Category Archives: Companies

Industry 4.0 award for Arburg

On 22 May 2017, Arburg was honoured with the “100 Centres of Industry 4.0 Excellence in Baden-Württemberg” award. This award was initiated by the “Industry 4.0 Alliance for Baden-Württemberg” network initiative to honour special achievements in the Industry 4.0 sector.

Arburg received the “100 Centres of Industry 4.0 Excellence in Baden-Württemberg” award because its products enable flexible high-volume production in batches as small as a single unit.

A total of 16 Baden-Württemberg-based “flagship projects for manufacturing of the future” were honoured on 22 May. State Secretary for Economic Affairs, Katrin Schütz said: “Industry, small and medium-sized enterprises and start-ups in Baden-Württemberg are leading the way in implementing Industry 4.0, as is impressively demonstrated by today’s award-winning solutions. Our aim with this award is to promote tangible solutions from the region, which create added value. The aim is to encourage small and medium-sized enterprises in particular to actively exploit the real opportunities offered by Industry 4.0.”

Arburg wins with “flexible high-volume production of single-unit batches”

Katrin Schütz pointed to Arburg as a perfect example of a company that has distinguished itself for decades through its innovative strength and, thanks to its 30 years of experience in IT-networked production, counts among the pioneers in the implementation of “Industry 4.0”. Arburg’s demonstration of “flexible high-volume production of single-unit batches” convinced the panel of judges and received the “100 Centres of Industry 4.0 Excellence in Baden-Württemberg” award in the “New Software/Networking Solutions” and “New Production Process” categories.

With its flexible, automated, IT-networked and spatially distributed production of “smart” luggage tags, Arburg recently showed how high-volume production can be combined with the customisation of individual plastic parts at the Hannover Messe 2017 in April. This example shows the future of modern business models, with the aim of integrating customers and their requirements in the value chain and individualising high-volume parts.

Economically efficient production of “smart” luggage tags

The “smart luggage tag” shows how such “mass customisation” can be achieved relatively simply by combining injection moulding and additive manufacturing without sacrificing the efficiency and cost-effectiveness offered by high-volume production. An Allrounder injection moulding machine, a Freeformer for industrial additive manufacturing, as well as automation and IT solutions from Arburg form a flexible cyberphysical production system.

Using an individual NFC chip, the injection moulded product produced on an Allrounder becomes the data and information carrier and controls the further production operations to become a one-off part. It communicates with the machines at the various production stations, knows its own history and current status, as well as navigating its own path through the process chain. The individual plastic design is applied in an additive process using the Freeformer.

A central element here is integration with Arburg’s proprietary ALS host computer system. This records the product, process and quality data and transmits it to a web server. In the “luggage tag” example, each part has its own website. The data for each component can be retrieved and traced at any time, even after many years. Digital networking through the host computer system promotes transparency and consistency and facilitates the optimum utilisation of the full production capacity, particularly in the case of smaller unit volumes and frequent product changeovers.

 “100 Centres of Industry 4.0 Excellence in Baden-Württemberg”

The aim of the “Industry 4.0 Alliance for Baden-Württemberg” network initiative is to pool expertise in production technology, as well as information and communication technology, to bring together all key players and to encourage small and medium-sized enterprises in industry to move towards Industry 4.0 through innovative information-sharing initiatives.

The “100 Centres of Industry 4.0 Excellence in Baden-Württemberg” competition seeks to identify innovative concepts in industry that have succeeded in the intelligent networking of production and value-added processes. As well as examining the level of innovation, the panel of expert judges also assesses specific practical relevance with regard to Industry 4.0. To date, a total of 84 companies, institutions and other organisations have been presented with a certificate and a glass plaque in five award rounds. This number is to reach 100 over the course of 2017.


Renishaw announces new Solutions Centre partner and distributor for its additive manufacturing technology in China

Renishaw, a global manufacturer of metrology systems and metal 3D printing machines, is pleased to announce the signing of an agreement with FalconTech Co., Ltd. as a Solutions Centre partner and distributor for its additive manufacturing (AM) technology in China. Located in Wuxi, Jiangsu province, FalconTech is a technology and innovation company focusing on the rapid manufacturing of high performance components for aerospace, biomedical, marine, chemical and other engineering applications.

