Wittmann Battenfeld bets on growing market for big presses

By Bill Bregar
Senior Staff Reporter

Published: April 26, 2013 2:18 pm ET
Updated: May 7, 2013 9:07 am ET

Image By: Wttmann Group An in-mold label system in operation at Wittmann Battenfeld's Competence Days

Related to this story

Topics Machinery, K 2013
Companies & Associations Wittmann Battenfeld GmbH

KOTTINGBRUNN, AUSTRIA — Wittmann Battenfeld GmbH generated 2012 sales of 275 million euros ($358 million), about 10 percent higher than 2011, and officials said an expansion into bigger injection presses and a big backlog at the end of year points to higher sales in 2013.

The Kottingbrunn-based machinery maker plans to show a much larger press, with 1,600 tons of clamping force, at K 2013.

Wittmann Battenfeld's machines had topped out at 1,100 tons, but the company showed off its new 17,220-square-foot addition at its Competence Days 2013 event. Some 900 visitors toured the expansion in Kottingbrunn, which also features higher ceiling and larger cranes.

Wittmann Group General Manager and Georg Tinschert, managing director and CEO of Wittmann Battenfeld, analyzed the business conditions at an April 24 news conference.

Wittmann Battenfeld has missed out on some large-press sales to the robust automotive market because of press-size limitations. And automotive, at about 50 percent of total sales, is a major area for the company, Tinschert said.

But going up to 1,600 tons will help, especially in the home market of Europe, which generates 57 percent of business, he said. That's because 98 percent of all injection presses sold in Europe are 1,500 tons and below, he said.

Wittmann and Tinschert gave an upbeat forecast for this K-show year, but said they still were a bit conservative, given differences in economies around the world. The company makes injection presses, robots ands auxiliary equipment.

Sales to Asia have been "rather stable" at around 14 percent of total business, Michael Wittmann said.

"North America has been performing extremely well for us," he said. North America accounts for 28 percent of companywide sales.

Visitors to Competence Days saw 17 injection molding machines turning out everything from a hockey stick made by the Airmould process to a a bucket with handle assembled inside the mold to a credit card of polylactic acid produced with in-mold labeling.

They also saw some European-style showmanship. After technical sessions and lunch, the sound system boomed out some hard-rock beat riffs — like from the Iron Man movies. In marched a Wittmann robot-man, followed by a contingent of young men and woman that were clad in futuristic, skimpy outfits. The crowd followed as the hulking robot mechanically strode into the factory area.

Once inside, Wittmann Battenfeld's overhead cranes lifted a stage high into the air, where three drummers pounded out beats on metal barrels, Blue Man-group style. A team of trapeze artists also was raised above the crowd by the crane.

Fireworks sparkled up in the back of the machinery hall — a heavy metal experience to show off the big iron.


Comments

Wittmann Battenfeld bets on growing market for big presses

By Bill Bregar
Senior Staff Reporter

Published: April 26, 2013 2:18 pm ET
Updated: May 7, 2013 9:07 am ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Plastic products win Best of IBS awards

January 30, 2015 1:36 pm ET

LAS VEGAS — A year ago, inventor Jeremy Smith of Utah took his idea for an electrical outlet cover plate with LED lights on the bottom edge to...    More

Image

Yizumi's stock price shoots up

January 30, 2015 11:56 am ET

Chinese injection press maker Guangdong Yizumi Precision Machinery Co. Ltd. has seen its stock price more than double in the first five trading days...    More

Image

China to lead the way on robots

January 30, 2015 11:12 am ET

More industrial robots will be operating in China’s production plants than in the European Union or North America by 2017.    More

Image

Plastics News Now: Losing weight with style, plastics in the Dragons' Den

January 29, 2015 6:00 am ET

A 19-year-old entrepreneur brings business to a U.K. injection molder after winning support on TV's Dragons' Den, auto suppliers combine...    More

Image

Plastics help Volt hit new target

January 28, 2015 1:54 pm ET

The 2016 Volt, unveiled at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit in January, features a sportier exterior design — GM calls it &...    More

Market Reports

Plastics in Automotive: Innovation & Emerging Trends

This special report newly released by PN and sponsored by The Conair Group examines current trends in the use of plastics in automotive, materials innovations and the changing landscape. It includes a review of legislative/regulatory activity impacting vehicle development and lightweighting, market opportunities & challenges for mold and toolmakers, innovative design strategies being implemented by major OEMs and suppliers, as well as a review of key indicators in Canada, Mexico, Brazil and China.

Learn more

Plastics Recycling Trends in North America

This report is a review and analysis of the North American Plastics Recycling Industry, including key trends and statistics based on 2013 performance. We examine market environment factors, regulatory issues, industry challenges, key drivers and emerging trends in post-consumer and post-industrial recycling.

Learn more

Injection Molding Market Analysis & Processor Rankings

Plastics News BUNDLED package contains our in-depth Market Analysis of the Injection Molding segment. You will gain keen insight on current trends and our economic outlook.

As a BONUS this includes PN's updated 2014 database of North American Injection Molders RANKED by sales volume. Sort, merge, mail & prospect by end market, materials processed, region, # of plants and more.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

June 2, 2015 - June 3, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - Chicago 2015

September 16, 2015 - September 18, 2015Plastics Caps & Closures - September 2015

More Events