Manufacturing Today - September/October 2016 - 90

iwis drive systems llc
www.iwis.de/en/home / U.S. site: Indianapolis / U.S. employees: 52 / Specialty: Chain drive
system components / Dan Egenolf, co-owner: "Our growth demonstrates that we're doing our job."

Midwest

tems' products are used in a variety of
markets, including automotive, agriculture, and food and beverage. Iwis
has diversified to include thousands
of additional customers.
"Any kind of assembly line could be
using our chains to transport parts,"
he says. "We've got a line of flattop
chains that are used in the beverage
market and in food packaging."

Driving Reliability

iwis drive systems' automotive chains are designed to
run 300,000 miles.

Built to Last

iwis drive systems' products can endure heavy
loads and harsh conditions. by alan dorich
Some companies offer a limited
range of products, but not iwis drive
systems LLC.
"What we do is we go to our various
customers [and] design and develop
products that meet their particular
application needs," co-owner Dan
Egenolf says.
"We don't go to them and say,
'Here's our catalog and pick out a
product,'" he asserts. "We design a
product that will overcome [their
challenges]."
Based in Indianapolis, iwis drive
systems is a division of iwis, a Munich,
Germany-based producer of engine
and drive systems for automotive, industrial and agricultural equipment
90

manufacturing-today.com SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2016

OEMs. The division's history goes
back to 2004, Egenolf says.
"What took place was our German
parent company had developed a relationship with John Deere," he recalls. "They were doing a very good
job in Germany and John Deere asked
if they would like to work for them in
the U.S.A."
But iwis needed its own U.S. division to do that. At that time, Egenolf
was a U.S. distributor for the company, and he partnered with iwis export
manager, Glenn Walters, to form iwis
drive systems.
Both men became 10 percent equity holders, while the parent company
held 80 percent. Today, iwis drive sys-

Egenolf credits iwis drive systems'
success to its parent company. "We
really piggyback a lot of the development on our German parent," he
says, noting that iwis is celebrating its
100th anniversary. "They really focus
on serving the OEM."
iwis drive systems' broad product
range and reliability also help. Historically, Egenolf says, chains tend
to break under heavy loads and harsh
circumstances due to dirt, debris and
heat. "So we've got to design our products to meet those application needs
and be more competitive in the market," he says.
This is particularly essential for customers in the automotive industry.
If a vehicle's timing chain fails, "The
whole engine will fail," he says. "[Our
chains are] designed to run 300,000
miles, guaranteed."
Farmers also depend on the products. "They cannot have failures,"
Egenolf says. "When they're out there
harvesting, they have to have all of
their systems running 100 percent to
capture the harvest."

Leading to Quality
iwis maintains a rigorous quality
control system that permeates the
entire organization, Egenolf says.
Its Munich facility daily produces 65 kilometers of chains that are
used for 35 million components. The


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Manufacturing Today - September/October 2016

Contents
Manufacturing Today - September/October 2016 - Cover1
Manufacturing Today - September/October 2016 - Cover2
Manufacturing Today - September/October 2016 - 1
Manufacturing Today - September/October 2016 - 2
Manufacturing Today - September/October 2016 - Contents
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Manufacturing Today - September/October 2016 - Cover3
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