Viewing posts categorised under: Engineering / Manufacturing

ABB and HASCO Create Joint Venture to Drive Smart Manufacturing in China’s Auto Industry

by swisschambei in Engineering / Manufacturing

Automation expert ABB and China’s leading automotive parts supplier, HASCO, announce the creation of a joint venture to drive the next generation of smart manufacturing in China’s automotive industry. The joint venture will build on the existing successful relationship between the two companies, leading to the crucial development of highly flexible and sustainable auto parts manufacturing within HASCO’s China-based operations. As the automotive industry’s transition towards electric vehicles gathers pace, parts manufacturers must increasingly invest in flexible facilities that can respond to rapidly changing demands and trends. The partnership between ABB Robotics and HASCO, which includes a 40% stake by ABB in the joint venture, will expand the use of smart technologies and artificial intelligence within the industry.  Both parties agreed not to disclose any further details about the investment.

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Clariant Begins Construction of Flame Retardants Production Facility in China

by swisschambei in Engineering / Manufacturing

Clariant, a focused, sustainable and innovative specialty chemical company, today announced that it will construct its first Chinese production facility for its successful Exolit OP flame retardants at its existing site in Daya Bay, Huizhou, Guangdong Province. By establishing local production capacity, Clariant greatly enhances the speed at which it can provide solutions to its customers in China. Driven by the fast-growing electrical and electronic equipment industries, in particular e-mobility, 5G communications technology and transportation, there is a rapidly growing demand for Clariant’s innovative and sustainable flame retardants in China and other Asian markets. “China has been one of the fastest growing regions for Clariant and we expect this development to continue in the future. By investing approximately CHF 60 million to establish a production facility dedicated to providing our local customers with innovative and sustainable Exolit OP flame retardants, we will take another step towards increasing our footprint in China and continue to solidify our position in the local market,” said Conrad Keijzer, CEO of Clariant. Clariant’s facility in Daya Bay is currently home to the company’s first ethoxylation plant in Asia, which services local pharmaceutical, personal care, home care, and industrial application customers within its Business Area Care Chemicals.

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Datwyler is Accelerating Growth in the Chinese Healthcare Market

by swisschambei in Engineering / Manufacturing

By taking over the Chinese company Yantai Xinhui Packing, Datwyler will gain direct access to the rapidly growing healthcare market in China. In doing so, Datwyler will fill another important strategic gap in the healthcare solutions business area and have its own production plants in all currently relevant markets. Datwyler has signed a contract to acquire the Chinese company Yantai Xinhui Packing Co. Ltd. Closing of this contract is subject to the anticipated fulfilment of the customary closing conditions during the first quarter of 2022. The details of the contract are undisclosed. This strategically important acquisition will provide Datwyler direct access to the rapidly growing healthcare market in China. The family-owned company Yantai Xinhui Packing was founded in 2003. In 2017, the company invested in building a new production plant in Shandong province in northeastern China. Yantai Xinhui Packing has automated production facilities for elastomer components for the healthcare market, its own development department and its own compounding facility. With some 170 employees, the young and modern company has annual revenue of some CHF 15 million. The current management will remain in place, thus ensuring continuity in serving the Chinese healthcare market. When integrating Yantai Xinhui Packing, Datwyler can draw on its many years of experience with its own Chinese plants for the automotive and industrial markets with some 1’500 employees in China.

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Novartis Eyes Continuous Support for Chinese Cardiovascular Patients through Innovation

by swisschambei in Engineering / Manufacturing

Novartis pledges to continue pushing innovation in China with new treatments and solutions in the cardiovascular sector, one of the most common diseases in China. Novartis’ major lipid-lowering drug “Inclisiran” is a key exhibit at the Swiss pharma giant’s presence during the 4th China International Import Expo. Johan Kahlstroem, senior vice president and business unit head of Cardiovascular, Renal & Metabolism at Novartis Pharma (China), said it aims to continue to strengthen partnerships with local stakeholders and to raise the overall treatment levels for cardiovascular diseases. Novartis is fully engaged in the Chinese market from manufacturing to business development, covering the whole industry value chain. It has been committed to offering innovative solutions and partnerships that could be valuable in achieving the goals of Healthy China 2030. The increasing prevalence of cardiovascular disease is a serious burden for patients and their families, and it’s also a huge challenge for healthcare provision and health budgets. According to the Chinese Cardiovascular Association, it’s estimated that there were about 330 million cardiovascular disease patients in China in 2019, about a quarter of the population, and it was responsible for 43% of deaths that year.

