Annual Report 2018

PDF of legal annual report with financial statements.

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Annual Review 2018

PDF version of this site.

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Digital Manufacturing

Digitalization increases productivity 

Digitalization using the Industrial Internet of Things (IOT) increases both flexibility and efficiency in production. In 2018, the factory in Kinston, U.S., became the pilot plant for a fully connected manufacturing shopfloor; this was followed by Sao Carlos, Brazil. The process flow in these factories is digitally controlled and managed by a Manufacturing Execution System which monitors production information as it receives data from robots, machines and employees in real-time.

Monitoring of assembly lines through hundreds of data points enables functions further down the value chain to react to changes in the production flow. It is a highly interconnected ecosystem in which real-time data is available on a range of devices, including tablets, smartwatches and smartphones allowing for fast reaction times. The optimization of the entire process flow is expected to yield several percentage points of productivity increase once fully deployed in assembly lines, technological areas, warehouses and internal logistics. Starting in 2019, the model of a fully-connected factory will be rolled out across production sites in a multi-year plan. 

At the factory in Curitiba, Brazil, another digital technology was introduced. This involves 3D-printing, also known as additive manufacturing, in the production of cooling channels in injection molds. A total of around 100 injection molding tools have been “digitally upgraded”, and are now producing 30 million parts annually. The use of this has resulted in a 20% increase in productivity in the full injection molding assets in the factory.

  • Industrial IOT process flow is expected to increase productivity by 3-5% in the Kinston and Sao Carlos factories when fully implemented
  • Starting in 2019, Industrial IOT will be rolled out across further factories and warehouses in the Group.
  • Additive manufacturing increased productivity by 20% in the manufacturing of plastic parts in the plant in Curitiba.

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