Sepro says its new product lines, including its 5-axis robots, have contributed to its record sales in 2014
With sales and market share growing in almost all global plastics markets, Sepro Robotique said it expects to close 2014 with all-time record turnover for the second year in a row.
Speaking during Fakuma, company CEO, Jean-Michel Renaudeau, said that as the year-end draws nearer, and with several months of record sales already in the books, the robot manufacturer should reach €78 million in sales for 2014, representing an increase of over 17 percent compared to 2013, which had the highest turnover since 2000. Unit sales are expected to exceed 2000 injection-molding machines equipped for the first time in the company’s history.
“Over the last several years, Sepro has implemented several strategies aimed at growing our position in the global market for robots used in plastics injection moulding,” explained Renaudeau. “We have added important new products, strengthened our sales presence in many regions and developed partnerships with injection-moulding machine manufacturers. I am very pleased to report that each of these strategies is paying off handsomely and the results are evident in the figures for 2013 and 2014.”
Renaudeau said 2014 sales are outpacing 2013 in all but one global region. In North America, Sepro’s largest market, sales are up 26 percent, in Germany, 17 percent, and in Spain and Portugal, where the market has been very soft for almost a decade, sales are up substantially due to a rebound in the automotive industry in the Valencian area of Spain that has already helped double sales, compared to 2013. This year, the two countries together will account for 14 percent of European sales.
New products introduced in the last three years also are contributing to Sepro’s growth, explained Renaudeau. While the Success Range of general purpose robots, together with the high-performance 3-axis S5 Line robots, still account for 66 percent of sales, the more advanced 5X Line 5-axis Cartesian robots has become the fastest growing segment. Other new product lines, including 6X Visual 6-axis articulated arm robots, Multi Inject robots for dual-material applications, Dual Arm robots and S3 servo-driven sprue pickers, are also said to be contributing significantly to Sepro’s business in 2014.
“While other companies cut back during the economic crisis, Sepro invested heavily in new product development,” said Renaudeau. “Today, we have a product line that is almost completely new within the last 36 months and they have been responsible for much of our recent success.”
During the same time period, Sepro has been aggressively pursuing robot sales through injection-moulding machine manufacturers who now offer Sepro robots as a part of a complete plastics process solution. Business generated mainly through four well-known OEMs now accounts for some 12 percent of Sepro unit sales and these partnerships are expected to expand in numbers and breadth of product in the near future, said Renaudeau. At Fakuma five different moulding machine suppliers are operating robots made by Sepro.