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

Molder provides quality parts and quality work for disabled adults

July 23, 2014 2:40 pm ET

Coarc Manufacturing Inc. does injection molding, assembly and all of the work of traditional manufacturer, but it also serves as part of Coarc Inc. a ...    More

Image

Plastics help designers bring home the gold

July 22, 2014 2:15 pm ET

Products with polymer content received multiple gold recognitions in the 2014 International Design Excellence Awards.    More

Image

Munson Machinery expanding assembly, testing operations

July 22, 2014 2:02 pm ET

Munson Machinery Co. Inc. is expanding its headquarters factory by about one-third in Utica, N.Y., where the company makes mixing, blending and size-...    More

Image

Windmöller & Hölscher looking to continued growth in China

July 21, 2014 3:40 pm ET

With 2013 global sales of 600 million euros, China has grown into an important export market for Windmöller & Hölscher KG, second only to the United...    More

Image

Material Insights: PE makers declare force majeure

July 21, 2014 1:53 pm ET

Plus, changes in PET bottle resin price, PolyOne closing facilities and CCP Composites gets bought.    More

Market Reports

Injection Molders Market Report & Ranking 2014

This special package contains our 132-page 2014 Market Report on the Injection Molding segment and our exclusive 2014 RANKINGS database of 500+ Injection Molders for a discounted package price.

Learn more

Plastics Recycling Market Review & Outlook 2014

This special report from Plastics News examines the North American plastics recycling industry and provides insight into indicators that impact market viability, including Resin pricing trends for virgin and recycled market material and historical Resin production trends for post- consumer and industrial waste.

Learn more

Shale Gas Market - Analysis of North American Region

This report highlights the impact of shale-based natural gas on the North American plastics market and features an in-depth analysis of production trends in the United States during 2013 and a forecast for 2014 and beyond.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

September 10, 2014 - September 12, 2014Plastics Caps & Closures 2014

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

More Events