning of each recycling line, in addition to operator training and ‘lifetime’ after sales service, Starlinger offers these services as standard. The company also offers engineering consultancy, financing and assistance in obtaining certifications and much more. As a supplier of high-tech industrial plants and customer-specific solutions, Starlinger recognises the value of individual customer care from the moment of first contact, until the recycling line is operational and beyond. Unrivalled after-sales service from its Customer Care Centre is an important part of Starlinger’s customer offering and a USP. This means not only a well-stocked spare parts warehouse, but above all the availability of qualified staff with in-depth and comprehensive expertise that can offer high problem-solving capabilities.
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Flexible, modular design The unique RecoStar PET, non-food recycling series offers stateof-the-art technology for the in-house recycling of PET flakes from bottles, preforms, strapping brands and sheets, as well as for the recycling of post-consumer bottle flakes after the washing process. The end product is a melt-filtrated, uniform granulate that can be used for a wide range of applications including containers, sheets, fibres and non-wovens. Here the main product features include flexible modular design, with high levels of automation and user-friendliness, as well as direct material flow, uniform treatment of the input material, adjustable pelletising systems and increased energy efficiency. The optional inline crystallisation after underwater pelletising also ensures optimised energy efficiency and high crystallinity. Some technical aspects of the RecoSTAR direct series include the heating of PET flakes, which are dried in a two-stage process by means of hot air and optional dry air, or under vacuum conditions. The special design of the dryer outlet results in centre-flow prevention, consistent residence time and FIFO processing. This ensures ideal preparation for the extrusion process with constantly maintained IV levels or with an IV increase level if required. Once installed, the unit can be equipped with an SSP reactor before or after extrusion in order to increase viscosity n and efficiency. For further details of Starlinger’s innovative recycling products and services visit: www.starlinger.com
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Pioneering biodegradable tubes Emballator Tectubes is a privately owned company that is a market leader in the development and manufacture of biodegradable and aluminium tubes. For more than 100 years the company has been seeing consistent growth thanks to its dedication to innovation and environmental protection. This clear focus has resulted in its becoming a world leader in the development and design of bio-materials technologies. Philip Yorke reports.
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ith two state-of-the-art factories located in Sweden, along with an extensive R&D department, Emballator Tectubes has been able to not only develop ground-breaking materials technologies, but also increase its geographic reach. Export sales to its traditional markets such as Europe and the US have stayed strong, whilst its ventures into new and emerging markets have helped to significantly broaden its export sales worldwide. Its activities in China, Asia and the Pacific Rim countries have boosted sales to around €60 million. In 2017 the company produced more than 500 million tubes for manufacturing industries worldwide.
New niche markets At Tectubes, the strategy is to continue to drive sales through the development of innovative products for niche markets worldwide. The company is also increasing its presence in many of its non-traditional market sectors such as pharmaceuticals, food and growing personal care markets, where extruded plastic products continue to dominate. Underscoring this trend is its recent launch of the world’s first biodegradable toothpaste tube, using resins that are made from renewable sources.
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Today the company’s standard range of tubes is divided into four distinct categories: aluminium, extruded plastic, injection moulded plastic, and IML (in-mould labelling). The company continues to invest heavily in its development of what it describes as ‘Green Tubes’, both in its use of biodegradable materials as well as those made of resins from renewable sources.
Fully customised solutions Thanks to its commitment to operating under the highest levels of hygiene and unrivalled engineering, Tectubes has become Europe’s largest supplier of tubes to the pharmaceutical industry and is an approved supplier to some of the biggest healthcare companies in the world. One of its biggest advantages is the breadth of products that are specially designed to meet its clients’ specific, individual needs. For example, if a product is sensitive to light, oxygen or other external influences, innovative new packaging can be tailor-made to meet the tight specifications, thereby finding the optimal, flexible logistical solutions to perfectly fit each client’s requirements. When it comes to household chemicals, it is important to Tectubes that the packaging is ideally suited for the intended use. For example,
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the special requirements may involve preventing the contents of the tube from coming into contact with other substances. For both extruded and aluminium tubes, the company can offer its customers barrier properties that are able to cope easily with more aggressive contents. International regulations concerning the packaging of food products are equally stringent as those required by the pharmaceutical industry. A modern tube offers a very hygienic choice for food as it is always supplied with an open end, thus making it a time-efficient and hygienic process. Furthermore, all Tectube products are supplied with tamper-evident closures, which in turn minimises the risk of leakage, whilst increasing security for the end customer. In addition, with the latest multi-function tube, the customer can squeeze the packaging and determine for themselves the thickness of the sauce or mayonnaise strip that they prefer.
