Lifetime Kayaks for the World
Lifetime Products Inc. is the world‘s leading manufacturer of blow molded polyethylene folding chairs and tables, picnic tables, and home basketball equipment. In 2015, six Kautex machines were ordered for the production of kayaks.
Lifetime uses polyethylene blow molding and metal forming technology to manufacture a variety of consumer and industrial products. The company has one of the largest blow molded plastics facilities in North America. Lifetime Products occupies over 3,000,000 square feet (278,000 m2) at its USA Head- quarters and employs over 2,200 people worldwide.The company started its molding business in rotomolding and in 1995 purchased their first Kautex extrusion blow molding machines. From 1997 to 2001, another 13 machines, built in the US at that time, followed. During the next 15 years, Kautex worked to supply Lifetime with retrofit accumulator heads for legacy machines. Since the acquisition of Emotion Kayaks in 2015, Lifetime has become one of the largest blow molded kayak manufacturer in the world.
Kautex-Maschines for kayak production
Finally in 2015, with Lifetime’s plans to open a new production facility in Mascot, TN, Kautex received an order to build three machines each of the model series KBS241 mono and KBS480, all intended for the production of various Kayak models.
”Kautex is our preferred supplier for blow molding machines,” explains Bob Adams, Vice President Lifetime Products Inc.. ”Their machines are technically superior and better built than competitive machines in the industry. When faced with the challenge of starting up a new facility, we chose to partner with Kautex because of their capacity to design and build multiple machines and to provide technical support, service and training for our personnel.” …more minimize
Toray Industries does research together with Kautex
With the substance polyphenylene sulphide (PPS), the Japanese chemical corporation Toray has developed an ideal material for the production of feed and
exhaust air ducts for modern turbo-charged engines. New materials are being developed in close cooperation with Kautex Maschinenbau.
Toray is a corporation in the chemicals industry with business activities in 26 countries and regions and has about 45,700 employees all over the world. In addition to the main business areas of fibers & textiles as well as plastics & chemicals, Toray is also involved in the development of IT products, carbon fiber composite materials, pharmaceutical and medical products, as well as in the environment & technology areas.
Starting in August 2016, Toray will use a KBS20-SB in the company's own technical center at the factory in Nagoya for testing the production of various 3D ducts using the suction blow molding process. The focus lies on the development of especially heat- and pressure-resistant air ducts made from PPS. Kautex Maschinenbau has provided the Japanese corporation with an extrusion blow molding machine for research and development purposes.
PPS for turbocharger ducts
A current development trend in the car industry is the downsizing of car engines. Turbochargers are used in order to be able to achieve the same performance with fewer cylinders and smaller displacement. However, these require heat-resistant air ducts in the engine. Toray achieved very good results here with polyphenylene sulphide (PPS). This plastic distinguishes itself with especially high and durable heat-resistance up to 220°C. The Kautex machine with high-temperature equipment can process this material without problem.
A development partnership
Jürgen Moitzheim, Sales Director at Kautex Maschinenbau, is looking forward to working with the Japanese plastics manufacturer. ”The latest developments in car engines always create new challenges for car industry suppliers. This is particularly true for the interplay between materials and engine technology. For this reason we like to work very closely with our customers on the development of new solutions.“
This also convinced Toshiteru Nishijama, Manager Automotive Products Business, Resins Global Marketing Dept. at Toray: ”We were looking for a provider who not only produces good machines, offers high process reliability and good service, but who will also support us with their know-how in the R&D field. It became clear quite quickly that we would use a Kautex machine.“ …more minimize
Elmeg shapes its future with Kautex machines
In the international automotive business, the name Elmeg has enjoyed a good reputation for more than 30 years. The Italian automobile supplier has specialized in the blow moulding process and has been the official supplier for suction blow moulded 3D parts since 2013 as they are used, for instance, in turbo-charged engines.
Elmeg purchased its first Kautex machines 10 years ago. Since then the two companies have developed a virtually friendly relationship. Salvatore Giordano, the recently deceased founder of the family company, compared the cooperation of the two companies with the successful cooperation between Ferrari and Michael Schumacher: ”It is very nice to work with Germans when you want to develop new ideas.“
Automotive in the DNA
In the meantime the son of the company founder, Gianluca Giordano, has taken over the management of the company and conducts business in the same manner his father did. Values such as technical competence, willingness to improve one's performance, and especially appreciating one's own values are part of the company mission. And not to forget, a passion for automotive which is passed down from generation to generation in the Giordano family. ”Being fascinated with automobiles is deeply engrained in our company DNA,” says Gianluca Giordano.
