LWB and REP set up jv for Chinese market; facility to be ready end-2014

Two leading manufacturers of rubber injection moulding machines, German manufacturer LWB Steinl, based in Altdorf near Munich, still run by the Steinl family, and the French company REP International, based in Corbas near Lyon, have established a joint venture to handle the exclusive sales, service and manufacturing business of rubber moulding machines in China. The joint venture is known as United Rubber & Plastic Machinery (Langfang).

LWB’s product portfolio includes the complete range of rubberinjection moulding machines with 6-1,200 tonne-clamping force and 4.5-30,000 cc injection volume, ranging from vertical C-frame machine specifically for the profile industry, vertical 4-column or frame machines, up to horizontal machines pillar and C- frame clamping unit into frames, C-frame and column construction.

REP, founded in 1907, has been since 1948, selling machines ranging from 7-2,400 tonne-clamp pressure, and 7-50,000 cc injection capacity, with primarily column frame design, for both horizontal and vertical lay-out.

Outside the Chinese market, the companies remain independent. Thus, the two injection moulding machine manufacturers are still in direct competition with each other in other regions.

Both, LWB and REP, are present in China for many years, but say that they do not overlap in the market, thus allowing for this strategic alliance, where the companies will share their resources and offer competitive prices of their products to the growing Chinese market.

The location of the new plant is Langfang, Hebei Province, southeast of Beijing, where LWB has since 2009 been manufacturing several injection moulding machines. The new plant, with a production area of 2,500 sq m, is scheduled to be finished by end of 2014 and will manufacture machines exclusively for the Chinese market.

New machine series for China

United Rubber & Plastic Machinery will also offer a new machine series, specially tailored to the Chinese market. Components from local production are combined with European know-how and thus provide a high standard of quality for the profile industry as well as for technical rubber parts for vertical and horizontal applications, say the companies. This new machine series will accept existing moulds operated on Rep or LWB machines, but without extended optional or special equipment, such as offered with products made in Europe.

"These days it is more important to make of use of common advantages to increase the level of service to a market, rather than duplicating resources, which will dissipate in me-too competition," said Peter Steinl , Managing Director of LWB Steinl .

“Year after year, new machinery manufacturers in China are founded, which copy the European machinery. During the recent Chinaplas, the visitors could see of a number of machines that at first – or sometimes even second glance - look like well-known products. These are the companies to fight against but there are arguments for the original technology – which the Chinese manufacturers recognise now, too,” he added.

United Rubber & Plastic Machinery will be a fully independent company that will operate under a Chinese Manager, Wang Xiao Bo, former General Manager of REP Beijing.

"The Chinese market is a big challenge with a big potential," says Bruno Tabar, President of REP. "We therefore rely on synergies with strong partners to generate further growth faster. Customers will take more advantages from a strong supplier offering a wide range of product and services".

Another benefit of this co-operation both companies see, beside lower production costs, is a strong unified sales and service network throughout China.

REP also has a cooperation with Taiwanese injection moulding machine maker Tung Yu.


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