With almost 60 years in the industry, OMET is an Italian company that manufactures tissue converting equipment and printing presses. The business starts in 1963, in the founder’s garage, and nowadays, they have more than 500 employees worldwide and subsidiaries in China, India, Singapore, Spain and US. In the latest Talk Tissue, Brian Uzcategui talked to Francesco Ponziani, Vice-President at OMET North America and they discussed the company’s history in the country.
Located in Illinois, OMET Americas Inc, the North American service center of the company, has just celebrated its 10th year anniversary.
“In 2011, we established OMET Americas and that’s because we were expanding in North America and wanted to be closer to our clients. Nowadays, we have sales managers, service technicians, parts specialists, product managers, project managers so we can follow and help our clients in north America from the beginning, in the definition of all the technical specifications, to installation, commissioning, training, repair, service support, and, of course, parts. We have a wide range of parts just relocated in a new bigger facility with a bigger warehouse, so we can increase our parts availability and we can ship from here, in the same day, to all North America,” Francesco says.
OMET provides converting equipment to produce different types of tissue products like, for example, napkins, towels, facial tissue, and during the Talk Tissue, Francesco presented some samples of the final products manufactured with their equipment.
“We offer the full line, from a winder to the cartoning machine,” he explains. “We can also offer different types of laminations. We have point to point, random lamination, synchronized or nested lamination.”
The company also offers printing machines. According to Francesco, OMET “always try to be in the front hand with technology, so now we see more and more the needs of also providing to our clients the possibility to print short runs in digital.”
Francesco also brought forward the key aspects that separate OMET from the competition, according to him, one of the key aspects for them is the productivity.
“Our machines are among the most productive in the industry. We are now patenting what I believe is the most productive napkin machine in the industry. It has a productivity of 25 thousand napkins per minute. I also think our interfold line, the ASV, we can go a thousand feet per minute in production, that’s a very high speed for this type of products.”
OMET understands that is getting more difficult for companies to find operators, so they help their clients by integrating its machines with electronics sensors, photocells, load cells, servo motors, drives, PLC, and try to automate as much as possible. Basically, the company tries to delegate to the machinery all the adjustments that once were done by experienced operators.
Another key aspect considered by the company is flexibility. “All our equipment is modular, so we configurate as you want. We are an engineering company at the end of the day, so we configure our machines based on the specific process of the client. We can add an embosser , we can add several printing units, lamination, we have all the drying capabilities so, for example, if you’re printing, you need to dry the ink sometimes, so we can integrate our line with hot air dryer, with heated rollers and then, of course, we have different options for the transfer section, wrapper and cartoning machine.”
However, the customer does not need to add all the equipment in once. According to Francesco, if the client is buying the machinery in a certain configuration today, in the future is possible to add additional units.
Nowadays it is evermore important to have as little errors as possible and the technology allows this. OMET has the capability to remote into machinery and get records of the equipment progress and process to eliminate the errors.
“All our equipment can be connected through the internet and our engineers can connect to the machine from all over the world.” Francesco explained. The engineers can connect to the equipment in real time and can make software modifications, troubleshooting, they can also get information about any alarm and motors, and even the temperature of the motors, to prevent overheating.
The customers can also benefit from this technology and measure the efficiency of the line. Because the equipment is connected to the internet, they can download an app on their smartphones, tables or laptops and get real time information about production, alarms and number of cases produced in the previous day, for example. All this information is always available and can be downloaded and analyzed by the plant staff.
During the interview, Francesco also provided some information about OMET new equipment.
“We are launching our winder line. it’s an interfolding line for quarter folded products. Other great innovation we recently developed is our anti-microbial additive. We developed it with one of our suppliers and basically, we can apply this additive in the tissue during the converting process. It allows the final product to be anti-microbial.”
Be sure to watch the complete Talk Tissue: