To make sure that the neighbors can continue sleeping peacefully despite somebody taking a bath or flushing their toilet in the middle of the night, sound-insulated pipes and pipe fittings are increasingly being installed in new buildings. S-Line is Peštan's response to this trend. The S stands for silent and promises building drainage hardware that performs at less than 12 decibels. The pipe system specialist based in Aranjelovac, Serbia, 75 kilometers south of Belgrade, modernized its injection molding production for the market launch of the innovative product line two years ago. The new tie-bar-less ENGEL victory machines make it possible to meet the increased precision requirements while maintaining low unit costs.
"We are the largest production plant for pipe and pipe fittings in Europe," proudly says Miodrag Petkovic on a tour of the production facility. He manages the company founded by his father 30 years ago, which in itself is a good customer of the products they produce. The new administration building has almost been completed and the production floors are also being extended. The location employs more than 1000 staff.
Injection molding and extrusion are the two major production processes that produce parts with a total material weight of 65,000 tons per year. After completing the plant expansion, the capacity will grow to 100,000 tons per year. "We are responding to rising demand, also from abroad," says Petkovic. Seventy percent is exported, primarily to Europe, but also to the USA and Asia. Thirty percent remains in the countries of former Yugoslavia, where Peštan is a leading brand.
Focus on operating costs and availability
Innovative products, such as low-noise pipes and pipe fittings, are among the growth drivers. The S-Line range currently accounts for around eight percent of the business. "This business will grow to at least thirty percent over the next five years," says Petkovic. "We have invested heavily in sound insulation," as Milan Nikolić, Head of Strategic Development at Peštan, emphasizes. There is a lot of expertise in the material – it's a mineral-filled polypropylene – and also in the geometry of the fittings. "The material and geometry place significantly higher demands on the injection molding process than conventional pipe fittings," says Nikolić explaining why the company also invested in machinery.