Smart automation and doubled volume at JTEKT Torsen Europe

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. The second award-winning company that we want to present to you is JTEKT Torsen Europe from Strépy-Bracquegnies, and their 180 staff, are global market leader in the production of limited slip differentials for 4 wheel drive cars. Smart automation was one of the practices that in the past four years helped the company to almost double the items produced per employee.

Besides production it is also dedicated to R&D and has in-house testing infrastructure. In order to maintain its position and continue to grow - the idea is to move towards larger volumes, more diversity in product types and a larger customer group - investments are made in people and materials, in (local) R&D technology. This is achieved by a well-considered approach of integration and efficiency, automation and digitalisation, eco conception and production.

JTEKT stands for intensive cooperation with customers who are involved in the development of tailor-made products, with own personnel, which can count on responsibility, flexibility and self-development. Besides a more than doubled volume the results of the past years also include a strong growth in personnel. The energy efficiency also improved with more than 54 percent between 2009 and 2015, the product weight of different differentials decreased by more than 40 percent.

The details of how JTEKT Torsen Europe 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).