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ABB to Realize ‘Robots Make Robots’ in Shanghai

by swisschambei in Engineering / Manufacturing

Swiss tech giant ABB will realize “robots make robots” in Shanghai, the company announced at the 2021 International Business Leaders’ Advisory Council for the Mayor of Shanghai. According to Peter Voser, chairman of ABB, with a total investment of USD 150 million, ABB’s new robotics factory in Shanghai will be put into operation in the first quarter of 2022. The new 67,000-square-meter factory will be one of the most advanced, automated and flexible factories in the robotics industry worldwide, utilizing the latest manufacturing processes — a cutting-edge center where robots make robots. Production in the facility will be based on cells of automation, with robots moving from station to station, enabling greater customization and more flexibility than in traditional, linear production systems. In order to realize “robots make robots,” ABB’s new factory in Shanghai will include an R&D center to accelerate the innovation and development of artificial intelligence. The factory in Shanghai will better participate in and promote the development of China’s high-end manufacturing industry, said Voser. ABB currently has three factories worldwide. In addition to Swedish and American factories, the new factory in Shanghai will mainly serve Asian customers. ABB has 27 local companies with 15,000 employees in China, with business activities covering R&D, manufacturing, sales and services.

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Sika Optimistic on China Prospects Despite Evergrande Concerns

by swisschambei in Engineering / Manufacturing

Sika can overcome rising raw material costs globally and uncertainty in China linked to debt concerns at developer China Evergrande (3333.HK) to reach its 2021 goals, Chief Executive Thomas Hasler said. The Swiss construction chemicals maker expects to increase its sales when measured in local currencies by 13%–17% this year following last year’s pandemic driven downturn in building projects. The company also expects to achieve an operating profit margin of 15% for the first time this year, confirming the guidance it gave in July. Hasler, who took charge at Sika in May, said he remained optimistic about China despite uncertainties surrounding China Evergrande.”There is a lot of speculation, but our Chinese organisation is much more relaxed. The exposure is rather small,” Hasler told Reuters at the company’s investor day in Zurich. Sika, whose products are used to strengthen and waterproof building materials, is more involved in high-end projects like bridges, ports and tunnels than the mass market like accommodations, where mainly Chinese companies operated, he said. “Our value is if you build a nuclear power plant or a bridge, then they rely on high tech, then they want reliability,” said the 56-year-old executive. “This type of construction is going to be reinforced and accelerate going forward,” Hasler added. “Our growth strategy in China is well balanced; our aim is to grow in China like in other regions.” Sika now gets around 10% of its annual sales in China, a share that “may increase a little bit”, Hasler added, although it was not the company’s goal to double this level. Sika confirmed its 2021 targets “despite a challenging raw material price development and supply chain restrictions.”

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Enics to Expand Manufacturing Site in Suzhou, China

by swisschambei in Engineering / Manufacturing

In response to increased demand, Enics announces expansion of its manufacturing site in Suzhou, China. The high-volume electronics manufacturing site serves both Chinese and international customers. Electronics Manufacturing Service company Enics is announcing expansion of one of its largest manufacturing sites in Suzhou, China. “Responding to increased demand, we are expanding our floor space by 50%, to over 22.000 square meters total still within 2021. The expansion space, adjacent to Enics’ currents manufacturing site in Suzhou, will house both warehouse space, as well as new assembly lines and certain function testers” tells Enics’ Vice President, Asia Jane Liu. “This expansion to a ready-constructed space enables fast increase of our capacity and smooth integration with our already existing operations in Suzhou.” Enics manufacturing site in Suzhou provides high-volume electronics manufacturing with new product introduction (NPI) and testing development services to both Chinese, as well as international customers. The highly automated manufacturing site currently employs 500 people, and takes pride in its high performance in delivery, quality and cost-competitiveness.