Dedicated support Through the company’s extensive experience in tube technology and its broad network of customer support agencies, it is capable of providing exceptional back-up throughout any production process. This can range from helping customers with the design and appearance of the tube, to finding the best equipment with which to fill the tubes. Tectubes keeps a close eye on consumer trends and constantly adjusts its range to suit the latest market demands. With its highly skilled technical development department and sales team with a solid understanding of the latest tube technologies, it can offer the customer an infinite range of tailor-made customer services. At Tectubes, the company supplies not only the optimal packaging solution, but also a total package service. For further details of Emballatior Tectubes’ latest innovative products and broad range of customer services visit: www.tectubes.com Industry Europe 183
in speciality papers The Sappi Group of South Africa is a global leader in the manufacture of dissolving wood pulp specialities and packaging papers, as well as graphic printing papers and bio-chemical products. The company has recently announced its latest, robust full-year results. These will now be enhanced by its strategic acquisition of the Cham Paper Group of Switzerland and increased investments in sustainability and renewable energy. Philip Yorke reports.
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appi is the world’s leading producer of dissolving wood pulp (DWP), which is a highly purified form of cellulose extracted from wood through specialised cellulose processes. DWP is the primary catalyst for the manufacture of viscose staple fibre which is a natural substitute for cotton and polyester in the textile industry. However, it is also used in foodstuffs, household products and pharmaceuticals. In addition to graphic papers, Sappi also produces speciality and packaging papers and all of these are playing an increasingly important role in an environmentally conscious world. Further diversification can be found in the company’s bio-energy and biomaterials programmes, which derive additional value from wood by extracting bio-refinery products and producing energy from renewable resources. Nano-Cellulose products are also being pioneered by Sappi to provide low-cost Cellulose NanoFibrils (CNF)
via its patented process that offers new global growth opportunities and new markets for the company. Today the Sappi Group is a truly global player with 14 state-ofthe-art paper mills in operation worldwide – seven located in western Europe, three in the USA and four in South Africa. Collectively they produce over 5.4 million tonnes of paper, 2.2 million tonnes of paper pulp, and 1.4 million tonnes of dissolving wood pulp per annum. The group employs more than 12,000 people and in 2017 recorded consolidated revenues of around US$ 800 million.
20-20 Vision Sappi’s future is bright and its continuing success is embodied in its strategic development plan, which it calls its ‘20-20 Vision’. This draws on the power of ‘One Sappi’ and the whole group as it
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expands beyond the realms of paper and pulp to unlock and commercialise the potential of wood-fibre-derived bio-products. As a longstanding leader and innovator in its field, the company is able to deliver tailor-made, customised solutions for its customers’ specific requirements to anywhere in the world. Through the power of ‘One Sappi’ the group is committed to collaborating and partnering with its stakeholders to offer them an exciting and prosperous future in sustainable wood-fibre. Sappi is listed on the Johannesburg Stock exchange and its shares are also traded in the USA through a level 1 ADR Programme. The group’s Market Cap in September 2017 was US$ 3.63 billion.
Commenting on the group’s latest performance, Sappi’s CEO Steve Binnie said, “Sappi has delivered another strong set of results with profits up 6 per cent year-on-year. I am very pleased with the growth of the dissolving wood pulp and speciality packaging businesses. Furthermore, our initiatives to reduce variable costs and the benefits of lower interest charges were able to mitigate higher paper pulp prices and a stronger rand/dollar exchange rate during the reporting period. “In the periods under review, demand for DWP was robust, growing at double digits throughout the year. We shifted more production capacity to speciality packaging during the year. The European business experienced a good final quarter, with expanded sales volumes and price increases helping to counteract the impact of rising paper pulp prices. Demand for speciality packaging continues to grow, and we require additional capacity from the conversions of the paper machines at Maastricht and Somerset Mills in order to serve this growth. These conversions have commenced and are set to be completed in the second and third fiscal quarters of 2018, respectively.”