The Italian automobile supplier uses a total of four Kautex machines. They include a KB260 for the production of plastic fuel tanks and a Kautex K3D-SB8 suction blow moulding machine which Elmeg loves because of its reliability and flexibility. This compact machine can be used for suction blow moulding and for conventional blow moulding applications and various materials. This allows Elmeg to process different materials alternatingly, such as Hytrel, Zytel, or PA6.6.
Specialists for 3D blow moulded parts
Its specialization in components created using blow moulding has allowed the company (which has an additional factory in Serbia since 2012) to acquire a great wealth of know-how. In contrast to most other competitors, and in addition to doing the engineering, Elmeg also makes its own moulds. This allows them to realize customer wishes quickly, flexibly, and cost-effectively but also to perform short-notice optimizations in the process.
Gianluca Giordano feels that this high level of customer support positions his company very well and adds: ”An important criterion for success is the optimal interplay of know-how, materials, and mechanical engineering. Kautex Maschinenbau is a partner which always supports us actively in the development of new solutions.” In the future Elmeg plans increasing international expansion under the motto ”Shaping together” – especially as expert for 3D suction blow moulded components. …more minimize
MPE s.r.l. - A sustainable partnership
MPE S.r.l has been a top international supplier to the automotive industry for 30 years. One of the key factors in its success is its excellent relationship with our team at Kautex Maschinenbau, along with our blow-molding technology.
MPE are specialists in the development and production of precision components for the global automotive industry. With five production facilities in Italy, the USA, Mexico and Serbia, the company sells almost 200 million vehicle components per year to the world's leading vehicle manufacturers. “It is a very demanding market. Suppliers have to be flexible and set high standards while still offering competitive prices”, explains MPE’s President, Giorgio Battagliotti.
Foto: Giorgio (l.) and Riccardo (r.) Battagliotti, MPE srl
Focus on customer needs
In order to meet these challenges, MPE understands the importance of maintaining close relationships with its international customers. Regular visits and invitations to customer audits and the continuous development of products and strategies are all vital factors in this respect. Mr. Battagliotti describes his company’s philosophy as follows: “Good suppliers never rest on their laurels but are always striving to improve.” This is why MPE believes it is essential to work closely with customers from the very beginning. As an experienced businessman, Battagliotti is well aware that “the acquisition phase is where we can really make an impression. This is where we can set-out our stall, show the customer that meeting their needs is our number one priority and explain how we can work together to find the perfect solution.”
MPE also expects this kind of service from its own suppliers. This is where Kautex Maschinenbau has a major advantage, thanks to its tried-and-tested mix of innovation, reliability and customer focus. MPE currently operates 13 Kautex machines that have already provided many years of reliable service. But sound, reliable engineering is only part of the story. “Of course we expect to see continuous improvements in terms of performance and efficiency”, explains Battagliotti. The bar has already been set very high, because the company has to satisfy leading vehicle manufacturers such as VW, BMW and Daimler “In Kautex, we have a partner who can help us to achieve our goals – making continuous improvements to production processes and developing exciting new products.”
MPE and the Kautex team already enjoy a lively exchange of ideas, and in future this will be even more rapid and effective. MPE is growing in the Nafta region and is now concretly examining the opportunities and potential that the Asian market has to offer. Kautex-Maschinenbau will be there to accompany Giorgio Battagliotti and his team every step of the way. …more minimize
Fulcrum Inc. - Tailormade packaging with Kautex quality
Started in 1988 Fulcrum Inc. is a custom blow molder in the US focusing primarily on consumer and industrial packaging. Fulcrum is an industry leader in the custom blow molding of high quality plastic containers ranging from 32 oz to 2 ½ gallons.