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Kuehne+Nagel Cuts Carbon Footprint by 70% for Honda China

by swisschambei in Engineering / Manufacturing

Around 16,000 tonnes of CO2 has been cut from the supply chain of Honda’s China-based manufacturing division through a road-to-rail transformation in partnership with logistics leader Kuehne+Nagel. The programme was developed through KN Sincero, the joint venture between Swiss headquartered Kuehne+Nagel and Chinese automotive logistics firm Sincero, established in 2018. KN Sincero worked with Honda China to develop an integrated solution to convert much of its domestic long-haul trucking to train lines, using regional hubs to improve supply chain performance and further reduce carbon emissions. The programme delivered consolidations as well as value-added services, including sorting, scanning, repackaging, GPS track and trace, and recyclable container management.  “Kuehne+Nagel has always been a supply chain partner that we can rely on, to help us improve our supply chain performance whilst also achieving our environmental goals,” said Mr. Jiang Hui and Mr. Takuji Kitamura, Joint General Manager of Wuhan Dong Hon, the logistics affiliate of Dongfong Honda Automotive.  After six months of shifting to the road-to-rail model, new supply chain reliability and efficiencies are expected to eradicate 16,000 tonnes of carbon emissions annually. The carbon savings represent an enormous 70% reduction in total.

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ABB to Power Latest Electric Motor Products in China

by swisschambei in Engineering / Manufacturing

ABB Motion, a business unit of the Swiss technology and engineering company ABB Group, plans to introduce more of its latest electric motor products in China to respond to the government’s call to pursue green and high-quality development, said its top executive. With China setting a target to combat climate change by speeding up reductions in emissions to reach carbon neutrality before 2060, measures to improve energy efficiency will play a vital role in helping industry and infrastructure to reduce their emissions, said Morten Wierod, president of ABB Motion. While mostly hidden from public view, electric motors are embedded in almost every built environment. They power a vast range of applications fundamental to modern life, he said. China has recognized the importance of efficient electric motors as a matter of policy, with a new national standard requiring motors to have a minimum efficiency level of IE3 coming into effect on June 1, 2021. “As one of the earliest countries to sign the Paris Agreement, China has made a strong commitment to address climate change,” said Morten Wierod, President of ABB Motion. “This latest legislation on electric motor efficiency is an important new step in driving down emissions.

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Interview: Swiss Engineering Giant ABB Ramps Up Robotics Business in China: Chairman

by swisschambei in Engineering / Manufacturing

The chairman of Swiss technology and engineering firm ABB told Xinhua he was bullish about his company’s performance outlook for 2021 driven by its China business and strong push into robotics and e-mobility. “The first quarter (Q1) of this year was better than expected, both in revenue terms but also in profit terms,” Peter Voser told Xinhua on the side-lines of the 50th St. Gallen Symposium, a conference and student initiative taking place at the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland in May every year. ABB, headquartered in Zurich, is a global technology and robotics leader with some 110,000 employees worldwide. In Q1, the company reported a 34% year-on-year jump in its net profit to 502 million U.S. dollars and expects orders and revenues to grow by more than 10 percent during the second quarter. “So all in all, I think a positive outlook for the second quarter, and then for the rest of the year. But there we haven’t given any numeric targets at this stage, but we are more positive than we used to be at the beginning of the year,” he said in the interview. China is ABB’s second largest market worldwide. Headquartered in Beijing, the company has around 15,000 employees in the country. Voser said the group’s China strategy is focused on an “in China, for China and the world” approach, which entails improving its local research and development (R&D) and innovation capabilities. “We are continuously investing in China,” Voser said. “Our biggest project at the moment is the new robot factory, which is also an R&D center and an automation artificial intelligence (AI) center for robotics, so it’s the value chain in which we are investing now.”

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