Felco Passion

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Felco Passion

Felco Passion// 2009// EditorialEconomic crisis: keep investing!Page 3// Sales networkNew subsidiary: FELCO AfricaPages 4-5// Glance at the marketsLaunch of Essentiel in AustraliaPage 6// New websitePresentation of the new sitePage 7// Award-winning packagingPage 8// Sustainable developmentFELCO materials and recyclingPage 9// FELCO's peopleThe steel workshop professionalsPage 10// NewsFELCO tools used for avocados!Page 11FELCO SA News BulletinCH - 2206 Les Geneveys-sur-Coffraneinfo@felco.com - www.felco.com99032.03-EN


ouge de marswww.felco.comROUGE DE MARSTHE LEGACY OFKNOWLEDGEFELCO SACH-2206 les Geneveys-sur-Coffraneinfo@felco.comT + 41 328 581 466 / F + 41 328 571 930


Felco Passion// 2009// EDITORIALEconomic crisis: keep investing!Stéphane PoggiBig names in finance and banking in difficulty,currencies swinging up and downlike a yo-yo, US and European auto industriesin a slump, economies in recession,households concerned for their buyingpower. All experts agree on one point, ifnothing else: this is the worst economicand financial crisis the world has seen inthe last sixty years.At FELCO however, we believe this economicdeadlock should be put into perspective.The cycle of nature does not slow downbecause of the financial crisis. Vineyards,trees and flowers still need pruning for the2009 vintage to be produced and the harvestfor subsequent years still has to be prepared.The cycle of nature is not concerned with financialand economic cycles.Of course, faced with a future of disillusionmentfor many, customers may be reluctantto spend money on tools. By systematicallybasing its range on durability and very highquality, FELCO is in the best position to contendwith such uncertainty in the appropriateway.In short, despite the crisis, FELCO is perfectlycapable of pulling through. We musttherefore continue with the strategy we havefollowed so far and keep on investing,always. This means investing in tools andproduction methods, refining existing linesand investing in the development of newproducts, developing customer support andexpanding into new markets. The achievementsat issue in this new FELCO Passion,including the launch of Essentiel in Australiaand the creation of a subsidiary for Africa,show the way forward. For a business likeFELCO, continuous investment is a must!3


SALES NETWORKNew subsidiary: FELCO AfricaFELCO SA has decided to strengthen itspresence on the African continent. A subsidiaryunder the name FELCO Africa Ltdopened its doors in Bellville, South Africa,on 1 January 2009. This is the fifth FELCOsubsidiary worldwide after Germany, Australia,Belgium and France."With FELCO Africa, we are doing somethingthat we have been considering for a longtime," said Stéphane Poggi, Sales and MarketingDirector. "South Africa is a smallmarket but it is very keen on FELCOproducts. South Africans were the first to usethe FELCO 4, formerly known as ‘popular’."With vine cultivation that covers more than250,000 acres - or almost the same size asthe vineyards of Bordeaux - South Africanwine producers are naturally one of the targetsfor the new subsidiary. "But we alsowant to expand our customer base andincrease awareness of our products in thesectors of arboriculture, parks and gardens,not to forget private customers," says MrPoggi.As its name suggests, the new subsidiary willnot limit its scope to South Africa alone butwill cover the whole of sub-Saharan Africa."The cut rose market is highly developed incountries such as Kenya, Ethiopia, Ugandaand Zimbabwe and we will also canvassthese customers through our new subsidiary.We also have plans for West Africa," saidStéphane Poggi.Based in Bellville, about sixty kilometres eastof Cape Town, the new subsidiary shareslogistics and administration with a companythat specialises in the distribution of flexiblepipes for transporting and transferring liquidfood supplies. The subsidiary is managed bythe experienced fifty year-old Gys Liebenberg,who has extensive experience in thedistribution and marketing of agriculturalequipment, and is passionate about FELCOproducts. 60% of FELCO Africa Ltd is ownedby FELCO, with 20% stakes each owned byGys Liebenberg and Graham Vorster. Thelatter, who has extensive knowledge ofAfrican trade routes, is specifically responsiblefor the development of business outsideSouth Africa."At the moment," said Stéphane Poggi, "wehave no plans to create further subsidiaries.However, we have just appointed a managerto provide support for all the markets in EasternEurope, just as we did in South America,where this has been a great success."4


Felco Passion// 2009In the photo from left to right:Fanie Olivier, Agritech; Gys Liebenberg,Sales Director, FELCO Africa; LaurentPerrin, FELCO SA; Graham Vorster, CFO,FELCO Africa; Stéphane Poggi, FELCO SA;François Olivier, AgritechBaroque for the barrelsThe town of Stellenbosch is not known just torugby players (it is home to the trainingcentre of the renowned Springboks, who wonthe Rugby World Cup in 2007). The town isat the centre of South African wine production.Wine producers vie with each other toprovide the best care for their vineyards andwill not hesitate to be original, like the DeMorgenzon estate, which decided to playbaroque music continuously in its vineyardsand cellars to improve production. Couldbaroque music be as beneficial to wine productionas FELCO tools? Time will tell perhaps.5


