With the plant visits, Taiwan makers hope to address the issues raised by Thai companies and use it to improve their machines and technologies. Each Taiwanese machinery builder was given a chance to introduce their machine tool solutions and explain how they can help Thai manufacturers to be more efficient, smarter, and more connected to their supply chain and customers alike. In return, Thai makers shared their criteria for choosing the right machine tool equipment they need.
Here's an inside look at the criteria that were discussed during the meeting, and some of the pitfalls Thai makers underwent during the process.
Global Thaixon Precision Industry
Global Thaixon Precision Industry Co. Ltd’s products include high-precision turning part, high-precision tooling/milling part and high-precision stamping part. In a job shop environment where parts of a multitude of sizes and shapes are machined, and where the requirements might change from day to day, Global Thaixon Precision said that it is important to select the right machine for a particular operation.
Director and Deputy General Manager Saito Satoru, explained that with countless multi-tasking machines with advanced capabilities on the market today, it can be overwhelming when trying to choose the best solution for their operations. After all, they don’t want to overspend on unnecessary functions or under invest in a technology that could make them more profitable in the long run.
“We want a machine that offers the highest possible performance for our exact needs at the lowest possible operating and downtime costs,” he clarified.
C.C. S. Advance Tech
C.C. S. Advance Tech Co. Ltd is a one stop manufacturing company that provides aerospace components to its Tier 1 and Tier 2 customers, such as Boeing, Airbus, Rolls Royce and UTAS.
According to Ketan Pole, Chief Executive Officer, in today's competitive business world, being innovative in everything you do is the key to success. “Innovation is really about responding to change in a creative way. One way to do this is by acquiring equipment or technology that helps you improve your efficiency,” he said.
Ketan further said that buying the right tools from the start can be a huge investment, but considering the size of the contract and the cost of the machine bought to accomplish it, getting into production without delay is essential.
“If you’re a good business, people will come to you,” Ketan commented. Aside from aerospace components, C.C. S. Advance Tech is also involved in one-off, small batch, as well as mass production of high-quality precision parts for oil & gas, electronics, semiconductors, needle/standard miniaturized bearings, computer parts and hard disk components manufacturing, fiber optics, bio-medical and automotive.
Somboon Advance Technology
Somboon Advance Technology Co. Ltd (SAT) has a long and illustrious history of serving customers in a certain way. It is engaged in the manufacture and distribution of motor vehicle parts for passenger cars, pickup trucks and agricultural machinery. Their businesses were focused on having the right product in the right volume available.
Today, though, the triad of machines, place, and price are still important, manufacturers are being asked to do more. Business Development Manager Chanboon Sripramote, said, “It is not enough that we provide access to motor vehicle parts anymore. Customers are demanding that we give them an edge in an increasingly competitive market.”
As a result, SAT is looking for machine tool equipment that will bring increased value for them. They want to partner with a machine tool builder who has moved beyond the traditional sales model of fulfilment to one who provides specialized product knowledge, design, and value-added services.
P.C.S. Precision Works
P.C.S. Precision Works Co., Ltd is a leading manufacturer of auto parts with a unique strength in advanced technology development. It has been accepted by major auto makers in Japan and Europe for over 30 years.
Taiji Ushioda, Interim Managing Director shared some of the pitfalls they experienced during manufacturing. “Excessive heat, vibration and noise are usually some of the problems we encounter. A failed bearing or gear is also an effect of the problems we encounter.”
He added, “While striving to accommodate quality requirements from our clients, we hold our machine suppliers to the same high standards. We continue to add new features to our products to increase their value and put ourselves ahead of the competition.”
Mr. Ushioda revealed that Taiwan manufacturers should move toward high-end market segments to stand out against low-cost competition from mainland China.
Jitachai Engineering Products
Jitachai Engineering Products Co. Ltd’s number one concern when buying a machine is price. They may place high importance on other factors, but in the end, the commercial success of the product depends on meeting margins, which means driving down manufacturing costs where possible. Managing Director Worradet Leelaassawin believes that the lowest price will not necessarily mean the lowest cost, but it's easy to lose sight of this when looking at attractive bids.
Although the company is not in need of a new machine, they want a partner with the capacity to be there during their "ups" but also to thrive through their "downs" -- not one that could be dangerously close to going out of business if their project is delayed or cancelled.
Jitachai Engineering’s main products and services include: mechanical parts, mechanical devices, jig & fixtures, mass production of rubber and metal molds, forming, prototype, test or sample work pieces.
Worradet advised Taiwan companies present during the visit to continually improve their technologies to create value-added products and deliver better solutions to customers to stay competitive.
Mr. Thongchalaem focuses on improving one area of its business at a time, rather than tackling an entire process. Ultimately, they improve turnaround time, efficiency or other aspects of its business. When he learned that he doesn’t need to buy a new equipment, he saved the money to make other investments. One example is a system he is carefully developing.
When asked about Taiwan equipment, Mr. Thongchalaem expects Taiwan makers to create more value for its customers.
At the end of the day, Taiwan makers know they can’t compete with machine tool builders from Germany or Japan on reputation. But they have the unique Taiwanese combination of quality and price. Chin Fong, Cosen, Equitop, Everricho, Goodway and Taiwan Takisawa pride themselves on the fact that they have learned from the best before building their own machines, utilizing Japanese and German solutions and technology in a low-cost package not available from those countries. Taiwan is a tiny territory of just 23 million souls. Talent mobility, above all, spurred the birth of Taiwan machine tool industry. The people behind Taiwan’s rise, whose vision and determination turned a little mountain island into a technology engine, are stories less known.