Gross sales at Prodex: 15+ million Swiss Francs

The Prodex, Swisstech and Pack&Move shows just closed their doors and it seems the week was very successful for a lot of people there. We at Eurotec thank our visitors for the sympathetic shared moments there.

The last day of the shows I discussed with a lot of responsible on their booths at Prodex and even if Saturday was far calmer than the other days, they were all smiling and positive. There was at least 15 machines shown for the first time in Switzerland and visitors were coming to booths with actual projects.

Very strong results
During that last day survey, I gathered the information that at least 100 machines were sold on the show (probably far more than that but it’s difficult to gather actual facts). If we took an average selling price of CHF 150’000, that means about 15 million CHF gross sales during the week and a lot more to be achieved in the following weeks.

End of the crisis?
Responsible of companies are nevertheless very careful, they all emphasize volatility of markets and prefer to remain careful in their plans.
People are willing to buy production means NOW, an exhibitor told me that they are flying some machines from Japan to answer urgent demands in Switzerland… reactivity and flexibility are of high importance.
Anyhow, the show sent a strong message to the industrial world that if the signals are not bright green, they are no longer red.

We discovered a lot of products to write about, stay tuned.

Pierre-Yves Kohler

Micronarc Alpine Meeting, January 16-18, 2011… Registration now open

Microsystems have now entered the age of high volume production for consumer applications, especially mobile phones, ICT and medical disposable devices. The issues associated with the production of these are of continued interest to manufacturers. These include tooling in high volume fabrication of precision parts, making highly efficient and reliable automated assembly lines and test systems for microproducts. There is a fast growing market for such components and products.


Following in the success of the first edition, The Micronarc Alpine Meeting 2011 will continue its focus on equipment for manufacturing microproducts.

This 2-day conference intends to stimulate networking and discussions in the casual atmosphere of Villars, a charming village and ski resort located at 1250 meters of altitude. A selection of invited speakers and presentations will comprise the program. A small, table-top exhibition will be conducted in parallel for those wishing to promote their company and products.

The conference will take place on a Monday and Tuesday, thus permitting paticipants that wish to arrive early to take advantage of the close proximity the ski lifts or simply relax for a couple of days in a laid-back Alpine setting. A conference dinner on Thursday evening at 1800 meters of altitude will add a touch of local charm.

A limited number of participants will be able to attend the event. Don’t miss it!

Download the early programme flyer here.

You can register here.

For more information:

Micro-nanotech Cluster of Western Switzerland
c/o FSRM – Ruelle DuPeyrou 4, CP 2353 CH-2001 Neuchâtel, Suisse
Tél: +41 32 720 09 00 | Fax: +41 32 720 09 90

PS: By the way, Eurotec will be there to bring you insights of this high level event.

Improving efficiency through innovative lubrication practices

With the introduction of the SMED method (single-minute exchange of die), Boillat Technologies appreciated instantly the importance of the role that processing fluids would play in optimising set-up times during production changeovers. In close cooperation with MOTOREX, the company’s needs were analysed and the solutions were presented. The result was a reduction in product variety from 12 processing fluids to just two cutting oils.


Jacques Boillat, the CEO and owner of Boillat Technologies in Loveresse, Switzerland, on the benefits of the SMED method and associated reduction in processing fluids.

From proven solutions to new ones
The managers of Boillat Technologies turned, therefore, to lubrication specialists MOTOREX and enquired about the potential for optimisation in the area of processing fluids. In dialogue with Technical Aftersales and the field service employees involved, all production steps were identified, production capacities recorded and tool lives determined. Based on the evaluated data and after an appraisal of the customer’s needs, production got off to a successful start from the very first batches following the introduction of the MOTOREX SWISSCUT ORTHO TX high-performance cutting/deep-hole drilling and broaching oil.

Benefits of a multi-purpose cutting oil
The cutting oil itself may be a universal grade, but any sacrifice in terms of performance would not have been entertained. Following MOTOREX’s recommendation to change over to the revolutionary SWISSCUT ORTHO TX high-performance cutting oil, the machine operator has been able to reap several benefits: It is now possible for each and every processing step to proceed with one and the same cutting oil. SWISSCUT ORTHO TX meets the most demanding requirements in the form of extremely complex machining methods combined with the most difficult-to-cut materials. The significant reduction in the quantity of processing fluids has helped to simplify logistics and substantially increase process reliability. Thanks to the absence of unwelcome substances, such as chlorine and heavy metals, the quality of the working environment has similarly been improved.

Disposal costs cut 50 %
With the changeover to MOTOREX ORTHO TX, the managers in Loveresse have selected a low-volatility and extremely skin-friendly cutting oil with minimal tendency to mist that guarantees maximum functionality with all popular ventilation systems and is integral to sustaining a healthy environment in the production room. Another pleasing aspect is the fact that the selected product is free of chlorine and heavy metals. As a result, not only is the product less harmful to mankind and the environment, it reduces disposal costs by 50 %. Indeed, recycling costs can vary considerably, depending on chlorine content and other sometimes problematic constituents. In addition, the absence of chlorine and heavy metals makes the cutting oil easy to clean up and so reduces effort in the parts cleaning process.