New digital horizons In keeping with its strategy of combining its organic growth with strategic acquisitions, Sappi successfully concluded its purchase of the speciality paper business of the Cham Paper Group Holding (CPG) on 28 February 2018. The Cham Paper Group AG is a leading manufacturer of coated speciality papers, based in Italy. The company’s plant in Carmignano, Italy is a non-integrated paper mill that is capable of producing over 100,000 tonnes of 186 Industry Europe
paper including CIS Flex-Pack, CIS Label Papers, Wet Glue and selfadhesive applications. The company operates a similar paper mill in Trento, Italy and its portfolio includes silicone-based papers and super-calendared, uncoated flexible packaging papers. However, Cham Group’s digital imaging business, which is located in Cham, Switzerland in a 4000m2 industrial facility, is the jewel in the crown. Here the base paper from Cordino or Carmignano mills is converted to produce over 12,000 tonnes of digital imaging paper per year.
Strength in sustainability Sappi is proud of its dedicated, long-term sustainability programme, which has spearheaded its business platform for many years. The company says that sustainability makes sound business sense and the results are plain to see. “We depend on our stakeholders to help us create long-term business value and on natural resources for our commercial viability. Accordingly, we have a strong business case for responsible corporate citizenship,” added Binnie. Today the Sappi Group uses natural resources like wood fibre and water to create products that support society’s needs. In order to ensure the on-going viability of these resources, the company strives to achieve the highest standards of environmental performance. For further details of the Sappi Group’s innovative paper products and services visit: www.sappi.com
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A passion for style
and performance The Albea Group is a global leader in the development and manufacture of high performance packaging for the cosmetics and personal care industries. The company has seen dramatic growth during the last few years thanks to a combination of strategic acquisitions and cutting-edge design technology. Philip Yorke reports.
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lbea produces the world’s largest range of beauty and personal care packaging and product solutions. With almost 16,000 employees, it serves both large and small customers in over 60 countries worldwide. This highly successful group also operates 38 state-of-the-art facilities in Europe, Asia and the Americas. The company’s dedicated teams provide a unique local presence and unrivalled global reach, offering robust capabilities in design and innovation, as well as project management. A long history of design and manufacturing excellence has enabled Albea to work with many of the world’s top beauty brands including Dior, Lancôme and Givenchy. The company is a one-stop shop for all beauty and personal care products and is committed to going well beyond standard ‘packaging needs’ in order to provide added value wherever possible.
The beauty of performance Earlier this year Albea entered into an exclusive strategic alliance with ‘Sun European Partners’ to sell Albea products worldwide. This move enhances its already strong global presence and adds to the power of the group, which was acquired by an affiliate of Sun European Partners
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in 2010. Albea is one of the world’s leading packaging companies, providing a wide range of solutions for the make-up, fragrance, skincare, personal and oral care markets. Its diverse product portfolio includes plastic and laminate tubes, mascaras, lipsticks, lip-glosses, compacts and closures. In addition, Albea produces shells, spray-caps, jars, lids, cosmetic accessories, bags and promotional items. Following the company’s acquisition by Sun European Partners there has been a step-change in its overall performance with significant capital expenditure leading to a rise in profitability of more than 80 per cent. This dramatic improvement in performance has been achieved through strong organic growth, as well as a continuous programme of investment in the latest cutting-edge technology and new operating initiatives. The company’s remarkable growth has been supplemented by a number of strategic acquisitions that include Betts, Eyelamatic, Tex and Rexam’s PC business, and as a result has transformed the Albea Group into one of the world’s largest and most successful packaging companies. Francois Luscan, Albea’s CEO, said, “We are excited for this new chapter in Albea’s 60-year history. Sun has been an outstanding shareholder as we consolidate our position as the leading provider of
solutions to the world’s most prestigious and dynamic global brands, building on our unique combination of customer focus, operating excellence, broad range of products and unrivalled global reach.”
