Global Tissue News

Elettric80 offers complete automated integrated solutions

“That is not just making the perfect pallet, but transferring the pallets and handling the entire material flow with our autonomous vehicles” – Gary Urban

Founded in 1980, Elettric80 is headquartered in a small town called Viano, in Italy, and specializes in the development of automated logistic solutions for daily consumer goods manufacturing companies in the beverage, food and tissue sectors and other diversified areas.

In the latest Talk Tissue Brian Uzcategui chatted with Gary Urban, Sales Account Manager – Americas, at Elettric80, who walked us through E80’s history.

“During the first 20 years of business, we were commonly known in the tissue industry for robotic palletizing solutions, but in 1992 we installed our first autonomous vehicle in an Italian tissue converter. It’s from then on that we began our development towards integrated automated solution, that is not just making the perfect pallet, but transferring the pallets and handling the entire material flow with our autonomous vehicles,” Gary said.

The company continues to supply and integrate their robotic islands, but today it forms only a sub-component of E80’s complete integrated solutions.

When discussing the company’s solutions, Gary told E80 has a vast portfolio with products that allow the customization of each solution. “The portfolio includes a wide range of robotic palletizers, high-speed robotic wrappers, an impressive range of laser-guided vehicles, systems that check the condition of the wooden pallets, layer picking systems, AsRs high-density automated warehouses and, of course, our software SM.I.LE80, the conductor, or the brain, that ensures that all the machines perform the right job, in the right place and at the right time.”

During 2020, all the segments within the tissue industry were affected since the pandemic hit. With E80 it was no different.

“The reaction in terms of how it affected E80 varies depending on the industrial sector and the country in which we operate. So, in some countries there’s been a notable slowdown of investment in automation, no doubt about that, but in other countries like here in North America, for example, investment has accelerated, and growth remains quite steady.”

“Between 2016 and 2020, our sales doubled and our sales are expected to double again heading into 2024, according to the current trend and despite the pandemic. So, on the other hand, it’s fair to say that the current investment trend in automation is ascending.”

The trajectory E80 is heading down in the next years will surely impact the staff, growth, and capital, therefore, Gary shared his point of view on how this impacted the company.

“The impact on E80, from my point of view, has been quite interesting and very impressive to watch. I’ve seen E80 increase their investments in quite an exhilarated and targeted way, starting with people, their employees, who are young motivated and highly qualified. Naturally, investments in R&D remains a pillar but what impressed me the most is how E80 invested in the future of the company through new infrastructure and acquisition.’

“The new infrastructure includes new industrial facilities that house dedicated business units. In terms of acquisition, E80’s integrated their best suppliers, those having proven strategic industrial capabilities key to E80 stability and growth. These include software design, laser-guided vehicle manufacturing, lithium battery and induction charging manufacturing. All technologies crucial to our core business.”

When discussing the definition of an automated integrated solution, the short answer is that it consists of a combination of hardware and software. However, in case of Elettric 80, the answer is a little bit different.

“We combine our own proprietary smart technology, that’s the hardware, with our own proprietary software, that’s the brain. With this combination, we manage the flow of materials and finished products in the plant or DC, and to end, automatically and with 100 percent traceability and safety.”

One of the questions many people can have about the company is if E80’s software communicates with the ERP system of the plant or DC they are operating and, according to Gary, the answer is yes. But, in addition, there’s one distinction that worth underscoring.

“If the client’s ERP server is temporarily disabled, our system – which is independent, and logistics dedicated – continues operating directly by our software without interruption. Then, once the plant’s ERP is reactivated, the two systems synchronize,” he explains. “With E80, shipping never stops.”

Gary also described how does E80 determine which of the machines to integrate into the systems they are designing and, to do so, the company’s consulting service professionals work along with the customer to design the system manly based on three KPI’s: space optimization, productivity and sustainability.

During the conversation, he also shared numerous and valorous information about E80’s projects and how their systems are designed looking forward to reach each customer expectation and individual demands. So be sure to watch the complete Talk Tissue:

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