SHANGHAI — Wintec is the secret weapon for Engel Holding GmbH to boost its market share in Asia — where it now sits below the global average for the world’s largest injection molding machine maker.
The family-owned business sent its top executives from Schwertberg, Austria, to Shanghai for the official launch of Wintec at Chinaplas April 23-26.
As Engel CEO Peter Neumann put it at the Chinaplas media day event: “Today is the birthday of Wintec. We are the parents of this product.”
As a part of the Engel Group, Wintec will function independently from Engel in Asia. It is specifically tasked with opening up sales in the commodity molders market.
Despite Asia’s strong growth and its overtaking the Americas as Engel’s second largest market after Europe, Engel’s market share here remains low at 11 percent, based on value. To put things in perspective, Engel claims 35 percent of the European market, 16 percent in Americas and 17 percent worldwide.
Wintec brings the potential to change that picture, Neumann said.
While Engel focuses on high-end applications with modular options, Wintec offers standardized machines for commodity producers — which is a big piece of the pie.
Engel’s chief sales officer, Christoph Steger, presented an interesting analysis of the injection molding machine market in Asia and China. He divided the market into five tiers: premium, technical molding, commodities, low-specs and low-tech.
The middle section, commodity molding, translates to 14,000 presses, or 33 percent of the Chinese market in 2013. Overall, the Asian commodity molding market is made up of 24,450 presses, which represent 38 percent of the total press fleet of 64,000 machines.
Wintec, with its dual-platen t-win model, is designed to tackle this sizable market segment.
The t-win presses, currently available in six sizes from 450 to 1,750 tons, deliver 23 percent higher productivity, 26 percent improved total cost of ownership, 63 percent less energy consumption and a 22 percent smaller footprint compared to local machines, according to Stefan Engleder, Engel’s chief technology officer.
The C2 control unit comes from Europe, and almost all other parts are localized.
The three main targets for highly standardized Wintec machines are white goods, automotive and other 2-platen applications, Wintec CEO Peter Auinger explained.
Wintec machines stick to high standards, albeit with reduced options, Neumann stressed.
The Changzhou plant for Wintec has 17,000 square meters of production floor space and 40,000 square meters of total area. It has the option to expand another 48,000 square meters.
The facility employs 100 and can produce 300 presses per year.
Separate from the Wintec operation, Engel has expanded its medical and packaging specialist team in Shanghai. Its new automation center in Shanghai serves to meet growing demand for automation production cells from Chinese customers.
“We expect China to be the biggest market for Engel in the future,” Neumann said.
Engel reported at Chinaplas that it reached $1.3 billion in sales in the 2013-2014 fiscal year.