Industry Europe – Issue 28.4

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Volume 28/4 – 2018

Accuride presents latest innovations CONESA: acquisition cements market leadership Tristone Group achieves news sales record

Life-changing product approvals for Europe’s pharma industry



OPINION

PETERMERCER

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Cui bono? Who profits from the Irish border impasse?

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it really possible, asks Hamlet as he watches Fortibras’s army march across the stage (or three of four of them anyway), that these twenty thousand men go to seize nothing but a bit of the Polish frontier, some little patch of ground that, as the Captain says, ‘hath in it no profit but the name’? All this expense of men and money for what? A quarrel over a straw, an eggshell. We too today may stand amazed at the spectacle of the EU launching its battalions to dispute a another little patch of ground between Newry and Dundalk – insisting that the question of this frontier must be settled before the Withdrawal Agreement with the UK can be agreed, even though there is still no agreement at all on future UK/EU trading arrangements. The Irish border ‘backstop’, says the EU, cannot depend on subsequent trade agreements – or lack of them – while the UK says it is not possible to say what kind of a border there will be until a trade agreement is reached – or not. It beggars belief that that this issue has been allowed to become such a stumbling block on the road to Brexit. The amount of trade across the Irish border is hardly worth bothering about – even for the Irish, never mind the rest of the EU. London, Dublin and Brussels all say they have no wish for any new border infrastructure (border posts, customs checks etc) to be introduced. So, as David Davis, the former Brexit minister, observed, ‘People might be forgiven for wondering what the exact problem is’. After all, it’s not as if there was currently no border. Different VAT rates and excise duties have made cross-border smuggling, especially in diesel, a quite profitable business for years, not least for, it is widely believed in Belfast, former members of the IRA. And then there is illegal immigration – everyone knows that the Irish police are on the lookout for people on south-bound buses who are

pretending to be going to work. All this keeps customs officers and police quite busy as it is. And there are cameras on the border and checks on standards of food for export at factories away from the border. The UK contends that, after Brexit, electronic monitoring, trusted trader rules and exemptions for small business would be quite adequate to ensure that Northern Ireland did not become a ‘back door’ into the Single Market. Unfortunately such proposals have been dismissed as ‘magical thinking’ by the EU.

Territory grab So the ‘exact problem’ now is the EU’s insistence on the backstop – what it says would need to happen if a free trade agreement between the UK and the EU were not agreed. And that, it says, would be that ‘Northern Ireland shall be considered part of the customs territory of the European Union’. This is such an outrageous claim – putting a trade border between two parts of the UK and, from the Ulster perspective, attempting to effectively annex the province – that not even the UK government could entertain it. But instead of telling Mr Barnier to take a running jump and go whistle for his £40bn, as the then Foreign Secretary might have put it, it came up with the Chequers proposal, which more or less extended the EU’s ‘customs territory’ to the entire UK. This went down well with no-one – even Mr Barnier is reported to have called it ‘insane’. So there is deadlock and the Withdrawal Agreement is supposed to be signed in November. But why have things got to such a pass, why is the problem so hard to solve? Cui bono? Well there are the usual suspects, of course. The EU would much prefer the UK to remain in the customs union. As Barnier has said, it would be ‘much easier’ for them. Multi-national businesses, worried about

disruption of their supply trains, would also prefer it. Most Remainers in all parties never stop telling us it’s ‘in the national interest’ and even the Labour Party seems now to support it, despite its leader’s life-long hostility to the capitalist agenda of the EU. And then there is Irish politics. Most people in Belfast think that Mr Varadkar is taking such a hard line on the border because he is trying to boosts his position by appeasing Sinn Fein voters. And Sinn Fein, of course, sees Brexit as an opportunity to break up the UK and bring about a united Ireland. For them the border issue is no straw. And then there is the UK government itself. Mrs May has insisted that Brexit means Brexit, that Britain must leave the customs union and the single market and so on, but a lot of people think she’s going a funny way about it. They suspect that the border problem is being used, if not by her then by those who advise her, to shift the UK’s position so that it ends up in what is in reality a customs union, whatever they choose to call it. And with the Chequers proposal to accept a common rule book – in effect, the acquis communautaire – they have pretty much offered to stay in the single market too. So instead of telling the EU it can have its £40bn if it stops being so pig-headed about the border and settles for a Canadastyle trade deal, May looks likely to give even more ground on Chequers – services, free movement etc – and pass it off as an unavoidable compromise. After all, most of her cabinet never wanted to leave the EU anyway so they may hope to fob the voters off with BRINO, a remainer’s Brexit. Of course that might mean electoral disaster for May and her party. It is right, concluded Hamlet, to find quarrel even in a straw when honour’s at the stake, though in this case honour has little n to do with it. 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

Comment 1 Opinion Cui bono? 4 Bill Jamieson Europe has a bigger problems than Brexit

Pharmaceutical Industry 6 Life-changing new products from Europe’s pharma industry A year of ‘firsts’ for drug approvals in Europe 8 Pharmaceutical news The latest from the industry

Packaging Industry 10 12

How pharma packaging can improve patient compliance Tackling the non-adherence problem Packaging news The latest from the industry

Logistics & Transport Industry 14 How is e-commerce affecting European logistics? The trends shaking up the sector 16 Logistics & Transport news The latest from the industry

IT Support Syed Hassan

News

Industry Europe

Reports

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

Alkmaar House, Alkmaar Way, Norwich, Norfolk, NR6 6BF, United Kingdom Tel: +44 (0)1603 414444 Fax: +44 (0)1603 779850 Email: photos@industryeurope.net adcopy@industryeurope.net Web: https://industryeurope.com Twitter: https://twitter.com/IndustryEurope

© 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

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24 26

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

AUTOMOTIVE HUNGARY 27 Exhibition for Automotive Industry Hungary’s premier

automotive trade event

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Flying higher Magnus Aircraft

HUNGAROMEDICA 32

HUNGAROMEDICA: All medical technologies under one roof The latest advances in healthcare

Automation & Robotics 34 Optimising nature’s electromagnetic forces Cantoni Group 36 Intelligent solutions Smart in/INTROL Group

Automotive & Heavy Vehicles 40 48 52 56

Strong link BorgWarner Sustainable mobility EvoBus Passion for the best Frauenthal Automotive Set to grow IDEAL Automotive


VOL 28/4

Above: Cantoni Group p34

60 63 66 70

Geared for success Nord Motoriduttori Trailers with many applications Zaslaw Flowing success Tristone Group New directions Simon Plastic

Chemicals, Petrochemicals and Offshore 73

Above: BorgWarner p40 Below: Nord Motoriduttori p60

Chemicals based on sustainability Bozzetto

Construction & Engineering 77 Each bathroom is unique Cersanit Capital Group 80 Railway and urban transport infrastructure ZUE Group

Above: DAKO-CZ p116 Below: Bridon-Bekaert Group p123

Energy & Utilities 82

Redefining offshore-energy cable systems Cablel Hellenic Cables Group

Food & Beverage 86 90 92

Fresh and full of flavour Victoria Cymes Crystal clear taste of vodka Stock Polska Top quality guaranteed CONESA

Home Electronics, Appliances & HVAC 96 Sliding into the future Accuride 101 At the forefront Baxi 104 Optimising ‘cold-chain’ efficiency Epta Group 112 Tinnitus, a transformation GN ReSound

Logistics & Transport 116 Safety on railways DAKO-CZ

Above: Uflex p134 Below: Plastek UK p146

Metals, Metalworking & Mining Above: Bozzetto p73 Below: CONESA p92

120 Global supplier Expom 123 Technological strength – doubled

Bridon-Bekaert Group

Paper, Packaging & Printing 126 Measured to perfection Cerulean 130 Green plastic packaging Schoeller Allibert 134 Adding innovation to expectation Uflex 138 Green paper production Smurfit Kappa Piteå 143 Stacking-up winning solutions DS Smith 146 Custom components Plastek UK 149 Pioneering super-stable e-mobility film Treofan

Pharmaceuticals & Medical 152 Material airlocks from SKAN SKAN Industry Europe 3


COMMENT

BILLJAMIESON

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Executive Editor of The Scotsman

Europe has a bigger problems than Brexit What answers does the EU have to the challenges of Italy and immigration?

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rom a UK perspective, it’s been easy to assume Brexit is the biggest worry around. The dithering, obfuscation and interminable delays have become a permanent fact of daily life, and with little prospect of an end to the uncertainty for business. But step back a moment from this national obsession. Across the EU there are bigger problems – one immediate and another, altogether more profound. Let’s deal first with the problem close to hand: it is the fear that Italy is set on a collision course with the rest of the EU bloc, and with a High Noon outcome that could send the currency and markets into a tailspin. For months, the European Central Bank has been anxiously monitoring developments in Italy – and for good reason. Outside of Greece, the country has the highest debt to GDP ratio in the eurozone at 132 per cent. Nothing new there: Italy has long been mired in debt. But two large cracks have appeared. The first is that economic growth has stalled, raising doubts as to whether Italy can continue to service its tottering debt mountain. And the second is that the populist Lega-Five Star government – the most improbable Left-Right coalition in European politics – looks poised to embark on a spending and borrowing spree that could set the country on a direct collision course with the European Commission and the European Central Bank. Some sort of international prize should be awarded to those who can explain Italian politics. But the Left-Right’s fiscal intentions are clear to see. It plans to suspend VAT rises and roll back pension reform. It is intent on introducing a flat tax and bring in a basic income for the poor. Then there is a dramatic increase required in infrastructure spending in the wake of the Genoa bridge disaster this summer. This would put Italy in direct breach of the EU’s Maastricht Treaty limit, 4 Industry Europe

and quite how all this would be funded with the European Central Bank winding down its purchases of sovereign bonds is anyone’s guess without resort to a full-blown EU bailout and the toughest of German terms. The country is more reliant than ever on foreign credit to meet debt repayments. But business expectations are at their lowest since the crisis in early 2013 and without an early pick-up in demand the economy analysts fear the country could topple into recession in the final quarter of 2018. Fitch, one of the leading credit agencies, has put the country’s already problematic ‘BBB’ rating on negative watch.

Tough opposition to immigration is what brought Italy’s Left-Right coalition to power and any attempt by Brussels to oppose it would be likely to spark an upsurge in support for populist, anti-Euro parties Even so, need we worry? Were not the firebrands of Greece brought to heel and the country made to swallow an austerity programme? But Italy is not Greece. It was a founder member of the eurozone, it is the second largest economy in the currency bloc and until recently a pillar of the European project. It is chronically dependent on foreign lenders to maintain public services and its creaking infrastructure – and as we saw this summer, it is in dire need of repair.

The immigration time-bomb And this is where a deeper challenge to Europe makes itself felt: the prospect of ever deeper divisions over immigration. Tough opposition to immigration is what brought Italy’s Left-Right coalition to power and any

attempt by Brussels to weaken or oppose it would be likely to spark an upsurge in support for populist, anti-Euro parties across the entire continent. In Germany, chancellor Angela Merkel is already struggling with an angry populist revolt against her stance on immigration and a rising threat from the anti-immigration Alternative for Germany (AFD). She looks to have neither the will nor the means to play Lady Bountiful to her southern neighbour with lending support. Denmark’s social democrats are planning to impose Danish language and values on migrants. Sweden has tightened asylum policies. Put bluntly, no European leader can dare to move against the populist surge or be seen as a soft touch. Nor are voters in Europe likely to be swayed by programmes of social and cultural integration. This is an issue bigger than European governments – individually or collectively – can control. For it is centrally to do with population growth. As senior American journalist Christopher Caldwell wrote recently in The Spectator, “The population of Africa has almost tripled since 1980, and it is going to double again between now and 2050. While Europe’s population shrivels and shrinks over the next generation, the continent to its south is going to add – add, not have – 1.25 billion young people. Already there are millions of potential migrants stacked up in the dosshouses of Tripoli and Tunis and Istanbul and on the roads behind them, ready to converge on the first country that offers a hint of the welcome that European leaders gave in 2015.” Tempting though it may be to view Italy as an isolated or marginal problem, it has the potential to reverberate across the continent, with consequences for politics, economies and markets. Trapped in a Brexit nightmare? Viewed from this perspective, Brexit looks n the least of the EU’s problems.



Credit - CGT Catapult

Life-changing new products

from Europe’s pharma industry It’s been a year of ‘firsts’ for the approval of novel classes of drug in Europe, Sarah Houlton reports.

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he EU has given the green light to several new therapeutics in the past year. The first RNAi product to reach the market, Tegsedi (inotersen) from Ionis and Akcea Therapeutics, is designed to treat hereditary transthyretrin amyloidosis, an inherited, progressive rare disease for which treatment options are limited. The drug is an antisense oligonucleotide. These products are short single strands of a nucleic acid that are designed to bind to the messenger RNA produced by a faulty gene, which blocks it from being able to replicate, and therefore effectively turns it off. Europe’s first cell therapy products were also approved. While potentially life-changing for patients, they come at a significant cost – hundreds of thousands of euros per patient. Kite/Gilead’s Yescarta and Kymriah from Novartis are both CAR-T products designed to treat blood cancers, and manufacturing them represents a huge challenge. 6 Industry Europe

The process is very different from those used to make small molecule drugs or biologic protein products, where large batches are made and distributed. Here, the first step is harvesting T-cells from the blood of individual patients. The cells are then genetically modified using a viral vector to insert a gene that codes for a chimeric antigen receptor, or CAR, which arms the cells to recognise and kill cancerous cells. They are then expanded to make more cells, before being returned to the patient. This means that every patient receives an individually tailored product – and therefore each dose has to be manufactured individually. Both companies are ramping up production capability in anticipation of product launches around Europe. Novartis will make the cells in-house in Switzerland plus at CellforCure in France and the Fraunhofer Institute in Germany, while Kite has a facility in the Netherlands.

Altering the cells is not the only manufacturing challenge – the virus used to insert the new gene into the cells needs to be made too. There is a real shortage of capacity for manufacturing viruses, which are also used in gene therapy, and in May the UK government’s Cell & Gene Therapy Catapult opened an incubator in Stevenage for the scale-up and manufacture of these products. It has six independent cleanroom modules for biotech companies to use, and the addition of further modules is already being planned. Four companies are already in situ – Adaptimmune and Freeline making viral vectors, and Autolus and Cell Medica producing cell therapies. The facility is adjacent to a cryo storage and distribution centre, run by Fisher Scientific. The UK government’s Industrial Strategy is leading to further investment in pharma manufacturing, too, not least the Medicines Manufacturing Innovation Centre that is being


Credit - CGT Catapult

set up in near Glasgow in Scotland. Its aim is to aid the development of new technologies and processes for the manufacture of small molecule drugs and fine chemicals. Brexit, however, continues to cause upheaval. The UK government is talking about stockpiling medicines so patients aren’t left without should the country crash out of the EU with no deal in place, and companies are having to spend large amounts of money on back-up plans for such an eventuality. It also means that the European regulator, EMA, will be leaving its London home and setting up shop in Amsterdam instead. It remains unclear what future relationship the UK will be able to have with EMA, despite the government’s stated desire to be some form of associate member.

Pressure on branded medicines According to IQVIA, over the past five years spending in developed markets rose from $326bn to $395bn, and 87 per cent of this $69bn net growth was in the US – in the other big markets, where costs and prices are largely managed by the healthcare system rather than left to the market to decide, growth has been slower or even declined. A big driver for spending increases was the success Gilead had with drugs like Sovaldi and Harvoni, which promise a faster treatment that is more likely to lead to a cure for hepatitis C, as well as some incredibly expensive cancer drugs and the widespread use of monoclonal antibodies to treat autoimmune diseases. While overall healthcare costs continue to rise, the amount spent on branded medicines is set to drop. IQVIA predicts that net brand spending will fall by 1–3 per cent in 2018. Patent expiry is set to raise its head again in the coming years, and with biosimi-

Credit - CGT Catapult

lars – competitors to biologics – now gaining a foothold in the market in the US as well as Europe, spending is set to fall as prices drop in the face of competition. The US is a decade behind Europe in the availability of biosimilars, but is catching up rapidly. And several more familiar brand name biologics are now facing competition in Europe. Versions of Remicade (infliximab) have been available to patients with autoimmune diseases for some time, and a biosimilar to breast cancer drug Herceptin, another monoclonal antibody, has also now been given the go-ahead. The world’s biggest selling drug is currently Abbvie’s Humira (adalimumab) and, with its European patent set to expire in October 2018, several companies are poised to capitalise by launching biosimilars. These include Amgen, Boehringer Ingelheim and Samsung Bioepis, all of which already have EMA approval to launch once the patent situation allows. Global sales for Humira topped $18m in 2017, more than double the second biggest seller, Bayer/Regeneron’s Eylea (aflibercept). Unsurprisingly, bearing in mind the amount of money involved, AbbVie issued legal challenges. These were settled in early 2018, with AbbVie granting licences that will allow biosimilars in Europe in October 2018, and in the US (where the patent expires later) in 2023.

Combating falsified drugs However, Europe saw the withdrawal of generic versions of the blood pressure lowering drug valsartan from several manufacturers, including Sandoz, Actavis and Dexcel, after carcinogenic nitrosamine impurities were found. These came from the active pharmaceutical ingredient, which was sourced

from Chinese manufacturer Zhejiang Huahai Pharmaceuticals. According to EMA, the Chinese company had changed its manufacturing process, which led to the presence of the impurity. Recalls in future should be easier to coordinate after the Falsified Medicines Directive is implemented in early 2019. Designed to secure and prevent falsified medicines entering the legitimate supply chain, its requirements will affect manufacturers as well as distributors and dispensers. Some of the Directive’s requirements are already in place, including rules around traceability of active ingredients, but as of February 2019, all packs of medicine destined for EU patients will have to bear a 2D code that is scanned at the point of dispensing. Each pack has an individual identity code, and if it does not exist on the EU database – either because it has been duplicated or is fake – then the pack cannot be dispensed. Manufacturers will have to upload these codes to the European Medicines Verification System when the packs are released to the market. If a pack gets flagged up as problematic at the pharmacy, then the manufacturer, the national regulator and the European Medicines Verification Organisation will all be notified. Manufacturers will also be required to apply an anti-tampering device to all the packs, to prevent the contents being removed and replaced with counterfeits. The serialisation of all the packs will make issuing recalls far simpler – the system will flag up if a pack should have been withdrawn when the pharmacist tries to dispense it. While this adds extra effort and cost to the manufacturing process, in the long run it should reduce the problem of fakes in the market, n and increase patient safety.

Industry Europe 7


NEWS

New developments in the Pharmaceutical industry

Boehringer invests in new tablet production facility in Ingelheim

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oehringer Ingelheim has held a groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of a new production facility for innovative drugs. This new Solids Launch facility will focus on development activities for drugs in tablet form and manufacture them for worldwide market launches. The research-driven pharmaceutical company is investing €85 million in Ingelheim, focusing on modern and flexible production, to be even better positioned for marketing new, innovative drugs. Starting in 2020, 75 employees will develop new production methods for tablet preparations and manufacture these centrally for all global market launches. In return, the production of older, easier-tomanufacture drugs has been gradually relocated to different countries in the worldwide manufacturing network since 2016, allowing greater focus on the more demanding tasks of chemical production. The Solids Launch facility is an important piece of the strategy, allowing Boehringer Ingelheim to keep the entire value-added chain in Germany over the long term, from research right through to production. Visit: www.boehringer-ingelheim.com

Novartis marks a new era for migraine patients N ovartis has announced that the European Commission (EC) has approved Aimovig (erenumab) for the prevention of migraine in adults experiencing four or more migraine days per month. Aimovig is the first and only treatment specifically designed for migraine prevention to be approved in the European Union, Switzerland, the US and Australia. It works by blocking a receptor called the calcitonin gene-related peptide receptor (CGRP-R) which plays a critical role

in mediating the incapacitating pain of migraine. In the extensive clinical program of 2600 patients, those on Aimovig experienced significant reductions in their number of migraine days per month, with a safety and tolerability profile similar to placebo. Aimovig can be self-administered or administered by another trained person every four weeks with the SureClick autoinjector pen, an established device commonly used for a range of different conditions.

“Migraine matters. It is a painful, highly disruptive neurological disease that affects all aspects of life, from going to work to spending time with family and friends,” said Patrick Little, President of the European Migraine and Headache Alliance. “A treatment specifically designed for migraine prevention is a much-welcomed innovation and could transform lives of patients for whom current therapies do not work or are not well tolerated.” Visit: www.novartis.com

GSK’s Nucala is granted marketing authorisation in EU

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laxoSmithKline has announced that the European Commission has granted marketing authorisation for Nucala (mepolizumab) as an add-on treatment for severe refractory eosinophilic asthma in paediatric patients aged six up to 17 years. As a result of this licence extension Nucala is now approved for use for severe refractory eosinophilic asthma in both adult and paediatric patients in the 31 European countries covered by the European Medicines Agency (EMA). Dr Hal Barron, Chief Scientific Officer and President, R&D, GlaxoSmithKline, said: “Asthma is the most common chronic disease in children. The availability of Nucala as the first targeted treatment available for young children with severe asthma will help provide asthma control for these children and reassurance to their parents.” Nucala is the first and only approved biologic therapy for paediatric patients with severe asthma that targets interleukin-5 (IL-5), which plays an important role in regulating the function of eosinophils. Visit: www.gsk.com

European Commission approves Bristol-Myers Squibb’s Opdivo (nivolumab)

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ristol-Myers Squibb Company has announced that the European Commission (EC) has approved Opdivo (nivolumab) for the adjuvant treatment of adult patients with melanoma with involvement of lymph nodes or metastatic disease who have undergone

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complete resection. This indication is for both BRAF mutant and wild-type melanoma patients. With this decision, Opdivo becomes the first and only PD-1 therapy to receive an EC approval in the adjuvant setting and has gained its eighth indication across six distinct tumor types in the European Union (EU). “Stage III and IV melanoma patients are at high risk for disease recurrence after surgical

removal and, therefore, in need of effective interventions to prevent recurrence,” said James Larkin, M.D., Ph.D., Consultant Medical Oncologist, The Royal Marsden. “This is an important new treatment option, as the data support the benefit of nivolumab across a broad range of patients to address concerns around recurrence post-surgery.” Visit: www.bms.com


NEWS

INDUSTRYNEWS Commission approves AstraZeneca’s once-weekly Bayer accelerates European Bydureon BCise device for patients with type-2 diabetes six new startups A

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hanging the experience of health: that’s the focus of the six startups which the Bayer G4A team has included in the Accelerator programme this year. The young companies from Canada, Germany, Israel, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States came out ahead of more than 1800 competitors from 100 countries. They now have 100 days in which to intensively drive the further development of their products and solutions with expertise and investment from Bayer. The company will provide them with offices in Berlin, pharmaceutical executives and industry experts as mentors and €50,000 in funding for each project. “Digital solutions are essential to driving innovation in an evolving healthcare environment. Bayer is seeking to apply them across the pharmaceutical value chain in order to detect diseases at an earlier stage, to develop medicines faster, and to deliver individual treatments with a meaningful outcome for patients. In this endeavor, we benefit immensely from collaborations and the exchange of knowledge and skills with innovative startups,” explains Dieter Weinand, member of the board of management of Bayer AG and head of the Pharmaceuticals Division. Cooperation with startups is an integral part of Bayer’s overall digital transformation. The company is driving a Group-wide initiative called ‘Advancing Digital’ to foster innovative solutions in healthcare and agriculture. Visit: www.bayer.com

EC approval of Pfizer’s first therapeutic oncology biosimilar

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he European Commission (EC) has approved Pfizer’s TRAZIMER, a biosimilar to Herceptin (trastuzumab), for the treatment of human epidermal growth factor (HER2) overexpressing breast cancer and HER2 overexpressing metastatic gastric or gastroesophageal junction

straZeneca has announced that the European Commission (EC) has approved Bydureon BCise (exenatide 2mg prolonged-release suspension for injection in pre-filled pen) as a new formulation within the marketing authorisation for Bydureon (exenatide extended release) for the treatment of patients with type-2 diabetes. The new formulation of once-weekly Bydureon is an improved single-dose, pre-filled pen device that requires no titration and is approved for use in combination with other glucose-lowering medicines, including basal insulin, to help improve glycaemic control in adults with type-2 diabetes whose bloodsugar levels are inadequately controlled by other glucose-lowering medicines together with diet and exercise. Cardiovascular, renal and metabolism together forms one of AstraZeneca’s main therapy areas and key growth drivers. By following the science to understand more clearly the underlying links

between the heart, kidneys and pancreas, AstraZeneca is investing in a portfolio of medicines to protect organs and improve outcomes by slowing disease progression, reducing risks and tackling co-morbidities. Visit: www.astrazeneca.com

Senior appointment at Sanofi S

anofi has appointed Jean-Baptiste Chasseloup de Chatillon as Executive Vice-President, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and Member of the Executive Committee, effective October 1st 2018. He will join Sanofi September 1st to ensure a smooth transition with Jérôme Contamine who will retire on Septem-

ber 30th, after more than 9 years of distinguished service at Sanofi. Mr Chasseloup de Chatillon most recently served as Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice-President for PSA Group. In this capacity he was also a member of the managing board and of the executive committee. “Jean-Baptiste is an experienced CFO who has been part of the impressive turnaround of PSA Group. His track record of successfully driving finance across different businesses and geographies throughout his career will be of great value to lead our very experienced team around the world,” says Olivier Brandicourt, Chief Executive Officer at Sanofi. Visit: www.sanofi.com

adenocarcinoma. This approval follows the recommendation from the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use in May 2018. “TRAZIMERA has the potential to help many patients with HER2 overexpressing cancers, such as breast and gastric cancer, which can correlate with poor outcomes and aggressive disease,” said

Professor Diana Lüftner, Charité Campus Benjamin Franklin and Member of the Presidency of the German Society of Hematology and Medical Oncology. “Today’s approval will help enable greater access for patients and physicians across Europe, without compromising on quality, efficacy and safety.” Visit: www.pfizer.com Industry Europe 9


Despite decades of effort to design pharmaceutical packaging that helps people take the right dose of the right medication at the right time, non-adherence remains a serious and far-reaching problem. Rich Quelch, Global Head of Marketing of Origin, a global pharma packaging and supply chain specialist, explains how the latest technologies and methods are being employed to help solve this pressing issue.

How pharma packaging can improve patient compliance R

esearch suggests around half of patients who are prescribed medication don’t comply with recommended adherence advice in some way. Non-compliance can take many forms. It could be forgetting to take a dose, refusing medicine due to off-putting side effects, taking incorrect amounts or not requesting a repeat prescription. Whatever the circumstance, patients are suffering because they’re not taking a prescribed medicine correctly or at all and, in the process, excessive amounts of medicine are being wasted.

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In the EU, 200,000 people die each year as a result of failing to follow medication advice properly. In economic terms, this costs the EU €1.25 billion and the NHS £500 million every year, putting additional financial strain on healthcare systems. Pharma packaging innovation plays an important role in boosting patient compliance and improving health outcomes.

Intelligent blister packs The use of blister packaging for solid dose medication is widespread, and this form of

delivery system is a core focus for innovators looking to boost compliance and enable adherence monitoring. ‘Smart’ blister packs are becoming increasingly popular, featuring an incorporated microchip which captures use-related data to monitor when a medicine is being taken and remind patients when the next dose is due. They can also provide warnings when the expiry date is nearing, if storage conditions aren’t safe or the packaging has been tampered with. Intelligent blister packs empower pharmacists and healthcare professionals caring for the patient by giving them access to the patients’ medicine-taking behaviours at home. This valuable information can then be used to get to the root cause of non-adherence and address any behavioural issues head-on in a way that hasn’t been possible before. Another good example of innovation in this area is smart wireless pill bottles used primarily for the treatment of cancer. Each bottle incorporates a wireless cellular chip and sensors which collect real-time adherence data such as when the bottle is opened and reclosed. In


the case of a missed dose, the system sends an automated alert via text to the patient, caregiver or pharmacist. Despite the promise of smart packaging in boosting patient compliance, there’s still a lower market adoption than you’d expect due to the initial cost of developing such technologies which is ultimately pinching heavily-guarded profit margins. Part of the answer to lowering costs and promoting accurate data collection could be to use smart packaging during clinical trials, in turn increasing commercial application and ROI by adding value to stakeholders, patients and pharma manufacturers.

Eliminating contaminants Big pharma is investing heavily in biologics to have prime mover advantage in a market forecast to be worth nearly $480bn by 2024. This all sounds extremely promising, but the rapid rise of biologics and biosimilars has thrown up huge challenges for the delivery of safe and effective products. By their nature, therapeutic proteins are very different from traditional small-molecule medicines because their function depends on their molecular shape and structure. They’re also very sensitive to contaminants such as metal ions found in tradition packaging materials like glass, plastics and rubber. There is a growing interest in wearable injectors (or on-body delivery devices) to meet the challenge of reducing contami-

nation and improving patient experience. The most advanced on-body systems are helping to improve compliance by administering larges doses of medicine over a preset delivery period, helping to avoid site leakage, local intolerability and injection pain. Patient self-administration of subcutaneous injections is a much cheaper method than intra-veneous (IV) infusion in a hospital. In addition, the patient’s quality of life is greatly improved as they can receive their life-saving treatments with ease and comfort at home.

