Founded in 1988, South Korean company Samsung Machine Tools Engineering Company has been manufacturing a range of CNC turning centers, vertical machining centers and tapping centers, as well as a range of CNC machines for Japanese builders, for over 25 years.
In May 2010, Samsung Machine Tools South Africa was appointed the nationwide distributor for Samsung Machine Tools, offering the versatile product line to the local metal cutting industry.
“It took us two years of negotiations to be appointed the agents. Samsung Machine Tools Engineering Company is a company within a large South Korean diversified manufacturing group and they don’t hand out distribution agreements easily. I first saw the machines on display at an exhibition in South Korea and decided that the product line will meet today’s intense requirements of the metal cutting industry in South Africa at an affordable price,” said Louis Struwig, MD of Samsung Machine Tools South Africa.
“At the time the company was on a worldwide expansion program, which was calculated and considered. In fact they had only started exhibiting on the international stage about three years prior to our appointment. However today they are exporting to Europe, Turkey, Japan, the US, the UK and China with their equipment on the floors of many world-class manufacturing companies in the automobile, aerospace, semiconductor, die and mould and robot industries,” continued Struwig.
“It takes time to break into a market that already has established suppliers. However I do believe that through hard work and the fact that we can offer quality machines and back-up service we have made a real impression. We are about to start our fifth year of trading and already we have just over 100 machines in the market place.”
“The mix of machines installed, comprising various sizes, is made up of 60% CNC lathes and the remainder in milling/machining centres. About 80% of these machines have been supplied with a Nikken rotary table, the other company that we represent.”
“Our customer base is also very interesting in that we have had about 30% repeat orders and we have supplied some blue-chip companies. These include Transnet, Denel, Eskom, Sasol and BAE Systems. The rest is made up of small to large general engineering shops and this proves that our products are being accepted universally across the market place.”
“We all know as suppliers that you are only as good as your service back-up and ability to supply spares timeously. We reached an agreement with Elkana CNC Services that they would be our preferred service and installation team, a year ago. Emmel Kambouris, who has been servicing and installing machine tools for over 25 years, heads up Elkana and he is supported by three other service engineers. This gives us peace of mind that there will always be someone available to service the machines that we have installed, countrywide.”
“We carry in the region of R2 million worth of spares at our facility in Aeroport, Spartan, Gauteng. This comprises mainly the popular types but if a client needs a special we can import it relatively quickly.”
New Sales Manager
“Anther development within the company is that we have just appointed a new Sales Manager – Nicky de Klerk. Nicky spent 20 years with the Dorbyl Group in their machine shop environment and when he left them he was their Production and Technical Manager. He then spent five years at one of the leading tooling suppliers as their Technical Manager. All this experience of working on and with CNC machines gives him an edge in dealing with clients.”
“We have upgraded our website so that it is now very user friendly with all the information a buyer needs on the site.”
“We now stock a range of lathes and milling machines so where possible, if we have the right size machine in stock, we can supply ex-stock.”
New $100 million Samsung Machine Tools factory in South Korea opened
“Towards the end of last year Emmel and I had the privilege of attending the opening of the new Samsung Machine Tools factory in Gimhae city, South Korea and it was impressive to say the least.”
“It was completed in August and it’s double the size of their old facility, now taking up
32,839 m² across four floors. The larger factory size means that not only will production of their current range increase but it’s set to expand to include more high end machines.”
“The factory is in an interesting development called the Golden Root Complex. It’s a ground-breaking “green” initiative – the first of its kind in Korea, combining commercial factory space with an eco-friendly environment. It’s got a prime location with excellent distribution links which of course will mean the process from machine order to build all the way through to delivery will be seamless.”
“The new factory is absolutely perfect for Samsung as everything can be done on site – from research and development to the manufacture and distribution of the entire range. The factory opening was quite an event with dealers from the US, China, Turkey, Italy, Germany, UK and of course ourselves”
“Samsung have got a whole host of new machines ready to launch including new multi-axis lathes like the PL45 Y axis, horizontal machining centres similar to the new LCV 500 that was on the stand at EMO 2013, big bore options like the PL80 and the new FTV 630 five axis machine.”
“There is a stand next door to the new facility which the company hopes to start developing soon. This shows a commitment to the industry and we are happy to be associated with such a progressive company.”
For further details contact Samsung Machine Tools South Africa on TEL: 011 392 1949 or visit www.smt-sa.co.za