Bright future Today the market trend is for bright tubes with metallic effects and intricate designs, as well as for beautiful, elegant tubes that stand out on the shelf, while at the same time preserving a customer’s more delicate formulations. These new aesthetic finishes help beauty brands to expand their seasonal collections and limited editions by providing pioneering, personalised products in very short time frames. This in turn helps them stand out from the competition. “Laminated cosmetic tubes are an ideal solution for beauty brands and they offer countless advantages, with different structures for different barrier levels and looks. Intricate designs, realistic photo-prints, matte or shiny effects, multi-coloured and sophisticated metallic finishes – all add up to an infinite range of design options. In addition, we can offer various cap and applicator options including flip-top, screw top and nozzles. “As well as flexibility and short time-to-market, our cutting edge ‘SmartPrint™’ digital printing technology allows batch sizes from 10,000 units and shortens product development lead times for our customers,” explained Dorothee de Courson, marketing director of Albea Tubes.
Maximising metal-forming expertise With the recent 100 per cent acquisition of Covit S.L., the Albea Group has increased its expertise in the anodising, assembly and decoration of metal parts for the packaging of cosmetic and per-
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PAPER, PACKAGING & PRINTING
sonal care products. Covit’s extensive know-how in stamping, anodising and colour matching is further complimented by its expertise in the design of advanced dispensing systems. This new acquisition will provide Albea with extended global metal capabilities, while building a strong, global supplier of precision metal parts. Metal is a critical asset in the fragrance and cosmetics market where packaging often combines metal and plastic parts to advantage.
Dawn of a new era In March 2108 an exciting new era of innovation and growth was heralded by the acquisition of Albea by a leading pan-European equity firm: PIA Partners. Francois Luscan, Albea’s CEO, com-
mented, “This is the start of a new era for Albea. With PAI we are opening another exciting and transformative chapter in our history. Together we are going forward and making Albea a more agile, reliable, creative and robust partner for our customers’ global brands.” Laurent Rivoire, partner at PAI Partners, said, “We are looking forward to partnering with the Albea team and to continue strengthening the group’s market position, as well as supporting the implemenn tation of an accelerated growth strategy.” For further details of Albea’s innovative and high precision packaging products for the cosmetic and personal care products industry, visit: www.albea.com
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Joanna is the name of beauty
Joanna Cosmetic Laboratory is Poland’s leading manufacturer of hair and body care cosmetics. Last year, it was celebrating its 35th year of operations. This jubilee was accompanied by a considerable increase in the company’s production capacity. Dariusz Balcerzyk reports.
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Textiles, Home & Personal Care
oanna Cosmetic Laboratory was established in Warsaw in 1982. From the very beginning it was fully owned by Polish capital. Initially, it manufactured only simple hair care cosmetic formulations for local customers. In the early 1980s its products were sold directly from the company’s small office in Warsaw. However, the political and economic transformations that took place in Poland at the turn of the 1990s created a favourable
opportunity for the company’s dynamic development. Joanna Cosmetic Laboratory has seized the opportunity and achieved success on both domestic and foreign markets. In 2007 it expanded into the segment of body care products. Today, the company’s production area covers 5500m². The latest expansion of the factory, along with a modern park for bottling machines, dispensers and cartoners for bottling and packaging
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Bech Packaging Bech Packaging specializes in production and development of plastic packaging for cosmetic, pharmaceutical and food industry. With technologies as blow moulding and injection moulding, we are able to produce all kinds of packaging of different materials (PE, PP, PET and other). We create new solutions that enhance safety, convenience and the highest quality of everyday products. Bech Packaging focuses on continuous development to meet the needs of the most demanding customers. Our qualified and experienced personnel combine imagination and creativity with their knowledge to turn the wishes and ideas into reality. We observe the packaging market to provide our customers with a unique, modern and attractive product whether bespoke or from the standard range. As a result of constant improvement and investment in our staff as well as technology, we have become a leader in manufacture and distribution of packaging solutions. All processes meet the requirements of International Standards ISO 9001 and 14001. Our mission is to provide safe and high quality products and services. In Bech Packaging, we do not forget about our environment. Using our knowledge, experience and technology we direct our efforts towards constant waste reduction and improvement of the technological processes efficiency. By optimisation of raw material consumption we decrease our impact on natural environment. We feel responsible for our ecosystem and we understand that sustainability is crucial for our future.