GLANCE AT THE MARKETSLaunch of Essentiel: FELCO Australia focussingon its female customersThe Australian subsidiary of FELCOfocused the entire Essentiel launch campaignon female customers. For the timebeing, it has decided that it will only introducethe FELCO 160S (small version) toappeal primarily to amateur gardeners.Thanks to a number of innovative promotions,this has already been a success.A vast continent with a population of just 21million, Australia has a huge variety of climatesand crops, ranging from mango andsandalwood in the north to apples and walnutsin Tasmania. The most remote customeris located 2,600 km from FELCOAustralia’s offices in Carnegie, a suburb ofMelbourne."Given the geographical size of our market,our promotion activities focus on advertisingin newspapers and on the radio and we do alot of public relations with groups that caninfluence the general public," said RémyFavre, who has been running FELCO's Australiansubsidiary since 1999. "For Essentiel,we focused on the small FELCO 160S andhave concentrated our marketing efforts onthe female market. The launch was markedby a press conference held as part of ExpoGarden Show in Melbourne, to which weinvited the media, major buyers and goodlocal distributors. Each guest received anEssentiel bag containing publicity materials(brochure and DVD), an Essentiel apron andsweets, not forgetting of course ... the essentialitem - a free sample of the new product."On the commercial front, Rémy Favre continued,"we have agreed a price deal with alarge group of retailers who have agreed tostock our product. For others, we haveestablished a 6 for the price of 5 promotion.We have also organised a competition forour sales representatives. The one whoplaces the most displays in stores wins acash prize and a number of gift-wrappedFELCO products." All these actions haveboosted sales. "After only two months", saidRémy Favre, "the Essentiel 160S is alreadyour 4th best-selling model."6


AWARD-WINNING PACKAGING FORESSENTIELThe Swiss Institute of Packaging (SVI)has awarded its Swiss Stars award for themost innovative developments in theSwiss packaging industry. The eight winnersin 2008 included the Essentiel packagingproduced by Cafag SA on the basisof specifications developed by FELCO.Essentiel’s packaging impressed the panelon account of its clever design and simplicity.FELCO’s requirements were not easy tomeet: It was to design packaging that wouldallow customers to see the entire Essentieland hold it, while properly protecting theproduct.For the panel, the package provided byCafag SA perfectly meets the needs ofFELCO. Through three carefully positionedopenings in the plastic shell that protects thecutting head of the Essentiel, customers canhandle, open and manipulate the pruningshears. As such, customers are encouragedto test what the Essentiel is like to work with,which is a great promotional advantage for atool that is available in two sizes, with largeand small handles. Thanks to the strongplastic shell, the whole tool and its packagingis still perfectly protected.Held annually, the Swiss packaging contestwas in its 39th year. There were 55 entriesthis year, a record number that makes theaward won by Essentiel’s packaging all themore prestigious.78


Felco Passion// 2009// SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENTFELCO materials and recycling: hard to beat!Since its earliest days, FELCO has alwayssought to make the best use of resourcesand minimise its impact on the environment.For Laurent Perrin, the ManagingDirector, there is hardly any room forimprovement, as the recycling of materialsis systematically undertaken at allstages of production. Discussions arestill taking place on how to optimise certainpackaging.The manufacture of FELCO tools inevitablygenerates a certain amount of waste. "At allstages of production, however, we always tryto make use of such waste," says LaurentPerrin. Steel off cuts produced during stamping,for example, are ground and returned tosteel manufacturers through a specialistrecycling company and the same is donewith the metal shavings from machiningoperations. The silt that is left after grindingprovides a good source of heating for thecement kilns. All cardboard packaging issorted and either reused or recycled. Paper,domestic and other waste is dealt with in thesame way wherever possible.In total, the volume recycled is impressive:more than 210 tonnes of metal in 2007alone, plus nearly 17 tonnes of cardboardand wood. Depending on the price of rawmaterials, recycling helps generate a smallprofit, although currently the reverse is true."But this is not what motivates us in the firstplace," says Laurent Perrin. "Sustainabledevelopment has been the whole philosophybehind FELCO ever since it was founded.Producing tools that can be dismantled initself means that components are intendedfor sorting and recycling at the end of theirlife. Allowing worn parts to be repaired orreplaced saves resources and reduces environmentalimpact."9


FELCO'S PEOPLEThe steel workshop professionalsWith around fifteen employees, the steelworkshop produces steel blades andcounter-blades for FELCO tools. The successivetasks of drilling, broaching,milling and punching shears are rigorouslycontrolled, thus ensuring extremeprecision. Robotic equipment and digitalmachining centres are gradually replacingconventional machines.Sébastien Nussbaum, who manages thesteel-machining workshop, explains the successiveoperations carried out by his teamusing a number of dedicated machines. "Theblades and counter-blades reach us asground blanks. They then undergo variousmachining operations. First, we drill holes sothat axes, screws, pins and other mountingpoints can be passed through and sometimeswe broach, an operation carried outcutting a square through the part. Then wemill the section, heel or the tip of the bladealong with the blade edge and then the outeredges of the parts are angled." This is highprecision work and requires all staff to constantlycheck that the piece being machineddoes not exceed set tolerance levels.The workshop has three types of equipment:conventional machinery which is very reliableand very accurate, but can only perform onetask at a time; robot units, which areultra-fast, capable to produce, round theclock and with great precision, the necessarymovements allowing parts to be trimmed;and finally computer digital control machines(CNC), which allow to carry out multipleoperations whilst only going through themachine once. An expert in modern machiningtechnology, Sébastien Nussbaum speaksenthusiastically about his CNC machines:"They allow us to streamline our manufacturingprocess, so we can avoid the multiplerepeat operations required by conventionalmachines."The staff is gradually trained to operate theCNC and robot units. This technologicalchange requires new skills, said SébastienNussbaum. "You need computer skills, attentionto detail and to be able to multitaskrather than just carry out individual operationson parts." Staff training is expected toplay a key role in the acquisition of thesenew technologies. Without a team that istrained and motivated, these devices do notperform to their maximum.From left to right in the photo:Nussbaum Sébastien, Bas Nurettin,Talovic Nesib, Hofmann Jean-Claude,Gremaud John-Michel, Antunes Flavio,Outaleb Said, Todeschini Jean-Daniel,Liengo Kanza, Ponzetta Antonio,Domas Louis-Marc10

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