Interview with Martin Scherrer AstenJohnson President PMC Eurasia
Why do you offer now press felts to the EMEA — markets?
AstenJohnson has an excellent press felt product portfolio, we are a strong player in North America and Asia offering products to the biggest and most modern technology paper machines in the world. Now it is time to bring these products to Europe. Some years ago we have already started to introduce press felts products to Russia and the Middle East region where we are growing rapidly. In 2021 alone we have doubled our press felt orders.
Basically we are just following our long-term strategy here in EMEA region where we are market leaders in Dryers and we have only focused on this product line for many years. We decided then to start with Forming approximately 10 years ago, having already in mind to begin with Press when Forming became established. Forming is established, now it’s time for Press.
How do you want to grow this business?
We have an excellent product portfolio, that is already a very good starting point. Additionally we have hired André Hüttner, a well-respected press felt champion in our industry and other new sales and service people for additional support in press. André will lead our press felt team. We have already started with this dedicated press sales and service team here in Europe to do service in the press sections and collecting data.
You don’t have any press production facilities here in Europe. From where will you supply the press felts?
We have one of the most modern fabrics production facilities in China. And we are one of the rare fabric supplier in the world to produce all 3 product lines in one factory.
That means we have huge fabrics experience in China and we have further plans to extend our production facility very soon. Honestly speaking we are growing quite fast.
We are working with lean already many years and we are able to produce our products within 4-6 weeks and with a good logistical train connection from China to Europe we are able to deliver a product within 1012 weeks from placing the order until the products are at the customer’s mill.
We will have warehouses in Europe where we will store the press felts of our customers to be able to react immediately. Logistics will be key, but we have already a lot of experience since we are importing products from Asia already since many years.
In one of my next customer e-mails I will present a nice video from our press felt plant in China, so that you get an impression about our state-of-the-art-facility.
Why should a customer now order from AstenJohnson since there are already many established press felt suppliers in Europe?
Why not?! We are bringing new ideas and new solutions into a market with growing demands for safety and sustainability.
AstenJohnson has unique seamed press products for demanding positions where you would think: “l never thought it is possible to run a seamed felt here!’
So we are able to supply applications for all positions with a seam. And it is so exciting to see what we have in our development pipeline!