Downtime on a production line can mean serious loss of revenue for an automotive parts manufacturing giant like Eberspächer, a major catalytic convertor manufacturer, supplying international markets.
When recently faced with the challenge of relocating their gas farm within their premises, they expected their gas supplier, Air Products, to facilitate a seamless process with no interruption to their production line. An extremely challenging transition, well executed by Air Products, Eberspächer confirmed.
Eberspächer Port Elizabeth, based in Deal Party, is a large gas consumer and their gas requirements are comprised of mainly argon and smaller portions of oxygen and carbon dioxide – primarily used in the welding of catalytic converters.
The relocation of the gas farm was unforeseen but necessary, said Eberspächer Maintenance Manager, Steven Jansen.
“We were clear that we needed the relocation to take place without any interruption to our production line. Air Products ensured our needs were understood and we agreed to the mitigation of any risks. This ensured our seamless supply remained uninterrupted. The installation was very well timed and planned,” said Jansen, adding that it was the type of high standard of service that Eberspächer expects of their suppliers, with the end-to-end relocation taking only 15 days.
Air Products, in particular, had to ensure they provided Eberspächer with security of supply, back-up service and technical expertise during the transition.
“Air Products delivered 100% of our needs. They facilitated a unified process – which was naturally a big concern for us, since we cannot afford to lose out on production time,” said Jansen.
The security of gas supply is also a genuine area of concern for Jansen, who said their need for gas escalates as their production line gets busier. “The support we receive from Air Products is phenomenal, and they have managed to get it right, always ensuring we have an adequate supply of gas at all times.”
The growing concern surrounding gas supply in the industrial sector will soon diminish as Air Products prepares to break ground on their Air Separation Unit in the Coega Industrial Development Zone (IDZ) in the next couple of months.
“It definitely works in our favour to know that the security of gas supply will be ensured with the new venture Air Products is bringing to the region. Coupled with the phenomenal service we receive from Air Products, we look forward to the expansion,” said Jansen.
A technologically advanced system enables Air Products and Eberspächer to monitor the gas farm remotely, ensuring that any problems that arise are dealt with speedily and that gas levels are scrutinised to effectively deliver supplies.
Air Products Area Sales Manager, Pierre Fourie, credits the success of the gas farm relocation to a dedicated Air Products Eastern Cape team who worked tirelessly and carefully to ensure the process posed no disruption to the client’s operations.
“Eberspächer has been our client for almost 20 years and we believe that winning recipes keep customers happy. We show our customers true service that delivers the difference,” explained Fourie.
“Air Products makes a point of understanding our customer’s businesses in order to refine the service we deliver to them. Not all businesses are the same and the service requirement cannot be industrialised fully. As a national company, our collective approach and the manner in which we engage with our customer speaks to that difference,” said Fourie.
Article source: http://mype.co.za/new/2013/04/its-all-about-air-supply/