Punch Powertrain invests in production and people

Since 4 February Belgium has seven more factories of the future: Biobakkerij De Trog, E.D.&A., JTEKT Torsen Europe, Ontex, Punch Powertrain, TE Connectivity and Van Hoecke NV were granted this label as a show of appreciation for their efforts. These companies have invested in state-of-the-art production technology, digitalisation, social innovation and ecology which now makes them top-of-the-range companies. We will discuss these remarkable companies one by one.

No less than seven companies have reached the status of ‘Factory of the Future’ after an assessment period. We will now present the winning company Punch Powertrain, a former subsidiary of DAF and today the only independent developer and producer of automatic transmission systems, with headquarters in Sint-Truiden. The plant is currently producing a monthly volume of products which six years ago constituted an entire annual volume.  The output per direct employee almost doubled, while interruptions have been reduced by a factor five in the last five years. The global investment programme of 350 million euros for the next four years is intended to multiply the current production volume by four again.

Punch is presenting itself as an international player in product development for hybrid and electrical vehicles. Knowledge and innovation in process and production are the essence of the sustainable business model adopted by the company for the anchoring strategy in Belgium: product and process development, start-up of production and production of key components in Belgium, final assembly of the transmission systems in their own (Chinese) plant, near the - mainly Asian - customers. The company can rely on a unique knowledge which is difficult to copy, even within the own organisation.

The details of how Punch Powerrtain did this are available on the website of Made Different.

In the context of Made Different Sirris and Agoria are currently coaching more than 200 other companies in their transformation to a Factory of the Future. One or more transformations are ongoing at these companies as we speak. These companies operate in a wide range of industries: technological industry, food, textile, paper, pharmaceuticals, transport, chemistry, leather, furniture, medical, construction... It involves SMEs (66%) and large undertakings (34%) spread over all Flemish provinces. Sirris and Agoria estimate that about 50 companies will have acquired the ‘Factory of the Future’ label by 2018. During this period about 500 companies will be addressed and coached in realising one or more transformations (while 50 Factories of the Future excel in all seven transformations).