Objectives comprehensively achieved
“Continuous optimisation is necessary in any production business. Together with motivated colleagues, competent suppliers and new workflow methods, the introduction of SMED into our company has resulted in great success,” explains Jacques Boillat, not without a hint of pride.

Technical Aftersales
CH-4901 Langenthal, Switzerland
Tel. +41 (0)62 919 74 74
Fax +41 (0)62 919 76 96

Benevis 2
CH-2732 Loveresse, Switzerland
Tel. +41 (0)32 482 60 60
Fax +41 (0)32 482 60 65
[email protected]

Taking a product to its users

In industry, the share of turnover assigned to marketing and communication is very low compared to other sectors; nevertheless, companies make sure they have the means to exhibit and sell their products. But what about after-sales? While it’s accepted that the second machine is customarily sold by the after-sales service, there’s no denying that after-sales technical communication tools are often the poor relation of communication. And yet there are professional solutions. Interview with Mr. Yvon Cosandier, Director of RédaTech in La Chaux-de-Fonds (Switzerland).

Every area of our daily lives depends on devices running smoothly, whether for professional or personal use.

Subcontracting the production of technical documents remains a rare strategy, with many companies never having considered it. Why is this? Mr. Cosandier explained: “There is a lot of presumption in this industry, and often companies do not appreciate the added value that an agency like RédaTech can bring”.

No superfluous staff
Mr. Cosandier told us: “A customer who contacts RédaTech must be able to rely on us completely. This is why our authors are engineers trained in technical writing. They are responsible for gathering information and clarifying and formatting messages. Documents are managed as projects. For the customer, this means their own engineers are relieved of as much work as possible”. Our engineers don’t simply format the text from the development engineers; they generate real added value while freeing up the company’s own resources.

The different types of document
RédaTech leaves the processing of commercial documents to advertising agencies, specialising instead in producing all types of “after-sales” documents, e.g. manuals and instructions for the following applications:

  • installation,
  • training,
  • commissioning,
  • operating,
  • programming,
  • maintenance,
  • after-sales troubleshooting.

RédaTech produces its documents using four departments:

  • technical writing (engineers),
  • 3D and educational illustration (drafters, illustrators),
  • technical electronic publishing and formatting (typographers)
  • translation (communication engineers and a worldwide network of specialist translators)

Poor document = poor machine/product?
This statement is, of course, wrong. However, if a user becomes annoyed each time he uses documentation or if the information is not clear, not only will the function not be performed correctly, but the operator will also be frustrated. If the basic notion that the second machine is sold not by the seller but by the after-sales service (and the user of the machine) is true, at least in part, then “poor document = poor machine” takes on its full significance.
Astronomical sums are sometimes spent on marketing, but can we really afford to be so flippant about technical documentation?

To find out more about the added value RédaTech can offer, please contact Yvon Cosandier at the address below.

Rue Fritz-Courvoisier 40
2302 La Chaux-de-Fonds
Tel. +41 32 967 88 70
Fax: +41 32 967 88 71
[email protected]

Production management is no longer a competitive advantage… really?

For many small and medium-sized business, production is still monitored “by hand” using Excel or Access and a lot of ingenuity. With growth, these kinds of businesses want to be able to use software to manage, schedule and monitor orders and production; simple software which can be adapted to their needs. Clipper from Clip Industrie provides an ERP-CAPM solution for companies of between 5 and 150 staff. To find out how this solution has been implemented at Almac, we met with Roland Gutknecht, CEO, and Yves Nanchen, Manager of Clip Industrie Suisse.

Comprehending, analysing, deciding and acting immediately, accurately and effectively; these are Clipper’s strengths.

“All-inclusive” software
Clipper’s ERP-CAPM software is fully-integrated software. According to Yves Nanchen, it is “the shortest path from order to delivery”. He explains: “There are no additional modules, when you buy the Clipper solution, everything is included, from commercial to after-sales management, which naturally includes management of procurement and production. These are open modules which are easy to configure to suit the customer’s needs. Users can use the modules as they wish”.

A clear process
Putting a production management and monitoring system into place requires very close analysis, as an error is not exactly easy to bear. Mr. Nanchen explained the process to us: “Often customers have heard about our solution but have never seen it in action. The first stage is therefore a demonstration and a discussion with the customer, lasting an hour and a half to two hours, to answer any questions and show them some solutions. Sometimes, we can see during this meeting that our software is not well suited. For example, for a service company which does not have a production stage, the system is too comprehensive for simple commercial use”.