Increased product throughput and quality
In early 2011, Fulcrum’s management team ordered a Kautex KCC 20D to replace an ageing blow molder. Says Director of Operations Dan Gilroy, “we identified opportunities to grow our business with new and established customers that we could not make happen with our existing equipment”. The results exceeded expectations and Fulcrum realized a dramatic increase in product throughput and quality. Additionally, the significant decrease in material loss added to the overall viability of the machine purchase.
New machinery supports growth
Also a benefit of adding this highly efficient machinery is the resulting growth Fulcrum experienced. Owner Samir Mehta explains it this way: “the decision to purchase a Kautex machine has been an excellent investment for our company. Our experience with their team was smooth and the results lucrative, so much so that we recently ordered a second machine. We look forward to our continuing relationship with Kautex”. …more minimize
Canature - More Growth with Kautex
Canature Environmental Products is China’s leading manufacturer of water treatment systems. In order to meet its future growth targets, the company has chosen to work with Kautex.
Clean water is a somewhat scarce commodity in China, whether for large-scale industrial usage or for supplying to people’s homes and public buildings. It is this latter area that is the main focus of Shanghai’s Canature Environmental Products Co., Ltd.
The company, which was founded in 2001, provides filter and water treatment solutions for apartments, office buildings, schools and private houses and so makes a significant contribution to supplying the Chinese population with clean drinking water. And its business is growing steadily, helped by public funding due to the fact that its work is classified as one of the governments “National Key Projects”
In 2011, Canature was the first Chinese manufacturer in this sector to be listed on the country’s stock market.
The company naturally has high expectations for the future. “We have enjoyed an annual growth rate of 30-40 percent over recent years and we obviously want to maintain this tempo”, says Qiao Huoming, Vice General Manager of the Production Department at Canature. The company is also keen to extend its range to include industrial solutions in order to fully exploit the market for water treatment systems. To achieve these ambitious goals, the company has enlisted the help of the experts at Kautex Maschinenbau. “We need to improve the efficiency of our production lines while reducing operating costs” explains Qiao Huoming, “So Kautex’s advanced technology and services make it the ideal partner for us.”
Currently, the first KBS61 machine is being installed and commissioned in Shanghai. But this is not the only reason that Qiao Huoming is feeling optimistic. “Canature’s success is built upon a constant quest for
perfection. Kautex is no different. So we look forward to continuing our fruitful exchange of ideas in order to keep improving our processes.” …more minimize
Con Plax New Pac - For us, Kautex is a guarantee of success
Con Plax New Pac has experienced many high points throughout its history and today Italy‘s best-known producer of plastic containers continues to enjoy great success by concentrating on its core business. Kautex is an integral part of this success story.
„Cupac“ – with this innovative product, Con Plax New Pac set new industry standards and established its reputation only a year after the company was set up in 1961.
The futuristic-looking plastic container with its rounded corners has been a top sellers for many years and is even incorporated into the company‘s logo. But this is not the only reason why the family business from Zingonia in Italy can look back on an eventful past. At the beginning of the 1980s, the company became pioneers in the industry by starting to produce Intermediate Bulk Containers (IBC) by blow molding using Kautex equipment.
Until 1988, it even produced its own blow molding machines. However, as a result of ever-growing specialization on the part of its competitors and faced with increasing cost pressures, Con Plax New Pac decided to re-focus on its core business by producing canisters
and plastic containers for a wide range of different industries. Today, much of its production relies on Kautex equipment and between 2008 and 2012 alone, the company integrated five new Kautex machines into its existing production lines. „If
we are to be leaders in our key markets, it is vital for us to ensure high availability, fast production, corresponding cost savings and the ability to change colors quickly“, explains Walter Bestetti, who runs the company with his two sons Filippo and Jacopo. „In this respect, Kautex is the best partner in the market.“ Added to this is the need for energy efficiency. Electricity is more expensive in Italy than in neighboring countries. „We’re currently planning to install a photovoltaic system that will allow us to reduce our energy consumption by around a third“, says Bestetti. „In this context, energy-efficient machines are absolutely vital. Here too, Kautex is in a league of its own.“ This is why the Italian company wants to maintain its close relationship with Kautex and in the future. The customer sums it up: „Kautex gives us a real sense of security thanks to its first-class machine technology and excellent customer service, and we want to continue having this guarantee of success. My visit to the new factory opening in Shunde strengthened this feeling of security still further.“ …more minimize
Agri Industrial Plastics (AIP) - Investing in innovation
US manufacturer Agri Industrial Plastics (AIP) really sets the pace when it comes to corporate vision. Kautex Maschinenbau has been the company’s strategic partner since opening its doors almost 35 years ago.
