Brueckner develops, produces and distributes machines and lines for the coating and finishing of apparel fabric, technical textiles, nonwovens, glass fabrics and floor coverings. In an interview with Fibre2Fashion, CEO Regina Bruckner speaks about the effects of the pandemic on the textile machinery industry and how the company? is reacting to the changed customer preferences with even stronger focus on sustainability.
Last year was a difficult year for the world due to the pandemic. How was the worldwide textile machinery industry affected?
Textile machinery saw quite a downturn in order intake, especially in the field of classic textiles due to the uncertainties of the consumers. Besides that, home textiles for hotels also saw a downturn. On the other hand, there were a lot of investments in machines for man-made fibres and of course in nonwovens.?
How have customer preferences changed in the current scenario and how are you reacting to that?
Customers are asking for faster deliveries as they too have to react faster to their customers. Secondly, they appreciate the possibilities of remote services. Besides they want to be more flexible with their machines; therefore machines need to be easy to handle and required to change to all kind of textiles they are finishing. Above all customers have started discussing possibilities of a more sustainable production.
What is Brueckner's market positioning with respect to the textile machinery market today? In which segment of textile machinery are you a market leader?
We are definitely the market leader in finishing of all kind of technical textiles - this includes many niche markets, but they all are equally important to us. We are a technical leader as our machines are designed for highly efficient and productive finishing and for treating the most sensitive fabrics.
Where do you source the raw materials for machinery? How does your supply chain work?
We built a new factory in Bavaria in 2017 and are working there since the beginning of 2018. We are convinced that flexible manufacturing is a key success factor to our custom-made machines and wide product portfolio. Especially in critical times as last year, we were able to react much faster as we had our own resources.
Which are your major markets?
Luckily, we′re selling to many markets worldwide -- our main markets are different for classical textile and technical textiles. In general, we see a lot of movement in Turkey and China, but there are many other markets which are also growing now like Pakistan, Uzbekistan, India and Bangladesh.
Which are some of the major textile/ apparel brands who are advocates of your machinery in India?
D′Décor is one of our most important customers in interior and home furnishing textiles. Indocount is one of the best producers of exclusive, very fine and sensitive home textiles. But there many more valued customers in India to mention on this list e.g Vardhman Textiles, KPR Mill, Himatsingka, Exim Knits, CR Garments, South Garments, SCM Garments, AKR Textiles, Armstrong Knitting Mills among many others.
Technology is in a sense leading the fightback. What steps has Brueckner taken or is taking to move into a more digitalised work culture?
In the finishing sector it′s even more important to get a good overview of production utilisation, efficiency and remote support of all machines. We′re selling our machines since years with integrated online support/remote service. This did help a lot during the pandemic as we were able to even start-up machines from the distance. Besides our machines can always be installed with key sensors to monitor energy consumption and efficiency. By doing so, the employees for production can plan their programme in a better way.
What are the new launches / product offerings to look forward to in the current year?
We developed new dryers for the nonwovens industry, especially for the finishing of very light fabric. Besides we′re developing a new way of impregnating fabric that afterwards has an anti-viral and anti-microbial effect and can be used in the medical industry, together with a chemical company.
What are your future expansion plans?
Our focus is to grow on the sustainable path and always focus on the needs of our customers. Therefore we′re developing a lot of custom-made solutions. What we expect in future is an even stronger focus on sustainability, e.g impregnation with reduced amount of water and chemistry - for example minimum application methods, higher efficiency in drying processes, etc.
Published on: 02/03/2021
DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this column are solely of the interviewee, and they do not reflect in any way the opinion of Fibre2Fashion.com.
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