Protecting children In the UK alone, medicines are the cause of over 70 per cent of hospital admissions for poisoning in under-fives. Alongside this, the global average lifespan is steadily increasing, applying pressure on the pharma industry to develop innovative seniorfriendly solutions which promote adherence. However, the very features which improve child-resistance can also make medicine packaging more difficult for older people to use. Traditionally, child-resistant packaging (CRP) comprised of bottles with the familiar ‘press to turn’ closure. However, more prescription drugs are now distributed in blister packs, which provide a perfect seal and can be issued in retail environments without any risk of contamination. At Origin, we are currently working on a new CR Smart technology, which comprises a ‘twin child-resistant design’ to create an even

stronger preventative barrier. The design is at a concept stage and has been purposely left to allow interested parties to take the design and adapt it to their given application. Several packaging firms have also developed innovative CRP options beyond traditional bottles. These include ‘press-to-engage’ resealable sliders that are difficult for young children but easy for adults of all ages. Expectations are also increasing when it comes to child protection; acceptable extraction levels for solid dose medication are being challenged and rightly so. If some are achieving results of F4 to F1, then why should F8 be considered acceptable? Brands have much to gain – ethically and commercially – by blazing the trail when it comes to CRP.

The future No one solution exists to solving the nonadherence problem. What’s certainly clear is a more holistic approach is needed that integrates packaging and delivery systems with ‘smart’ devices, software and personalised support. Unlocking the potential of big data will continue to be a top priority for the industry and healthcare stakeholders over the coming years to use the valuable insights gained to develop patient-centered adherence interventions tailored to individual needs. Only through an ongoing collaboration and investment in R&D will we succeed in improving optimal use of evidence-based treatment n and adherence to medicines. Industry Europe 11


NEWS

New developments in the Packaging industry

Indorama Ventures Ball Packaging collaborates acquires PET recycler with Dutch craft beer brand Sorepla Industrie B

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ndorama Ventures has increased its PET recycling capabilities by acquiring French-based Sorepla Industrie for an undisclosed fee. Sorepla Industrie operates one recycling facility in France which boasts three production lines: one for recycled polyethylene terephthalate (rPET), another for recycled high-density polyethylene (rHDPE) and finally a line for food-grade pellets. The facility is capable of processing 52,000 tonnes of material every year, and Indorama claims that the facility will strengthen its position in the packaging market amid rising demand for rPET packaging, as manufacturers seek more sustainable packaging solutions. Aloke Lohia, group CEO of Indorama Ventures said: “Indorama Ventures plays a key role in promoting the circular economy and environmental sustainability globally. “We believe that the recycling of PET packaging is one of the most responsible solutions for the preservation of resources and the reduction of PET containers in landfills. Indorama Ventures is playing its part and investing in recycling solutions globally. “With a comprehensive European network for bottle sourcing and good supply chain efficiencies, we feel that this acquisition will contribute as an attractive platform for strong future growth in the sustainable recycling business with the potential to expand globally.” Visit: www.sorepla.com

Finnish packaging start-up Jospak receives ScanStar Award

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inland-based packaging start-up Jospak Oy has received a ScanStar 2018 Award for its board-based tray packaging for Kannuksen Lihakauppa Grillipekoni. This innovative, sustainable food packaging solution contains up to 85% less plastic than a regular plastic alternative.

12 Industry Europe

all Corporation is partnering with Dutch craft beer brand Brouwerij Homeland Amsterdam to create a unique, blank can design for its popular spelt beer. The cans have been designed in Ball’s 33-centilitre standard format, which is a popular choice amongst many craft brewers. Unlike other brands, Brouwerij Homeland Amsterdam has decided to leave the 360-degree can canvas blank, creating a strong, high-impact design. The minimalist cans feature no printing or messaging, other than the name, date and alcohol percentage on the bottom of the can. This type of innovative and design-led packaging is important within the craft beer industry, as the beers are primarily brewed for taste rather than volume and result in unique products that deserve equally unique designs. Craft beer is a booming industry as consumers are increasingly demand-

ing more authenticity, choice and flavour options. What’s more, cans are also becoming increasingly popular for brewers, as they provide easier recycling opportunities than glass and are easier and cheaper to ship due to their light weight. The cans are now available in supermarkets, bars, restaurants and hotels in The Netherlands. Visit: www.ball.com

Jiffy appoints new managing director UK company Jiffy Packaging has appointed Richard Gregg as managing director. Gregg was previously managing director of Plastic Omnium Urban Systems Ltd in the West Midlands. Gregg’s commercial and general management experience will prove invaluable as Jiffy looks to

expand its business following a programme of new investment. Commenting on his appointment, Gregg said, “The Jiffy name needs no introduction and I am delighted to be joining a fantastic team. “We continue to invest in our production facilities, and we have a broad product offering and a service-led culture. I am excited to be part of this iconic brand as we look to the future.” Jiffy Packaging is a leading manufacturer of postal mailers, polyethylene foam and bubble film products for a wide variety of end-applications in various market segments including office, retail, automotive, building and construction. Visit: www.jiffy.co.uk

ScanStar is a joint Nordic packaging competition which has been held annually since 1969 by SPA, the Scandinavian Packaging Association. The ceremony itself will take place in November 2018 at the FoodTech Fair in Herning, Denmark. The jury explained its reasons for nominating Jospak’s solution: “The design takes into consideration visual communication,

material use and recycling. Instructions on the bottom of the packaging facilitate recycling. The easy separation of the film and fibres makes source separation simple. The jury finds that opening instructions and the opening mechanism can still be improved. The overall design supports the impression of a sustainable packaging.” Visit: www.jospak.com


INDUSTRYNEWS Antalis launches new Alpla and Fromm join forces in PET recycling aim of the partnership between ALPLA and Georg Lässer, Head of Corporate Recycling Services Smart Packaging Centre TheFROMM is to further optimise the current high at ALPLA. “The collaboration between our recycling

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part of its mission to help customers perfect their packaging materials and procedures, Antalis has opened a new flagship Smart Packaging Centre at the company’s head office in Coalville, UK, as part of ongoing expansion plans for its burgeoning bespoke packaging solutions and services. The Smart Packaging Centre is a state-ofthe-art design lab and solutions centre where Antalis’ highly-reputable designers will now be able to respond much quicker to the rising logistical challenges facing customers by conducting a comprehensive review of their packaging requirements on-site. The centre essentially allows clients to bring their products and sit down with Antalis designers to create new bespoke pack designs and live samples, which can then be rigorously tested and modified if necessary. Forming the cornerstone of the new design facility is Impact CAD, an industry-leading software suite specifically designed for the packaging industry. Working in conjunction with Antalis’ recently-unveiled Zund G3 L-2300 cutting table, the software will dramatically speed up the packaging design process from weeks to just a few hours. Visit: www.antalis.co.uk

Roastworks launches fully recyclable coffee capsules

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oastworks Coffee Co has released the first-ever range of fully recyclable, 100% aluminium Nespresso-compatible capsules in UK supermarkets. The capsules consist of speciality-grade coffees which are roasted in a way to distinguish their unique qualities using their vintage

recycling rates for PET as well as a significant reduction of CO2 emissions through saved transport. “The requirements at our production sites complement one another very well. At ALPLA, we mainly need clear, food-grade pellets. Fromm processes coloured flakes for the strapping bands,” explains

facilities will ensure the necessary quantity and quality of materials for production for both sides.” “The three recycling plants are integrated in various procurement markets and complement one another ideally in the procurement of raw materials,” highlights Reinhard Fromm, owner of the family-run FROMM Group. The PET Recycling Team plants in Wöllersdorf (Austria) and Radomsko (Poland) are part of the ALPLA Group. These recycling facilities have an annual capacity of approximately 45,000 tonnes of food-grade rPET produced by post-consumer materials. The PET recycling company Texplast in Wolfen (Germany) produces PET pellets and PET flakes. Visit: www.alpla.com

Smurfit Kappa & Scania enter paper-based packaging venture

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murfit Kappa and global transport provider Scania have entered a partnership in order to replace materials used in Scania’s supply chain with paper-based packaging solutions. The Dublin-based firm collaborated with Scania Parts Logistics to make a 50% reduction in the storage space required for its truck window packaging service, which meant Scania achieved considerable transportation savings. “After a comprehensive review of the challenging brief that we presented them with, Smurfit Kappa managed to present us with an ingenious solution that exceeded all our expectations,” said Brechtel Coox, Packaging Engineer at Scania Parts Logistics. In order to review all aspects of Scania’s supply chain, Smurfit Kappa utilised its SupplySmart service to compare its findings collated from over 60,000 supply chains. Then, the analysis was reviewed and areas where sustainable changes could be made were identified.

German roasting machine. The coffee is then grounded with great precision and packed in to oxygen-free aluminium capsules. Will Little, owner of Roastworks, noted: “We’ve been working on creating a fully recyclable product for the last few years and have now managed to create one which doesn’t compromise on the quality of the coffee. Unlike many materials, aluminium is almost

“This project was the result of a collaborative process between Smurfit Kappa and Scania Parts Logistics,” commented Erik Bunge, CEO of Smurfit Kappa Corrugated Benelux. “The paperbased solution we came up with combines corrugated and honeycomb production capabilities and enables us to deliver an innovative and reliable service to our valued partner Scania.” Visit: www.smurfitkappa.com

infinitely recyclable, so once the material has been produced it can be used repeatedly.” Visit: www.roastworks.co.uk

Industry Europe 13


Online services and e-commerce are helping to shape the way the European logistics sector is developing – affecting everything from demand for warehouse and distribution space to the development of more complex distribution systems and technologies.

How is e-commerce affecting

European logistics? T

oday’s logistics market no longer sufficiently meets the complex demands of online retailers – that’s according to a recent report from PwC, ‘E-Shaping of the European Logistics Market’. The predominant reason for this is that the traditional logistics industry has up to now been geared towards handling large consignments primarily for the B2B sector.

Derek Bryan, VP EMEA

But the sector is changing. According to PWC, the European e-commerce market “is expected to expand amidst the further development of multi-channel selling offered by bricks-and-mortar retailers and the expansion of ‘pure play’ online stores.” While online purchases still account for only around 4 per cent of retail sales in the EU, e-commerce is one of the fastest growing markets. It recorded 18 per cent annual growth and was estimated to be worth €200 billion as far back as 2011, with around 70 per cent of this figure coming from the three European bighitters: Germany, the UK and France. That being said, in the years since there has been notable growth in the eastern European market as it is increasingly targeted by the large international players, and we can expect to see further development in these regions.

Increasingly complex demands All of the above has had – and will continue to have – a significant impact on the way the European logistics market is evolving. In 14 Industry Europe

particular, the growth of the online retail market has caused rapidly increasing demand for new warehouse and distribution space. As an example of this, online retail giant Amazon has increased its distribution space in Europe by more than 1000 per cent in the last 10 years. Furthermore, it has become apparent that e-tailers require more complex distribution systems than traditional logistics market players. One reason is that the e-commerce business is based on a Business to Consumer (B2C) model, meaning that at least one, if not several, steps have been eliminated from the supply chain, increasing the number of customers the e-tailer has to deal with directly. This also means working with multiple suppliers and distributing large quantities of goods with short delivery times. This growing business model has led to the many e-tailers establishing e-fulfillment centres which cover the whole supply chain, from sourcing products from suppliers to sorting, packaging, delivery and even managing returns.


But it is not just the e-tailers, of course: plenty of traditional retailers with bricks-andmortar premises also have online sales operations with unique warehousing needs. With the added complication of needing to offer multiple delivery options, from home delivery to in-store pick-up, many are transforming their distribution systems in order to achieve greater efficiency and lower storage costs.

Third-party logistics opportunities According to the above-mentioned PWC report, while it is true that a number of the larger e-commerce businesses are developing their own e-fulfilment centres, a significant number of smaller companies would still consider outsourcing some of their supply chain needs to third-party logistics (3PL) providers. And as this is still a relatively young sector with no fixed distribution strategy, there are plenty of opportunities for enterprising 3PL providers to develop tailored logistics services for individual clients. The German 3PL market in particular has recognised the opportunities this presents, with providers such as Fiege and Hermes doing particularly well – the latter looking to attract US online retailers who are planning to move into the European market.

Growing technological challenges There’s another element to this: the ongoing importance of e-commerce is also obliging logistics businesses to put systems and technologies in place to cope with different regional requirements and risks. We spoke to Derek Bryan, Vice-President EMEA at fleet management software provider Verizon Connect, who had this to say about the growing technological challenges facing the industry: “Operating across different international regions adds a layer of complexity for logistics businesses, particularly for their risk and compliance managers – especially in places like Europe which has ‘soft borders’ between countries with national and EU level legislation. “As the e-commerce industry continues to grow across Europe, it’s important that logistics risk managers have systems and technology in place that are capable of coping with different regional requirements and challenges at a national and international level. This avoids each region operating in an independent silo with little to no data connectivity or integration between them. He added: “Mobile Resource Management (MRM) can aid pan-European logistics management by combining technologies such as telematics, routing, and scheduling, along-

side risk and policy compliance into a single platform, enabling businesses of all sizes, and across all borders, to communicate through a seamless interface. This makes life easier when operating across multiple borders which may all have different regulations in place, as MRM insights allow for greater control and measurement of key compliance and safety legislation.” What is clear from all the above is that the e-commerce sector, still in its relative infancy, is likely to have a major impact on the way the European logistics sector develops. Online and multi-channel retailers will be rethinking their storage and distribution strategies, while logistics providers and their suppliers will need to adapt to meet the new n challenges this presents.

Industry Europe 15


NEWS

New developments in the Logistics & Transport industry

Scan Global Logistics & ECCO expand on partnership

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can Global Logistics and ECCO have expanded their partnership with a new deal covering all inbound volumes to Denmark and Riga from ECCO’s production sites in Asia. The major third party logistics provider, Scan Global Logistics and ECCO, which is one of the world’s leading fashion footwear retailers and manufacturers, recently signed an agreement

nominating Scan Global Logistics as ECCO’s logistics partner for inbound volumes to Denmark and Riga from Asia. “It is important for us to have trust in our logistics service providers and that trust has been built with Scan Global Logistics over the years of good cooperation,” says Scott William Phillips, Supply Chain Director at ECCO. “Through this nomination we want to recognise Scan Global Logistics for the efforts made to help us create an efficient supply chain over the past years.” The partnership includes multiple geographies and products, i.e. shipping of raw materials and finished shoes to/from Asia Pacific, Europe and North America via ocean freight and airfreight. The main flow being the latest nomination of ocean freight of finished shoes from the production units in Asia to Denmark and Riga. Visit: www.group.ecco.com

Heathrow selects Vanderlande for maintenance and IT services H eathrow Airport has awarded Vanderlande the maintenance and engineering service contract at T3IB. The company will also offer a spare parts provision across the whole of the airport. T3IB is Heathrow’s newest baggage facility and is fully integrated into Vanderlande’s installed base in the airports’ western campus. In addition to the T3IB contract, Heathrow has also awarded a pan-airport IT service contract to Vanderlande, which is an extension of its current activities. Heathrow and its passengers will reap the benefits of a harmonised, transparent approach to baggage IT support that is delivered 24/7, year-round. The service contract will be facilitated by a team of 60 IT specialists based in Terminal 5 and the IT support facility located within Vanderlande’s offices close to the airport.

K. Hartwall acquires A&A Logistik-Equipment

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. Hartwall, a Finnish provider of returnable logistics solutions, has acquired A&A Logistik-Equipment GmbH & Co. KG, a German provider of logistics equipment for a range of industries. K. Hartwall develops logistics solutions primarily aimed at retail companies, postal

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“We are extremely happy with the confidence that Heathrow Airport has shown in us,” says Vanderlande’s managing director Airports Division UK Mike Christman. “These contracts confirm that Vanderlande’s maintenance services and its global IT strategy are delivering value and a high level of performance to our customers.” Visit: www.vanderlande.com

services and the automotive industry. Its customers include leading industry players such as Schaeffler, Royal Mail, Havi Logistics and Bosch. K. Hartwall Oy Ab has a turnover of around €55M and employs 160 people. A&A is located in Heidenau near Hamburg, Germany. The business is currently divided into two core segments: standard equipment and special projects for customers in various

Siemens and FPT agree on cooperation to digitalise logistics

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iemens Postal, Parcel & Airport Logistics (SPPAL) and the IT company FPT Germany have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to promote collaboration in areas including innovative software technology and consulting. By joining forces with FPT, Siemens is extending its network of strategic partners and driving forward the digitalisation of logistics. The agreement also enables Siemens to expand its portfolio of customer-specific solutions with a particular focus on Internet of Things (IoT) applications, training and user-friendly apps. Headquartered in Vietnam, FPT employs 32,000 people worldwide, 15,000 of them IT developers. “Through our partnership with FPT, we are strengthening our competence in the digitalization business,” said Michael Reichle, CEO of Siemens Postal, Parcel & Airport Logistics. “Access to such a large pool of IT experts at Siemens and FPT will enable us to accelerate our time to market. That makes all the difference in this sector.” “We are working with Siemens to identify what opportunities this partnership could open up,” said Pham Minh Tuan, CEO of FPT. “To this end, a Hackathon has already taken place in SPPAL’s new MindSphere Application Center in Dubai.” Visit: www.logistics-airports-solutions.siemens.com industrial segments. Since is establishment in 1992 the company has been highly innovation-focused. In 2011 it launched its Elephantboard® – a versatile Dolly that can be tailored to customers’ needs. The latest product in the stable is the LiftLiner Tugger train system. The company has a turnover of €4M and 25 employees. Visit: www.k-hartwall.com


INDUSTRYNEWS

GreyOrange sorts fashion with new high-speed Linear Sorter

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obotics and supply chain Automation company GreyOrange has recently installed its latest Linear Sorter at an international fashion company that provides fashion clothing and accessories across India, for women, men, teenagers and children. High-speed Linear Sorters are commonly used by e-commerce and third-party logistics companies to sort large volumes of parcels for distribution throughout the country. However, it is unique that this Sorter located at a new distri-

bution centre in Maharashtra will be used as an Order Consolidation Item Sorter for store retail distribution. It will sort and consolidate fashion items for distribution to over 500 locations in India, comprising exclusive brand outlets and shop-in-shop in multi-brand stores. Vivekanand, Country Manager – India and SAARC, GreyOrange commented, “Our Sorters have been tried-and-tested for use in many e-commerce and third party logistics operations. We have continually refined and added to their software capabilities. We are delighted that this Sorter delivers one of the highest performances in terms of versatility in providing a responsive supply chain. This Sorter can easily switch to handling the specific requirements of each stage of the warehouse process – Inbound, Outbound and returns – providing maximum throughput during the shifts.” Visit: www.greyorange.com

Cabka-IPS at FachPack: Solutions for diverse applications

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abka-IPS presented a range of products from its wide portfolio transport and storage solutions at FachPack 2018. The lightweight Eco P3 plastic pallet was specially developed for the chemical industry and tailored to its logistical challenges: utmost protection of sensitive loads and the smooth flow of goods. The Eco P3 is a further development of the standard CP7 wooden pallet for the chemical industry – with all the advantages of a plastic pallet. It is light, stable, and can handle even heavy loads. To meet the various requirements of automotive logistics, Cabka also developed pallets and load carriers specially tailored to the industry’s needs. Thanks to its collapsible rings, the Cab-

Cube 2.0 large load carrier (LLC) can be easily and quickly folded up and stacked, including the underside and lid. As a result, the CabCube 2.0 achieves a volume-reduction of up to 80%. Also interesting for the automotive industry are the ESD pallets Endur E5 and Eco E5.1. The special mixture of materials protects sensitive loads from damage caused by electrostatic discharge. Visit: www.cabka-ips.com

X2 Logistics Networks partners with BoxTop Technologies

BoxTop Technologies was founded in 1995, which gives it nearly a quarter of a decade of freight industry experience as a software platform. Today BoxTop Technologies’ software can enable freight forwarders and other logistics professionals around the globe manage their operations, accounts, customer relations, warehousing, and tracking so they can

X2

Logistics Networks, one of the world’s leading logistics networks, has announced a partnership with BoxTop Technologies through its X2 Vendors programme. BoxTop Technologies is a well known and recognised provider of freight management and transportation system software.

Kalmar wins container handling equipment order from SIPG in China

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almar, part of Cargotec, has secured an order to supply 15 units of container handling equipment to Shanghai International Port (Group) Co. Ltd (SIPG). This order, including a total of 4 units of Reachstackers and 11 units of Empty Container Handlers, has been booked into the Cargotec 2018 second quarter order intake. Founded in 2005, Shanghai International Port (Group) Co. Ltd. is the largest joint-stock port operator in China. In 2017, the total cargo throughput volume for SIPG reached 700 million tonnes and the container throughput also exceeded 40 million TEU, making it as the largest container port in the world. The new equipment will join the fleet of around 100 Kalmar reachstackers, empty container handlers, forklifts and terminal tractors currently in use at SIPG to support its container handling, warehousing and dangerous goods transportation business. The Kalmar reachstacker is a durable, reliable and flexible solution for container handling and industrial applications, helping customers to maximise operational productivity and achieve their business targets. The ergonomically designed cabin offers excellent visibility for the driver and allows them to have full control over the machine at all times. Visit: www.kalmarglobal.com

work more efficiently and continue to grow their businesses. X2 Group Founder & CEO Richard Overton is, “looking forward to a long and mutually beneficial partnership that will allow for the members of X2 Logistics Networks to reap the rewards of BoxTop’s involvement through X2 Vendors.” Visit: www.x2logisticsnetworks.com Industry Europe 17


NEWS

New contracts and orders in industry

Porr secures largest ever rail contract in Poland

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project worth €116 million, has been awarded to Porr by the Polish railway infrastructure manager PKP Polskie Linie Kolejowe, for the modernisation of the Oświęcim–Czechowice-Dziedzice railway section located in southern Poland. It is part of the Nr. 93 railway line between Trzebinia and Zebrzydowice.

Karl-Heinz Strauss, CEO of the Austrian-based construction company, commented, “As this is a design-build project, our Polish colleagues will get to work on the planning straight away. The draft design should be ready in just six months; all of the requisite construction permits have to be in place at the latest 16 months after signing the contract.” In total, 63 km of track and 106 sets of switches will be replaced along the 21 km-long stretch, the complete control and safety system, catenary and 13 level crossings will be modernised, and all of the stations will be fitted with new platforms that offer disabled access. Additionally, 45 civil structures including 20 railway viaducts will be upgraded or overhauled. The work is expected to reach completion by the end of July 2021. Visit: www.porr.pl

Softil technology selected for South Korea’s Incheon Airport rail link T he world’s leading mission critical communications (MCC) enabler Softil and global solution provider K-Won Corporation have announced that Softil’s award-winning BEEHD software development kit (SDK) has been selected to drive a new generation of K-Won 3GPP standard compliant mission-critical push-to-talk and push-to-video communication terminals for use in the Incheon Airport Railway Link. “The high-speed rail link from Incheon Airport to Seoul plays a crucial role in South Korea’s economy and it is only to be expected that the mission-critical communication systems employed in the rail service are best-in-breed technologies,” says Seon-IL Jang, vice-president of K-Won Corporation. “Clearly, Softil is delighted to partner with K-Won and extend its footprint in South Korea’s

Veidekke signs new rail contract with Bane NOR

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eidekke has signed a contract worth NOK 295 million with Bane NOR. The Follo Line Project will see the completion of the concrete works in Gamlebyen, Oslo. This is the third of four contracts awarded by Bane NOR on the Follo Line since the agreement with the Italian main contractor 18 Industry Europe

developing high-speed rail network,” adds Pierre Hagendorf, Softil’s CEO. “Our BEEHD technology and its advanced communications capabilities for TRCP terminals will greatly enhance the dayto-day operations of the rail link.” K-Won will build the terminals using LTE-R technology, a version of LTE designed specifically for the mission-critical operational and maintenance services of railway operators. Visit: www.softil.com

Condotte was completed. Bane NOR is building a new double track between Oslo Central Station and Ski (the Follo Line). The Follo Line is Norway’s largest transport project and includes a 20km tunnel – the longest of its kind in the Nordic region. The new double track between Oslo Central Station and the public transport centre Ski constitutes the core of the InterCity develop-

Wing selected to develop evosoft Hungary headquarters

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roperty development specialist Wing has been selected to construct the new Budapest headquarters for Siemens-owned evosoft Hungary, covering an area of 22,000m2. Through this, evosoft will consolidate its activities into one location and increase efficiency. Wing has become a niche developer of builtto-suit high tech office headquarters in recent years, while the south Buda area – where the factory will be located – has become the hightech hub of Budapest. “The office building of evosoft will be developed by Wing and handed over to evosoft in the form of a long-term lease agreement as the second phase of the Hungarian Nobel-Prize Winners’ R&D Park,” says Noah Steinberg, chairman and CEO of WING. The facility, which is LEED ‘Gold’ pre-certified, is expected to support co-working for the 1500+ staff at evosoft. Located near the Budapest University of Technology and Economics and the Faculty of Informatics of Eötvös Loránd University, the building will allow software developers to work in a more productive environment, according to evosoft. Construction has already started on the project, with completion expected in January 2021. Visit: www.wing.hu ment southeast of Oslo. The contract won by Veidekke is referred to as ‘Klypen-Loenga’, and mainly comprises concrete works relating to the Follo Line’s approach into Oslo Central Station. Construction starts in August and is slated for completion in summer 2019. The Follo Line is scheduled for use from late 2021. Visit: www.veidekke.com


WINNINGBUSINESS Outotec to deliver minerals processing technology to South America

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utotec has been awarded an order for the delivery of minerals processing technology for a new copper concentrator to be built in South America. The contract value booked in Outotec’s 2018 third quarter order intake is approximately €25 million. Outotec’s scope includes engineering and the delivery of flotation cells and filters. The deliveries will take place by the end of 2019.

“We are pleased to be part of one of the most important mining projects in South America through Outotec’s energy-efficient flotation cells and our proven filter technology. This order will strengthen Outotec’s position as a supplier of advanced minerals processing technologies in South America,” says Kimmo Kontola, head of Outotec’s Minerals Processing business. Visit: www.outotec.com

Balfour Beatty to deliver first stages of East Leeds Orbital Route

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alfour Beatty has been awarded a £5 million contract by Leeds City Council to deliver phase one and two of the East Leeds Orbital Route. Works will include improvements to a number of existing Outer Ring Road junctions and the widening to three junctions along the A6120 Ring Road. Balfour Beatty will also be responsible for the design of the £87 million 7km East Leeds Orbital Route. The initial highway work forms a part of the wider East Leeds Extension (ELE) programme, which on completion will be the largest road scheme in the city since the 1970s.

