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COPERION EXTRUSION DAYS | OPEN HOUSE REPORT


Turnkey boom helps sales break $1bn at Coperion


Coperion’s Extrusion Days event at its headquarters in Stuttgart last year marked a milestone $1bn sales result. Chris Smith learnt more from senior executives Ulrich Bartel and Peter von Hoffmann


Last year proved to be a landmark for compounding machinery maker Coperion, which saw sales break the $1bn barrier for the first time in its history. Speaking to Compounding World during the company’s Extrusion Days customer event at its headquarters in Stuttgart in Germany in November, Coperion President Com- pounding and Extrusion Ulrich Bartel attributed the growth to booming plastics industry demand as well as some major turnkey contract successes. “One of the big drivers was twin screw extruders for the polyolefin area. These are big machines and huge capacities are being built up. Growth in this area is more


Main image: Attendees viewed demonstrations of Coperion’s latest equipment during tours of the company’s Stuttgart technical centre


than 50%,” said Bartel. The new projects are focused on North America, where he says the US policy of re-industriali- sation together with the cost efficiencies of the shale oil and gas industry have reversed many years of almost no polyolefin invest- ments. “What we see now is


Above: Coperion General Manager Business Unit Engineering Plastics and Special Applications Peter von Hoffmann (left) with President Compounding and Extrusion Ulrich Bartel


www.compoundingworld.com


polyolefin customers coming to us and talking about projects of more than $50m.” Turnkey installations have long been a key part of Coperion’s business, Bartel says, but these huge polyolefin projects mean that share is moving from a historical level of around 10% to 15-20% of its order intake. “But we are not only a big system company,” he emphasises. “We are also interested in smaller customers and smaller equipment – one rotary valve or one feeder.” Sales of standalone machinery items and provision of service account for more than 50% of Coperion’s business, according to Bartel. The plastics and chemicals


sectors currently account for around 80-85% of the company’s order intake ($1.1bn last year), with the remainder coming from the pharma and food industries. The latter present good growth opportunities but also provide insulation from the historical ups and downs of the plastics industry. “Everyone in the plastics business is very happy right now but we know this market goes in cycles. We haven’t had a down for some time but when it happens it is good to have another business,” he explains.


Recycling potential Coperion also sees consid- erable future potential in the area of recycling, both for traditional mechanical


January 2019 | COMPOUNDING WORLD 19


PHOTO: COPERION


PHOTO: COPERION


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