Under the partnership, FalconTech will set up an Additive Manufacturing Solutions Centre in Wuxi using Renishaw’s latest AM systems and supported by Renishaw’s extensive expertise in manufacturing solutions. FalconTech will also purchase ten RenAM 500M metal additive manufacturing systems over the next 18 months, with the first three units to be installed by the end of July 2017.

“We are excited to be a Renishaw Solutions Centre partner in China,” said Mr Shen Yu Lan, Managing Director of FalconTech Co., Ltd. “Combining FalconTech’s expertise in aerospace with Renishaw’s technology and manufacturing expertise, the Additive Manufacturing Solutions Centre can create a platform on which we can work in close partnership with customers to help them realise the benefits of AM in their products and manufacturing processes.”

In addition, Renishaw will also purchase and promote FalconTech aerospace-grade titanium metal powders to its AM customers in China, and work with FalconTech to develop and optimise these powders for use on current and future ranges of AM machines.

The RenAM 500M is a laser powder bed fusion additive manufacturing system designed specifically for the production of metal components on the factory floor. “This is an exciting new chapter for Renishaw in terms of our commitment to delivering the best solutions in additive manufacturing to key industries,” said Paul Gallagher, Managing Director/Vice President of Renishaw (Hong Kong) Ltd. “The combination of FalconTech’s knowledge of aerospace and its existing capabilities, combined with Renishaw’s leading edge technology and manufacturing expertise, gives us a dynamic partnership to provide the latest and most effective manufacturing solutions.”

Equipped with Renishaw’s latest AM systems and supported by the knowledge and expertise of engineers, the new Solutions Centre operated by FalconTech offers a fast and accessible way to rapidly deploy this exciting technology in China.

Estoppey-Addor SA rachète Bicrom SA à Corgémont

Au 1er janvier 2017, la société biennoise de galvanoplatie Estoppey-Addor reprendra les activités de Bicrom SA à Corgémont dans le Jura bernois. L’ensemble du personnel est repris et le site de Corgémont est conservé.


L’entreprise Bicrom SA, fondée en 1993 par M. Christian Jungen est spécialisée dans le chromage, en particulier le chromage noir et le chromage blanc. Elle est active dans les domaines de l’horlogerie-bijouterie, le médical, le dentaire, l’optique, la fibre optique et l’automobile.

Les spécialités de Bicrom SA viendront compléter et renforcer la palette de produits proposés par Estoppey-Addor SA de Bienne, entreprise fondée en 1880 et gérée par sa 5e génération. Riche d’un savoir-faire éprouvé en dorage, nickelage chimique ou encore cuivrage, Estoppey-Addor mettra au profit de Bicrom, sa maîtrise de son management de la Qualité (ISO 9001 et 14001).

Les premières négociations ont débuté en mai de cette année. Les deux actionnaires principaux, Sandrine Estoppey et son frère Cyril Estoppey ont rapidement été convaincus du bien-fondé de la reprise commerciale et industrielle de Bicrom SA afin d’intégrer par croissance externe : d’une part, un savoir-faire précieux avec son outil de production dédié et, d’autre part, des synergies commerciales évidentes à développer.

Les parties ont signé le 15 décembre dernier le contrat de reprise de Bicrom SA par Estoppey-Addor Chromage SA. Le dossier de reprise a été conduit par Langel M&A Consulting de Bevaix, société spécialisée en transmission d’entreprises. Les parties ont convenu de garder le prix et les détails de la transaction confidentiels. En ce qui concerne le personnel, Bicrom SA emploiera au 1er janvier 2017 sept collaborateurs dont M. Christian Jungen qui occupera le poste de responsable de production du site actuel de Corgémont de 1’200 m2.

La direction générale sera assurée par Sandrine et Cyril Estoppey et l’ensemble des activités commerciales de Bicrom SA sera transféré et communiqué sous la nouvelle entité en formation d’Estoppey-Addor Chromage SA. La vingtaine d’employés d’Estoppey-Addor SA de Bienne ne sera pas non plus affectée par la reprise de Bicrom SA.