Thomas Edgcumbe, Balfour Beatty managing director for its North and Midlands regional business, said: “We are looking forward to working in partnership with Leeds City Council and making a significant and sustainable contribution to the local economy and community. We have a wealth of experience in the design and delivery of highways schemes and this award is testament to the success of our work across the UK.” Works are due to commence next month and are expected to complete next summer. Visit: www.balfourbeatty.com

AkzoNobel supplies coatings for historic Westminster Abbey addition

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istory has been made at Westminster Abbey in London with the first major addition to the famous church since 1745 – and AkzoNobel has supplied products for the prestigious project. The new £23 million Weston Tower features 500 leaded windows and every window frame is protected with the company’s Interpon powder coatings. The tower provides staircase and lift access to the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Galleries, located in an area which has never been open to the public before. “As the undisputed leader in powder coatings, we are very proud to have contributed to such a

significant project, which is integral to the history of the UK,” said Tomasz Kluczewski, regional director North Europe for AkzoNobel Powder Coatings. The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Galleries were officially opened by Her Majesty the Queen earlier this summer. The galleries are located in the medieval Triforium – an area 16 metres (52 feet) above the abbey’s floor, which has lain unused for centuries. Its window frames are coated with the company’s Interpon D2525 Anodic Bronze finish and BPP600 barrier primer, which provide a perfect colour match and long-lasting protection. Visit: www.akzonobel.com

TechnipFMC wins contract for Vietnam’s largest olefins plant

liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) feeds to produce olefins of up to 1.6 million tonne/yr. The olefins will help meet Vietnam’s rising demand for petrochemical products. The plant will also include proprietary licensed units for C3 hydrogenation, C4/C5 hydrogenation, pyrolysis gasoline hydrogenation and butadiene recovery units, be based on TechnipFMC’s proprietary ethylene technology. The proprietary ethylene

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echnipFMC has been awarded by Long Son Petrochemicals Co. Ltd a contract for the licensing, engineering, procurement, construction, commissioning and start-up of Vietnam’s first olefins plant, on Long Son Island. Designed as a flexible feed cracker, the olefins plant can utilise both naphtha and

technology includes these key components: Ultra Selective Conversion (USC) furnaces, preferred for high selectivity and low-cost; and Heat-Integrated Rectifier System, preferred for energy efficient ethylene recovery. TechnipFMC is conducting the project in a consortium with SK Engineering & Construction Co. Ltd. of South Korea. Visit: www.technipfmc.com Industry Europe 19


NEWS

Combining strengths

Axel Johnson International acquires Polish sealing specialist Electrolux partners with

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xel Johnson International’s Industrial Solutions business group has acquired Passerotti sp. z.o.o., a Polish niche distributor of technical seals, from the industrial service provider ERIKS. With eight locations in Poland, Passerotti is a significant player in the Polish market with about 11,000 customers present in both MRO and OEM segments. By acquiring Passerotti, Industrial Solutions strengthens its position in Poland. “The acquisition expands our geographical reach in mechanical power transmissions, which is part of our growth agenda,” says Ola Sjölin, managing director, Industrial Solutions. “With excellent capacity for providing tailored sealing solutions, Passerotti is recognised as a value-added distributor of technical seals in the Polish market.” Headquartered in Bielsko-Biala, Passerotti has an annual turnover of approximately €6.6 million and 85 employees. Its offering is primarily

focused on sealing technology, providing a wide range of seals for various technical applications in combination with complementary mechanical power transmission products. The company is an authorised distributor for a number of world leading brands, with a wide and diversified supplier base enabling its competitive offering. Visit: www.axinter.com

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breeding programmes in more than 15 crops.The addition of the vegetable seeds business enhances BASF’s global offer to farmers. It strengthens BASF’s seed platform and complements the recently expanded Agricultural Solutions portfolio, which includes seeds and traits, chemical and biological crop protection, soil management, plant health, pest control and digital farming. This closing completes BASF’s acquisition of a significant range of businesses and assets with combined 2017 sales of €2.2 billion, which Bayer offered to divest in the context of its takeover of Monsanto. The all-cash purchase price amounts to a total of €7.6 billion, subject to certain adjustments at closing. Visit: www.basf.com

lectrolux is investing in Sweden-based Karma, a start-up that helps restaurants and supermarkets reduce food waste by selling unsold food to consumers. The investment is part of a wider USD 12 million round with other investors. Electrolux and Karma are also initiating a strategic partnership to explore common solutions in reducing food waste. The new partnership with Karma will explore new innovative solutions within the future of food and help to scale up the fight against food waste. The partnership will combine Electrolux’s expertise within appliances and food preservation with Karma’s digital platform and expertise within sharing economy. “We are committed to drive a positive change and we know that the best way to do this is by working together with others who share our ambition. Electrolux is continuously exploring solutions that drives a better and more sustainable living and we’re excited to support Karma,” said Jonas Samuelson, President and CEO of Electrolux. Reducing food waste is an important target in Electrolux’s sustainability framework with the goal to inspire better food consumption among consumers and professionals. Visit: www.electroluxgroup.com

of sales and logistics will take place on 1 November 2018 and the transfer of production is planned to take place in early 2019. Kiilto’s parquet business covers Finland, Sweden, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Poland, Russia, Belarus and Ukraine with an extensive network of customers. Its products are available through distribution networks or direct sales.

“Kiilto lacquers and fillers will complement Teknos’ product assortment for the flooring industry. We have a firm position in the markets, so we can smoothly continue to serve new customers through our local sales offices and to provide them with an even wider assortment of other products,” says Arto Mannonen, managing director, Teknos Oy. Visit: www.teknos.com

BASF completes acquisition of Bayer’s vegetable seeds business

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ASF has completed the acquisition of Bayer’s global vegetable seeds business, mainly operating under the brand Nunhems. The transaction adds a well-recognised brand with a very successful business track record to BASF’s portfolio. The acquired vegetable seeds business comprises 24 crops and about 2600 varieties. It also includes well-established, strong R&D and breeding systems with over 100 unique

Teknos to acquire parquet product business from Kiilto

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eknos has acquired a parquet product business from Kiilto. The product assortment consists of primer lacquers, 1-component and 2-component lacquers and parquet fillers. Through the acquisition, Teknos gains ownership of the recipes, trade names, customer contacts and know-how. The transfer

20 Industry Europe

food waste start-up Karma


LINKINGUP European Commission approves giant LindePraxair merger

Mitsubishi Electric acquires ASTES4 SA in Switzerland

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ased in Switzerland, ASTES4 SA (ASTES4) is engaged in the development, production and sale of patented automated sorting solutions for sheet metal laser processing machines. As a wholly owned subsidiary, customers can now benefit from integrated solutions available across the global market with ASTES4’s automated sorting systems embedded into Mitsubishi Electric’s sheet metal laser processing machines. Sheet metal laser processing involves loading the material, laser cutting, unloading cut materials as well as removing and sorting cut parts from the frame. A shortfall of skilled human resources in production facilities around the world, combined with the ability of fibre laser machines to produce

higher volumes of work, has escalated worldwide demand for sorting solutions. A significant increase in productivity is made possible by automating sheet metal laser processing, including pre- and post-processing. ASTES4 provides flexible automated sorting solutions for various materials using its own patented technology with high-quality system engineering capabilities that can integrate the entire automation system. With this acquisition, Mitsubishi Electric will further strengthen its portfolio of automation systems together with sorting solutions for sheet metal laser processing machines. Visit: www.mitsubishielectric.com

Atlas Copco acquires niche machine vision solutions provider

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tlas Copco, a leading provider of sustainable productivity solutions, has acquired German QUISS Qualitäts-Inspektionssysteme und Service AG. The company specialises in machine vision solutions for quality inspection and robot guidance, mainly used in the automotive industry. QUISS is based near Munich in Germany. Its core competence is image processing, algorithms, as well as system design including hardware and software. The products are mainly used for quality inspection of adhesive dispensing applications within the automotive industry. “The increased competence in vision systems for robot guidance and quality inspections will

allow us to provide even more customer value in the world of automation,” said Henrik Elmin, Business Area President Industrial Technique. The acquired business will become part of Atlas Copco’s Industrial Assembly Solutions division in the Industrial Technique business area. Visit: www.atlascopco.com

Hadley Group takes over sheet metal specialist EWS

struction sector, both in the UK and internationally. Stewart Towe, CEO of Hadley Group, said of the news: “I am delighted to confirm the addition of EWS into the Hadley Group. The company greatly complements our wide range of value added construction products. We look forward to supporting EWS as they continue to progress in the markets they serve.”

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adley Group, a world leader in advanced cold rolled steel technology, has acquired EWS (Manufacturing) Ltd, a UKbased specialist in the production of components and profiles using cold rollforming technology. The acquisition confirms the Hadley Group’s commitment to the con-

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he European Commission has given the goahead for the $80bn merger between German chemicals group Linde and its US rival Praxair. The landmark deal would form the world’s largest industrial gas supplier. However, US approval is still needed. The approval from Brussels was reached following various concessions from the two parties, in order to address concerns that the merger would increase prices and limit consumer choice. It has been agreed to sell Praxair’s European assets to Japanese rival Taiyo Nippon Sanso for €5bn, transfer the American company’s stake in SIAD to joint venture partner Flow Fin and divest any helium sourcing contracts beyond what it needs to supply the European market. Margrethe Vestager, the EU’s competition commissioner said: “With this decision, we make sure that the merger of Praxair and Linde will not result in further concentration in Europe and that customers will continue to benefit from competition in these markets.” Furthermore, in order to secure US approval, the companies have committed to selling $3 billion worth of Linde’s US assets to German rival Messer and private equity group CVC. Visit: www.linde.com

EWS produces in excess of 25 million metres of cold rollformed sections annually and is the market leader in Window and Door Steel Reinforcement with core strengths in other construction market products. The Wolverhampton, UK-based manufacturer will now form part of Hadley Group’s global chain of manufacturing locations. Visit: www.hadleygroup.com Industry Europe 21


NEWS

MOVINGON

Relocations and expansions across Europe

Gripple expands in Japan Bobcat invests in new equipment at Czech facility UK D -based wire fastening manufacturer Gripple has cemented its position as a global player with the opening of its latest office in Japan. Takahiro Makino has been appointed as managing director to oversee Gripple Japan leading the company’s expansion in the Japanese construction market. The move comes as Gripple eyes opportunities arising from the country hosting the Rugby World Cup in 2019 and the Olympic Games in 2020. Takahiro, who joins the company following ten years at one of Japan’s largest suppliers to the construction industry, said: “There is huge potential for Gripple in my country and we’re opening the office at a very exciting time for Japan.” Visit: www.gripple.com

oosan Bobcat will be making a series of investments in new technology, machinery and processes at its Innovation Centre in Dobris, Czech Republic. Doosan Bobcat sees this R&D capability as vital to maintaining its competitive advantage in EMEA region, so these investments can be seen as a consolidation of this advantage. They will encompass all operations in the Innovation Centre, from rapid prototyping and prototype assembly to performance and durability testing. In the last 12 months, Doosan Bobcat has made several more important investments at its Innovation Centre, including: a CNC horizontal boring machine; a CNC five-axis milling machine and a dynamometer. The total cost of these investments was €1.41 million. Visit: www.doosanbobcat.com

WELTEC Group buys 2.2-MW biogas plant in North Germany BMW building car factory in Hungary

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ordmethan GmbH, a WELTEC BIOPOWER Group subsidiary, has taken over an insolvent biogas plant in Südergellersen, Lower Saxony. The Germanybased specialist in the development and operation of biomethane and biogas plants will completely modernise the technical and operational infrastructure of the 2.2-Megawatt plant. The project development work is currently under way. “Following a takeover negotiation process of about two years, we will speedily modernise the plant technology in order to ensure its going concern,” says Jens Albartus, director of WELTEC BIOPOWER and Nordmethan. The original plant had been set up in 2009 and expanded in 2014. The operator’s concept was based on the digestion of horse manure and sale of the digestate as fertiliser pellets. However, as the concept turned out to be technically difficult and economically unfeasible, the plant went bankrupt. Following the takeover by the WELTEC Group, the substrate input is now being adjusted, and the plant technology is being modernised. Visit: www.weltec-biopower.com

Sika increases presence in UAE with new Dubai factory

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ika has expanded its operations in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) by investing in a new factory in Dubai. An existing production facility for concrete admixtures has been relocated to the new site and expanded. A state-of-the-art mortar facility and a reactor for producing polymers have

22 Industry Europe

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MW has announced it will be investing €1 billion in a new car factory in eastern Hungary – a move that could position the country as a focal point for high-end car manufacturing in the region. The new plant will be based near the city of Debrecen and will have a capacity of 150,000 per year, according to BMW. Already, around one-third of Hungary’s exports consist of car manufacturing. And BMW is not the first major carmaker to set up manufacturing in Hungary: Daimler and Audi both have plants in the country, and the latter has recently launched the serial production of electric engines at its Hungary plant. Visit: www.bmw.com

been installed and will form the basis for the production of high-performance concrete admixtures. In addition, the new facility will play a strategic role as a sales and distribution centre for the region. Sika has grouped together and greatly expanded its mortar and concrete admixtures production, warehouse capacity, and offices at the new location in Dubai Industrial

City. Material streams, logistics, and the cost structure will thus be optimised, and the course set for further growth. The local polymer production facility will help to significantly cut costs and make it possible to supply customers located in all states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) with customised concrete admixtures. Visit: www.sika.com


NEWS

TECHNOLOGYSPOTLIGHT

Advances in technology across industry

Unique Lab in Denmark to be Global Research Mecca T

he Aalborg University (AAU) laboratory is the first of its kind in the world and will be used by AAU’s Department of Electronic Systems, a decades-long world leader in antenna research. The new antenna laboratory is the first anechoic chamber that can slide open the roof and a wall. These features combine the potential of an enclosed anechoic antenna lab and an outdoor measurement station, explains Gert Frølund, Professor and head of the antenna section in AAU’s Department of Electronic Systems. “With the wall and roof of the new lab open, researchers can measure huge objects and signals over vast distances without the ground reflection and other influences that usually plague outdoor

measurements. In practice, the lab simulates an infinitely large space that is shielded and radio anechoic, something that hasn’t been seen before,” says Gert Frølund. “We have no idea what the new lab will be used for in the future, and that is exactly the point. We are taking into account that the future will bring rapid development that is impossible to predict, and have built the laboratory in as flexible and ambitious a way as possible so that it’s future-proof,” says Gert Frølund. The lab contains an elevator and a measurement platform that can lift and rotate large objects like cars and satellites of up to 3500kg inside the laboratory. And by removing the roof,

even larger objects such as wind turbine blades or fighter planes can be partially or completely lowered down into the laboratory. Visit: www.aau.dk

Plans for a 385-metre fish farm facility in the open sea AN

entirely new fish farm design, which looks more like an elongated offshore oil platform than a traditional aquaculture facility, may soon be installed in Norwegian waters. A model of the ‘Ocean Farm’ concept is now being tested at SINTEF Ocean’s Ocean Basin Laboratory, which in recent decades has been the test site for many floating oil installations. The

aquaculture sector is now looking to install facilities further out at sea in order to have access to more space and cleaner water, and reduce the risks of salmon lice and disease infection. “Our aim is to advance the aquaculture sector in a sustainable manner,” says Bjarne Johansen, who is a project manager at the aquaculture company Nordlaks, which is behind the project. “We believe that the key to achieving this is to exploit new and more exposed areas of the ocean,” he says. The main construction is made of steel and will contain six large nets, designed to house 10,000 tonnes of farmed salmon, amounting to up to 2 million individual fish. Out at sea, the facility will

be as much as 385 metres long. The project was launched in response to the Directorate of Fisheries’ development licences scheme, which is a temporary arrangement involving the issue of special licences aimed at promoting innovative projects that require significant levels of investment. The Directorate had received 104 licence applications on deadline day in November 2017. “Norway is a global leader in the development of large-scale salmon production facilities in exposed localities,” says Ivar Nygaard, who is a Senior Project Manager at SINTEF Ocean. “The Nordlaks project is the biggest aquaculture venture we have undertaken to date,” he says. Visit: www.sintef.com

VTT developing a solution to marine plastic waste problem

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TT Technical Research Centre of Finland is helping to solve the global plastic waste problem. VTT is developing in a project called PlastBug a mobile container unit to remove plastic waste from ocean areas, in order to create a safe living environment. “Our idea is to design a mobile container where microbes degrade plastic waste to valuable products like fuels or chemicals,” says Kari Koivuranta, Principal Scientist at VTT. The aim is to develop a small, container-based factory that can be placed in an area where centralised plastic waste collecting or recycling is not possible or feasible. The container can be located

on a beach or ship. The factory unit would get most its energy needed for the process from solar energy and wind power. This year researchers in the PlastBug project have been searching microbes that are capable of degrading different kind of plastics (PE, PP, PS or PET) and have developed methods for the pretreatment of plastics. Researchers are currently using a three-stage screening method to screen microbes from different sources. “Some microbes have already passed through the first two stages of the screening. In the third stage, we will confirm they are capable to consume and digest plastic. In the next step, if

plastic degrading microbes are found, we will improve the ability of the most effective microbes to digest plastic, and we will develop plastic pretreatment methods further to ease the work of the microbes,” says Koivuranta. Visit: www.vtt.fi

Industry Europe 23


EURO-REPORT

FOCUS ON...

Germany Allan Hall reports from Berlin on Germany’s continued strong growth.

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rade wars and tariffs which once threatened the mighty export-led economy of Germany have in fact done nothing to dent it. The country has rebounded strongly from a slowdown early in the year as growth accelerated. It recovered from its first-quarter slide to reach 0.5 per cent quarter-on-quarter between April and June, according to preliminary data from the federal statistics authority Destatis. Analysts surveyed by the data company Factset had predicted expansion would remain at the pace seen between January and March – a time when growth slowed to 0.4 per cent. Alluding to the fallen idols of the national football squad, humiliated in Russia, ING Diba analyst Carsten Brzeski said: “Contrary to the national soccer team, the German economy did not have a rude awakening at the start of the summer.” The figures showed Europe’s largest economy had grown 2.0 per cent year-onyear by the end of the second quarter – no small comfort to observers who feared a slowdown throughout 2018 after the weaker first three months. Germany also outperformed the average of the 19-nation eurozone, whose growth slowed to 0.3 per cent between April and June. Growth was lifted by “positive domestic impulses,” Destatis said, with “increased spending on consumption by both households and the state.” Low unemployment has helped drive domestic consumption. Germany now has its lowest jobless figures since reunification in 1990. This in turn has encouraged trade unions to demand higher wages in sectors like metalworking as increases have been relatively low since the financial crisis of 2008. Investment is up in equipment and construction industries thanks largely to low interest rates for enterepreneurs to take advantage of. 24 Industry Europe

Booming Berlin The rosy economic picture has forced Berlin to roll back on its unofficial slogan – ‘Poor but Sexy’ – coined after the fall of the wall and the collapse of western subsidies which kept it rich throughout the long years of the cold war. For the past several years it has been the new digital economy and start-ups which have boosted the city’s fortunes. With the return of parliament, and its attendant lobbying and business associations, Berlin now enjoys above average growth rates and the property market has boomed. In fact it has boomed so much that the left-wing city government is now considering taking a leaf out of New Zealand’s book by banning the sale of property to foreigners.

“Contrary to the national soccer team, the German economy did not have a rude awakening at the start of the summer.” In the last decade prices have doubled across the German capital. Despite some of the most comprehensive rental protections in major European cities, long-term Berliners are being forced out as property prices have skyrocketed. Berlin Mayor Michael Müller has said the city was considering implementing the drastic step taken by New Zealand authorities in banning non-residents from purchasing property. “The Senator for Finance is working on proposals to prevent housing speculation. We are taking a constructive and flexible approach,” Müller said. With American, Israeli and Russian investors making a significant impact on

the property market, a new law forbidding foreign ownership could potentially impact a large amount of foreign investment capital. But it is not yet on the statute books and has not hit investment so far – nor the desire of international foundations to be represented in the city. The Berlin Senate now has 939 foundations, including George Soros’ OSF, registered in the capital. Soon 150 people will work in OSF’s ‘Global Hub’ after it transfers entirely from Budapest. The first employees are already working in Berlin at the famous Potsdamer Platz. “We want to network with the local scene, with other foundations, NGOs, activists, and think tanks,” said OSF Regional Director Jordi Vaquer. But the rosy economic and cultural mood may not last. Germany is vulnerable to knockon effects from Washington’s confrontation with China, one of the country’s biggest trading partners. Brexit also threatens the momand-dad ‘Mittelstand’ firms, along with the corporate giants, which currently trade directly and easily with the UK. One survey suggested business in excess of €66 billion a year was at risk if the cliff-edge Brexit becomes reality with no trade deal in place for Germany and other EU nations. While economic growth has been good there are signs of of business and investor confidence falling back in recent months in response to President Trump’s tariffs and his agressive rhetoric. Nevertheless, “with the economy having grown in 34 out of the last 37 quarters, Germany remains on track for a golden decade,” ING analyst Brzeski added. “But trade tensions, geopolitical risks such as the slump in the Turkish lira and politicians’ slowness to invest and reform at home mean looking ahead, the challenges facing the German economy will increase rather n than decrease.”


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industryeurope.com Industry Europe 25


EURO-REPORT

FOCUS ON...

France Ian Sparks reports from Paris on an expose of the French fashion industry.

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scathing new book has stripped the veneer of glamour from the French fashion world to reveal the low wages and harsh working conditions of young employees desperate to succeed in the country’s second biggest industry. The book entitled ‘The Most Beautiful Job in the World’ tells how trainee staff wear luxurious clothes, carry €2000 handbags and fly business class, but sleep on sofas and eat fast food because they are often paid in clothes vouchers instead of cash. Most are too frightened to complain because their bosses tell them they are ‘lucky to have a job in fashion at all’ and could be replaced with eager new trainees ‘in seconds’, author Guila Mensitieri writes. The Italian post-graduate student originally wrote the book as her PhD on the inner workings of the fashion industry, but the details exposing the seedy underbelly of the glamorous world of haute couture were quickly picked up by the French media and a publishing house. The author began her thesis eight years ago after meeting a young Italian sylist named only as Mia. Mensitieri writes: “She was wearing Chanel shoes and carrying a Prada handbag, being flown across the world in business class. I never would have imagined that she was in the situation she was in. “She couldn’t afford to rent a room, so she was couch surfing at a friend’s house behind a screen in the kitchen. Sometimes she had no money for her phone bill. She was eating McDonald’s every day. She never knew when she would be paid for a job and how much she would get. “For example, for a week’s work, a very big luxury brand gave her a voucher for €5000 to spend in their boutique. It’s true she could have sold it, but working in fashion means being seen in a constantly updated uniform of beautiful, expensive clothes and accessories – paid for by vouchers such as the one Mia 26 Industry Europe

received instead of a salary. This situation is nothing exceptional. Mia is just a paradigm of what is going on.” Mensitieri, who attended the École des Hautes études en Sciences Sociales, one of France’s elite grandes Ècoles, said of her book’s publication: “I was a little bit scared when it came out because it’s quite a strong denunciation, even though that was not my goal. I’m an anthropologist, not a journalist.” She added: “When we think of exploitation in fashion we think of sweat shops abroad or sexual harassment of models. But that’s not what I was interested in. I was looking at the creative side: stylists, makeup artists, young designers, interns, assistants. “What I really want to make clear is that exploitation exists at the very heart of the powerfully symbolic and economic centre of the maisons de couture, the big luxury brands. But it is a different form of exploitation. In some cases, also barely legal.”

A different world? Mesitieri said during a launch of her book in London: “The message from the fashion industry is that you don’t have to be paid because you are lucky to be there at all. Working in fashion is hyper socially validating, even if you’re unpaid. That’s an important point for me. “Fashion presents itself as something exceptional, a world outside the ordinary. There is a kind of confused denial of the norms of labour conditions. The dream that French fashion, especially, projects is that of a life of effortless luxury – mundane everyday facts of life such as working for a living, or indeed even money, are considered vulgar, taboo, even dirty subjects. “But is it really possible that France’s second most profitable industry after cars and before armaments – a €15 billion industry – can be an exception in capitalism? To me, fashion is the very centre of contemporary

capitalism – it upholds the old forms of exploitation, factories in Bangladesh and so on – and the new, very modern forms which are more a kind of self-exploitation, a blurring of the line between your work and everything you are outside of work.” To understand fashion’s reach and power, Mensitieri explains, look at the parade of designers President Emmanuel Macron invites to the Elysée palace. She said: “The government is keenly aware of the industry’s economic and symbolic power. In France, to say ‘I work in fashion’ is something extremely important. “That is why lowly workers will accept almost any kind of eccentric behaviour from their bosses, and the workers justify this by saying, ‘Oh, but he’s a genius. That’s what geniuses do’.” Mensitieri, who calls this phenomenon ‘the glamourisation of domination’, said one interviewee for the book told her: “My boss was earning €13,000 a month but I was on the minimum wage. Just €100 a month more would have made the difference to me. But he wouldn’t do it.” And it is not just people working in fashion who might recognise themselves in these descriptions. It is a similar scene across all the creative industries and academia, says Mensitieri. She also makes a good comparison with the charity sector where, it is widely held, ‘doing good’ is incompatible with being paid well. She added: “If you want to change things, you have to look beyond fashion, or whatever industry you’re in, and talk to people in different fields who are working under the same conditions. “There is a strong anti-fashion movement in the UK and, in France, models are working together for better working conditions. You need to start collaborating – which is an almost heretical thought in fashion. You need to stop thinking of yourself as special.” n


Automotive HUNGARY exhibition

EXHIBITION FOR AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY AUTOMOTIVE HUNGARY International Trade Exhibition for Automotive Industry Suppliers and the accompanying AUTÓTECHNIKA-AUTODIGA International Vehicle Maintenance Industry Trade Exhibition will be held between 17–19 October 2018 at HUNGEXPO Budapest Fair Centre.

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ncompassing the Hungarian and Central-Eastern European automotive industry, the wide-ranging event will present the total spectrum of the automotive sector, ranging from design to manufacturing, to 10,000 professional visitors.

Everything under one roof Last year, automotive specialists from 34 countries came to the exhibition where 225 exhibitors from 12 countries presented their products and solutions. In addition to the four car factories which are present in Hungary – Audi, Mercedes, Opel and Suzuki – exhibitors included plenty of leading companies in their field, TIER 1, TIER 2 and TIER 3 suppliers, industry-related service providers, public organisations and representatives from various industry associations.

Overall, around 73 per cent of the visitors were made up of decisionmakers or involved in decision-making and 82 per cent of last year’s visitors are planning to visit the event this year also. Alongside car manufacturers and their suppliers, AUTOMOTIVE HUNGARY also represents the manufacturers of spare parts, and the educational sector of the automotive industry. The exhibition provides opportunities for networking with existing and new customers, recruiting, analysing competitors, identifying new sales channels and market opportunities and observing the current and emerging trends within the industry. Behind the exhibition there is a wide range of professional and governmental support, enabling high-quality professional programmes to be created. The professional partners of the exhibition are the AssoIndustry Europe 27


ciation of the Hungarian Automotive Industry (MAGE), the Association of Hungarian Automotive Component Manufacturers (MAJOSZ) and the Hungarian Investment Promotion Agency (HIPA).

Training sessions In addition to the planned programmes, this year also features several engineering training sessions: the MAGE-MAJOSZ-HIPA B2B supplier forum and TechTogether competition for engineering students. Portfolio and MAGE will organise an Industry 4.0 conference during the exhibition to focus on the topics of digital switchover, smart factory, smart investments, and the relationship between robotisation and labour shortage. Another presentation will introduce the new generation of design and simulation tools supporting the automotive industry, and also the 3D printing solutions that support additive manufacturing. The National Association of Packaging and Material Handling will also present packaging solutions offered especially for automotive suppliers.

Repair and maintenance forum AUTOMOTIVE HUNGARY’s co-event, the AUTÓTECHNIKA-AUTODIGA International Vehicle Maintenance Industry Trade Exhibition, will be held this year for the 27th time. This is the most important profes-

28 Industry Europe

sional forum of the automotive repair and maintenance industry in Hungary. Diagnostics, garage equipment and spare parts for cars and services can be viewed under the same roof. The exhibition also offers a three-day opportunity for professionals to familiarise themselves with the newest innovations, developments and services in the automotive industry and the maintenance of electric cars, as n well as the required tools and equipment.

HUNGEXPO C.Co. Ltd. 1101 Budapest, Albertirsai út 10. AUTOMOTIVE HUNGARY project Phone: +36 1 263 6088, +36 1 263 6007, +36 1 263 6104 E-mail: automotivexpo@hungexpo.hu www.automotivexpo.hu/en AUTÓTECHNIKA project Phone: +36 1 263 6074 E-mail: autotechnika@hungexpo.hu www.autotechnika.hungexpo.hu/en Free entry after preliminary professional registration on automotivexpo.hu/en/industryeurope


Automotive hungary exhibition

© Gergely Besenyei – Magnus Aircraft

Flying higher Hungarian aircraft producer Magnus Aircraft was set up to create an innovative new generation of aircraft that meets today’s expectations and has multifunctional features. The company is now about to start the standardised production of its main product, the Magnus Fusion 212, to serve markets in the US and in China. Edina Beale reports.

© Gergely Besenyei – Magnus Aircraft

Industry Europe 29


© Gergely Besenyei – Magnus Aircraft

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oon after its establishment in 2014, the Hungarian aircraft producer Magnus Aircraft developed its first aircraft, the Magnus Fusion 212, which still remains the firm’s main product today. The company’s skilful engineers implemented a combination of technologies that are only used by a few manufacturers worldwide. The aircraft is a low-wing monoplane, its symmetrical wing profile providing superb aerobatic capabilities and its large control surfaces ensuring advanced steerability. Due to its high-strength, carbon fibre and honeycomb structure enforced design, the Magnus Fusion 212 is able to take a load between -3 and +6 G.

In recent years the company has experienced growing interest in its product from foreign markets, therefore a large investment has become necessary to extend its capacities. The management came to the decision to build a new production plant near Pécs-Pogány in the south of Hungary. The foundation stone was laid in August 2017 and with funding from the Hungarian government the new production facility is currently being built. According to plans the new factory will open before the end of 2018 and the manufacturing process of the Fusion 212 will switch to standardised production.

Global presence

Magnus is constantly looking at how to maximise the quality of its products in all areas. The company has signed an agreement with the University of Pécs in regard to research and development projects and dual programmes at the university. At present the Magnus Fusion 213 is the only model in the final stage of development. This model is the newest version of the Fusion product line and it is predominantly designed for recreational and educational purposes. “The aircraft is equipped to provide the best quality flight experience,” says László Boros, chief executive of

Once Magnus Aircraft received the FAA certification, the firm was able to strengthen its international connections and saw an opportunity to enter into the international market. In 2015 a strategic decision was made to launch the Magnus Fusion 212 on first the European then the world market. Magnus has established a subsidiary in the US under the name of Magnus Aircraft INC and set up a new joint venture company in China, registered under the name of Hebei Tianshan Magnus Aircraft Manufacturing Co. 30 Industry Europe

Constant product development


Automotive hungary exhibition © Light Film Studio

© Gergely Besenyei – Magnus Aircraft

© Gergely Besenyei – Magnus Aircraft

© Gergely Besenyei – Magnus Aircraft

Magnus Aircraft Zrt. “During the development stage, we took notice of various aspects, customer demand and their feedback and I can proudly confirm that this model is the best we have ever made.”

