Plastics News - Show Daily - October 22, 2022 - 20

20 * Plastics News, October 22, 2022
SHOW DAILY
Engel Austria investing in an energy-effi cient future
By Karen Laird
Sustainable Plastics
ENGEL
Demand may be down, but investments
in energy effi ciency
remain strong. That was the main
message from Engel Austria CEO
Stefan Engleder this year at K.
Speaking at an Oct. 19 news
conference, he said that " energy-effi
cient solutions are certainly
vital for Europe's survival. " But,
he said, incoming orders were
down in the two-digit range.
" Right now,
the
situation
is
changing from week to week. We
are using K to feel and sense the
mood of the market, " he said.
The high costs of energy in Europe,
which are a direct result of
the geopolitical developments of
the past months, have impacted
businesses across the continent
and the energy-intensive plastics
processing sector is no exception.
In addition, the destabilizing
effects of the pandemic's supply
chain disruptions and material
price fl uctuations are also contributing
to the uncertainty in the market
about the immediate future
and further dampening demand.
The decline in incoming orders
since August is mainly seen in the
construction and infrastructure
industries. By comparison, the
automotive sector is still performing
well globally. According to Engleder,
Engel does not expect the
situation to change for the better
in the near future, and indeed
anticipates a further decline in
demand. In the medium to longer
term, however, the board is confi
dent that the market will regain
momentum. " Plastics processing
remains a growth market, " Engleder
emphasized.
Engel Austria is using recycled materials along with high-speed
production during K 2022. Messe Düsseldorf photos
Back on track
As it now stands, Engel will
close the current 2022-23 fi scal
year in March 2023 with a 7 percent
year-on-year increase, mainly
thanks to what is currently
still a comparatively good order
backlog, hence fulfi lling its aim
to return to the €1.6 billion sales
mark achieved in the pre-crisis
fi scal year 2018-19. Europe accounted
for 50 percent, although
this region in particular is feeling
the brunt of the rising costs of energy;
the Americas for 27 percent;
Asia for 21 percent; with 2 percent
coming from other regions.
In North America, said Engleder,
growth was particularly strong in
packaging.
" We are benefi ting from the
ongoing reshoring trend in the
region. This led to a very high
demand for machines with short
lead times, which led us to implement
our Fast Track program. "
He added that due the recession
in North America, Engel expected
demand to taper in the
near future.
Meanwhile, the recovery of the
automotive industry is driving
growth in Latin America, Brazil
and Argentina, with Engel participating
in this growth at an above
average rate.
While the zero COVID policy in
China has its stunted economic
growth, Engleder said that Engel,
which has a strong local presence
in that country, has continued to
do good business there. He added
that notably Southeast Asia
and India are currently benefi ting
from the Chinese government's
rigid coronavirus policy and becoming
alternative production
locations to China.
India, the Middle East, Turkey
Hall 15,
Booth C58
and parts of Africa - in particular
South Africa - are all performing
very well after the ramp-up in the
automotive industry in the middle
of last year. As well, the company
established a new subsidiary
in Tangier, Morocco, in the early
summer of this year. Morocco has
rapidly developed into a leading
automotive
manufacturing hub
for automobiles in Africa, overtaking
South Africa as the biggest
exporter of passenger cars on the
continent. In addition, the packaging
and medical sectors are
also emerging as highly promising
markets for growth in this region.
" The new local offering has been
very well received by customers.
We have already expanded the
team on-site, " Engleder said.
Sustainability drives
investment
While the automotive industry
has regained momentum far rapidly
than expected over the past
year and continues to account for
a high share of order intake today,
new challenges have arisen
in the form of skyrocketing energy
prices, infl ation and the war in
Ukraine that are reshaping investment
priorities, causing, in some
cases, projects to be postponed.
Engel has noticed that customers
are interested in updating their
machinery to boost energy effi -
ciency or are willing to invest on
behalf of new technologies such as
electric mobility or autonomous
driving. Demand for energy-saving
servo-hydraulic and all-electric
injection molding machines continues
to rise, as does the need for
technology enabling the processing
of recycled materials.
According to Engleder, decarbonization
is an increasingly important
issue, especially in the
automotive industry.
" In fact, I have a brand-new announcement
to make: Supplier
sustainability is now a decisive
criterion guiding investments in
new machinery and production
units here. We just heard two
hours ago that we have achieved
gold status in the EcoVadis ranking,
which our customers in the
automotive industry will appreciate, "
he stated.
He noted that the pandemic-related
boom in the technical molding
division, which mainly impacted
the building, household, sports
and leisure sectors, had subsided,
while investments in logistics applications
were still high.
Other sectors are also showing
growth to keep pace with new
market developments. A good example
is the teletronics industry,
where demand for high precision
injection molding machines for
highly demanding products, often
in the fi eld of micro injection
molding, is on the rise. The wearables
and sensor products sector
for sports, leisure and health is
also opening up further potential
in this area.
The emphasis in the medical
market has gradually shifted as
COVID has started to retreat, with
investments in autoinjectors and
inhalers now gaining in importance.
The packaging sector is in
the grips of the transition to the
tethered caps, driving demand
for all-electric, high-performance
machines from the Engel e-cap
series. In response to the changing
conditions, Engel has invested
strongly in its packaging expertise.
This year, a new packaging center
with machine capacity for customer
trials, demonstrations and industry-specifi
c developments was
opened in Austria at the Schwertberg
and St. Valentin locations.
K 2022:
Beyond just 'green'
After two years of pandemic,
coming to K 2022 offers an oppor
http://www.polystarco.com

Plastics News - Show Daily - October 22, 2022

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