If the demonstration is conclusive, we can start putting the system in place. Clipper specialists spend two days with the customer to analyse and configure the system and the project starts. With the retrieval of data, the creation of good indicators and training, the transition takes three to four months. Mr. Nanchen told us: “We have already managed to carry out a successful transition in a few weeks, it is possible, but we prefer to work step-by-step to give our customers the time to integrate the new system seamlessly”.

Outstanding results
Whereas integrated production management is no longer as strange an idea as it was 10 or 15 years ago, a large number of small or medium-sized companies are wary of crossing over to a fully integrated system. Clip Industrie has carried out a survey on return on investment with customers who have switched their internal solutions to the Clipper software. The results are conclusive: 92% of companies have increased their overall productivity, 93% have noted a rise in profitability and almost 90% have seen a return on investment in less than 18 months (A brochure made by Clip Industrie containing the full results of this study is available to our readers. Contact [email protected] Tel. +33 04 42 50 62 9).

For Roland Gutknecht: “With growth, the volume of purchases and work in process increase, and management and monitoring follow this. Without a system like this, we simply would not be able to operate”.

Can we say that Clipper frees up time for decision-makers?
“Absolutely!” was Yves Nanchen’s reply. If we know that we can rely on an effective system which gives us the right information at the right time, all levels of the company will be freed up and can concentrate on value-adding activities.

To find out more about Clip Industrie and the Clipper software
CLIP Industrie
Yves Nanchen
Rte de la Drague 65, Case Postale 1244
1950 Sion
Tel +41 27 322 44 60
Fax: +41 27 322 44 69
[email protected]

Clip Industrie is looking for a champion in German-speaking Switzerland
After having ensured its development in French-speaking Switzerland, Clip Industrie Switzerland is looking for a regional director for the German-speaking part of the country. With an understanding of the software sector and the industrial market in German-speaking regions, this person will be responsible for the technical and commercial aspects.
If you are interested in this forthcoming position, please contact Yves Nanchen using the details given here above.

Vitamins for your manufacturing at PRODEX 2010 in Basel

If you’re going to the PRODEX exhibition that starts next Tuesday, Springmann hopes that your visit will lead you also to its booth located on the ground floor of the main Hall 1.0, booth A 09.

More than 20 machines, with several Swiss premières will show you nowaday’s machining and measuring possibilities. The list of exposed products downloadable below (in French), informs you about the various possibilities for which the company offers solutions.

Springmann takes advantage of this great rendez-vous for the machine tool industry to formalize new representations. Because of retirement, Springmann now represents the products formerly represented by Santschi in Oberkulm. It is namely three manufacturers:

  • DISKUS WERKE (ED): manufacturer of flat grinding on booth sides
  • NAXOS-DISKUS (ED): manufacturer of grinding  wheels and abrasive products.
  • HOECKH (ED): machines for washing and degreasing parts.

And even if your manufacturing has no need of vitamins for the moment, think of yourself and come enjoy a delicious vitamin fruit juice on the stand.

You can register your visit on the Springmann website here and download the programme (in French) here.

Springmann Switzerland
Route des Falaises 110
Case postale
CH-2008 Neuchâtel
Tel. +41 32 729 11 29
Fax +41 32 725 01 01
[email protected]

Springmann Austria
Runastrasse 90
AT-6800 Feldkirch
Tel. +43 5522 709 60
Fax +43 5522 709 65
[email protected]

By the way, the company emphasizes the fact that it’s time to benefit from an actual Swiss Francs/Euro favorable rate to buy European!

SF-Filter strengthens its presence on the Austrian market

SF-Filter with headquarters located in Bachenbülach Switzerland and already established subsidiaries in VS- Schwenningen, Germany, France, Poland and Austria, broadens its market share through the purchase of Filtor Filtersysteme GmbH based in Münchendorf near to Vienna. The company has been renamed SF-Filtor GmbH and will concentrate its efforts on the development of the Austrian market whose potential is significant.

In the future it will be able to serve customers more efficiently. SF, which is positioned as the leader in the filter field in Europe, sells the widest range of quality filters of all origins and all dimensions for mobile and industrial applications. It is oil, air, fuel filters or filters for pneumatic or hydraulic sectors, dedusting or air conditioning. Customers can rely on very quick deliveries thanks to a huge permanent stock consisting of no less than 20,000 models of filters.
Being able to be supplied from a single provider whatever filters needed prevents customer to hold its own stock and having to stop its machines, facilities and vehicles. Customers realize substantial savings.
Second pillar of the group in Austria, SF-Filterdienst GmbH based in Weiler is already well established.

SF-Filter AG
Kasernenstrasse 6
CH – 8184 Bachenbülach
Tel. + 41 44 864 10 60
Fax + 41 44 864 14 56
[email protected]

You can also find more information about SF-Filter on Eurotec number 367 (novembre 2009) here.