Aiming for growth Magnus currently employs 25–30 people; however, this number is constantly growing as a result of the company’s dynamic development. Within a few years it is aiming to provide jobs for a total of 110 employees. As part of its growth strategy, the company is working on building a dealer network to gain a larger presence in the international market. Besides its companies in the US and China, Magnus also now has a distributor in Australia. In order to increase its sales Magnus puts great emphasis on brand building and regularly attends fairs and exhibitions to popularise its products. This year the company represented itself at the XII Pollack EXPO and the International Automobil and Tuning Show where industry players meet up to exchange ideas. At the AERO Friedrichshafen 2018 EXPO visitors were able to look at the Fusion 212 model and the eFusion aircraft as well as enjoying the experience of flying with the Fusion simulator. During the expo, Magnus Aircraft launched its brand new Innovator Network, a system which aimed to find new owners for five Magnus eFusions.

activity in our new manufacturing site and to use the extra capacities we have as a result of receiving the CS-LSA certificate, which is currently under progress. Besides this, we aim to increase our sales and focus on brand building. It is also a priority to meet the highest needs of our customers and partners and based on cusn tomer feedback we seem to be successful in this.”

Good prospects Mr Boros is confident about the company’s level of competence: “In the international market we work against strong competition, but based on the feedback I can honestly say that any member of the Fusion product line is competitive in terms of price, performance, safety and flight experience.” The team at Magnus Aircraft has always believed that the future holds plenty of opportunities and it would only have to grab those when they come along. “We still feel exactly the same way now,” continues Mr Boros. “Establishing the international dealer network is a long-term process, but it has already brought great results. At this moment our main goal is to start our standardised production © Gergely Besenyei – Magnus Aircraft Industry Europe 31


HUNGAROMEDICA: All

medical technologies under one roof HUNGAROMEDICA Health and Medical Technology Exhibition is the largest exhibition of healthcare companies, technology, products and services in Hungary. Taking place in Budapest from 11–13 October 2018, the event is expected to play host to around 10,000 attendees.

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the second weekend of October 2018 all members of the Hungarian healthcare industry will converge in Budapest. Hungexpo Ltd is the organiser of HUNGAROMEDICA, a special healthcare trade exhibition at which manufacturers, service providers, healthcare companies, investors and laymen will come together to explore the latest technologies. HUNGAROMEDICA Health and Medical Technology Exhibition will be showcasing the frontline of the healthcare trade including medical technologies and medical aids, nursing aids, hospital techniques, medicine supply or even home nursing instruments. 32 Industry Europe

Source the latest products, explore new market options and get in touch with the right contacts to facilitate new business. The applications of exhibitors are still under process; you can still apply and book a stand for this event in October 2018.

Hungary invests in healthcare In recent years we have seen a continuous increase in public expenditure for healthcare in Hungary. Since 2009 more than €2 billion has been channelled into the sector, predominantly to improve healthcare institutions in rural areas and medical technology. In 2017 this meant


HUNGAROMEDICA exhibition

excess funds of nearly €622 million for the sector. Within the Heath Insurance Fund for contribution-in-kind, i.e. for direct patient care, more than €5 billion will be allocated in 2018. This will be followed by hundreds of millions of euros in development funds in the coming years, which will also enable the renewal of the supplier system in Budapest. And when such large investments are being made, it is advisable to review the progress of technology and examine new prospects for patients and healthcare professionals who are constantly looking for new opportunities, how they can provide a better service to their patients and how they can revolutionise their work.

The perfect forum The HUNGAROMEDICA Health and Medical Technology Exhibition and its related professional seminars offer a platform to present the results of new medical technologies, to review the latest analyses and to discuss current legislation. This will help to redefine the future role of hospitals, clinics and pharmacies while enabling participants to reinterpret the doctor-patient relationship models in the face of ever-increasing digitalisation. At the same time, the HUNGAROMEDICA Exhibition is a powerful tool to reach a wide range of corporate goals, whether this is professional networking, reaching new customers, image building, new product launches, mapping competitors, increasing growth or sales. At this event participants are able to examine the current trends and study the biggest market players; on the other hand a number of potential clients will also be present so attendees are not only able to strengthen relationships with their current institutions but are also able to acquire new medical partners. The exhibition will be hosting about 10,000 professionals, service providers, representatives of policy and sector management, students studying in higher education and others who are interested in the healthcare industry.

companies, and the International Medical Technology Conference prepared by MediKlaszter. Access to and participation in these programmes will be free of charge to healthcare workers. “Our long-term goal is to establish a regional meeting point where exhibitors and visitors can obtain accurate information on current news from the healthcare industry, and we are aiming to create a display forum for the innovative and exportable products produced n by the domestic medical technology sector.”

The main themes of the exhibition are: Wide range of medical devices Medical Technology and medical aids manufacturers, distributers, rehabilitation, home care Healthcare technology Hospital building, technique and operation Pharmaceutical manufacturers and distributors Pharmacies Private Healthcare providers Healthcare IT To see a full list of the exhibition’s themes go on the event’s website: www.hungaromedica.hu/en The distinguished partner of the Exhibition is the Semmelweis University – Medical Manager Training Centre To apply and for more information email: hungaromedica@hungexpo.hu www.hungaromedica.hu/en

Comprehensive programme Mr Csaba Vörös, exhibition director for Hungexpo, explains the purpose of the event and provides information on the scheduled programmes: “At Hungexpo’s exhibitions we work together with a number of prominent professional partners in order to organise high quality events that are tailor made to meet special market requirements of the specific sector and therefore effectively contribute to the business success of our exhibitors. The distinguished professional partner of the HUNGAROMEDICA Exhibition is the Semmelweis University Medical Manager Training Centre. We have developed the themes and programmes of the exhibition with the involvement of the university and our other professional partners. “We invite to this event private and public funded institutions, hospital managers and financial directors, doctors, pharmacists, nurses, healthcare professionals and graduate medical students. We open the third day of the exhibition to the general public. We also offer hundreds more healthcare workers a two-day credit enhancement training organised by the leading healthcare university in Hungary, the Semmelweis University. The subjects of these training sessions include digital healthcare, patient safety/care, institute management and health diagnostics. A spectacular hospital development presentation is being scheduled in our programme, by the Healthy Budapest Programme representatives. In addition, other programmes include the Hackathon event organised by EIT Health, Medicina Conference with the main Hungarian health decision-makers and market leading Industry Europe 33


Optimising nature’s

electromagnetic forces The Cantoni Group is a global market leader in the design and manufacture of electric motors, brakes and specialised industrial tools. The company produces electric induction motors for use in pumps, fans, compressors,conveyors, etc., as well as electromagnetic brakes, electrohydraulic releases and others. Today it offers complete solutions with its latest innovative products keeping the company at the forefront of the electric-drive industry. Philip Yorke reports.

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he history of Cantoni Group goes back to XIXth century. The Group comprises manufacturing plants located in Poland, with Cantoni Motor as the International Sales Office. Thanks to its constant and close cooperation with the various R&D departments of the Group, and in association with leading European universities, the company is able to create, produce and test specific solutions for a diverse range of industrial applications. These include electric motors for use in power plants, conveyers and mining equipment, as well as for the paper, marine, chemical and electromechanical industries. In addition Cantoni is involved in the design and manufacture of wide range of electrical apparatus, e.g. brakes, electrohydraulic releases, etc.

Advanced asynchronous power The global demand for complete solutions concerning electric motor drives, and in particular those involved in the production of motors equipped with electromagnetic brakes, continues to grow. One of the Cantoni Group’s state-of-the-art factories has for years been producing general purpose asynchronous motors with uprated output from 0.75kW to 250kW, and these are equipped with electromagnetic brakes for both AC and DC applications. The company’s broad spectrum of brake motors executions is very wide starting from a simple safety brakes for hoist applications, to powerful, silent drives for stage movement in theatres and out34 Industry Europe

door events. Heavy-duty brakes for use with conveyers in the mining industry and coal power plants are also produced by Cantoni with a high degree of protection from dust-intensive zones. Since 1954, the Cantoni Group’s brakes factory located in Poland, has continued to produce a wide range of electrical equipment, whilst optimising performance in order to meet the challenging demands of today’s competitive marketplace. The company’s AC and DC brakes are used to stop the rotation of a motor shaft or a machine after the voltage supply has been switched off. Cantoni’s HZg series three-phase AC brakes provide a braking torque of between 20 to 400Nm and are available in five different frame sizes. In addition, a broad range of DC brakes with a braking torque of up to 5000Nm in different executions and configurations in terms of supply and safety allows to use them in multi-purpose drives.

The safety-first NEX- series The Cantoni Group’s commitment to research and new product development has resulted in some major safety breakthroughs over the years. The company’s latest NEX-series electromagnetic brakes are designed to meet all the essential requirements for equipment and protective systems intended for use in potentially explosive atmospheres, such as gas and dust-laden atmospheres (zones 2 and 21), and this is underscored by its full ATEX safety certificate.


Automation & Robotics

The company’s on-going development of this product range has resulted in the launch of the new HEX-series, a fully flame-proof brake system that is designed specifically for the hazardous mining and chemical industries. The offer of the Group includes also electrohydraulic releases, a mechanical devices with linear movement which are used in most cases for releasing (opening) of expansion and disc brakes in drives of transportation machines, lifts, conveyors, elevators, etc. One of the examples are electrohydraulic releases, type ExZE, which meet and in some cases exceed the essential requirements for equipment and protective systems intended for use in methane-endangered areas and potentially explosive atmospheres. They are fully certified and offered with a three-phase voltage supply of up to 1000V, with rated force 800÷3200N and have a stroke from 60-160mm. Further development of the electrohydraulic ExZE releases has led to the production of the company’s latest ExwZE explosion-proof releases with higher voltage supplies that range from 1000 to 1250V.

Powering ahead Earlier this year, the Cantoni Group announced that it had produced the biggest electric motors in its history in terms of both power and weight. This was a special consignment for the power industry. The motor type is Sfw900HV8D and has an output power of 5600kW, at a speed of 745RPM and voltage of 10500V. The huge frames for these very large motors are steel welded and B3 mounted with an IC81W cooling system and mounted water-air heat exchangers. These powerful motors will be used for driving exhaust fans in a newly-constructed power station that will be delivering 910MW. The motor’s characteristic features include low sound pressure levels, with built-in sound absorbing elements and low-value starting current. This is in addition to the special construction of a terminal box that is resistant to any short-circuits that may occur during everyday operation. These highly specialised motors are also equipped with dedicated control and management equipment: Pt100 sensors in stator’s winding and bearing nodes, as well as advanced water leakage sensors. There is also a built-in vibration management system and current transformers in the terminal box of stator’s winding.

Transforming visions The Cantoni Group takes its responsibilities to the environment and the training of up-and-coming engineers seriously. A special project initiated by the company is designed to transform the visons of young engineers into technically advanced products, by training them and encouraging them to realise their visions in the process of designing ever-more efficient and eco-friendly electric motors. Cantoni also supports young scientists from the Politechnika Czestochowska University of technology in their pioneering work on the Mars Rover space programme. This n has resulted in their models winning several international awards. For further details of the Cantoni Group’s innovative products and services visit: www.cantonigroup.com. Industry Europe 35


Intelligent solutions Smart in, a company from Katowice, a part of the INTROL Group – one of the largest Polish engineering holding companies – is Poland’s leading provider of the IT services, auditing and consulting in the fields of Smart City, Smart Region and IoT. Dariusz Balcerzyk talks to CEO Michal Swoboda to find out more about the company’s unique competencies.

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lthough Smart in is a young company, founded in 2016, it is already making an impact. Mr Swoboda begins: “At Smart in we strongly believe that state-of-the-art technology can bring unprecedented efficiency to industry and improve our cities’ liveability and safety. We implement intelligent monitoring and analytics, particularly comprehensive solutions for video monitoring and decision-making support for municipal services and public safety forces. We carry out projects with an emphasis on thorough needs analysis, smart architecture design, and optimisation of individual clients’ business and their future development. The word ‘optimisation’ is crucial for us.” As mentioned, Smart in is a part of the Introl Group, a well-known Polish engineering holding company. The group provides comprehensive engineering services; it implements investments in the field of system projects, power units, cogeneration systems, process automation, industrial measurements, telecom systems in smart buildings, air-conditioning and ventilation systems, environmental protection systems and production of advanced automation equipment. The group comprises 36 Industry Europe


Automation & Robotics

14 companies (including Smart in) from the energy, environmental protection and industrial automation sectors. Its turnover in 2016 is estimated as almost PLN 400 million (almost €100 million); it has thousands of customers around the world and employs 1600 people. “We are proud to be able to combine the group’s over 25 years of experience in industrial measurements, automation and engineering with innovative technologies in the areas of analysis, data processing and data correlation,” says Mr Swoboda. Smart in employs 70 people, including more than 30 first-class engineers. The strength of the company lies in its strong network of partners; it creates solutions based on the latest technologies of such renowned companies as HP, IBM, Cisco, Oracle, Lenovo, Dell and Rockwell Automation. Recently, Smart in was awarded the title of the IBM best partner in Europe.

Making life better “Every device is a source of a lot of data, from which you can draw conclusions that help to optimise all processes; that is, to make life around us better. Our customers come from various sectors, including municipalities, local districts, sport facilities (for example, we have optimised management processes at the newly refurbished Silesian Stadium in Chorzow, Poland), companies with stable production processes, energy companies, distribution companies, as well as public and government institutions,” says Mr Swoboda. Smart in is a good example of a company operating in the field of Industry 4.0, which is based on automation and data exchange in manufacturing technologies. The company specialises in implementing complex solutions by providing full care post-implementation, warranty and post-warranty; supply of equipment and software; solu-

CEO Michal Swoboda

Industry Europe 37


tions based on cloud computing; technical support and services; and services installation and configuration. “Our knowledge in the field of technology allows us to choose the best solution for our customer. This is particularly the case in projects in which the sensors are responsible for the collection of data, and our device is responsible for its transfer,” says Mr Swoboda.

Smart city One of the main areas of interest for the company moving forward is the so-called ‘smart city’. This describes an urban area that uses different types of electronic data collection sensors to supply information, which is used to manage assets and resources efficiently. Data collected from such different data resources as city inhabitants, or municipal devices and assets, is processed and analysed to

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monitor and manage various areas of city life, such as transportation systems, waste management, water supply, information systems, power plants, traffic, law enforcement, schools, hospitals, libraries and other community services. “For me a smart city is a way of data processing enabling the city’s inhabitants to enjoy a good quality of life. Thanks to the optimisation processes, the city functions in a better way, is economically managed and safe. You just want to live in such a place. We are fully confident that the smart city approach is the perfect solution for both the private and public sectors, as a response to the growing global interest in urban, cultural and everyday living zones development,” explains Mr Swoboda. Smart in’s leading product is an intelligent operations centre, based on IBM Solutions, which helps to effectively manage incidents in a city, improving its security and liveability. Intelligent monitoring is not


Automation & Robotics

only an effectively placed camera, but an effective way to supervise the monitoring infrastructure, regardless of its size. The company supported the Polish city of Gdynia in the process of obtaining the ISO 37120:2014 standard. This defines and establishes methodologies for a set of indicators to steer and measure the performance of city services and improve quality of life. Gdynia is one of only two Polish cities (the other is Kielce), and one of 70 in the whole of Europe, to have obtained this certification. “Smart city is not only a vision of a distant future. This is a new reality that we are entering, creating a safer environment for future generations and improving the quality of life right now, with every implemented technology,” says Mr Swoboda.

Internet of Things Smart in’s other area of interest is the Internet of Things (IoT). “Internet of Things is not just a network of devices and systems connected to the internet. It can be used in any field, e.g. environmental control, energy management and infrastructure, automation, healthcare, medical systems, and more. The goal is to make computers work with people in a natural way, in many applications and processes, understanding their questions and providing answers that they will be able to understand n and evaluate,” explains Mr Swoboda.

http://smart-in.eu/ Industry Europe 39


Strong link The American company BorgWarner has created 600 jobs by investing 15 billion forint into its three production plants in Oroszlány in Hungary in the last three years. BorgWarner Oroszlány Kft today is a strong link with great future prospects within BorgWarner’s global operation. Edina Beale reports.

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Automotive & Heavy Vehicles

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ne of the most important challenges in all industries today is to create solutions for a cleaner and more energy saving world. Companies in the automotive industry have a major task to deliver energy saving transport solutions and BorgWarner has been focusing on this area for decades. It has developed technology systems that improve the efficiency of the vehicle, reduce emissions and increase performance. The R2S two-stage turbocharger system is a prime example of its pioneering solutions; it uses an electric actuator instead of the former vacuum technology to move the valves so the vehicle responds quicker whilst significantly reducing emissions.

Dynamic growth BorgWarner has been manufacturing innovative technologies in Hungary for many years now. Located 76 kilometres outside of Budapest, the Oroszlány campus produces state-of-the-art turbochargers for gasoline and diesel engines. The factory was established in 2001 in order to assemble turbochargers to serve the Audi factory in Hungary but soon began to manufacture the products in-house. The company has seen dynamic development ever since and today the Oroszlány site is now the second largest turbocharger production site in Europe.

Last year (2017) the 14,000m2 production area of the turbocharger producing factory was extended by another 7000m2 production hall. This unit, now on full capacity, requires an additional 350 staff. The current product portfolio includes BV turbochargers with variable turbine geometry, turbochargers with waste gate for diesel and gasoline as well, and turbochargers with twin scroll. The products from this business unit are used by personal car, light/medium/heavy truck and commercial vehicle manufacturers and serve many globally renowned European automotive companies including Audi, Volkswagen, Fiat, GM, Volvo, the PSA group and BMW. The Hungarian factory incorporates all the latest energy efficient operations. It uses waste heat from air compressors and furnaces and will recycle rainwater for watering lawns as well as condensation wastewater. Additionally, the building uses linear fluorescent lamps (LFLs) in most of the production and office areas, and compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) in the remaining facility to reduce energy consumption.

Extending product profile In addition to turbocharger production, there are now two more business units in operation on the Oroszlány complex which covers an area of 35,000m2 and employs more than 1400 people in total. In 2015

Industry Europe 41



BorgWarner opened its TTS production facility to provide capacities that allow the company to meet growing customer demand with localized production. It began to manufacture hydraulic pumps for ‘preemptive’ AWD systems, complete transfer case units for Jaguar Land Rover and related spare parts for OEMs. BorgWarner’s market-leading AWD solutions contribute to enhanced vehicle traction, improved driving dynamics and better fuel economy. Later in the same year, another business unit, BorgWarner Emission Systems, was established to manufacture advanced products including exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) tubes, valves and coolers as well as thermostats – all key technologies for modern engines aimed at reducing emissions.

Good prospects Mr Attila Bogár, the managing director of BorgWarner Turbo Systems Kft, has been working for the company for over eight years. He has always been interested in innovative car technologies. Mr Bogár believes the two main components essential to achieve success are quality and reliability. He sees incredible opportunities in innovations in the automotive sector: “The field of innovations in this industry is extraordinary as changes are obvious and very fast; therefore there is no need to look back decades but just to examine the new developments at the end of the year.” He highlighted the ideal geographical position and large capacities of the Oroszlány campus which Industry Europe 43


Essentra Components With 75 years’ experience, Essentra Components is a global market leading manufacturer and distributor of plastic injection moulded, Klinger

vinyl dip moulded and metal components. A global footprint with 47 sales and distribution centres across 29 countries, we make it easier for customers to solve their challenges across a range of markets and applications such as automotive, specialist vehicle manufacturing, equipment manufacturing, consumer electronics and appliances, to name but a few. In fact, over 70% of the world’s top global manufacturers work with us. As an innovative designer and manufacturer, Essentra Components specialises in caps and plugs, masking products, hydraulic protection, access hardware, cable management, and many more. Over one billion parts stocked with fast dispatch and free sampling on most standard products, allowing customers to “try before you buy.” Essentra Components forms part of Essentra plc, a FTSE 250 company and a leading global provider of essential components and solutions. Through its 4 divisions: Components, Packaging, Filters and Specialist Components, Essentra focuses on the light manufacture and distribution of high volume, essential components which serve customers in a wide variety of end-markets and geographies, providing a global presence with local support.

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46 Industry Europe


Automotive & Heavy Vehicles

attracts car manufacturers like Audi, Mercedes and Opel operating in Hungary as well as Tier 1 and Tier 2 automotive suppliers. According to Mr Bogár the future prospects of the automotive industry will be largely influenced by the stability of the eurozone in the next few years. Unlike Europe, Asia and China can expect more stable and dynamic growth in this sector. Quality requirements and regulations are additional factors that will influence the pace of production. The increase in energy prices forces manufacturers to produce vehicles that are more efficient but at the same time smaller in size – 1.6 litre engines instead of 2 litres are already available on the market. The opportunities will change according to market needs.

Safe operation winner With its dynamic development and high quality standard operations BorgWarner Oroszlány Kft has set an example for other international sites of the BorgWarner group. While continuing to expand, the company has managed to maintain its focus on safe operations and has won the Work Safety prize several times. This is a prestigious award for completing one million working hours without accidents that require reporting. The Hungarian firm is the only company among BorgWarner’s 74 global factories that has won this award five times in a row. With this recognition the company received a USD 20,000 reward that was shared between n the local fire service, the ambulance service and a kindergarten.

Industry Europe 47


Sustainable mobility EvoBus GmbH, the largest European subsidiary of Daimler AG, is a leading full-line supplier to the European bus and coach market as well as a growing global player. To ensure the European plants are fit for the future, the company has decided on a major investment programme to further enhance production efficiency. Romana Moares reports.

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ith its numerous production facilities and service shops, EvoBus is represented throughout Europe with more than 8000 employees. As part of the Daimler Buses business area, EvoBus GmbH is integrated into the group’s global bus activities. The product portfolio includes city buses, interurban buses and travel coaches, delivered either as a complete bus or a chassis. Daimler Buses is the world’s biggest and most profitable bus manufacturer. The company has a global reach, supported by a network of production plants and service centres. With its comprehensive offering of the Mercedes-Benz, Setra and BharatBenz brands, Daimler Buses covers the full scope of requirements in the field of bus transportation, with maximum focus on safety, efficiency and ecological sustainability. Moreover, with its OMNIplus and BusStore brands, the company provides a worldwide service network and full 48 Industry Europe


Automotive & Heavy Vehicles

Industry Europe 49


coverage service line, including used buses. In the first half of 2017, the Daimler Buses Group sold almost 13,000 buses and chassis worldwide, confirming its solid position in Europe, Brazil, Turkey, Argentina and Mexico. EvoBus Czech Republic has been operating in the Czech market since 1998. In 2001, a new production plant was commissioned, soon to be progressively expanded, followed in 2006 by a new service and sales centre in Prague, built in a green field and completed in just six months. In 2012 Evobus opened a new modern production hall in Holýšov, extending the production area to about 40,000m2. The manufacturing plant in Holýšov is part of the European EvoBus production network. The factory produces segments of body shell and components for urban low-floor buses, intercity buses of the Mercedes-Benz brand and all Setra buses and coaches, supplied to its sister companies in Germany. Although the main market for the final products remains Europe, they are shipped to customers around the world.

Fit for the future The production plants of EvoBus in Mannheim and Neu-Ulm in Germany and Holýšov in the Czech Republic have been successfully collaborating for many years. However, their structures and distribution of tasks have evolved over time and are no longer appropriate for modern production processes. In order to ensure that its plants in Europe continue to be fit for the future, the company’s management and works council has 50 Industry Europe

agreed on a future-oriented package for efficiency enhancements in production. In the coming years, approximately €340 million will be invested, of which €140 million will be spent on the European plants to facilitate optimised structures and more efficient processes. In the future, each European plant will focus on several key competences with simplified processes and shortened supply routes: the Mannheim plant will produce the first series of battery-electric buses, as a competence centre for city buses. The competence centre for touring coaches in Neu-Ulm will continue to work intensively on safety and assistance systems, including those for autonomous driving. And the Czech plant in Holýšov will take on the production of complete bodies-in-white of the touring coaches as well as carrying on supplying components for the bodies-inwhite of the city buses. As a result of the planned changes aimed at increasing the scope of competence of each plant, the body shop in Holýšov will be significantly expanded. The premises will increase by more than 130,000m2 to a total of 234,000m2. A series of new halls will be built to house the production of complete bodies-in-white for the touring coaches that will be made within a new workflow layout to support lean production and optimum material flows.

Strategic commitment The existing halls for cladding assembly and chassis spraying will also be reconstructed, and a new administrative building will be added, including the supporting infrastructure. The investment will


Automotive & Heavy Vehicles

also cover the equipment for a new welding shop as well as new technologies for the cataphoresis coating process, the most modern and environmentally friendly equipment in Europe, and a new, highvalue adding process for the Holýšov plant. The production plant will supply approximately 3000 segments of the Citaro city bus bodyworks, to be assembled in Mannheim. Production of bodies-in-white will also increase and may reach up to 3000 units per year. The first complete bodyworks are planned to leave the production lines in 2019. Gradually, different types of buses will be added, with the last model included in 2021. The investment is expected to create 400 new jobs. The strategic decision to expand the facility is a major commitment to the future, significantly increasing the importance and position of the Holýšov plant as a separate competence centre for the bodies-in-white throughout the Daimler Group’s production network. Through this extensive investment in its production base, Daimler Buses has confirmed its commitment to systematically continuing to n shape the future of mobility.

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Passion for the best Frauenthal Automotive is a leading premium supplier and development partner to the European automotive OEMs and a market leader in several automotive segments. The company has over 100 years of industrial experience under its belt: a strong tradition and maximum customer focus, combined with innovative approach, have been key to its success. Romana Moares reports.

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stablished in the 1890s, Frauenthal has been continuously improving its expertise in automotive parts development and manufacture. Since 1975 it has led the industry in supplying parabolic springs; since 1983, air suspension springs; since 1996, 3D air suspension springs and since 1999 front mono-leaf springs for heavy trucks. Frauenthal Automotive supplies the majority of the European commercial vehicle industry as well as selected car customers. In addition, the company is also active in the non-automotive sector – a segment with great potential. Headquartered in Vienna and employing over 1800 people, the company is one of two divisions of Frauenthal Holding AG, and has become an irreplaceable industry partner.

Three pillars The cornerstone of today’s Frauenthal Automotive was laid in 2002 when the first spring plants were acquired in Austria and Germany. Further acquisitions of major European commercial vehicle suppliers followed. In 2005, Frauenthal produced the first high-stress 7.5tonne front-axle mono-leaf springs and today it is Europe’s industry leader in the supply of LCV, truck and trailer leaf springs. As a highquality manufacturer of commodities, the company focuses on a long-term partnership with customers who appreciate the security of supply, cost-optimisation and flexibility. The division maintains three product groups: the Powertrain division develops and produces connecting rods, balancing shafts and distributor rails with two locations in Germany and supplies the

Industry Europe 53


European passenger car and truck industry. The Gnotec Group, with two locations in Sweden, one in Slovakia and one in China, has state-of-the-art equipment for sheet metal processing through stamping, pressing, cutting and welding. The compressed air tank business line, with locations in Germany and the Czech Republic, is the European market leader for compressed air tanks made of steel, which are used, among other things, in the braking systems of heavy trucks.

Top development expertise Today’s automotive world is faster-paced than ever before, with the application of new technologies and demands for intelligent solutions. Weight reduction, improved use of the chassis and total cost optimisation over the vehicle’s lifetime – those are the current requirements affecting the sector development. Frauenthal Automotive’s innovation strategy is aimed at increasing product and process performance, expanding the product range with more powerful components, and optimising service to customer needs. Product innovations are rooted in simplification, with the aim to streamline the solutions in order to reduce total costs and to make it easier for customers to install or continue using certain components. In order to increase the efficiency of parts, the company strives to improve material properties, develop new product designs and optimise production processes. Product development follows a clearly defined cycle: lower weight – reduction in materials used – reduced environmental impact – increased cargo capacity – lower fuel consumption – lower total cost – enhanced profitability. The results of this approach include dual chamber air tanks and plastic air reservoirs, and the focus on simplification has brought the Headfix solution for air reservoirs: this innovative head mounting product uses a completely new design, removing the need for an additional holding assembly.

New business Facing current market challenges including the rising cost pressure and decreasing production of heavy commercial vehicles; the 54 Industry Europe


Automotive & Heavy Vehicles

company’s strategy has been based on further automation of the production line and layout optimisation, further quality improvement and increasing the customer base in the automotive sector as well as other industries. The company boasts maximum customer orientation and is committed to long-standing and close customer relationships, continuously improving existing products as well as offering customised solutions for new products. In addition to premium quality, the company’s competitive advantages include utmost flexibility, the highest levels of supply security, as well as cost savings generated by specialisation.

The focus on increasing value for customers has paid dividends. As both the European commercial vehicle market and the passenger car manufacturers relevant to Frauenthal recorded growth rates in 2017, the company’s financial performance has further improved. “Frauenthal Automotive was able to win orders for new business in all product areas, which will contribute to sales growth in the years to come,” confirmed Dr Ing. Martin Sailer, CEO of Frauenthal Holding, adding that for the Frauenthal Automotive division, the good market situation is expected to further increase earnings n in the near future.

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Set to grow IDEAL Automotive is an international system supplier and development partner for the automotive industry. With over 4000 employees in 17 locations, the company is in better form than ever before and looking to further increase its capacity. Romana Moares reports.

