Waldorf Technik GmbH & Co. KG, a German company that designs and builds high-speed robots and automation for the medical and packaging markets, has created a U.S. subsidiary.
The Engen, Germany-based company announced the creation of Waldorf Technik Inc. in St. Charles, Ill., on Oct. 1. The operation handles sales and service for North America.
Automation for the high-volume production of disposable medical products and in-mold labeling and part removal for packaging are two recession-resistant markets, said export sales director Andrew Sargisson, at Waldorf's booth at the Fakuma trade show, held Oct. 14-18 in Friedrichshafen.
``If you look at the U.S. market, it's two veins of gold,'' Sargisson said.
He said Waldorf has a few North American customers, but up until now, its automation equipment has spread by word-of-mouth. Company officials considered selling through an agent, but decided that a direct U.S. presence was the best way to boost sales.
The president of the Illinois operation is Taras Konowal, who formerly ran the U.S. unit of Fahr Bucher GmbH, a German maker of injection and compression molding presses that was sold to KraussMaffei. Waldorf's strength is building customized automation equipment for medical disposables things like pipettes, contact lenses, insulation injectors, syringes, inhalers and blood-testing devices. The company's MedTec system can track parts through part removal, handling and packaging, so the customer can tell exactly when each part was made and in which mold cavity it was made.
``We take away the risk element,'' Sargisson said. ``This is all about traceability and qualification.''
On the packaging side, Waldorf designs and builds Highflex robots and automation for in-mold labeling, with takeout times as fast as one-tenth of a second. The equipment is flexible, so the same system can handle a variety of shapes, such as round and rectangular containers.