Schuler completes takeover of AWEBA Werkzeugbau German high-tech company will be fully consolidated as of July 1, 2016 / Takeover opens up new market segments for die construction business

Schuler AG has completed the takeover of German die construction specialist Aweba. Following approval from the relevant anti-trust authorities, Schuler – the market leader in forming technology – has now closed the acquisition process. As of July 1, 2016, Schuler will thus become the sole owner of Aweba Werkzeugbau GmbH Aue. The Aweba Group is one of the world’s leading full-service providers of dies and fixtures.


Schuler CEO Stefan Klebert commented: “Aweba’s outstanding technological expertise in die construction is a perfect fit for our portfolio with major benefits for the customers of both companies. The acquisition and subsequent pooling of resources in die construction will add further momentum to Schuler’s growth.”

In the past fiscal year 2015, Aweba generated sales revenue of around € 60 million. The Aweba Group employs around 600 people, including almost 200 highly skilled engineers and toolmakers. In future, they will work together with Schuler’s existing die construction specialists in a single division.

Aweba CEO Udo Binder stated: “The previously separate activities of Schuler and AWEBA in the field of die construction complement each other perfectly. There is hardly any overlap. Schuler’s global market standing gives us the platform to present ourselves to customers as a global system supplier within a strong group.”

Aweba currently supplies clients in the automotive and electrical industries, as well as machine and plant manufacturers. Schuler signed the purchase agreement with the previous owners of the company (private and institutional investors) on April 13, subject to approval of the relevant anti-trust authoritie

Arburg: Agnes Bagsik reaches final of “Engineer Powerwoman 2015” competition at Hannover Messe

The “Engineer Powerwoman 2015” career prize was presented at the Hannover Messe on 17 April 2015 as part of the “WoMenPower” special conference. This annual award is presented to a woman who has demonstrated excellence in the MINT (mathematics, information technology, natural sciences and technology) sector. Agnes Bagsik, who heads Arburg’s Freeformer Technology Development group, was among the three finalists. As an innovative machine manufacturer, Arburg also targets women in its search for dedicated staff.

Combined “Womanpower” (right to left): Gabby Aitink-Kroes, winner of the 2014 career prize, panel of judges chairwoman Prof. Barbara Schwarze, prize-winner Dr Jelena Stojadinovic (Membrasenz) and finalists Agnes Bagsik (Arburg) and Dr Cynthia Morais Gomes (BIM).
Combined “Womanpower” (right to left): Gabby Aitink-Kroes, winner of the 2014 career prize, panel of judges chairwoman Prof. Barbara Schwarze, prize-winner Dr Jelena Stojadinovic (Membrasenz) and finalists Agnes Bagsik (Arburg) and Dr Cynthia Morais Gomes (BIM).

“We are delighted that Agnes Bagsik won through against a large number of contestants and was selected by the panel of judges as one of three finalists for the ‘Engineer Powerwoman’ award,” said Managing Partner Renate Keinath, who is responsible for Human Resources Management at Arburg. “This makes her a strong role model for all women who are interested in a technical career with us and whom I would like to encourage to take the step into mechanical engineering. After all, as an innovative, family-run business and one of the world’s leading manufacturers of machines for plastic processing, we rely on dedicated, well-trained employees, to whom we offer excellent, long-term career prospects.”

Agnes Bagsik drives forward development of the Freeformer
A graduate mechanical engineer, Agnes Bagsik is a team manager at Arburg and is responsible for the technological development of the Freeformer. This new system for industrial additive manufacturing celebrated its international debut at the K trade fair in 2013 and is currently being launched on the various markets worldwide. Agnes Bagsik acts as a link between the areas of development and customer requirements, as well as handling cooperative partnerships with universities and colleges. “To develop and further this brand new technology right from the start is a fantastic challenge and motivation for me,” said Agnes Bagsik, who has a highly demanding and varied job at Arburg. Her tasks include the adaptation of software and hardware to the various processes and applications. Among other activities, she was involved in the development of a water-soluble supporting material and made a major contribution to ensuring that the Freeformer is able to individualise high-volume parts in line with customer requirements.
Engineer Powerwoman 2015 career prize
The “Engineer Powerwoman 2015” career prize is awarded by Deutsche Messe every year to a woman who has made a mark or played a key role in innovation within a company through her dedication, ideas or work. Prof. Barbara Schwarze, who is the head of the panel of judges and who teaches “Gender and Diversity Studies” at the University of Osnabrück, awarded the EUR 5,000 prize on 17 April 2015 at the WoManPower conference at the Hannover Messe. The winner was Dr Jelena Stojadinovic (Membrasenz), who prevailed in the final against Agnes Bagsik (Arburg) and Dr Cynthia Morais Gomes (BIM, the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing).