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Automotive & Heavy Vehicles

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DEAL Automotive, based in Bamberg, was founded in 1964 and was formerly known as Schaefer Teppichboden GmbH. It changed its name to IDEAL Automotive GmbH in 2000. The company serves Tier 1 automobile manufacturers and its customer base includes most of the famous names: Mercedes-Benz, SEAT, Opel, Porsche, Lamborghini, Audi, Volvo and many others. In 2017, the company generated a turnover of nearly €390 million. IDEAL Automotive GmbH operates as a subsidiary of IDEAL Group Deutschland GmbH and manufactures textile lining components for the interior and exterior applications for the automotive industry, such as door coverings, car mats, coating parts made of plastic, side linings, loading doors, spare wheel recess coverings, tailgate linings, seat backrest linings and wheel arch liners. The company also provides needle fleeces, tufting products and coatings, including nonwoven fabrics, tufts, coatings/equipment, and carrier nonwovens. In addition, IDEAL Automotive offers concept design and construction, research and development, prototype manufacturing, production, component and material testing, and logistics services.

The company boasts a high in-house production depth which comprises the production of semi-finished and finished products. From raw granulate to fibre manufacturing and processing through to the final component, the expertise is included in all manufacturing steps, providing clear advantages to customers including reliable processes, quick and flexible reaction times as well as a cost-efficient and economic production.

Valued partnerships The company has valuable expertise in the fields of acoustics, fibre technology, plastic formulation and process engineering. The competence comprises the development and production of system parts

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– from the first idea to the prototype construction through to serial production. In close cooperation with well-known research institutions, the best and most efficient solutions are found. The new intelligent system solutions reflect individual customers’ requirements: the optics, functionality and longevity of the products are just as important as cost-efficient production. The low weight of the components, their noise-reducing effect and the good recycling possibilities are just some of the advantages that IDEAL Automotive’s textile lining elements in the vehicle interior and exterior provide. All production facilities are equipped with new, state-of-the-art technology. To meet the quality and environmental requirements of its customers and to ensure environmentally friendly production, all IDEAL sites are certified according to ISO / TS 16949 / VDA 6.1 and the processing plants according to DIN EN ISO 14001. The company strives to continually improve working conditions and environmental impacts. Uniform standards for quality, work safety and environmental protection apply to all plants. Collaboration between suppliers and customers is based on mutual trust. IDEAL Automotive is a modern company that is successful not only through innovation and quality but also through continuity and reliable partnerships. IDEAL is constantly on the lookout for suppliers that are able to develop new products with, or for, the company.

Proven route to success IDEAL Automotive is set to further increase production capacity. In 2016 a new location was opened in Slovakia, and in 2017 another factory was commissioned in Poland. This just goes to show that quality, reli-

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ability and commitment to ensuring maximum customer satisfaction are proven routes to success. As the company states: “We want to not only satisfy our customers but also inspire them in the long term. The fact that we have been able to produce for renowned manufacturers in the automotive sector for years now is our promise of quality. The thorough understanding of materials, technology and the market go hand in hand with IDEAL Automotive GmbH projects.” In 2018, the company is set to further increase its manufacturing capacity in Europe – it is now building a new factory in Świdnica, in southern Poland, planned to be completed by the end of the year. The planned factory covering an area of approximately 27,400m2 will be divided into functional zones – the industrial section (approximately 25,000m2), comprising the production hall and warehouse,

two unloading tunnels and technical facilities, as well as the social and office section, which will take up in excess of 2000m2. The estimated cost of the entire project declared by Ideal Automotive is over €15 million. In mid-2018, IDEAL Automotive also completed the extension of one of its factories in the Czech Republic, in the Panattoni Park Stříbro near the D5 motorway. The extended factory covering a total area of over 14,000m2 will be making carpets for passenger cars. The latest additions are fully in line with the group’s strategy of healthy growth, an efficient operational management and thought-out investments. Given the increasing demand for top quality products within the growing automotive sector, it is safe to say that IDEAL Automotive’s n future looks bright.

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Geared for success Nord Motoriduttori Srl is a global leader in the design and manufacture of electronic drive technology for geared motors, frequency inverters and electronic gear units. Today the company is seeing strong growth not only in its traditional markets but also in the world’s emerging markets, as well as in other more mature global markets. Philip Yorke reports.

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Automotive & Heavy Vehicles

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ord Motoriduttori Srl is part of the Nord Drivesystems Group, and is headquartered in Bargteheide, near Hamburg in Germany. The group was founded in 1965 and its global presence extends to over 60 countries worldwide. Today the group has more than 3000 employees, and in 2017 recorded sales of over €500 million. The company’s core activities include the manufacture of geared motors, frequency inverters and gear units. These are used to drive a wide range of machinery in sectors such as material handling, construction, beverages, food and chemicals. Nord Motoriduttori employs over 200 people in Italy and produces over 13,000 motors a week there. These are supplied partly to the Italian market but mainly to the group’s HQ in Germany, where it utilises them in its own geared motor production and distributes them all over the world. In addition, Motoriduttori operates five gearbox assembly lines, where it assembles geared motors for the Italian market using the 100 per cent German made parts, including gears, housings and shafts manufactured by the group. As the Italian branch of Nord Drivesystems Group, it also commercialises all other products from the Motoriduttori range.

Flying high When it comes to airport baggage handling systems, reliability is the number one priority. The breakdown of even a single system component results in a backlog and unacceptable delays. Nord is very familiar with the strict airport requirements and supplies drive systems and solutions for a wide range of baggage handling applications. All Nord components are precisely matched to each other in order to ensure reliable, smooth operation. These gear units are extremely robust, run almost silently and have a particularly long service life. They can help to reduce stand-still times and thereby contribute to the increased efficiency and availability of the entire baggage system. Nord’s reliable and cost-effective electroni-

cally controlled conveyor drives have proven themselves at airports throughout the world. The systems combine high flexibility and tiered functional equipment with ease of operation. These drives can ensure high conveying speeds when necessary, which are increasingly needed these days due to the more stringent safety measures imposed at the world’s airports. The mechatronic Nord drive systems are based on 2-stage bevel gear motors that offer low weight ratios and high efficiency. In combination with wall-mounted or motor-mounted frequency invertors, they form the world’s most efficient drive systems. In addition, the Modular Nord range of products enables computer drive solutions from a single source and so reduces the number of versions. This means that the overall operating costs of the system can be kept low, making the product even more cost-effective. From design and commissioning to service maintenance, Nord supports its customers through all phases of each project and supplies optimal quality which meets, and often exceeds, international standards.

Food for thought The food and beverage industry is among the most regulated in the world and demands strict adherence to hygiene and sustainability criteria. Aluminium offers a number of benefits in this respect as well as in the application of advanced drive technology. The material is characterised by low weight, low costs and excellent heat conduction. Aluminium also has an inherent corrosion resistance and does not always require painting. If the appropriate chemicals are used, the lightweight aluminium drives are optionally available with nsd tupH surface treatment. Furthermore, the smooth aluminium surfaces allow effortless cleaning. As a result, the light and highly durable aluminium drives are especially suitable for the applications involved in the food and beverage industry. Industry Europe 61


Turnkey systems As the leading turnkey manufacturer of mechanical, electrical and electronic drive technology, Nord is able to supply complete drive units and configures the most efficient and reliable drive concepts. The distinguishing features of Nord are its high quality standards, state-of-the-art production facilities and fast, just-in-time deliveries. The company has a growing selection of hygienic drives, which are perfect for the food and beverage industry as well as for diverse chemical industries. Large industrial gear units are another Nord speciality. In fact Nord is the only manufacturer worldwide to produce very large industrial gear units with 242,000Nm output torques in the proven one-piece Unicase housing. Typical applications include those found in the mining industry as well as in the chemical industry, which needs high torques in order to mix high viscosity liquids. As the demand for electric motors and gearboxes has increased both in terms of volumes and in terms of larger sizes, Nord Motoriduttori is investing heavily in line automation and increasing its number of production lines to enable it to immediately expand its production to meet the n increased demand. For further details of Nord Motoriduttori products and services visit: www.nordmotoriduttori.com

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Trailers with many applications Zaslaw, a company from Andrychow, is one of Poland’s leading manufacturers of trailers and semitrailers for agricultural and road use. “Our brand is well-known and recognisable both in Poland and other countries,” as Jaroslaw Luczak, the company’s commercial director explains to Dariusz Balcerzyk.

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aslaw has a long tradition in the production of road and agricultural trailers, semi-trailers, undercarriages, containers and various arrangements. Its history reaches back to 1953, so in 2018 the company celebrates its 65th anniversary. Since the very beginning, Zaslaw has been one of Poland’s leading manufacturers of agricultural trailers. Its main product, ‘Autosanki’ trailers, are its most popular agricultural trailers, with 68 per cent of

Polish farmers using them. The company’s annual output in 1960, 1970 and the 1980s reached 20,000 vehicles. In the 1990s Zaslaw was completely restructured: initially, in 1996, the limited company was established and then, eight years later, its ownership structure was changed. Since then, it has been owned by a group of Polish entrepreneurs. In 2008 the company moved its entire production to Andrychow, a town that is one Industry Europe 63


of the most important industrial centres in the southern part of Poland. Since 2007, there has been a special economic zone with a total area of nearly 140 ha. Over the years since its establishment the company has extended its offer, which now includes curtain semi-trailers, dumping semitrailers, vehicles for timber transport, construction trailers, semitrailers and vehicles for the municipal sector.

Crossing borders Zaslaw makes both agricultural trailers and road vehicles (i.e. various types of road trailers). Each segment makes up 50 per cent of its

total annual sales. For 2018, its projected output is 1600 heavy vehicles and 6000 small lightweight luggage trailers, including around 530 agricultural trailers. “In terms of the agricultural trailers’ sales volumes we are only the fifth producer in Poland, but we are the undisputed leader in the sale of large trailers with a load capacity of more than 12 tonnes. This is due to our quality policy. Our trailers are equipped with components made only by reputable companies, such as SAF Holland, BPW, ArcelorMittal, Jost, Hella or Aspock. Therefore, they are often more expensive than the trailers made by our competitors. In the case of small trailers, this difference in price is of fundamental importance,

Aspöck Systems Aspöck company has focussed on the planning, development and production of future-orientated lighting for diverse vehicles for 40 years now. During that time have brought light to the roads and are therefore Europe’s leading manufacturer for pre-fabricated lighting systems for all types of towed vehicles. From the concept, right up to a product ready for assembly, Aspöck develops solutions concerning lighting for truck trailers, trailers, agricultural machines, automotive, motorcycles and caravans. Through our collected experience, we can provide the global vehicle industry with individual and innovative solutions not only for innovative LED lighting, but also for wiring and plug systems.

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since the trailers are usually purchased by smaller farmers who only use them for a couple of weeks a year. Large trailers are bought by big farmers and agricultural enterprises, for whom the quality of the trailer is much more important than its price,” explains Mr Luczak. Zaslaw develops innovative production solutions, thus broadening its market offer. Recently, it launched the production of an aluminium tipper with cubature of 24m³, low loading height and weight of under 4900kg. Its newly designed 13-metre frame for semitrailers to transport timber with sliding or removable stakes has allowed it to achieve a greatly reduced semitrailer weight. The company makes truck upper structures with cranes dedicated to wood transport. Their technical parameters are adjusted to meet individual customer requirements. It has also developed numerous accessory solutions to meet specific customer demands, such as an extension to the side boards. These increase the trailer’s capacity by 100 per cent and can be mounted to all braked and non-braked trailers. Zaslaw’s sales are focused on the local, Polish market. However, recently the company has also been making forays into foreign markets. “Our products are already present and popular in such countries as the Czech Republic, Austria, Slovakia, Romania, Ukraine, Hungary, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. Our brand is more and more recognisable in Germany. It is worth adding that more than 500,000 of our vehicles have been produced and sold on the European markets since 1953,” says Mr Luczak.

pany’s production hall with a surface area of 18,500m² is situated on a large plot of land covering an area of 17 ha. The most cuttingedge production equipment ensures consistently high production efficiency (one vehicle per hour). Zaslaw cooperates with many partners, which translates into success and new business opportunities for all companies taking part in this cooperation. Its business partners are selected very carefully, as the quality of the final product is extremely important. “We greatly value companies that respond to the needs of our customers as flexibly as we do. From our partners we require the highest quality, quick response, and excellent service. If they are interested in joint development, we usually become partners for a long time,” concludes Mr Luczak.

Cutting-edge producer Zaslaw employs approximately 300 people, with young and innovative employees supported by experienced technicians and engineers with the latest manufacturing processes at their disposal. The com-

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Flowing success Tristone Group, a globally operating automotive supplier group, is a specialist in tailor-made flow technology solutions used in all major automobile brands. Last year the group reached a new sales record, laying a solid foundation for further growth, further internationalisation and increased R&D efforts. In an interview with Romana Moares, Group CEO Günter Frölich spoke about the latest developments.

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op quality, reliability and customer-oriented innovation – these are some of the values to which the worldwide success of the Germany-based Tristone Group has been attributed. They are also the basis of continued growth and expansion, as is evidenced from its latest financial results. In 2017, the Tristone Flowtech Group reached an annual turnover of €288 million with over 3000 employees in manufacturing and development locations in Germany, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Turkey, Spain, France, Italy, Mexico, India and China, cementing its leadership worldwide in supplying fluid applications in the areas of engine cooling, battery cooling and turbochargers. “New business award contracts for fluid battery cooling applications for electric and hybrid cars led to €24 million p.a. in sales, or lifetime revenues of about €176.6 million, and are spread among 11 global original equipment manufacturers and one battery manufacturer, with 17 different new future car platforms. Contracts for battery cooling applications accounted for 26 per cent of total business award contracts, demonstrating the strong position of the group in this business field,” said Günter Frölich.

Keeping pace with new developments The group was established as a result of a spin-off of the former Fluid Automotive Business Unit of Trelleborg AB in 2010. In February 2017, the group was purchased by the Chinese Zhongding Group, Ningguo, and will continue to be managed under the same name and corporate structure. 66 Industry Europe

Tristone Flowtech Group is highly specialised in fluid applications in the areas of motor and battery cooling as well as air-charge and air-intake systems. It is increasingly benefiting from the trend towards a reduction of space and fuel consumption with the introduction of polyamid materials as well as the introduction of new powertrain concepts with hybrid and electric cars and the integration of fluid motor and battery cooling systems. “We are a well-established market leader in our field of business, a Tier 1 development partner for more or less all major OEMS, delivering our solutions globally,” confirmed Mr Frölich. “We pride ourselves on delivering added value for our customers and providing them


Automotive & Heavy Vehicles

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with a whole set of innovative products for fluid applications. Our special strength is that we can combine engine and battery cooling applications for electric and hybrid cars. While market penetration of electric and hybrid cars in 2017 was still very small, i.e. below 2 per cent globally, the production volume is anticipated depending on the different available predictions to grow to about 10 per cent in the next five years.” Reflecting further on current market development, Mr Frölich highlighted several trends that will change the automotive industry in the coming years. “Basically, we see three technologies that move

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the market, that are more or less affecting all of our three key product segments: electrification of the power train; hybrid and electric cars as an add-on to combustion engine vehicles; and an increased focus on weight reduction, ultimately leading to replacement of metal and aluminium parts by plastics. “We are naturally reflecting the trends into our business. Delivering high-quality products and solutions with technological advantages in terms of reliability, functionality and general product characteristics combined with our technical competence as a design partner represent a strong competitive advantage,” Mr Frölich affirmed.


Automotive & Heavy Vehicles

Acting locally, succeeding globally As a result of these attributes, the last few years were a period of continued global expansion. At the beginning of 2017, a new hose plant in Mexico was commissioned, which now delivers serial production to Ford, General Motors, FiatChrysler, VW, BMW as well as some Tier I customers in Mexico, the US and Canada. At the same time, building of a new facility in India was completed. In December 2017 the group started with the preparation and preselection of a new US plant located in North Carolina, to support its business in the NAFTA region and especially in the US and Canada. As Mr Frölich explained, the construction of the plant is expected to begin in May and its product portfolio will include engine cooling hose systems, air charge hose systems and fluid battery cooling systems for the US and Canadian passenger car markets. “The company is doing very well – this year we expect to achieve sales of around €303 million, representing a year-on-year increase of 10 per cent. We have a strong, growing presence in Europe, NAFTA as well as in Asia, with sales in India just starting this year. Now we are getting ready to penetrate the Brazilian market, to further expand our global reach. Our growth target is to achieve €430 million in sales by 2021, generated by twelve production plants located worldwide. Given our track record of delivering the best for the customers and our commitn ment to continue doing so, this target seems achievable.” Industry Europe 69


New directions

From a one-man operation that was established over 30 years ago, Simon Plastic has grown to become a significant plastic component manufacturer supplying products for prominent car manufacturers in Hungary. Today the company is more determined than ever to strengthen its competitiveness and move into new markets. Edina Beale reports.

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he rapid development of the Hungarian plastic component manufacturer Simon Plastic began in 1996 when its first production hall was built in Szabadbattyán, 6km away from the industrial city of Székesfehérvár. The company then became the official dealer of General Electric in Hungary, which enabled it to invest in more serious technology in order to supply the automotive sector. The firm began to win contracts with prominent car manufacturing companies and by 2008 it had the financial strength to establish another production site in Kőszárhegy. At present Simon Plastic employs nearly 400 people and the company’s turnover reached HUF 5.8 billion in 2017. This year its revenues are expected to be close to HUF 7 billion. While the company’s core products are automotive electronic connectors and sound systems, it also supplies components for the medical, food, electronics and energy industry. Nearly 30 million pieces of components are being produced every month, most of them used by top European car manufacturers including Mercedes, Audi and BMW.

Fresh strategic ideas In order to improve efficiency, in January 2018 the Kőszárhegy site became the company’s new headquarters. Hence, the structure of Simon Plastic has been stabilised and strengthened after the significant change four years ago when the company’s founder, Mr István Simon, stepped down from his post as CEO and passed the management of the factory on to his son, Péter Simon, and his daughter, Zulejka Simon. While still concentrating on the core business of plastic component manufacturing, the new management has also already implemented some fresh strategic ideas. “We invest great energy in extending our core product range with higher added value products. We now offer assembly services for our partners and we intend to put more emphasis on this activity in the future,” reveals Mr Péter Simon. “A couple of months ago, following our half-year audit, we received the ‘Factory of the year 2017’ award – this is a good indication that we are moving in the right direction.”

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In order to meet the requirements of these new potential markets, Simon Plastic has begun to make the necessary investments. “In the past three years we have invested nearly 1 billion forint on developments. These were partly infrastructural developments and partly capacity extensions, but the same emphasis was placed on developments aiming to improve quality and efficiency.”

a public procurement procedure is taking place for similar size developments which will include capacity enlargement, while the same focus will be given to improving the quality of our technologies. In addition to this, we intend to build a new 6000m2 manufacturing hall and equip that with machines and technologies to meet all customer requirements. The value of this project is nearly HUF 1.5 billion.”

New production and office facilities

Clear vision

As a result of this investment, a 1500m2 warehouse facility was reconstructed to be suitable for production activity and this area is now linked to the company’s existing production hall. A new tool factory was also being built and equipped with CNC machine, a tapping press machine, chip wire cutting and laser marking. In addition, the firm extended its office facilities to provide a new base for its growing number of engineers, finance and accountancy staff. A new raw material supply facility was also attached to the production hall and, in response to the demands of Industry 4.0, Simon Plastic has introduced a modern MES (manufacturing execution systems) reporting system. In order to extend its capacities the firm has purchased new injection moulding machines. But these serious developments however do not end here, says Mr Simon: “Currently

Since its establishment, Simon Plastic has been continuously strengthening its position. Today the Hungarian firm is in the process of transforming its organisation so it can step forward in the supply chain and acquire new strategic partners and profitable markets in the automotive and other industries. Its long-term goal is to maintain its focus on continuous developments while diversifying its activities in order to focus on projects with higher added value. Mr Simon has a clear future vision: “Our mission for the long run is to provide a high quality, customer orientated service for our partners in the automotive and other industries. Relying on the teamwork of our committed staff we are aiming to produce high added value plastic and metal components using innovative, sustainable n and safe production methods.”

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chemicals, petrochemicals & offshore

Chemicals based on sustainability

Established in Italy in 1919, Bozzetto is a global group with 100 years of experience in chemical auxiliaries in three different fields: Textile Chemicals, Building Chemicals and Performance Chemicals. Last year the group was acquired by a new owner and is now looking to further boost its global reach. Romana Moares reports.

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eadquartered in Filago (Bergamo), Bozzetto Group was incorporated in 1919 as a textiles chemicals company specialised in chemical agents aimed at enhancing textile production efficiency. Over the decades, the group has widened its product portfolio, both organically and through acquisitions, to include building materials, detergents and agricultural chemicals. Today, with many production plants in Europe and Asia and representations in North, South and Central America, Bozzetto can deliver valuable chemicals solutions across the globe. Michele Scarpellini, the Business Line Manager for Performance Chemicals, reminds us that next year the group will commemorate 100 years of successful operation. “What was started by the first owner, Giovanni Bozzetto, back in the early 1990s has grown into a multinational group with a wide-reaching competence. The company grew through several milestones – the 1970s were a time of diversification in other fields and the late 1980s were a period of the

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group’s internationalisation, after the majority stake in Bozzetto was acquired by Rütgers. The group expanded significantly in the 1990s and the early 2000s when several subsidiaries were established in Spain, Germany, Turkey and Poland, followed by plants in Indonesia and China.” Last year, the company experienced yet another milestone – its 100 per cent stake was sold to private equity firm Chequers Capital, which is expected to promote further growth and strengthen the group’s global footing.

Three pillars As Mr Scarpellini explains, the group pursues three key business lines: textile chemicals, performance chemicals and building chemicals. “The textile business line still accounts for most of the turnover (53 per cent), followed by the building chemicals (24 per cent) and performance chemicals (23 per cent). The textile chemicals enter all facets of textile


chemicals, petrochemicals & offshore

processing, from fibre production and preparation, through dying, digital printing up to finishing, and includes even fashion art chemicals. “The building chemicals include super plasticisers for concrete and mortars, set retarders and workability retention extenders and additives for plaster board production,” he continues. “Performance chemicals is the most complex product group and includes various specific business lines such as products for water hardness reduction, water treatment chemicals, agents for cosmetics, chemicals for agriculture and a number of specialities such as chemicals for the rubber, pulp, painting and other sectors.” He confirms that all three business lines are growing, with sales covering 90 countries around the world. “Bozzetto Group’s solutions are tailor-made with an almost unparalleled production and delivery flexibility. From the initial preparation to the final application, our technicians are continuously involved, so that our customers see us as true partners. This certainly helps to expand our operations – although our main geographical region remains Europe where around 40 per cent of sales are generated, we are experiencing growth in both the Americas and Asia and see an emerging potential in new regions such as Africa.”

In line with current trends In 2017 the group generated a turnover of €125 million, continuing to capitalise on its sound, multinational foundation and the extent of its competence and expertise. “Our chemists have excellent knowledge and skills and are very well prepared to support our customers all the way through. Our know-how and the level of professional services is one of the reasons for our being in the market for 100 years,” Mr Scarpellini points out. He also highlights the company’s focus on R&D, with more than 50 people in the laboratories and sales team with strong background in downstream industries for an outstanding technical service. The company’s focus on innovation is another important factor. Its laboratories are equipped with cutting-edge instruments and devices and are closely connected to the production process, where sophisticated tests are conducted. “Our researchers constantly work on new product development and modifications in all the different business lines. The focus is on the ‘green’ aspects, maintaining excellent performance, leading the textile business unit to achieving several certificates, such as Bluesign®. “Moreover, starting from this year all our products made here in the Italian plant are formaldehyde-free,” says Mr Scarpellini. “The Industry Europe 75


Bozzetto Group has always believed in investing in expanding its research laboratories with regard to both equipment and human resources. Especially in sectors like ours, without research it is not possible to improve products in order to provide the solutions the market expects.” He confirms that sustainability is a big issue, and one to which the company pays a lot of attention. The Bozzetto Group actively supports the worldwide commitment to the Responsible Care Global Charter to enhance the management of chemicals and applies in all its production plants a number of ecological measures including waste collection and recycling, a progressive energy consumption reduction and a recovery programme involving washing waters and the reclamation of reactors at production turnover. Mr Scarpellini confirms that after a century of successful operation, the group is ready to face the next stage of its development. “The future is challenging but exciting at the same time. Last year’s takeover by Chequers Capital gave us a positive push. The new owner is willing to invest in Bozzetto, so we are looking at potential further acquisitions, n in Europe but also elsewhere, to support further growth.”

NOVELETRIC Since its birth, NOVELETRIC boasts of having Bozzetto spa as a costumer, with whom NOVELETRIC has consolidated a strong business relationship, which has currently taken the shape of the modern concept of the circular economy. Indeed, Bozzetto spa’s attention towards the environment is confirmed through the purchasing of regenerated packaging and the reliance on experienced packaging regenerating companies such as NOVELETRIC.

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Construction & ENGINEERING

Each bathroom is unique The Cersanit Capital Group, headquartered in Kielce, is Poland’s leading manufacturer of bathroom products, including: sanitary ceramic products, ceramic tiles, shower cubicles, acrylic bathtubs and shower trays, bathroom furniture and accessories. Dariusz Balcerzyk reports.

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stablished in 1998, Cersanit is a dynamically developing capital group (previously known as Rovese Group), operating on the international ceramic tiles bathroom equipment markets. In 2007 the group became the owner of the Opoczno brand, which in turn strengthened its position among ceramic tile manufacturers.

Global manufacturer of ceramic products Today, the group belongs to the world biggest players on the market. Its annual production of ceramic products is estimated at more than 8 million units, which places it 7th in the world and 3rd in Europe. Where the production of tiles is concerned, it ranks 2nd place in Europe and 10th in the world. Its product offer reaches all European Union countries, as well as the markets of eastern Europe, the Middle East and the countries of Central Asia and North Africa. The group’s share of the ceramic tile market in Poland is 13 per cent, in Germany 5 per cent, in Ukraine 23 per cent, and in Romania 8 per cent; while in the sanitary ceramics segment it

holds a 35 per cent share of the Polish market, 8 per cent in Germany, 40 per cent in Ukraine and 50 per cent in Romania. Thanks to its extensive structure, the group is able to respond quickly to regional challenges and adapt its portfolio to the local conditions. The Cersanit Group employs more than 7000 people and its production is carried out across 11 modern factories, situated in locations that allow it to serve many regions efficiently. This guarantees a high level of customer service, flexibility and quick response time to local market needs.

Wide range of products The Cersanit Group’s core business is the production and distribution of products used to furnish bathrooms and other interiors, as well as the space around a house. Its brands provide high quality, functional and aesthetic products for both individual and investment clients. Its offer includes a wide range of ceramic tiles, bathroom ceramics and flush-mounted frames, toilet boards, bathroom furIndustry Europe 77


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Construction & ENGINEERING

niture, bathtubs and fittings. It also manufactures several products used in various types of public facilities. Thanks to its comprehensive offer, the group has established a cooperation with partners implementing various investment projects. Its products are used by clients operating in almost all industries: construction, trade and services, in administration, communication and transport, education, health, art, recreation and the hotel industry. The Cersanit group consists of five renowned European brands: Cersanit, Opoczno, Meissen Keramik, Pilkington’s and Mei. Cersanit, the group’s leading company, is a well-known and valued brand of bathroom equipment. It uses the latest technological know-how and translates this into a wide range of innovative solutions. The tiles created by Opoczno have a variety of patterns, colours and structures, all in line with international interior design trends. Its high quality products and innovation have made Opoczno one of the leading manufacturers of ceramic tiles. Meissen Keramik is one of the oldest tile manufacturers in Germany. For more than 150 years, it has been constantly developing fresh solutions in the field of tile design and quality. Meanwhile, the variety

of tailor-made wall and floor solutions offered by Pilkington means that the brand meets the needs of a wide range of consumers. Mei is a producer of high-quality German tiles, whose constant innovations in the field of design have allowed it to remain at the forefront of the industry. The Cersanit Group’s continued market success is only possible with the strong support from trustworthy partners, such as, to name just two: BZMO- Boleslawieckie Refractory Works, a leader in the production of aluminosilicate refractory materials; and Colorobbia Polska, a part of Gruppio Colorobbia, the world leader in ceramics.

From strength to strength The group’s philosophy is that the bathroom should be a place of relaxation, which combines beauty with functionality. Thus, it needs to be unique. This is why Cersanit has developed a fully comprehensive offering, enabling each consumer to arrange an interior adapted to his or her individual needs and tastes. The Cersanit Group’ strategic long-term goal is to build a strong international business organisation and to achieve and maintain a n leading position in the bathroom furnishing market.

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Railway and urban

transport infrastructure ZUE, a capital group from Krakow, is one of Poland’s leaders in public transport infrastructure construction. It is focused on the railway and urban rail and energy sectors, bringing together companies with design, trade, production and implementation capabilities.

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UE Group is a general contractor whose main scope of activity is focused on designing and delivering comprehensive tram line and railway construction systems. It also executes the whole accompanying infrastructure including the earth works, railway beds, drainage systems, as well as engineering and building stations. The group provides complete services in terms of the construction and modernisation of power systems for the entire tram line infrastructure, as well as the construction and modernisation of the tram and train catenary network. The scope of the ZUE Group’s business also includes the provision of services for the maintenance of city infrastructure systems (tracks, catenary, powering systems, lighting).

