Chinaplas 2014: KraussMaffei’s 2nd phase of expansion; Netstal mulling assembly in China
Chinaplas 2014: KraussMaffei’s 2nd phase of expansion; Netstal mulling assembly in China

“Growing at a double digit growth, China is the fastest growing market for KraussMaffei. We will continue on the course to success that we have set in the past year in China,” said Christian Blatt, CEO of KraussMaffei Group in China. He was referring to the newly inaugurated second production hall at KraussMaffei’s facility in Haiyan, China. With this expansion, the production space has been doubled and now covers 22,000 sq m.

The Germany-headquartered firm’s target is to produce 300 machines/year and it has already produced 50 machines at theHaiyan plant it set up last year, which “is still at the ramping up stage”, said Blatt, during a media briefing.

In one new hall, in particular, injection moulding machines in the MX series are manufactured for Asian customers, in a range of 850-3,200 tonnes. “Thetarget markets for these machines are the automotive, packaging and electronics sectors,” said Blatt.

Using optimised production processes, the output times are shortened by almost half, which is welcome news for customers, explained Blatt. Added to this are the time and cost advantages since there is no need to transport items from Europe, along with a faster availability of spare parts and a service package that is tailored to meet local needs, emphasised Blatt.

When asked if other types of machines will be produced, Blatt said the GX series would “come later”. Shown at Chinaplas was a new GX Spinform, with cube form technology on a swivel platen machine. It was demonstrating the production of a PP/LLDPE push-pull closure in a cycle time of 6.4 seconds.

Meanwhile, KraussMaffei has been present for more than 13 years in the Chinese market. It started off producing extrusion machinery in 2006, adding on rubber equipment in 2009 and reaction process machinery in 2011. “We have a strong market presence in China with three strong brands: KraussMaffei, KraussMaffeiBerstorff and Netstal,” added Blatt.

PET machine maker Netstal’s CEO Hans Ulrich Golz, echoed Blatt in pointing out that China is an important market. “The population in the cities is growing fast, so there is a need for beverage and medical products. Standards are increasing all the time,” he said, adding that the Switzerland-made Netstal machines have been sold in China for 11 years.

To strengthen its presence further, Netstal has now opened a demonstration and training centre,with test facilities, at the Haiyan plant. It houses a fully electric 220-tonne Elion machine,which demonstrated production of blood collection tubes during the new plant inauguration. As a demonstration plant for the beverage industry, Netstal also installed a complete PET-LINE system with cooling and drying units back in September 2013.

Moreover, in order to offer its customers better local service, it will also stock up spare parts for the market.

Golz also said that there are plans to replicate Netstal’s Swiss operations in Näfels in China. The firm’s next step would be to set up mould testing services “in one or two years”. “We will make an announcement soon on the assembly of machines in China,” said Golz, adding that the Chinese manufacturing operations would be locally run.

(IMA)

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