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Textiles, Home & Personal Care
cosmetics, has allowed Joanna Cosmetic Laboratory to increase its production capacity by 30 per cent. Its computerised production management system includes recipes, technology, as well as the entire production and logistics operations; its main storage facility in Duchnice, near Warsaw, has space for 12,000 pallets.
Specialist in hair cosmetics Joanna Cosmetic Laboratory is an expert in the field of personal care, nourishing and styling products, as well as lightening, colouring and professional cosmetics for hairdressers. “We are the largest company in Poland to be focused on hair care cosmetics. Our range of products includes hair dyes, hair-styling products, shampoos, conditioners, peels, shower gels, depilatory products and professional hairdressing cosmetics,” says Ms Agnieszka Sikora, Joanna’s production director. “Our mission is to specialise in cosmetic products that fully meet customers’ body and hair care needs, and to be recognised for high quality offered at a reasonable price. Therefore, we continuously monitor the needs of our customers in order to meet their expectations in the best possible way. Our brand is known for clinicallytested and proven quality, flexibility, modernity, and the loyalty of our clients. We constantly improve our formulas and expand our offer of cosmetic products. Our product development team works closely with dermatologists and hairdressers. All this means we can be proud of the fact that our company experiences continuous yearon-year growth, which positions us among the leading cosmetics companies in Poland.”
Increasing foreign sales Joanna Cosmetic Laboratory employs 350 people and its staff is well qualified, experienced, stable and motivated. The company has a portfolio of more than 600 products, and each year dozens of new lines are introduced to the market. Its annual production capacity is now more than 50 million units, with an option to expand if necessary. With an excellent level of brand recognition and awareness amongst consumers at home, Joanna is also increasing its export activity: only a few years ago, its foreign sales accounted for 4–8 per cent of overall turnover, while at the end of 2017 it was estimated at 15 per cent, which was achieved through close cooperation with foreign distributors. “Currently, our products are present in 35 markets around the world. We have a strong position in such countries as the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and the UK, as well in the Arabic countries of the Middle East. However, we are constantly developing our export operations and plan to increase the share of exports in our total sales,” says Ms Sikora.
Meeting the highest standards Joanna Cosmetic Laboratory has been awarded the Good Manufacturing Practices certificate. GMP provides guidance for manufacturing, testing, and quality assurance in order to ensure that a product is safe for human consumption or use. The company has also benefited from co-financing from EU funds. Three times it has used EU funds to support its participation in overseas trade shows, and two times for the purchase of modern machines and production tools. Industry Europe 197
Joanna Cosmetic Laboratory operates the most modern Research and Implementation and Quality Control laboratories, where a team of the most experienced technologists and cosmetologists is employed. The company also runs its own sewage treatment plant and deionised water production station, which uses the reverse osmosis method. Owing to the modern machinery it owns and production processes it performs, it meets the highest sanitary and hygiene standards. Joanna cooperates with many supply partners, which contribute greatly to its ongoing success. It invests in the best raw materials,
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which are purchased from the leading suppliers throughout Europe. On the other side, it also closely cooperates with local, Polish companies. For example, its attractive packaging comes from the leading Polish packaging producers, which are well known and appreciated not only in Poland, but also abroad. This approach translates into success and business opportunities for all the partners taking n part in this cooperation. www.joanna.pl
also in this issue...
The Ericsson research and development centre in Budapest is one of the largest info-communication centres in Hungary, and Ericsson’s second largest research and development centre after the main R&D institution in Sweden. Edina Beale introduces the operations of Ericsson Hungary and reveals its latest successes.