A story of success ZUE Group is a private business which was founded in 1991. Initially, the company operated in the electronics and radio communication industry. The extension of its activities into the field of power electronics, energy and traction works took place in 1994. Two years later, ZUE established a cooperation agreement with SIEMENS AG, based in Vienna. 80 Industry Europe

As a result, new technologies (such as modern WS90E tram driver switches) have been introduced into the Polish market. In 1997, ZUE saw its first major success with the design and construction of a catenary section made entirely using Western technology. ZUE was the first company in Poland to accomplish such a task. Following this, the company built Poland’s first underground power supply substation for tramways. In 2000–2001, it acquired shares in a track and road maintenance company. In 2014 it entered a new business segment: the design and construction of power transmission lines. Together with its Croatian partner, ZUE carried out the construction of a 400 kV line with a total contract value of PLN 469 million (more than €100 million). In the same year, ZUE and its Slovakian partner acquired a contract in Kosice, Slovakia, worth more than €33 million. Today, ZUE Group consists of five companies: ZUE SA, the parent company; Biuro Projektow Komunikacyjnych (Communication Design Office) in Poznan; Railway Technology International; Railway Technology International Germany GmbH, and Railway gft Polska. In 2017 the group’s revenues exceeded PLN 465 million (€110


Construction & ENGINEERING

million), with a net profit PLN 233 million (€55 million). Currently, the group employs 800 people and carries out projects throughout the entire country. For years ZUE Group has cooperated with both large international corporations and small, local companies. This strategy has translated into successes and business opportunities for all partners. A good example of this successful cooperation is the long and fruitful partnership with Sika Poland, a part of the the international concern Sika – one of the world leaders in specialised chemical products for the construction industry.

Wide range of services Comprehensive deliveries, starting from design to construction of tram catenary networks, have been offered by the company since the beginning of its operations. The group’s services include solutions based on Polish and Western European technologies, together with the supply of all necessary materials. Within the services associated with the construction and modernisation of catenary networks, the group offers the comprehensive delivery and maintenance of tram catenary networks; construction, modernisation and ongoing maintenance of catenary substations; and related design services. The catenary power network is inseparably associated with the catenary network itself. In this field, the group offers construction services for catenary substations with components produced both by domestic and foreign manufacturers, including the latest globally available solutions. For the construction and comprehensive modernisation of tram tracks, the group offers complex solutions based on diverse technologies available for all kinds of track gauges. Track design and construction technologies include, among others: tracks on so-called Hungarian slab, tracks on pre-stressed concrete sleepers, tracks with reduced noise levels (noise absorption by vibration-isolating mats or a sublayer made of epoxide resin) and green tracks.

The track infrastructure elements delivered and assembled by the group include, among others: track partings, track crossings, safelocked switch drives, modern trailing switch drives, track drainage systems and rail greasing systems. Possessing the necessary specialist equipment and communication technology for the maintenance of lighting fixtures, ZUE Group performs both construction works (from design to delivery) as well as on-going maintenance of entire lighting sections. In the field of communication wiring, the group offers the construction of communication networks for traditional wiring (cable piping installed via trench or jacking) as well as fibre optic wiring (in special ductwork or cable suspension on posts, such as catenary). The ZUE Group also offers the complete construction of street traffic lights from design to n delivery and the commissioning of entire traffic light systems. Visit: www.grupazue.pl

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Redefining offshoreenergy cable systems For almost 70 years the Hellenic Cables Group has led the field in the development of advanced, submarine and data-transmission cables, as well as in a broad range of other high performance cable systems. Many of its recent high-profile contracts underscore the depth of know-how and expertise that this dynamic company processes, as Philip Yorke reports.

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he Cablel Hellenic Cables Group S.A. was founded in Athens in 1950 and has become one of the largest cable manufacturers in the world. It offers its clients a portfolio of the most reliable, high-tech and competitive cable solutions available anywhere. With almost 70 years of experience and a strong emphasis on exports, it focuses on the development of value-added products to meet the changing needs of its global, blue-chip customers. Today the high-tech Cablel Group manufactures specialised cables for the power, telecommunications and data industries, as 82 Industry Europe

well as for the photovoltaic and construction sectors which often require enamelled wire cables and compounds and a host of other complex material combinations.

On-going investments Hellenic Cables has always blended its enviable technical knowhow with its on-going programme of continual investment in new technology. This guarantees its clients the highest possible levels of efficiency and performance, as well as giving them the competitive


Energy & Utilities

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edge. Hellenic’s commitment to sustainable development has also been a key factor in enabling it to establish a strong market position internationally. The company’s extensive production facilities are comprised of six state-of-the-art manufacturing plants located in Greece, Romania and Bulgaria. Today many of the world’s most famous brands rely on Hellenic Cables for their expertise and solid performance at all stages of production and installation. The company’s extensive client base includes such well-known international brands as Bombardier, Vodaphone, Schneider Electric, Alstom, and Siemens, Network Rail UK, Vattenfall and Dewa.

Optimised turnkey solutions Since it was founded, Hellenic Cables has undertaken an infinite range of prestige turnkey projects. Many of these have been for the supply and installation of advanced submarine power cables, and high-voltage underground cables, as well as armoured and special application cables. Utilising its extensive range of facilities the company employs its own highly specialised production assets, and well-established expert subcontractors, enabling it to deliver optimal outcomes in terms of value, performance and reliability. The capabilities of the Hellenic Cable group in submarine cable projects is unrivalled and includes the engineering of systems to meet a diverse range of critical criteria and diverse specifications. In addition, it also conducts cable-route surveys at the shoreline and in the open

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sea as well as at the designated underground segments. The group will also take care of the transportation of cables to site as, well as the installation of cables utilising its specialised cable-laying vessels, equipped with advanced navigational equipment, dynamic positioning systems and sophisticated cable-laying machinery. In addition, Hellenic Cables can handle the submersion of cables at the shoreline on the land segments, as well as the construction of beach manholes and other civil-related works. Furthermore, it will commission the new system and train its customer’s personnel in the operation and maintenance of each installation.

Setting new gold standards Last year’s Energy Mastering awards were held in Greece and there was stiff competition from across the world. The award was based on the optimisation of electrical power conservation, to be achieved through improvement of the quality of supply and the decrease of power distribution losses. In this category Hellenic Cables S.A. won the gold prize for an exciting energy-saving project conducted at its compounding plant in Greece. The coveted Energy Mastering Awards recognise and reward the best energy-efficient conservation and sustainable practices company. In the framework of the Hellenic company’s Corporate Responsibility Initiative and its on-going commitment to Sustainable Development, whilst in the process respecting the environment, the com-


Energy & Utilities

pany undertook an electric power conservation study. This study involved its rubber and plastic compounding plant in collaboration with the specialised technical services of Redexd S.A of Greece. The percentage of electrical power savings, during the first nine months of the project, was 4.7 per cent. In parallel to this, a decrease of CO2 indirect emissions was achieved by more than 312 tonnes per annum. This prestigious award confirms the unswerving course of Hellenic Cables towards ever greater sustainability and it strengthens the company’s resolve to continue to set the highest standards for the industry. This valuable project demonstrates that when more energy is conserved, resource use is minimised and environmental footprints are significantly reduced.

Cables subsidiary, Fulgar, located in Corinth, Greece, where the production and testing of continuous lengths of the longest submarine cables in the world is empowered by Hellenic’s unique, state-of-the-art facilities and equipment. This major offshore contract underscores Hellenic Cables’ leading position in the submarine cable manufacturing market, n as well as in the global offshore energy industry as a whole. For further details of Hellenic Cable’s high-tech innovative cable products and systems visit: www.cablel.com

Delivering unique, high-profile systems Recently Hellenic Cable S.A. was awarded a high-profile contract to supply the DME group of Belgium with advanced submarine cable systems as part of Europe’s largest offshore grid project, known as MOG, which is located in the North Sea. The €70 million contract was awarded in association with dredging International NV, a subsidiary of the DME Group. It is for the supply of high-voltage submarine cable systems, which are intended to progressively connect the planned offshore windfarms in the Belgian sector of the North Sea, with the on-shore high-voltage grid situated on the Belgian mainland at Zeebrugge. Hellenic Cable’s responsibilities for this prestige contract include the design, engineering, manufacturing, jointing termination and testing of more than 90km of 220kV composite, three-core, XLPE insulated submarine cables. These also include three optical cables comprised of 48 fibres each. The high-voltage cables will be manufactured at the Hellenic Industry Europe 85


Fresh and full of flavour Victoria Cymes is a leading Polish producer of fruit syrups, fresh and pasteurised juices, fruit drinks and smoothies in a wide range of flavours.

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ictoria Cymes was founded in 1981 by Mr Lech Kurkowski. Initially, it consisted of a factory producing carbonated beverages and waters. Over time, the production range has increased to include syrups and juices in 1-litre and 200-millilitre cartons. In 2007, the company launched a line of fresh juices, which have become a great success and enabled it to reach a leading position in its sector.

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Victoria Cymes started as a small firm but over time it has become one of the largest producers of concentrated syrups and various kinds of juices in Poland. The company owes its success to the unique recipes and high quality of its products and, equally, to the fact that Victoria Cymes has been managed by the owner of the company, Mr Lech Krukowski, since its establishment. The decision-making process is shorter



in comparison to large corporations, which translates into greater flexibility. In conclusion, it can respond rapidly to market challenges as well as to difficult situations.

Victoria Cymes enters Europe Victoria Cymes’ current range of products comprises more than 160 fruit syrups, bartenders’ syrups, fresh and pasteurised juices, fruit drinks, still and carbonated drinks. Today it employs 350 people. The company owns a factory equipped with 15 production lines. It is based in Walcz, a town in north-western Poland, located 150km from the German border. It also owns nine warehouses scattered throughout Poland, which enables it to deliver its products quickly to the most remote parts of the country. According to the company’s website, its annual sales are estimated at €100 million. During the last couple of years, Victoria Cymes has been actively developing its presence on the foreign markets. Exports make up 10 per cent of overall sales, with its products already present on many markets, including Germany, Sweden, Ireland, Croatia, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Russia, Ukraine, the Czech Republic, the UK, the USA and the UAE. Victoria Cymes was also the first food and beverage company in Poland to implement the high-pressure processing (HPP) of fruits and juices. This revolutionary, sophisticated method will allow the company to launch brand new products. 88 Industry Europe


Food & Beverage

Water is the key factor The high quality of the Pleistocene water drawn from the company’s own deep wells is the cornerstone on which its business is based. Currently, Victoria Cymes has three water intakes but is planning further drillings. Victoria Cymes is located in a very ecological region, where forests and lakes occupy 40 per cent of the whole area with no presence of heavy industry. The factory’s laboratory carries out stringent testing on raw materials before they are sent for production, as well as any finished product, which is later stored in the laboratory archives. The quality of the products is confirmed by numerous certificates and awards, including: the 2008 Consumer Golden Laurel for the Fresh Cymes juices series; the Gold Medal at the 2012 International Gastronomy Fair in Poznan for naturally turbid red beet juice; the Good Product 2014 certificate for fresh carrot juice; 1st place in the 2014 FMCG Hits for Fresh Cymes carrot juice and apple juice (the ‘health-promoting products’ category); the Polish Merchants Award for the ‘Sunny fruit’ syrup with raspberry flavour in the 2015 ‘Golden Paragon’ competition; ‘Know Good Food’ Awards for fresh apple juice, fresh carrot and celery juice, and fresh carrot juice in 2015, for ‘Smaki Victorii’ naturally cloudy apple juice, naturally cloudy raspberry and apple juice and naturally cloudy orange juice in 2016, and ‘Smaki Victorii’ naturally cloudy apple and cranberry juice and fresh beetroot juice in 2017; the ‘Buy Polish’ Certificate in the 2016; and ‘Quality and Tradition’ Certificates for fresh celery and carrot juice and carrot juice in 2017, to name but a few. Victoria Cymes cooperates with both international corporations and local companies. It selects its partners very carefully and prefers longterm relationships. The company is a reliable partner, which enables it to establish permanent cooperations with such market leaders as: FLOTTWEG (a manufacturer of machines and systems for mechanical liquid-solid separation), ITALMEX Warszawa Sp. z o.o. (an importer and distributor of branded food products from Italy, Spain and Greece), NOVADAM (a provider of professional cleaning detergents and hygiene solutions), and Gat Givat Haim Cooperative Society for the Preservation of Agricultural Products from Israel. Victoria Cymes’ products can be found both in small, local shops and in large retail chains, including InterMarche, Spar, Carrefour, Makro, Fresh Market and Lewiatan. It is also a well-recognised producer of juices and syrups developed to order, under private labels. In this respect, it cooperates with many commercial networks in Poland n and in the foreign markets. Industry Europe 89


Crystal clear taste of vodka Stock Polska is a high-profile producer of clear vodka and vodka-based products. The company is an important part of the Stock Spirits Group, a leading spirits business in central and eastern Europe. Dariusz Balcerzyk reports.

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tock Polska, combining tradition with modern international standards, is Poland’s leader on the flavoured vodka-based liquor market and comes second in the category of clear vodkas. The company’s history dates to 1906, when Emil Plage, a well-known industrialist and visionary from Lublin, Poland, decided to establish the first spirit distillery in his town. Those were the origins of Polmos Lublin, known today as Stock Polska. Thanks to the dedication of his successors, the company survived both world wars and, as a result, resumed production in 1944. However, during the Communist regime the nationalisation of private manufacturers went ahead, and the company was seized in 1951 by the National Alcohol Monopoly. Much later came political changes in Poland, resulting in a process of gradual change for the status of the company. Following these changes, the company survived and indeed thrived, becoming the leading manufacturer in the speciality vodka market and one of the most important players in the branded drinks market.

Strong presence Since 2007 the company has been a part of the Stock Spirits Group, a leading producer of branded spirits in central and eastern Europe, with a portfolio of more than 45 brands across a broad range of spirits, including vodka, vodka-based flavoured liqueurs, rum, brandy, 90 Industry Europe

bitters and limoncello. The Stock Spirits Group has sales and marketing operations in Poland, the Czech Republic, Italy, Slovakia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, and Croatia. It also distributes spirits in more than 50 other countries through third-party arrangements. The group operates two main production and bottling sites, in Lublin, Poland and in Plzen, Czech Republic. It also operates a small distillery in Prádlo, Czech Republic, and has an ethanol distillery plant in Rostock, Germany. The group’s revenue in Poland in the first half of 2018 was €67.1 million compared to €64.5 million last year, which is a growth of 4.0 per cent. For the Polish market, total vodka market volumes declined by -1.0 per cent in the six months to the end of June 2018 versus +1.2 per cent last year. The decline is driven by the contraction of the clear vodka market by -3.0 per cent, whilst flavoured vodka continues to grow (+5.3 per cent to the end of June 2018). The value of the vodka market also declined compared to last YTD by -0.5 per cent (2017: +1.5 per cent), which is possibly a reflection of the relatively high temperatures this year. In marked contrast to the marginally declining overall vodka market, Stock Polska achieved strong growth in both retail volume (+7.3 per cent) and retail value (+5.3 per cent YTD), and is now the fastest growing major player in the vodka market by volume and value YTD.


Food & Beverage

Stock Polska cooperates with both international corporations and local companies. It selects its partners very carefully and prefers long-term relationships. The company is a reliable partner, which enables it to establish a permanent cooperation with such market leaders as FOB-Décor (a manufacturer of closures from steel and aluminium sheet, which is a part of Tradepol Group), and Stölzle Czestochowa glass factory (a part of the Stölzle Glass Group which manufactures high-end packaging glass) to name just two.

A strong portfolio What makes Stock Polska stand out from the competition is a rich portfolio of more than 40 brands across a broad range of spirits products. The company specialises in both flavoured vodka-based liquors such as Żoladkowa Gorzka, Saska and Lubelska, and a fast-growing portfolio of clear vodkas, including Żoladkowa de Luxe, Stock Prestige, Amundsen, Orkisz as well as Zubr and 1906. The company’s portfolio also includes liqueurs and brandy.

Flavoured vodkas lead the way Flavoured alcohols are becoming increasingly popular with Polish consumers. This year’s sales in the category increased by 10.4 per cent compared to the corresponding period last year. Stock Polska launched recently two new flavours from its Zubr brand, one of the leading vodkas in the economy-class vodka in Poland: Zubr Cytrynowy (lemon) and Zubr Wisniowy (cherry). Not long before, two new additions, Lubelska Gruszkowka (pear) and Lubelska Jezynowka (blackberry), had hit the shops, taking the total range to nine flavours. The two new flavours were the favourites identified from a wide variety tested through consumer research. In March 2018, three new Saska flavours joined the Stock Polska product range: Hazelnut with a hint of caramel, Orange with a hint of bourbon and Coffee with a hint of brandy. It is also worth noting that Saska Cherry with a hint of rum and Saska Quince, both vodka-based liqueurs, won Superior Taste Awards at the prestigious 2018 International Taste & Quality Institute Awards in Brussels, which is one of the world’s leading organisations n dedicated to certifying the taste of food and drink products. For more information, visit: www.stockspirits.com

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Top quality guaranteed With more than one million tonnes of fresh tomatoes processed per campaign, Spanish CONESA Group is the largest tomato processing company in the Mediterranean. It is also the world’s leading producer of tomato powder, supplying 80 per cent of its output to export markets outside Spain. Last year, the company completed an important acquisition, further cementing its leading position. Romana Moares reports.

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hroughout its history, CONESA has experienced dynamic growth, and today it is present in over 40 countries. The last few years in particular have been a period of constant expansion, as Mr Manuel Vázquez, CEO of the CONESA Group, confirms: “In 2014 we bought TOMIX in Miajadas (currently Conesa Vegas Altas), followed in 2015 by the acquisition of the AGRAZ Group with factories in Extremadura (Spain), California and China. The most recent acquisition was completed in October 2017 when we bought two factories in the Sevilla area that had belonged to the Algosur Group.” With the latest acquisition CONESA Group has become the largest tomato processing company in the Mediterranean, with a processing capacity of 25,000 tonnes per day and 1.4 million tonnes per crop, placing it among the top five companies in terms of fresh tomato processing volumes worldwide. “Our turnover for the 2019 crop is forecast at €250 million,” says Mr Vázquez. “In terms of produce processing, we control around 37 per cent of the Spanish market but 80 per cent of our turnover is generated in the export markets.”

The widest range The group currently operates 11 production plants. Six of those process fresh tomatoes into ingredients for the second transformation (tomato paste, diced tomatoes, tomato powder, etc.); three are located in Extremadura, Spain, two in Portugal and one in Xinjiang, China. CONESA also has one plant dedicated to tomato powder production, located in Leemore, California, and two factories in Extremadura (Spain), processing finished products for retail. 92 Industry Europe

The portfolio covers the full scope of tomato products, says the CEO. “In the first processing category, we cover the full range including highly concentrated products (paste from 22/24 brix to 36/38 brix with many different specifications), low brix products (pasata and crushed tomatoes from 06/08 brix to 14/16 brix), diced tomatoes of different sizes and tomato powder. “The second processing, i.e. finished products, covers different types of tomato sauces, ketchup, crushed tomatoes (tomato triturado for the Spanish market), tomato frito and similar,” he continues. “Our competitive advantages include the breadth of the product portfolio, the different packaging options and the ability to meet individual customers’ needs. Being primarily an ingredient manufacturer, it is not easy to come up with new products, but we always try to differentiate ourselves from the competitors by collaborating with our customers to design products that give them some added value.”

Group synergies With growing public awareness of food quality and rising interest in product origin (traceability) as well as in the hygienic standards and the actual manufacturing process employed for the food production, the stakes are high. CONESA’s Agricultural Department, aware of this market trend, maintains direct contact with farmers and tomato growers to make sure that the supply chain runs smoothly and efficiently, with the aim of supplying fresh tomatoes of the highest quality in quantities suited to each factory’s capacity. “Our product range includes baby food and organic products, demand for which has been growing steadily. Although the market is


Food & Beverage

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Food & Beverage

still relatively small, we have doubled the production of organic products in the last three years,” says the CEO, pointing out that CONESA is now the biggest producer of organic tomatoes for processing in Spain, although this still represents only 3.5 per cent of total volume processed. “Demand for organic products is expected to continue to increase and CONESA will certainly reflect this trend. There is a lot of confusion in the organic market but we guarantee that our organic tomatoes are 100 per cent organic.” The company is strongly export-oriented, selling its products to 66 countries. The main markets include the UK, Germany, France, USA and Japan. Good, stable supplier relationships are of great importance to CONESA as they contribute significantly to its reputation and growth. “Our main suppliers are farmers, with whom we have annual contracts to cover our needs. Another big group of suppliers are the packaging

companies. In this area, we have long-term relationships with drum suppliers Greif and Armando Álvarez, aseptic bag suppliers Goglio and Aran, to name just a few. Other trusted partners include the mechanical services supplier Transfinox, automation services supplier Auser, chemical product supplier Brenntag Química and other companies, such as machine manufacturers CFT and Navatta Group. The list is long and we value our partners greatly,” says Mr Vázquez. Asked about the company’s plans for the future, he admitted that following the rapid growth in the last few years, the focus will be on consolidation, to take full advantage of the group synergies. “Differentiation and innovation are the other two big topics,” he pointed out. The aim is to continue to stay ahead of competitors and given the recent company development, CONESA is on the way to achievn ing this objective.

Industry Europe 95


Sliding into the future Accuride, with nearly one million square feet of manufacturing space on three continents and growing, is the largest company in the world dedicated to the innovative design and manufacture of telescopic slides. Product development reflecting market needs has been a key factor in the company’s global development. European Sales Director Jim Armstrong revealed that the company is in the process of launching a new product for the white goods sector, demonstrating again its innovative focus and market leadership. European Sales Director, Jim Armstrong

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Home Electronics, Appliances & HVAC

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ccuride is a manufacturer of commercial-grade drawer slides, linear track systems and electronic locking solutions for cabinetry in commercial, residential and industrial applications. The components can be found in major appliances, electronic enclosures, cars, office and residential fixtures, and industrial machines. The company, with its wide variety of off-the-shelf and custom solutions, has a truly global presence. “We have manufacturing facilities in North America, Europe, China and Japan, each with a product development centre. Each facility supplies its own markets so that we are always close to the customer,” says Mr Armstrong, adding that the business is currently growing in all geographical regions. “We work closely with our customers to develop practical and cost-effective solutions. Whether it’s a single component or an entire assembly, we have the resources to make it happen.”

Accuride can reliably handle projects of any size. The range covers products from different materials in different sizes and lengths and includes heavy-duty aluminium slides that carry up to 200-plus kg rolls on massive printing machines, down to tiny products that are

installed in coffee makers. “No one in the world can offer this huge range of products. The company has built this expertise since 1960 and this is clearly a massive advantage, something that sets us apart from competitors,” says Jim Armstrong. “Another thing is the high quality and customisation. We don’t compete with cheaper producers making millions of standard products. We manufacture to customer specific requirements; each slide is tailor-made to suit their units. Quality is a huge factor underpinning our success. Our products are tried and tested to the most stringent of requirements, reflecting customers’ involvement and input in the product design stage.” Accuride’s slides move smoothly across a variety of industries, in a vast range of products supplied by prime OEMs. This breadth of applications is another special feature that has carried the company steadily into its current leading position. “On the direct sales side of the business, we service many different markets demanding different materials from cold rolled steel, different grades of stainless steel to aluminium,” remarks Jim Armstrong, pointing out that distribution is also a key part of the business, with a global distribution network servicing clients from the individual production facilities.

Miele

Miele

Customer specific solutions

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Ready for steamer cooking In Europe, one of the key sectors that Accuride supplies is the white goods industry, where its customer base includes all major brands, such as Whirlpool, Miele and Electrolux. These companies are just a few of the manufacturers who have incorporated the premium movement of Accuride ball bearing slides into their products, relying on the innovative slide solutions to maximise space, while also managing high and low temperatures and wet conditions. “We are always looking at introducing new features to the customer’s maximum benefit. Just recently our designers have come up with an innovative slide to suit the new steam ovens combining standard and steam cooking, which has been gaining popularity in Europe. Naturally, the aggressive steam creates different material requirements than for products used for standard oven cooking, and the slides we have designed satisfy both. The slide is made from top quality austenitic steel with the highest corrosion resistance to ensure long lasting, smooth performance. The product was designed in response to OEMs’ requirements and more and more companies are now incorporating it into their appliances,” explains Mr Armstrong. The white goods sector is not the only industry that shows promising growth potential, as he further affirms. “Automotive is a significant part of Accuride’s business and we deal with most of the major brands, directly or indirectly, accommodating their demands for weight saving and ergonomic comfort.” With its decades of experience, successful track record around the globe and focus on innovation, Accuride is well placed to meet the challenges of the future. “The future will bring more automation in factories and new trends, such as smart appliances. We are ready to meet the challenge. We are constantly looking at developing new products, new materials and will strive to further develop existing markets but also to find new markets for new products. We are a manufacturer, we have n skilled people – we can do anything.” 100 Industry Europe


Home Electronics, Appliances & HVAC

At the forefront Baxi SpA, the Italian designer and producer of boilers and high-tech heating systems, has based its reputation and growth on continuous development of technologically advanced products, supported by an excellent level of service. Today, a few years short of 100 years on the market, the company is stronger than ever before. Romana Moares reports.

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ith a turnover of €255 million and more than 500,000 units sold, Baxi achieved an excellent financial result in 2017, with a 20 per cent year-on-year increase. The company, which started with a single product, today provides a complete range of energy-efficient products to ensure maximum comfort and savings, and integrated systems with renewable resources. Managing Director Alberto Favero describes how Baxi SpA has evolved into a market leader. “Although the company’s origins go back to 1925, it only shifted focus to the heating sector in the 1970s. The timing couldn’t be better – it was a period of extensive gas network expansion. By the mid-1980s, the company consolidated its domestic position and turned to the export markets. In 1999 we joined the English Baxi Group, a European leader in the heating sector, and in 2009 became part of the newly created BDR Thermea Group, today’s world leading manufacturer and distributor of smart climate and sanitary hot water solutions. “We provide not only heating solutions but also offer air conditioning systems as well, which we added to our portfolio some four years ago,” he continues. “Baxi today operates in over 50 countries and employs 700 permanent staff, with an additional 200 seasonal workers to cover increased demand in the high season from June to October.”

Technology of the future Baxi has always boasted a state-of-the-art product design and development department: over €10 million has been invested in technology and R&D. The products are designed and manufactured in the company’s modern factory in Bassano del Grappa, the largest in its sector in Europe, occupying an area of 100,000m2, housing 14 production lines with daily production capacity of up to 4000 boilers, warehouses and a large area dedicated to logistics management. Continuous improvement is an integral part of the company’s operation, evidenced by its lean production and zero defect projects. Baxi’s product portfolio is based on boilers (both residential and commercial), hybrid systems and renewable technologies, including solar thermal hot water systems and air source heat pumps. “We are pushing for the heat pumps and hybrid solutions at the moment. It used to be a bit of a niche market before but not anymore: the sustainable energy solutions are now heavily supported and required by regulations throughout Europe, so the hybrid products seem the perfect solution to meet current demands. Besides, the product development strategy is also focused on hydrogen boilers,” remarks Mr Favero. “One of the things, indeed, that is at the centre of our attention at the moment is the H21 Leeds City Gate, researching the use of hydrogen to run the boilers instead of gas. At the moment, the combination of 102 Industry Europe


Home Electronics, Appliances & HVAC

both is used as a combustible element but the future will be hydrogen only. Unlike, for example, the Netherlands and France which are slowly moving towards electricity, the UK will continue to use gas, which clearly shows the need to collaborate in development of both technologies.”

Prospective development Mr Favero explains that what has made the company so strong internationally is the added value provided for customers, i.e. the combination of different solutions at affordable prices, as well as the high level of services, reinforcing the reliability and brand loyalty. Apart from its Italian base, the company operates factories in several European countries – the UK, the Netherlands, Germany, France, Spain and Turkey. “We have trading companies in Russia, South America, the Czech Republic and elsewhere, and a facility in China. While the format of our products is the same, we offer slightly different applications for different markets, and also use other brands in various countries,” says Mr Favero. He goes on to explain that although the company’s key markets are in Europe, Baxi’s presence in China and Russia is increasing. “We are the market leader in Rus-

sia, where we have been operating since 2000, and currently plan to invest in a new plant in China to boost our position there in response to the rapidly increasing demand for boilers.” He also confirms that the company fully reflects the current trend of digitalisation and increases product connectivity in line with market demand, supporting the Industry 4.0 concept. “Traceability of all parts and products is a big issue now, and this starts with suppliers. At the moment, all components incorporated in a new boiler are fully traceable.” Given the increasing demand for high-quality, reliable heating solutions, prospects for Baxi seem good. As noted by Mr Favero, the company now needs to focus on the service aspect. “The more complex product, the more we need to be in close contact with customers. That’s why the emphasis on service is so strong and will continue to be in the future,” he says, adding that Baxi will also strive to complete its other strategic tasks: consolidate its presence in its key markets; further enhance the product, system and service offer; apply the Industry 4.0 principles and attract new young talent, to drive n the company forward.