Meusburger – E 15581 Hollow round sections made from heavy-duty PUR

Meusburger is the leading manufacturer in the field of high-precision standard parts. Thousands of customers all over the world make use of the numerous advantages of standardisation and benefit from the company’s over 50-year-experience in working with steel. Offering an extensive range of standard parts, combined with high-grade products in the field of workshop equipment, Meusburger is a global partner for tool and mould making.

NEW at Meusburger – E 15581 Hollow round sections made from heavy-duty PUR
NEW at Meusburger – E 15581 Hollow round sections made from heavy-duty PUR

Meusburger has extended its range of E 1558 elastomer springs with E 15581 Hollow round sections with hardness 90 Shore A.

These are made from heavy-duty Polyurethane rubber (PUR) and ideal for making springs in application-specific lengths, damping discs or machine elements. Other characteristics of the E 15581 are their long life and their high fracture and abrasion resistance.

Sandvik Coromant wins Volvo Cars Award of Excellence

Cutting tool and tooling systems expert Sandvik Coromant has been honoured by automotive giant Volvo Cars in the company’s Award of Excellence 2014. The efforts of Sandvik Coromant over the past year were rewarded in the Special Recognition category. The Volvo Cars Award of Excellence was created in 1998 to acknowledge the outstanding contribution made by suppliers that have gone the extra mile and contributed to the success of this world famous automotive manufacturer. A considerable number of suppliers were nominated for the Volvo Cars Award of Excellence 2014, with finalists recognized in categories such as quality, cost competitiveness, technology, environmental and social responsibility, and special recognition.

Häger, Managing Director Sandvik Coromant Sverige AB, Jan Rasmussen, Senior Strategic Account Manager responsible for Volvo Cars at Sandvik Coromant and Lars Wrebo, Senior Vice President Purchasing & Manufacturing at Volvo Car Group.
Häger, Managing Director Sandvik Coromant Sverige AB, Jan Rasmussen, Senior Strategic Account Manager responsible for Volvo Cars at Sandvik Coromant and Lars Wrebo, Senior Vice President Purchasing & Manufacturing at Volvo Car Group.

Successful projects
The award for Sandvik Coromant arrives after the completion of several successful projects to reduce cycle times and boost both productivity and profitability. In 2014 a total of seven projects with projected savings for Volvo were identified and documented. Overall these projects have not only improved quality and reduced downtime, but extended tool life to deliver a 39.8% saving in tooling costs.

By way of example, Sandvik Coromant recently proposed the testing and implementation of CoroMill® 5B90 to machine the combustion face of cylinder heads and overcome excessive burr. The solution delivered three times greater tool life, far fewer burrs and much quicker tool set-up.

Close co-operation
Working in close co-operation with the Volvo Cars engineering team, other tooling projects completed in the past 12 months include the implementation of the CoroTurn® SL system of modular adaptors and exchangeable heads to facilitate quicker tool change; new insert geometry for grooving camshafts that increased tool life from 125 to 500 pieces; new inserts for crankshaft machining that led to longer tool life and shorter cycles; and a new grade and geometry for a boring tool that increased tool life and reduced downtime due to fewer tool changes.

Moving forward, current projects involving new tooling concepts include cost reduction and process security for cylinder boring, and an increase in quality and tool life for wheel hub spline milling. Sandvik Coromant is also delivering support in upgrading tool holders that will allow the next generation of crankshafts to be accommodated.

20-year partnership
Sandvik Coromant has been a committed partner to Volvo Cars for more than 20 years, striving continuously to identify ways to optimize tools, machining methods and thereby, end results. The company has established a long partnership with the engine manufacturing plant in Skövde and the component manufacturing plant in Floby, although support also extends beyond Sweden. For instance, Sandvik Coromant recently helped with the transfer of knowledge on tooling for machines at a brand new facility in China.