“Flexibility” is the key word when describing the reasons for AIP’s success. Since its foundation in 1978 in Fairfield, Iowa, the company has consistently worked to expand its customer base – which could hardly be more diverse. Whether it is fuel tanks, soundproof screens or shelf systems, AIP supplies customised solutions to meet every requirement and works closely with the customer from the initial design idea right through to the finished product. But this is not the only reason
why customers remain so loyal to the company. AIP is also the watchword for excellent quality, fast reaction times and on-time delivery. Over the years, the company has grown from a tiny four-man operation to one of North America’s leading manufacturers of extrusion blow molded components. It has relied on the expertise of Kautex right from the start and it continues to invest in technical innovation.
Mick Stielow, AIP’s Director of Sales and Marketing, comments: “Cutting-edge technology is essential if you want to survive in this business. As the world’s
leading supplier of extrusion blow molding machinery, Kautex helps us to be constantly pushing the boundaries in terms of flexibility, efficiency and quality.” 21 Kautex machines are currently operating at AIP. The trend is increasingly moving towards multi-layered production processes.
“Single-layer tanks have largely become obsolete, particularly for biofuels. It is now essential to have additional barrier layers in order to meet emission standards”, says Geoff Ward, Engineering Manager at AIP. At the same time, the company is countering growing price pressures by increasing automation levels in its production area and by reducing run times. Kautex Maschinenbau remains the supplier of choice in this area. “For us, Kautex is much more than just a
supplier of high-quality manufacturing solutions”, says Mick Stielow. “Instead, we think of the company as our strategic partner and we believe it has played a major part in AIP’s success.” …more minimize
Sino-Asia Plastic Package (SAP) - A rising star in the Chinese market
In the space of just a few short years, Sino-Asia Plastic Package (SAP) has established itself as one of China’s leading manufacturers of high-quality packaging materials. Its production processes rely on equipment from Kautex.
Procter & Gamble, Avon, Amway, Unilever, Johnson & Johnson – SAP’s customer list reads like a Who’s Who of the consumer goods industry. From its three locations in Zhongshan, Tianjin and Suzhou, the company supplies the whole of China with high-quality packaging materials, making it one of the country’s leading manufacturers.
SAP was founded in 1999 in Zhongshan and production began in the summer of 2000. Since then, the company has experienced the kind of growth that is not an everyday occurrence, even in the booming Asian markets. This success is based on SAP’s comprehensive service package and its focus on always providing its customers with added value. The company is always there to help and advise the customer, from the initial design of the packaging and labels, through the manufacturing process, right up to the final delivery. It also provides a high degree of flexibility, fast reaction times and the unwavering desire to supply top-quality products.
Kautex supplies the cutting-edge technology that is essential to meet these demands. Since 2001, SAP has been relying on this market leader’s expertise
and engineering solutions. “We are not prepared to take any risks, so we made a conscious decision to turn to the global market leader in extrusion blow molding technology”, says Rondy Liao Deputy Technical Director SAP. “If we are to compete in today’s markets, it is essential for us to have a totally reliable partner with the highest quality standards on the production side. ”Now 26 Kautex machines are in operation in SAP factories. The multi-layered customer service package includes intensive training courses, ongoing process optimization and regular maintenance. “Kautex has helped us to build a highly-efficient production line in every respect, and in this way it has made a major contribution to SAP’s growth.”
This is why SAP is keen to continue working closely with Kautex in the years to come. It is planning to expand its business into the pharmaceutical area in the near future. But its main goal is to become China’s number 1 in the packaging industry in the course of the next 5-10 years, followed by expansion into the global market. Rondy Liao sees the greatest challenges in this respect as being the customers’ insatiable desire for new, innovative packaging solutions and the unrelenting price pressures: “We need to make more use of multi-layer processes and reduce energy consumption and run times. But with Kautex by our side we are optimistic that we will achieve our ambitious goals and continue to write the SAP success story.” …more minimize