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Optimising

‘cold-chain’

efficiency 104 Industry Europe

The Epta Group is a global leader in the development and manufacture of eco-friendly, commercial refrigeration cabinets and systems. The company continues to see strong growth thanks to its unrelenting drive to improve efficiency and eco-sustainability, as Philip Yorke reports.


Home Electronics, Appliances & HVAC

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he origins of the multinational Epta Refrigeration Group are endowed with the inspirational and entrepreneurial skills of its founder, Luigi Nocivelli. Following an apprenticeship in his father’s workshop, he established the leading electrical appliances company ‘Ocean’, and in the 1970s became the CEO of Ercole Marelli. It was not until the new millennium that he founded Epta. With Luigi Nocivello at the helm, Epta became a truly global player specialising in commercial refrigeration, and thanks to the strategic acquisitions of leading Italian and overseas brands Epta is able to offer a breadth of experience and product diversity that is unparalelled in the industry. Today the management of the global refrigeration group is in the capable hands of Marco Nocivelli, a second generation family member who continues with the well-established ethical values of the company. These include: Order, Humility, Delegation, Resilience and the Ability to let others lead. Today the Epta Group is in a strong position to build on its rich history of innovation, quality and customer care.

Innovation and diversity driving sales The Epta Group continues to expand its global business through a combination of strategic acquisitions and the development of many innovative technologies. Its core business is the manufacture of complete commercial refrigeration systems for multinational retailers. Epta offers an infinite range of solutions for the preservation and display of fresh and frozen food products. These advanced eco-friendly solutions are specifically designed to meet the needs of retailers who prefer to rely on a single multinational partner for their specialised, turnkey refrigeration systems. The company’s product portfolio is extensive and ranges from traditional refrigeration cabinets, positive temperature vertical and horizontal counters and plug-in cases, as well as medium and high-capacity systems and cold rooms. ‘Eptology’ is a term which has been adopted by the company to sum up its dedication to the promotion of sustainable development, which in turn is used to leverage the four pillars of its business: Experience, Efficiency, Excellence and Evolution. Today the Epta Group employs over 5000 people worldwide and in 2017 recorded sales of more than €850 million.

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Advanced global solutions The strategic acquisition of leading companies in its sector has guaranteed the Epta Group an eminent place at the top table of the industrial refrigeration industry. Its many famous brands include Costan (1946), Bonnet Neve (1930), Eurocryor (1991), Misa (1969), IARP (1983) and Knudsen Køling (1961). In both the domestic and international market sectors, Epta is the only partner capable of producing and marketing complete, turnkey refrigeration systems. This is made possible thanks to the integration of its many individual, high-tech product lines and unrivalled expertise gained in a broad spectrum of international markets. “Our well established group companies are all leaders in their respective fields and all are recognised for their dedication to innovation, reliability and outstanding product design. These brands enhance the traditions and values of the parent company. The unique synergies between each brand allow Epta to offer well-balanced turnkey solutions that meet the diverse market needs in the retail and HoReCa sectors as well as in the fast growing Food and Beverage industry,” commented Marco Nocivelli, chairman and managing director of Epta SpA.

Strength through diversity Diversity is one of the company’s many USPs and when the company acquired Misa in 2011, it became the owner of the global market leader in the design and manufacture of commercial and

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industrial cold-rooms. This important acquisition enabled Epta to create new opportunities in the HoReCa sector, especially with its high-quality eco-sustainable products and the many coveted certifications it has earned. One of the company’s earliest acquisitions was the Bonnet Neve brand, which was formed as a result of a merger between two leading French brands: Bonnet Refrigeration and Satam Neve. It was acquired by Epta in 1988 and succeeded in bringing these primary refrigeration companies into the Epta Group fold. The brand had already achieved an enviable reputation for its revolutionary solutions and innovative merchandising and energy-saving technologies.

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Costan is another company that was brought into the Epta family in 1986 and had distinguished itself early on as a result of its high quality products and exceptional customer services, which supported its technologically advanced and reliable refrigeration turnkey systems. This unique company represents the core of the Epta Group product offering. The state-of-the-art systems are distributed in Italy by a highly qualified sales network as well as through the company’s sales offices and approved distributors worldwide. Another group affiliate, Knudsen Køling, is a Danish company that specialises in the design and maintenance of turnkey refrigeration and CO2 systems and was a recent Epta acquisition having recently joined the group in 2015. George Barker is yet another famous Epta brand that is renowned for its wide knowledge in the manufacture of custommade refrigeration units and has been an important facet of the Epta Group since 1999. Epta’s range of plug-in refrigerated cabinets are designed and produced by IARP. Then there is Eurocryer, which was founded in 1991 and epitomises the best in Italian style and design, with a focus on prestigious stores that value its unique and aesthetically pleasing designs.

Built-in hygiene In addition to its on-going commitment to the environment, the company also sees the issue of food safety and hygiene as a major priority. The Epta Group enhances its manufacturing processes with its specially developed anti-bacterial treatments for traditional refrigeration units that use silver ions. With this system the units are treated during the extrusion and coating process, with internal components coated with a paint that exploits the properties of the silver ions. In addition, Epta has also introduced a remote monitoring service for its customers which guarantees optimal ‘cold-chain efficiency’ in their stores, which significantly reduces their overall energy consumption. For more details of the Epta Group’s innovative and unique range of products and services visit: www.eptarefrigeration.com

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Tinnitus, a transformation GN ReSound is a global leader in the design and manufacture of intelligent audio hearing products and solutions. It has transformed traditional hearing-aid systems with its smart GHz- technology and advanced medical and consumer sound solutions. Philip Yorke reports on a company that continues to see strong growth as a result of its unrivalled audio solutions.

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Home Electronics, Appliances & HVAC

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eSound is part of the global GN ReSound Group, one of the world’s largest providers of hearing-aid instruments and diagnostic instrumentation products. With roots that go back to 1943, ReSound has been responsible for many audiology firsts. These include the WDRC (Wide Dynamic Range Compression) system, which broke new ground for sound processing, and DFS (Digital Feedback Suppression). This was the first system to effectively eliminate howling and sound distortion on headsets. In addition, the world’s first open-standard digital chip set new standards for flexibility in programming, and furthermore, the introduction of ‘ReSound AIR’ signalled the creation of an entirely new type of hearing instrument. This new system provided more natural sound and eliminated the discomfort associated with plugin hearing devices. Headquartered in Ballerup, Denmark, GN ReSound is represented in more than 80 countries worldwide. The company draws on its comprehensive range of R&D resources at its technology centres around the globe, where its researchers work to apply new technologies to improve the quality of life for millions of people. Today the GN Group has more than 5000 employees and its parent company, GN Store Nord, is listed on Nasdaq Copenhagen stock exchange.

Personalised hearing care The revolutionary LiNX 3D hearing-aids developed by GN ReSound have recently seen further advances in audio technology with the introduction of a new rechargeable battery option. The company’s

latest rechargeable solution is made available to users based on a clear understanding of their expectations and ReSound’s on-going commitment to empower users to select the solution best suited to their needs and preferences. This announcement follows the company’s release of its innovative 5th generation 2.4GHz wireless technology, ReSound LiNX 3D hearing-aids. These offer unrivalled sound quality, enhanced fitting experience and unique remote fine tuning that gives users a new hearing-care experience. Now with overnight charging, users will be able to benefit from the advantage of all-day power, without the need to change batteries. Users will also save time and effort with even less impact on the environment, to create freedom, convenience and confidence. GN Hearing’s President & CEO, Anders Hedegaard, said, “This new rechargeable battery solution allows hearing-care professionals to offer an additional option to their clients, and gives hearing-aid users even more choices to tailor their hearing experience to their unique preferences.”

Ringing the changes Following a major international study, it was revealed that over 15 per cent of the world’s population are affected by temporary, or permanent tinnitus. The symptoms include a ringing or buzzing in the ears, which can be caused by a number of conditions, of which the most common are the exposure to high noise levels experienced in the workplace or those experienced at a loud concert. A Danish study comprising over 14,000 participants revealed that 27 per cent of those in the study experienced either temporary or

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permanent tinnitus. This is equal to one quarter of the Danish population suffering from the distressing symptoms of tinnitus. The idea of helping people to focus on something other than invasive sound is the basic concept of a new app developed and produced by GN ReSound. It is called ‘ReSound Relief’ and offers a unique combination of audio therapy and relaxation exercises. One important feature of the new app is that it allows you to create your own soundscapes. After downloading the app, users can listen to music via a smartphone as usual, and if wireless hearingaids or headphones are being used, it is possible to stream the sounds directly through them. This new app also contains a feature called ‘My Relief’, which keeps a record of how the app is being used and creates a personalised plan that allows you to track your own progress, in a similar way to an exercise app. “The idea of ‘My Relief’ is that you can use it as part of a treatment programme provided by hearingcare professionals. Because ‘My Relief’ keeps a record of your use, it provides useful information that a hearing-care professional can use as part of tinnitus counselling,” said Michael Piskosz, Senior Audiologist at GN Hearing.

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Transforming lives GN ReSound transforms people’s lives through the power of sound with smart hearing-aids that enhance the lives of those suffering from hearing loss. The company’s integrated headset and communications solutions assist professionals in all types of businesses to be more productive. Today GN’s innovative power has paved the way for a stream of ground-breaking solutions, such as its revolutionary 2.4GHz-technology for hearing aids, and unified headsets with active noise cancellation. This is in addition to its all-in-one ear-worn training solutions with built-in heart rate monitor. It is worth noting that GN ReSound was responsible for the world’s first ‘Made for iPhone’ hearing aid with direct stereo-sound streaming. The lives of those with severe hearing disabilities have also been transformed with the world’s smartest ‘Super-Power’ hearing-aid, the ReSound ENZO2™, which offers the renowned benefits of its LINX2 ™ system to people with severe-to-profound hearing loss that n are in need of ‘Super-Power’ solutions. For further details of the GN Resound Group’s innovative products and services visit: www.resound.com



Safety on railways DAKO-CZ is a manufacturer of pneumatic, electro mechanic and hydraulic brake systems for rail vehicles with a proven track record reaching back two centuries. As in previous years, the company is looking at increased financial performance in 2018.

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he company, with a planned annual turnover of around €40 million, 70 per cent of which is generated in the export markets, is based in Třemošnice in eastern Bohemia. The majority owner of the company is CZECHOSLOVAK GROUP. The second shareholder is Tatravagónka a.s. Poprad, a leading European manufacturer of freight wagons. DAKO CZ supplies brake systems and components for freight and passenger cars, suburban units, locomotives, metro vehicles and trams. Rail vehicles equipped with DAKO brakes can be seen not only in Europe but also in China, India, Malaysia, Indonesia and Algeria, where the company cooperates with leading rolling stock manufacturers and operators of mass rail transport. The company has its own research and development centre, a proprietary testing laboratory and a design centre. DAKO’s unique know-how is based on a strong tradition – its history goes back to 1816, when a casting and mechanical engineer-

ing factory was founded in Třemošnice. After 1920, the company’s core business was expanded to include products for the railway industry. In the 1950s DAKO started to manufacture and assemble brake systems of its own design. But progress did not stop there. International success was achieved with CV1 and CV2 distributors for international railway and in 1995 the first brake systems for trams were designed and made. “Last year we achieved around €30 million in sales and plan to continue to grow,” says general director Dagmar Matúšová. “It is very positive to see our people’s commitment to achieving this strategic goal. The increase in financial indicator has been boosted by our efforts to find the optimum production, logistics, purchasing and sales channels as well as by a continuous production process improvement.”

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New products The fully modernised plant in Třemošnice makes products with the DAKO-CZ logo, currently ranking among the best in the domestic and global markets. The reliability of DAKO-CZ’s brake design has been confirmed by a number of patents and licences. The products comply with all applicable UIC and TSI standards and regulations. The company strives to support the professional development of its staff, as well as to improve their working conditions, as it is the people who are the most important factor contributing to the quality of DAKO brake systems. As a result of the expertise and hard work of its designers and project managers, supported by continued investment in product research and development, the company can regularly introduce new products to global markets.

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In-house research and development is the company’s major asset. Also, thanks to the state-of-the-art testing and prototype workshop, the company has introduced new products including a new electromechanical brake unit, designed for rolling stock, and the iRB series control units, designed for hydraulic and electromechanical braking systems. The new DAKO-CZ electromechanical braking system has become a modern BRAKE BY WIRE technical innovation that meets the most demanding environmental requirements. Also new in development is the compact brake valve MEMU, designed for controlling the metro (M) and suburban (EMU) unit brake systems. MEMU represents a new generation of compact brake valves, integrating all the necessary functions including the SIL 2 control electronics into a single unit. The new brake valve will be presented at InnoTrans 2018.


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Prospective future The company plans to invest in new machines in 2018, aiming to reduce production and logistics times and improve production quality. Investments planned for 2018 will also include buildings. At the moment, preparations are under way to extend the repair shop, to create a comprehensive repair workstation that would cover dismantling, cleaning and assembly. The company also plans to modernise its measuring stations and to upgrade the bench for dynamic testing of high-speed brake units and brake discs so that high-speed brakes may also be tested (i.e. EMB, EVO). In February 2018, DAKO-CZ was certified by the RDSO Certification Authority as a supplier of systems for LHB coaches for the Indian Railways. By the end of next year, the company will have delivered brake systems for 600 passenger coaches. Siemens is another longterm partner for whom DAKO-CZ has realised a number of successful

projects. This year, the company will deliver brake components for the metro systems in Munich, Sofia, Nuremberg and Bangkok. Until 2019, the Třemošnice plant will be producing new electromechanical brake units and control units for new trams for the Polish city of Poznan. The new electromechanical units will be installed in the Moderus Gamma trams, supplied by Modertrans Poznań. “In general, the passenger and freight transport market is growing, with increasing demand for the new generation of brakes for passenger coaches and metro vehicles, with reduced cost of brake lifecycle and higher utility value for the vehicle operator,” says Mrs Matúšová, confirming that DAKO-CZ will develop products in line with these trends. “We will present our new products for both passenger and cargo rolling stock at InnoTrans in Berlin in September.”

WE LARGELY CONTRIBUTE TO SAFETY ON RAILWAYS.

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Global supplier Expom S.A., a company based in Kurzetnik, is Poland’s leading manufacturer of metal parts, assemblies, devices and large-size steel structures for industries such as marine, machinery, power, mining, construction and others. “For our clients, we are the partner in solving their technological problems,” says Mr Rafal Domzalski, Expom’s president.

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lthough Expom S.A. was founded in 1991, the company is proud of its sound experience that has lasted for more than 65 years, since it is a continuation of the local POM (State-owned Machine Centre) tradition that reaches back to 1952. “The political and economic transformations that took place in Poland at the turn of the 1980s and the 1990s found the Centre inefficient and losing its raison d’être. At the same time, the same situation created new possibilities for private businesses. In 1991, two local businessmen bought the failing POM and based on its fabrications, founded Expom, which refers to its predecessor (ex-POM). We started with only 30 people,” begins Mr Domzalski. “Initially we continued the POM’s manufacturing of parts for the agriculture industry. However, since the barriers in the international trade had been removed, we took the chance to go forward. In 1997, we entered the foreign markets and soon achieved international success. By 2007, we had extended our product range into the maritime and off-shore industries, including our flagship product, namely marine boat davits. Within a few years, we had become the European leading producer of marine boat davits.” 120 Industry Europe

In 2012, Expom redefined its product range and diversified its customerportfolio. “At some point, we realised that we were focusing all our efforts on one client. When he got into trouble, it also affected our condition. Our new strategy was sustainable development, a multitude of industries and gaining more than 20 regular customers, none of which reached a share of more than 25 per cent of our sales. Such diversity ensured our security and development, regardless of the fluctuations in one or more markets,” explains Mr Domzalski.

From Kurzetnik to the world Currently, 350 people work for the company, including 200 employed directly by Expom and 150 people outsourced. “We are very proud of our highly-qualified employees. We encourage them to propose changes and improvements in the company by putting suggestions in the Ideas Box. The best concepts are implemented and awarded with financial prizes. The Expom employees can also apply for co-financing of their sporting passions. It doesn’t matter if you play tennis, handball or if you are training in karate – when you need financial support for


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sports equipment or participation in a competition, you will certainly get it,” says the company president. Expom is headquartered in Kurzetnik, a small village in north-eastern Poland, owns five production halls with a total area of 6500m2 and a technological construction office. The company’s annual sales in 2017 were estimated at PLN 50 million (approx. €12 million). This means that Expom has doubled its sales in just seven years. 97 per cent of Expom’s production is based on foreign sales, with Germany, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Italy, France, Austria, Belgium and the Netherlands as the main foreign markets. The company’s products are also well-known in more distant markets such as the USA, Canada, Asian and Arabic countries, Singapore and Congo.

Expom loves challenges The company is an experienced manufacturer of large-size steel structures for numerous industries, such as offshore and marine (it makes marine and harbour davits and cranes, lifeboat davits), machining (large-size machinery components), aviation (chassis components,

airport logistics), oil and gas (special machines for deep foundation engineering), power (furnaces and exchangers for large-size kilns, stators for motors and power generators) and renewable energy (small wind turbines, welded stators for wind power generators). “We love challenges and do not run a series, routine production. We only manufacture sophisticated devices for individual customer orders and offer comprehensive processing in covering the design of steel structures, the stages of analysis, production and provision of accessories and independent testing. For our customers, we are partners in solving their technological problems, from the initial concept to the final product, and when completed the products can be shipped to any place in the world,”,adds Mr Domzalski. Expom’s entire production process is subject to strict quality control requirements in line with ISO 9001. The production starts from the order acceptance and analysis is carried out by the engineering and design department. Steel elements are equipped with electrical and hydraulic systems on site. Thus, each product leaving the plant is finished, ready to work and adjusted to market-specific requirements.

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Structures intended for use in difficult conditions are enhanced with collision avoidance and anti-corrosion systems. Expom strives to keep pace with modern technology. It uses EU funding to ensure its further development. The funds are currently being used to build a modern R&D centre. Expom already holds a strong position in the static and dynamic testing of lifeboat cranes, lifts, elevators and winders with SWL (Save Work Load) from 900 to 24000 kg intended for the testing of prototypes in extreme conditions specified by the regulations of IMO and SOLAS. The company runs destructive and non-destructive tests of welded joints. From large international corporations to small local companies, Expom cooperates with many partners. This strategy translates into successes and business opportunities for all parties. The company selects its partners very carefully and, in return, receive a package of benefits, technological assistance, and full documentation. This approach guarantees long-term, close and fruitful cooperation. “Expom regards its subcontractors as daughter companies,” conn cludes Mr Domzalski. http://www.expom.pl

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Metals, Metalworking & Mining

Technological

strength - doubled The Bridon-Bekaert Group is the world’s premier supplier of mission-critical steel cords and ropes. Its unrivalled, innovative technologies are acknowledged in many key industries from oil & gas to mining, and from forestry to construction. Bridon International and the Bekaert Ropes Group merged in 2016 to form the world’s biggest, and most high-tech brand in its field. This significant strategic move has provided major gains for the company’s customers, as well as for the environment. Philip Yorke reports.

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hen you work with the Bridon-Bekaert Ropes Group, you are benefiting from more than 300 years of specialised experience in steel wire, synthetic ropes and cords, as well as enjoying a customer service culture that has grown to become second to none. The group’s technological leadership can be seen in its combination of rope technology and wire technology which provides a unique platform that demonstrates a clear differentiation in the high-end international rope market. The group’s ability to serve a diverse range of market sectors, including oil & gas, elevator, surface and underground mining, cranes, industrial infrastructure, fishing and forestry etc., speaks for itself. With 17 manufacturing locations around the world the company has by far the most extensive global footprint. As a result, personal service and up-to-the minute technological assistance is available to all. Although the Bridon-Bekaert Group was formed only in 2016, its heritage spans more than three centuries. It is this unique heritage, combined with its strong vision and dedicated customer focus, that makes the Bridon-Bekaert Group the world leader in its field. Today the group is listed on the Euronext stock market in Brussels and with around 30,000 employees and consolidated revenues of almost €5 billion, it ranks as the clear, global market leader.

Serving critical, multifaceted markets Bridon-Bekaert ropes are trusted globally throughout a broad range of industry sectors. The company represents the gold standard in quality and reliability, especially when it comes to high-end mission-critical ropes and wires. It is impossible to list all rope and wire applications in this short feature, but among the most visible is the Oil & Gas industry. This encompasses onshore and offshore exploration construction and the countess multi-faceted operations that are connected with it. 124 Industry Europe

Bridon-Bekaert has centuries of experience and product understanding at hand concerning the unique challenges of the oil & gas industry. This in turn allows the company to design highly specialised ropes that exceed its customer’s expectations and the most stringent international industry standards. These high-tech products are designed to endure the world’s most extreme, abusive and demanding oil and gas operations, and to operate faultlessly in the world’s most hostile environments. When it comes to the mining industry, equally demanding and hostile environments apply. All Bridon-Bekaerts ropes and wires are designed to achieve the longest possible service life and the lowest maintenance regimens, with the optimum uptime. At Bridon-Bekaert, every product is tested to destruction so that the company knows precisely its individual capabilities, and is therefore confident that it will perform to the operator’s highest expectations. Trusted in the world’s deepest mines which suffer the harshest and unimaginable operational environments, the company’s underground ropes provide superior service and out-perform any ropes produced by its competitors.

Cooler airport hubs Thanks to Bridon-Bekaert’s ability to provide unique solutions that meet today’s most challenging projects, it was selected to partner with other leading construction experts in order to design a structure for Doha’s state-of-the-art International Airport. The new structure would not only provide shade in the intense 50C summer heat, but would also support the hundreds of hyper-parabolic fabric canopies. Thanks to Bridon-Bekaerts’ unique technological know-how these will be supported and tensioned using hundreds of Bridon-Bekaert stainless steel Dryform cables. Recently the company extended its existing range of Stainless Steel Dryform cables in order to incor-


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porate a 1000kN MBL cable, which will be used as a bracing cable that extends to the outer edge of the huge structure. In association with Gelsenkirchen of Germany, Bridon-Bekaert has produced over 1500 cable assemblies designed to meet the diverse demands of this high-profile project. Cables are being supplied in diameters ranging from 12mm to 35mm in stainless steel, and from 45mm to 70mm in Galfan Locked coil.

Focus on safety and sustainability The company’s ‘Ropes 360 service’ enjoys a unique reputation for its commitment to providing complete solutions and support for its customers. The primary goal is to maximise its customers’ safety and to extend every rope’s operational life-span. Teams of dedicated rope technicians and engineers offer flexible services, from rope inspection and non-destructive examination (NDE), to post retirement examination and modern feedback systems.

Brindon Bekaert has helped customers worldwide to implement and manage comprehensive rope-inspection programmes in order to avoid the high costs associated with equipment downtime. When a rope requires repair or maintenance, then ‘Ropes 360 Services’ provides customers with immediate installation and replacement services, as well as with failure criteria and rope maintenance training to ensure the optimum safety of the operator and to optimise the life-expectancy of the rope or wire. Whilst safety is a top priority at Bridon-Bekaert, so is sustainability. The company’s excellent sustainability performance in 2017 has recently been recognised by its inclusion in the Ethibel Excellence and Sustainability Index (ESI) Europe. This is a reference benchmark for top performn ers in terms of corporate social responsibility. For further details of Bridon Bekaerts latest innovative products and services visit: www.bridon-bekaert.com Industry Europe 125


Measured to

perfection

Cerulean is a manufacturer and supplier of quality control instrumentation, test and measuring equipment for leading global customers. Following a change in ownership, the company is now looking to increase its presence worldwide. Romana Moares spoke to Ian Tindall, Head of Marketing, about recent business development, new products and emerging market opportunities.

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or more than 70 years, Cerulean has been synonymous with the supply of precision test and measurement equipment solutions for the tobacco industry. Based in the UK in its single manufacturing plant in Milton Keynes, the company runs a worldwide operation, generating 98 per cent of its sales in export markets. “We have a number of service centres based globally, notably in Singapore, USA, India and Shanghai, and are expanding with workshops in Turkey and Algeria,” says Ian Tindall, adding that the company also has a number of ‘home-based’ engineers in an additional 11 countries and expects to expand this list by at least two more countries in the next few months. Last year, Cerulean was acquired by G.D SpA, a wholly owned subsidiary of the COESIA group, a privately owned entity headquartered in Italy. “The new owner fully supports our global expansion,” says Ian Tindall. “We have begun to work closely with G.D and share market intelligence, sales leads and overseas facilities to better serve a common customer base.”

Accurate and sustainable Cerulean is essentially a metrology company, providing equipment that measures physical and some chemical properties. “The company is very much grounded in the tobacco business and for over 50 years we have provided physical testing equipment and smoking machines used in the QA of cigarette manufacture. In fact, we can

trace our history back to 1945 although the company name and ownership has changed a number of times since that date,” says Mr Tindall, explaining that the tobacco industry is highly regulated and geographically diverse but with a strong set of product standards that have to be met. “Working within this environment has become a particular talent of the Cerulean business,” he affirms. In the course of its development, the company has diversified into other regulated markets with testing equipment for cartons and air samplers used in the detergent business. Its reach was further expanded by the recent acquisition of a unique product that safely and accurately measures the temperature of frozen and chilled foods. Cerulean showcased this accurate and sustainable equipment, Celsius, at the Birmingham NEC in April. “Current methods involve pushing a probe into the food under test after blast chilling or freezing and hoping that the probe is in a representative place. The food then has to be thrown away, the packaging removed and recycled or disposed of and the cycle repeats. With Celsius, the product is placed in a box and the average temperature of the product displays after a few seconds. The product can then be removed and sold. The capital investment is greater for a Celsius than for a probe but the payback can normally be met in three to six months with higher degrees of accuracy and full traceability of measurements.” Industry Europe 127


In response to new demands “Another innovation is our first foray into Industry 4.0 with a product called Konexis, which we think of as a 24-hour on-site engineer. This is a proactive tool that can be used to maximise up-time on the Cerulean test stations and minimise unnecessary service and maintenance. We see this as a win-win for the customers and Cerulean as it allows us to better manage our engineers and spares holding, whilst for the customer it reduces the cost of ownership. “Customers are becoming less involved in their metrology equipment – they just want it to work. We use the ‘health’ data of the equipment and the calibration data to anticipate maintenance requirements and also in the event of a failure provide immediate diagnosis. The model we want to get to is that of a photocopier – it tells you what to do before it goes wrong and if it does fail it tells you how to fix it. Part of our approach is to use cloud-based data analytics to not only give this information locally but also have plant-wide summaries/data dashboards or enterprise-wide

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dashboards .We think that the adding of this end-to-end care of Cerulean metrology equipment goes beyond a traditional capital purchase or B2B relationship within our industry and begins to align Cerulean more closely to the business aspirations of our customers.” Cerulean has a strong, and growing, R&D team. As stated by Mr Tindall, 20 per cent of new equipment sales should come from products released to market in the last two years. “Generally speaking, there are two major product releases each year and 10 minor product enhancements. We have plans to release something quite revolutionary at the end of the year that is specifically directed at the new vaping and heat not burn products that have been released on the market. As the technology is in the process of being patented I cannot say much more except ‘watch this space!’ He further reflects that while until about five years ago cigarettes were more or less the same for decades, now the market looks very different. “The advent of e-cigarettes has prompted us to make a


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new class of vaping products – mostly sold in Europe and the USA – one of which, the Chimera, is a radical continuous vapour generator for in-vitro toxicology studies. We are also developing products to serve the so-called ‘Heat Not Burn’ products released by companies such as BAT, PMI and JT. They need a whole new set of testing machines and we are rapidly developing a suite of physical and vaping machines for these applications.”

In conclusion, Mr Tindall confirms that the future looks promising. “In light of the many new opportunities round the corner, we are targeting a growth of 50 per cent in the next few years. Given that we expect further growth of the tobacco sector, while also boosting our non-tobacco business, and given the financial backing and support n of our new owner, I believe this target is achievable.”

Success based on partnership Cerulean has a network of reliable supplies who act as partners in terms of technology integration. “The list of companies we work with is long but I will name just a few. Our local supplier, SMC, which actually has a desk in our factory, supplies us with pneumatics. It is instrumental in ensuring we have the best cost benefits from our equipment,” says Mr Tindall. “We also value greatly the work with Micro Epsilon, which supplies laser metrology components that have extended and improved our product range, and Innoark, a Singapore-based company that we have partnered with to start to deliver some of the data analytics and predictive maintenance advantages of Industry 4.0. And last but not least, Omron – with whom we have only just started working, looking to re-vamp one of our product and replace some older technology with an Omron-based system. That this company is headquartered within 2km of our site really helps this!”

Ian Tindall, Head of Marketing

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Green plastic packaging Schoeller Allibert is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of returnable plastic packaging for material handling and a European market leader in its sector. In a world in which reducing the plastics impact is becoming an everyday imperative, Schoeller Allibert’s role will increase even further. Ludo Gielen, Chief Strategic Officer, spoke to Romana Moares about the new products the company is launching across its various markets and its ‘greener’ vision of future packaging industry.