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wedish networking giant Ericsson has introduced the Scandinavian company culture in Hungary since it established Ericsson Hungary Kft in Budapest in 2005. Punctuality, staff involvement, motivation and sustainability are among the main principles embedded in the company culture. Currently providing jobs for nearly 2000 people, the activities of Ericsson Hungary are based on three main pillars. On one hand, it is one of the largest companies engaged in telecommunications and computer science in Hungary. On the other hand, Ericsson Hungary
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is the strategic partner of Magyar Telekom, for whom since 1991 it has been delivering mobile networks and installing 2G, 3G and 4G mobile network systems and landline infrastructure. Over the past few years, Ericsson Hungary has been carrying out maintenance for UPC Hungary’s national network and has also recently developed the mobile network for Digi Hungary. Finally the third pillar of Ericsson Hungary’s operation is its regional service centre, where 200 highly trained Hungarian engineers work to provide telecommunication systems and system integration.
New Ericsson House in Budapest
Since December 2017, Ericsson has a brand new home in Hungary. The Ericsson House was built on the bank of the Danube on an area of 24,000m2, where the Swiss company has its second largest research and development centre. This building is one of Hungary’s most modern, most innovative facilities that meets the requirements of the strict environmental quality standard, the national LEED Gold. The construction of the six-storey building was tailored to meet Ericsson’s needs. Looking at its shape and functionality, the Ericsson House fits in very well with the surrounding area. Below the building is a four-storey underground parking facility that provides 540 car parking spaces and 250 spaces for bicycles.
Ericsson has recently won two important awards for 5G technological innovation: one was for the 5G Radio Dot equipment and the other for the cooperative work with IBM that resulted in the 28 GHz frequency, full radio-end solution for 5G use. In February this year, Ericsson unveiled the 5G Radio Dot equipment, the world’s first indoor small cell 5G solution, enabling operators to meet rising demand for superior indoor connectivity. This solution has won the GTI Award for mobile technological innovation breakthroughs in 2018. Besides this, Ericsson, together with the IBM Watson Research Centre, has also received the ISSCC Lewis Award for developing the
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also in this issue...
28 GHz full radio front-end solution for 5G use. This was the first time Ericsson had received this renowned award for integrated chip design. The Ericsson 5G NR Radio Dot system is based on the 3GPP 5G standard and offers a simple upgrade solution from 4G by using the existing indoor network infrastructure. The 5G Radio Dot provides 2Gbps or above speed on indoor networks, and supports the new and upcoming industrial applications that need to meet strict retardation and bandwidth specifications in areas including mining, production and health. Service providers belonging to the GTI group have already expressed their interest in the 5G launch planned in 2019 and 2020. The first standalone, 5G- based commercial networks are expected to start their operations next year, while the wider band of network development is expected from 2020.
New Ericsson solution developed in Hungary T-Mobile US in North America, which has more than 72 million network users, will introduce a new telecommunication solution developed by Ericsson Hungary. The Ericsson Expert Analytics (EEA) solution, developed by Ericsson’s research and development
centre in Budapest, measures the quality of the general service and is able to accept and process large amounts of data coming from different sources. With this new Ericsson solution, T-Mobile controls all mobile data including communication services and mobile bandwidth, and is able identify problems faster and more accurately than traditional tools. The prototype, which was developed over many years, was designed and constructed in Budapest, and EEA is now Ericsson’s foremost product and analytical platform. The Budapest site has become the EEA’s global development centre. This solution serves many hundreds of technical users, and T-Mobile plans to extend the service for all areas including customer service, operation, the examination of tool operations and IoT. The company has announced that 5G technology is ready for business use. It is now concentrating on technologies for achieving 5G business use and focusing on the most important factors to support applications such as radio network access. The company has so far signed 38 letters of intent in five continents for introducing 5G services. In addition to the American market, T-Mobile Ericsson has signed a contract to construct the 5G network for Vodafone UK in London, Deutsche Telekom in n South Germany and for Swisscom in the whole of Switzerland. Industry Europe 203
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