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choeller Allibert has been inventing, developing, designing and manufacturing Returnable Transit Packaging (RTP) for more than 60 years. The company offers a comprehensive range of standard and tailor-made RTP packaging solutions across ten key product segments – foldable large containers, foldable small containers, rigid pallet containers, beverage crates and trays, stackable and stack /nest handheld boxes, UN pails, foldable IBCs, pallets and dollies. Continued focus on high quality, durability and sustainability helps the company’s

customers to enhance supply chain efficiency and profitability, lower transport cost, reduce waste and enhance green branding. The company controls about 10 per cent of the total returnable packaging market, and with 25 per cent of the European market share it is the number one in Europe. On the global level, Schoeller Allibert is one of the top three players. “Schoeller Allibert offers its clients packaging knowledge and services including cradle to cradle recycling. We offer full support and

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can take care of collecting, recycling and re-using returnable packaging materials that are ready for replacement,” says Ludo Gielen. “The products that are recycled at our facilities can even be safely used as food packaging. For this purpose, the EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) provided scientific advice and approval to our recycling process installed on three of our sites in the Netherlands, Germany and Spain.”

Innovation programme Following the integration of Linpac Allibert and Schoeller Arca Systems in 2013, each a leading player in their fields (reusable packaging and plastic pallet providers), joint efforts have been directed towards an innovation programme. Many of the major innovations in plastic packaging systems were developed by Schoeller Allibert. The company invented products like smooth wall, foldable large containers and bottle crates with in-mould labels. The main focus has been on creating a sustainable packaging cycle. “In the last five years, we have introduced more than 50 new products across all of the sectors we serve including automotive, food processing and agriculture, and we are continuing that process,” says Mr Gielen. “The products that we are bringing to the market are pretty unique. We try to make the product light and focus on creating more internal and a higher foldability, so that transfer and return may happen cheaper. The ultimate objective is to provide a better alternative to one-way plastics, thus responding to the world’s concerns regarding increasing plastic waste. “We pursue a very different strategy within the packaging industry and are proud to be in the reusable segment, a segment with a very high potential,” he goes on, emphasising that the strategic way forward is to keep bringing new ideas and new solutions to the market, where cardboard, wood and even metal gets replaced by easy-torecycle plastics. “That is our key message.” The innovative focus covers all product groups across all markets the company serves. For example, later this year it plans to launch new foldable packaging that will replace the metal boxes used in the automotive industry, fully electrification-ready. Also this year, new products will be introduced for the food and beverage and agriculture sectors and, as Mr Gielen reveals, new packaging solutions for the e-commerce industry will be ready soon.

Close to customers Major investment has gone into not just product development but also the production base. In the last two years, the company has opened two brand-new facilities to meet increasing market demand, strategically located close to customers. In June the Schoeller Allibert Group inaugurated its 14th production plant – a state-of-the-art factory in Beringen, Belgium. As from 2019 this new facility, with a 6000m2 production hall, will be the first factory in which Schoeller Allibert will start to produce ‘circular plas132 Industry Europe


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tic pallets’. The Beringen factory was opened just two years after the commissioning of another brand new plant in Poland, an investment worth €20 million. Located in the Katowice special economic zone, and with a total floorspace of about 6350m2, the plant produces a full portfolio of products for customers in the CEE region. “We believe we need to produce close to the markets. If you want to be a sustainable company, you also need to avoid transport. That’s why the two locations in Belgium and Poland were chosen to cover both the western and eastern part of our European markets,” Mr Gielen points out. With the latest manufacturing facility, Schoeller Allibert now operates 14 production plants worldwide – 12 in Europe, one in Phoenix, Arizona, and one in Shanghai. “In Europe, we have a very stable position and our business model has proven to be very successful. We will now attempt to apply it elsewhere, anticipating the industry’s needs and listening to consumers’ requirements. It is good to know that we are making a difference in the packaging industry,” he reflects. “We have ambitious plans for the future. Given the increasing environmental awareness worldwide and the general favourable market conditions we n plan to grow by 50 per cent in the next five years.”

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Adding innovation to expectation

Uflex is a global phenomenon in the world of flexible packaging. Since it was founded in 1983 it has grown to become a multi-billion dollar global player. The development of recent major advances in aseptic (sterile) liquid packaging and recyclable barrier packaging for edible oils are just two of its many recent innovative break-throughs, as Philip Yorke reports.

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ollowing the company’s pioneering development of products for the flexible packaging industry, Uflex has achieved an unrivalled leadership position in the global marketplace. Its international client base includes countless blue-chip household name brands such as P&G, PepsiCo, L’Oreal, GSK, Nestle, Kimberly Clark, Tata Global and Johnson & Johnson among many others. With consumers benefiting from its packaging expertise across the world, Uflex enjoys unsurpassed global reach. Its state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities are not only located in India but also in the USA, Mexico, Dubai, Egypt and Poland. Fully certified to ISO 9001 and ISO 14001, Uflex has also gained FDA and BGA approvals and forms part of the prestigious global D&B database. In addition, Uflex is also the winner of many prestigious international awards, including an accolade for top exporter of BOPP & BOPET films and the Worldstar award for packaging excellence. Among its portfolio specialities are value-added packaging materials that include holograms, metallised papers, laminates, printing inks and lamination adhesives, as well as rotogravure cylinders, stamping foils and packaging converting machines.

Banking on success In a recent major development, Uflex has been approved by the Indian Bank’s Association (IBA) as a security printer for the production of MICR (Magnetic Ink Character Recognition) instruments for its banks. This operation requires overt and covert features for bank cheques, legal tenders and a variety of other negotiable security documents. Since Uflex possesses all the relevant systems technologies and infrastructure required, the IBA had no hesitation in awarding Uflex the latest coveted contract. Expressing his delight over this achievement, Ashok Chatervedi, Chairman and MD of Uflex Limited said, “We have been at the vanguard of the global fight against counterfeiting by offering top of the line brand protection solutions to our clients in the flexible packaging field, and preventing them from being ‘body-doubled’. “Acknowledging our capabilities in developing world-class anticounterfeiting solutions for brands, academic qualification degrees,

and mark sheets etc., the IBA has given us the opportunity to securely print MICR instruments which is a big honour and responsibility in itself. Through immaculate R&D, we remain committed to raising the bar of technology in the security printing and brand protection sector.”

Multi-layered innovation In 2017 another milestone was added to the Uflex ‘Hall of Fame’ list of achievements. This was the long-awaited unveiling of the company’s Asepto™ brand, which revolutionised the formulations and processes for the optimisation of sterile liquid packaging. Uflex’s unique, state-of-the-art Aseptic Liquid Packaging plant is already commercially operational and is in line with the Indian Government’s ethos, ‘Make in India’. The company’s new Aseptic packaging lines ensure that food and liquids remain free from bacteria and other harmful micro-organisms for a period of at least eight months under constant room temperature. Uflex’s special aseptic packages are made by laminating polyethylene with paperboard and aluminium foil. This unique multilayered construction enables the carton to protect the contents from various contaminants responsible for spoilage, thereby preserving the product’s freshness and value. These components work together with the aluminium foil layer to provide a strong barrier for O2 and light. The innermost layer makes it possible to ‘seal-through’ the pack. In addition, the paper layer provides stiffness, making it possible for the cartons to form a brick-shape, which in turn offers maximum utilisation of storage and transportation space. Currently the Indian aseptic liquid packaging market is growing by almost 20 per cent per annum and the market is expected to double in the next five years to reach around 20 billion packs per annum. Rasna International is one of India’s largest manufacturers and exporters of beverages, and is also one of the first to take advantage of Uflex’s latest packaging breakthrough innovations. On this occasion Rasna tasked Uflex to provide a unique packaging solution, Industry Europe 135


and what Uflex came up with took the brand to the next level of customer satisfaction. The company developed an all-new spouted profile stand-up pouch with a side handle for carrying the Rasna Fruit Powder concentrate, which has proved a great success on shelves throughout India and overseas. Fruit powder concentrate is extremely hygroscopic and therefore must be completely protected from outside elements and especially from the ingress of moisture. Thus Uflex created a four-tier profiled packaging structure comprising polyester, aluminium foil, polyester and polythene components.

Geared for greener packaging For many years Uflex has been dedicated to the protection of the environment, with sustainability at the heart of its greener packaging policy from the outset. When interviewed for a recent cover story for the packaging industry, Ashok Chaturvedi, Uflex’s Chairman and MD, said, “I have been reiterating time and time again that flexible packaging and plastics have a definitive, alternate end-of-life use, hence they are 100 per cent sustainable. At the end of its life, the post-consumer product can be easily converted into alternative, non-critical and nonfood contact materials, for utilities such as chairs, boom barriers, road dividers and for many more items. In addition, energy can be recovered from waste multi-layer flexible packaging and plastics in the form of usable heat, electricity or fuel through a variety of processes including combustion, gasification, pyrolisation, anaerobic digestion and land-fill gas recovery.” Commenting on the company’s major breakthrough in the area of sustainable, flexible packaging, joint president and new product development director at Uflex, Jeevaraj Pillai, said, “Edible oil needs to be carefully protected from oxygen which makes it rancid. Currently, barrier properties in a co-extruded film for edible oil packaging are imparted by nylon and/or EVOH. However, it is the presence of these two elements that makes the packaging of edible oil non-reprocessable. We at Uflex have developed a specialised formulation that renders barrier packaging for edible oil fully reprocessable despite the presence of Nylon or EVOH.” 136 Industry Europe

New honours bestowed upon Uflex founder In recognition of his commitment and dedicated entrepreneurial contribution to the remarkable success of Uflex Limited, Mr Ashok Chatervedi, Founder, Chairman and Managing Director of one of the world’s largest multinational flexible packaging materials companies, has been honoured with the Economic Times Polymers Lifetime Achievement Award 2018. Mr Chatervedi is a first generation entrepreneur and founder of the Uflex Group. Under his dynamic leadership the group has evolved to become India’s largest fully integrated flexible packaging materials and solutions company. With his continuing stewardship and move to become the biggest packaging supplier to the pharmaceuticals industry, the future n for Uflex looks very bright indeed. For further details of Uflex’s latest innovative products and services visit: www.uflex.com



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.

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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.

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“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 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


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Per Sward, company director

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 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

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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.”

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.”

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Stacking-up winning solutions DS Smith is a leading global provider of corrugated board packaging and specialised plastic packaging solutions. For many years the company has led the field in efficient product recycling and sustainable solutions. Recent ground-breaking innovative systems and products developed by DS Smith have combined to increase the gap yet further between the company and its competitors, as Philip Yorke reports.

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ounded in London in 1940 by the entrepreneurial Smith brothers, the DS Smith Group has grown to become one of the world’s most innovative and progressive packaging companies. Today its statistics are impressive by any standard. Currently the company employs more than 30,000 people worldwide, and its state-of-theart facilities are strategically located in almost 40 countries across all five continents. In the fiscal year 2017/18 DS Smith recorded revenues of more than six billion euros. The company’s strategy for growth is based upon its dedicated understanding of its customers’ needs for far-reaching futuristic solutions. These systems must be designed to meet customers’ changing, and challenging future packaging needs. From the outset, DS Smith has been committed to delivering innovative products and processes that not only reduce waste, but also reduce production costs and eliminate complexity in their various supply chains. By utilising its in-depth expertise, which ranges from design to production, and from supply to recycling, the company is able to offer the highest possible quality, as well as environmentally-friendly, innovative solutions and services. These solutions look at the big picture of its clients’ packaging needs and not just one element in isolation.

Boxing clever DS Smith has always invested much of its bottom line in new product development and to improve recycling and sustainability. A recent result of this on-going investment programme is a breakthrough solution created for the soap and hand-cream dispenser sector. The company’s latest ‘Bag-in-Box’ solution provides the answer to many of the problems encountered in the refilling of dispensers from bulk containers, such as spillage and other packaging processing anomalies. Today Bag-in-Box by DS Smith offers the ideal solution for soap and hand cream dispensers. This unique system comes in a contaminationfree sealed pouch with integrated dispensing options that make refilling

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easy, and products easy to store, as well as being and quick and simple to handle. With cleanliness being a top priority in any hospitality and healthcare facility, Bag-in-Box, is clearly the product of choice and one of the most popular solutions for wall-mounted hand soaps, sanitisers, moisturisers and other personal hygiene liquid preparations. High-traffic rest rooms, schools and kitchens typically use between 800 to 1200ml ‘Bag-in-Box cartridges. These can be designed to suit virtually all wall-mounted dispensers in the global market place. For the hospitality industry, smaller sizes are more popular for products such as shampoos, body gels, hand creams and other personal care products. For high-volume industrial requirements the ideal solution is a three- or five-litre Bag-in-Box system for hand soaps and sanitisers The many advantages of the new Bag-in-Box dispensing system include simple and quick refills without the risk of spillage, along with precise portion control and dosing. In addition, the new system offers full utilisation of the inner-dispenser space and involves significantly less plastic than competitive products. The special fully collapsible bag ensures less product waste and a sanitary-sealed bag benefits from a unique built-in nozzle device.

Dispensing perfection One of the world’s most successful suppliers of caps and closures for the international food and beverage industry, Affaba & Ferrari, (A&F) decided it needed to replace its traditional type of packaging with more sustainable, durable and re-usable collapsible containers that would be perfect for base dispensing. The challenge revolved around that fact that sport caps are produced from two pieces. Once the first part is produced the caps need to be hygienically stored until the production of the second element is complete. To avoid the potential risk of the ingress of wood shavings from the storage pallets, A&F looked for a solution that would solve the problem without the need for employing wooden pallets.


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DS Smith Plastics’ ‘Stackabox’ system was designed especially for the handling of PET preforms, caps and closures. The re-usable and easily stored container makes it the perfect dispensing solution that can be utilised throughout the entire production process. What’s more, the base dispensing process significantly reduces the risk of any damage to the caps. Following stringent testing at A&F’s manufacturing plants, it was confirmed that the highly efficient, flexible-fold ratios minimised warehouse storage costs. Furthermore, the product’s durable construction, with its smooth internal surfaces, ensures ease of cleaning, thus providing optimal hygiene for the safe storage of caps. Thanks to their long life span, A&F was able to drastically reduce its levels of packaging waste. In addition, DS Smith’s Stackaboxes are 100 per cent recyclable.

A taste of paradise Rapak, part of DS Smith’s Plastics division, participated in the 48th APCC Cocotech conference and exhibition in Bangkok late in August 2018. Rapak exhibited its latest solutions for the production, processing and packaging of coconut-based products. Today Rapak is a key global player in Bag-in-Box packaging for coconut creams, offering a complete portfolio of Bag-in-Box filling equipment, flexible bags and fitments. At this important international packaging event, Rapak showcased its renowned ‘Intasept Liquid Filling’ technology for Bag-in-Box packaging. This is comprised of a unique, double-membrane gland that offers superior security for heat-sealed enclosures, both before and after filling. The specially designed high-speed and economical filling machine, allows sterile products to transfer without the use of a chemical agent in the process.

Thanks to Rapak’s unique Intasept system and its airtight flexible bag, the Bag-in-Box is able to maintain the coconut cream in a fresh n condition up to one year after production. For further details of DS Smith’s innovative packaging solutions and services visit: www.dssmith.com

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Custom components Plastek UK Ltd (Europe) is a leading manufacturer of custom injection and blow moulded components for the packaging industry, offering creative packaging solutions to multinational FMCG businesses in the personal care, household, food and beverage, healthcare and cosmetics markets. The company is now looking at further expanding its international footing, as European Vice-President Mick Shaw confirmed.

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ased in Mansfield, north Nottinghamshire, Plastek UK Ltd (Europe) is a division of the USA based Plastek Group, a renowned global manufacturer within the plastic packaging industry. Apart from the 155,000m2 manufacturing facility in the UK, the group currently operates moulding facilities in the United States, Mexico and Brazil and is looking at increasing its capacity.

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injection and injection blow moulding techniques. The group’s customer base includes all blue chip companies, such as Unilever, Danone, P&G, Nestle, Reckitt Benkiser and other major brand names. “We have always specialised in complex, multi-function mouldings which suited our highly-automated plant. We have also invested in Advanced Clean Room Manufacturing to ISO class 7, and are now installing graded segregation of production to serve the most exacting needs which will help us gear up for the pharmaceuticals and medical production,” says Mr Shaw. Plastek’s speciality lies in value added packaging components which offer enhanced functionality and differentiation, including actuators and


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spray caps, laundry caps, cosmetics tottles, and infant nutrition packaging. The innovative development of products, processes as well as people is an integral part of the company’s culture. “We offer the flexibility and the corporate will to meet the needs of international consumer brands, and have even moved entire production cells from one continent to another in order to accommodate the needs of our customers. We use the latest in-moulding technology, including ultra thin wall and 2-shot moulding, and keep up to speed with all new moulding innovations,” says Mr Shaw.

Responding to market needs “Our R&D teams work on several projects, including looking at using PCR resins for several current customers. However, at this stage we are unable to disclose any further details due to confidentiality. What I can say, though, is that our R&D teams are also working closely with customers regarding recyclability and sustainability, the big topics of today.” He pointed out that the company is also addressing another major trend – the call for reduced amounts of packaging. “We are working with our partners in the consumer goods sector to investigate biodegradable

plastics. From a business point of view, we are looking at shifting into multi-use low-volume, high-value products in the medical and pharmaceuticals sectors.” One of Plastek’s key competitive advantages is its ability to provide services that deliver quality, volume and speed – factors that help the company to stay ahead of other, including Asian, manufacturers. “There is no doubt that we outstrip them on quality,” says Mr Shaw, “Our training, automation and process controls are all aimed at superb levels of conformity which others find hard to match. We are constantly striving to be the best and work tirelessly to achieve all the industry leading standards and accreditations to ensure we are competitive. “We work very lean in all our organisations around the globe with a big emphasis on customer relations and support, and undergo several customer audits each year which ensures we always maintain the highest standards.”

New horizons The group continues to develop in partnership with its customers, and is ready to locate manufacturing units to meet their needs. “We ship to

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destinations all across the globe, from Mexico and Argentina, through Australia and India to the UK and the whole of Europe, on a daily basis,” says Mr Shaw. He further explains that Plastek is ready to continue its growth, and to exploit emerging new opportunities. “As I mentioned earlier, we plan to expand into the medical and pharmaceuticals markets. To this end, we have brought on board a new Business Development Manager, who has vast experience in the medical & pharma industries. Also, we have recently achieved ISO 13485:2016 Medical Devices accreditation, which will hopefully help us to develop further in these new areas.” In terms of geographical coverage, Plastek is looking to grow through acquisitions in the UK and Europe. “We would definitely like to achieve a wider international footprint and are now assessing several potential ways forward. Given Plastek’s reputation, track record and innovative focus, I believe it is a realistic goal. Keeping pace with the technology and investing in people will help us enjoy continued success,” concludes n Mr Shaw.

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Pioneering superstable e-mobility film

Treofan, the German premium provider of high quality BOPP film for over 50 years, is now a key partner in the HiT-Cell Research Project, involving RWTH (Aachen University), and MEET (Munster Electrochemical Energy Technology). Philip Yorke reports.

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he exciting HiT-Cell Project is being publicly funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research of Germany (BMBF) for the European ‘Battery 2020’ project. This is just one of the many pioneering projects that Treofan has either initiated, or been invited to contribute to, in its over 50 years of experience in the BOPP market. Today Treofan is a leading global supplier of premium-quality BOPP products and intelligent film solutions. Present in over 100 countries worldwide, the company’s innovative strength is underscored by its on-going success and numerous, ground-breaking patents awarded over the years. With unrivalled film-making expertise, an extensive product portfolio and first class technical services, Treofan is positioned as a premium provider for leading FMCG brand manufacturers and converters worldwide. Today the company has a global focus with an annual capacity of around ten billion square metres and it employs over 1200 people worldwide. Treofan’s annual turnover has also climbed to more than €600 million. Furthermore, due to its on-going major investment programme in new technology and production processes, the company continues to increase its productivity and its profits. With 14 production lines operating around the word, Treofan now benefits from eight, state-of-the-art five-layer plants. In addition to its recent investments in Europe, Treofan has also invested more than seven million euros in a new metaliser facility at its extensive manufacturing plant in Zacapu, Mexico, which is geared to serve the US market.

Lithium-ion battery break-through In May this year, Treofan announced that, based upon its tried-andtested nano-porous Treopore® separator film, it is developing a new,

low-loss, thermally stable and safe separator film as part of a groundbreaking HiT-Cell (high Temperature Cell) research project. The objective of the project is to develop a temperature-stable lithium-ion battery for all mobile and stationary applications. Compared to currently available polyolefinic separators, this new, innovative separator will offer a significantly higher temperature-stability profile. With its much-improved properties, the new separator film will be perfectly suitable for use with lithium-ion battery cells, and utilised across a broad spectrum of electric mobility. Although today’s conventional ceramic separator coatings do increase the safety profile of lithium-ion battery cells, they are not always able to prevent the separators from collapsing under continual thermal stress. Such coatings also lead to additional resistance in the cell itself. This resistance in turn heats the cell, especially during rapid charging and discharging, which can also lead to a significant reduction in service life. The new separator film by Treofan will provide a substantial increase in thermal stability and, as a result, the safety of the battery cell. “We are delighted to be collaborating with our partners on this exciting and pioneering project, using our expertise to advance a key technology for the future,” commented Dr Franz Josef Kruger, head of the TreoPore business unit at Treofan in Germany.

Less is more Earlier this year, Treofan launched its latest IML (in-mould labelling) film: EWR50. This is now even thinner than before with a thickness of just 50um. However, it offers greatly improved efficiency and a considerably improved surface yield, while maintaining the same inherent product properties. Industry Europe 149


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Just like Treofan’s earlier product, EWR57, the solid white EWR50 enables the hyper-efficient production of labels. The IML decoration with EWR labels also gives packaging the desirable high-gloss look. EWR has been specifically developed for in-mould labels for PP and PE injection moulding. With its excellent antistatic properties, web flatness and machinability, it is ideally suited for all offset and sheet-fed printing with UV curing and oxidative inks. It is also ideal for gravure and UV-flexo printing. With the introduction of this all-new film type, Treofan continues to expand its product portfolio in close cooperation with its partners and customers. “The new EWR50 film is geared towards satisfying the increasing market demands in terms of efficiency and yield combined with excellent quality,” said Joachim Jung, head of Product Management and Business Development at Treofan.

Expanding product range Recently Treofan added yet another important product to its diverse portfolio of EUP high-performance in-mould labelling films. Matte on both sides, the new EUP technology platform was specially developed in order to meet the demanding requirements of sheet-fed offset printing. Its high level of stiffness enables exceptionally high processing speeds combined with excellent quality, while its low density enables optimal yields. Until now, the EUP product family was available in thicknesses of 50um, (EUP50) and 60um (EUP60). “The new 70um version is in response to our customers’ ever-growing requirements when it comes top processing efficiency and quality,” said Jung. “Its development is the result of our close collaboration with machinery manufacturers and brand owners in the global in-mould n labelling industry.” For further details of Treofan’s latest innovative film products and solutions visit: www.treofan.com

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Material airlocks from SKAN Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) is employed in the pharmaceutical industry for decontamination within aseptic and aseptic-toxic manufacturing of pharmaceuticals. However, the fairly reactive oxidising agent must not come into contact with humans, reagents or pharmaceutical products. Material airlocks with integrated catalytic converters represent an elegant solution here.

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KAN employs specially developed catalytic converters to decompose H2O2 efficiently and reliably. The catalytic converters, containing metal-based, nano-structured catalytic material applied on a stable and water retaining substrate, are used for example in H2O2 material airlocks. Two trends ensure an increased demand for such material airlocks. On the one hand, an increasing number of biotechnologically developed drugs and pharmaceuticals need to be manufactured aseptically because pharmaceutical products cannot be sterilised terminally, which increases the requirements for aseptic production. On the other hand, the development of patient-specific, individually manufactured products is on the horizon, which must also be produced under aseptic conditions.

Material airlocks with integrated decontamination process A safe and rapid H2O2 decontamination process has been integrated into the SKANFOG® material airlock. The material airlock is used for the controlled transfer of thermolabile products, sensitive materials and equipment from a lower classified cleanroom to a cleanroom of higher classification and serves in pharmaceutical companies as a barrier between cleanrooms with differing grades. The material airlock is also suited for the aseptic transfer of material in a sterility testing isolator or RABS. The material airlock is suitable for various cleanroom grades. The stainless steel construction can be adapted to the requirements of the customer thanks to its modular structure, and is designed for maximum process reliability. The material airlock can also be retrofitted into existing buildings.

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Pharmaceuticals & Medical

Safe process flow during material transfer The material airlock is equipped with two pneumatically sealed and interlocking airlock doors made from safety glass, which are monitored by sensors. The loading process with material is performed from the side with the lower cleanroom classification (e.g. ISO 8); the door to the side with the higher cleanroom classification (e.g. ISO 6) remains locked. After being loaded with the material to be transferred, the transfer can be started in a fully automated and validated decontamination process. An automatic pressure leak test is conducted before the start of the decontamination process to verify the leak tightness of the airlock. The SKANFOG® decontamination technology is based on the micro-nebulisation of liquid H2O2 with defined concentration. Two nozzles in the chamber corners create a mist with very finely dissipated droplets which are sprayed on the material and products to be transferred, the airlock room and the inner walls of the chamber. Compared with conventional wiping, it simplifies and enhances both procedure and validation. Moreover, nebulised H2O2 in moderate concentrations can be used without concern with regard to toxicity, corrosion and persistence. Scientific studies have shown that a total kill of a 10e6 population of the organism Geobacillus stearothermophilus can be achieved and reproduced. The H2O2 material airlock enables the total kill of a 10e6 population of the respective organism in a fully automated decontamination process, which is completely validated and reproducible. After the decontamination, the H2O2 is purged out of the chamber by the air handling unit. The chamber air is routed through a

catalytic converter which breaks down the H2O2 into water and oxygen. After the aeration phase, the door can be opened from the cleaner side and transferred material can be taken out safely.

Catalytic converter ensures a low pressure drop While conventional catalytic converters are applied on a firm substrate, the SKAN catalytic converter, developed exclusively by SKAN and used here, consists of a highly porous ceramic substrate coated with catalytically active metal-based nanostructures. The catalytic material is characterised by a great surface to volume ratio, thus achieving an optimal catalytic effect. The nanostructure also enhances the catalytic effect and ensures an increased throughput during the chemical process of the decomposition of H2O2. The material system is mounted as a force-locked element in a module made from stainless steel. Compared to conventional catalytic converters, the pressure drop is lower by a factor of five. The combination of nanostructured, catalytically active material, the porous substrate and the packing density ensures a very high energy efficiency. This is due to the fact that the process intake air extracted from the ambient room can be returned as exhaust air into the same room after the catalytic reaction. This allows the airlock to operate independently from a cleanroom ventilation system which otherwise is complicated to install. Since no separate exhaust unit is needed, the airlock has fewer interfaces, is easier to install and can be employed with more flexibility.

Safe ventilation in any direction The air flows unidirectionally into the airlock chamber. The air drawn from the surrounding room is pre-filtered and then guided through a

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fan and an HEPA filter free of particles into the chamber. When the doors are closed, the quality of the air conforms to grade A (ISO 5). The lock is operated with overpressure relative to the ambient room, thus ruling out any contamination. When being loaded from the lower classified cleanroom side, the air is guided from the chamber ceiling into the lower classified clean side and the inner pressure in the chamber equalises with the pressure in the lower classified cleanroom. A leak test is conducted automatically before every decontamination cycle. The chamber remains unvented during the decontamination. The overpressure in the chamber is maintained against the lower classified cleanroom and remains regulated during the ventilation. Once the door to the higher classified cleanroom is opened, the pressure in the higher classified cleanroom equalises in

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the chamber, whereby the exhaust is guided back into the lower classified cleanroom without particles after flowing through a further HEPA filter in the catalytic converter.

GAMP 5.0 conforming automation The SKANFOG® material airlock is equipped with touch panels, a programmable logic controller (PLC) and a PC. The runtime connection (TCP/IP) transfers commands and statuses as well as process and alarm data between the computer-supported human-machine interface (HMI) and the process PLC. By means of the HMI, the user can control the process and has reading access to process data. To provide an overview and to monitor the processes, the elements of the piping and instrumentation diagram (PID) are displayed in the HMI in which


Pharmaceuticals & Medical

operational conditions are constantly indicated and animated. Access to HMI client functions is protected by user authorisations against unauthorised access. Local logging on or logging on via Active Directory can be supported. The chronological event list (CEL) serves as FDA-compliant audit trail. All relevant changes are logged so that they cannot be manipulated. A comment can be saved with every entry. Simultaneously, every access can be logged and traced with a user signature. All information about acknowledging alarms is also logged compliant to the FDA. A batch report is generated for every decontamination cycle or every production charge. It is possible to transfer information via OPC or other standardised software interfaces to superordinate IT systems. The automation solution of the material airlock fulfils all requirements of GAMP 5.0 and fully complies with CFR 21 Part 11. The corresponding software is fully validated in accordance with GAMP 5.0. Additionally, the material airlock meets all GMP requirements for a rapid and reliable material transfer and enables a fully validated and automated transfer process of materials between cleanrooms with different cleanroom grades, or directly into sterility testing isolan tors and RABS.

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145 44 Inside front

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