EMO Hannover 2013 stimulates new business throughout international machine tool industry

Strong international appeal underscores EMO’s role as industry’s flagship fair.


Every two years, Europe’s most important international machine tool exhibition, EMO, takes place. Italy hosted the event in 2009, two years further on, Hannover, Germany benefited from the exhibition as it did this year. The exhibition is scheduled for Milano, Italy in 2015.

EMO Hannover 2013 came to a successful close on Saturday, 21 September. “This year’s EMO raised the bar in all areas,” remarked EMO General Commissioner Carl Martin Welcker at the end of the fair in Hannover. “With more visitors, more business and more international drawing power, this EMO has proven even more successful than last time around, impressively underscoring the event’s status as the world’s premier trade fair for the international metalworking industry,” he said. From 16 to 21 September, over 2,100 exhibitors from 43 different countries (2,037 exhibitors from 41 different nations in 2011) were on hand in Hannover to showcase their innovations to industrial users from around the world under the event’s keynote slogan of ‘Intelligence in Production’.

Over the six days of EMO, the Hannover event attracted a total of just under 145 000 (140 000 in 2011) trade visitors from over 100 different nations. “Foreign visitors numbered more than 50,000, or one in three. Attendance from Europe was up markedly. “European industry is rebounding, and keen on investing in manufacturing technology,” Welcker noted. Italy, Switzerland, Sweden, the Netherlands and Russia topped the attendance figures for the European continent. By a very wide margin, China accounted for the largest number of visitors from Asia, followed by Japan, Taiwan and India.

According to a visitor survey, one out of every two attendees had a managerial status, with the authority to make purchasing decisions for their organizations. They reported their main motivation in attending as wanting to expand and modernise their production machinery. One out of every five visitors reported placing an order at the show. A similar number, at 20 percent, intended to finalize purchases after the event, with the figure being double in the case of customers from abroad. According to Commissioner Welcker: “Many purchase orders, including several high-volume deals, were signed right here in Hannover.” Exhibitors were also anticipating brisk after-show sales. Among all visitors with firm investment plans, each placed between four and five orders during their time at EMO. This figure was even higher than for the previous event two years ago, which took place in the midst of an economic upturn.

EMO Hannover 2013 succeeded again in covering the entire bandwidth of the global machine tool market. “This is where manufacturing experts come to explore ways of improving operations,” Welcker said. Visitors were particularly interested in solutions for boosting energy and resource efficiency, as well as user-friendly equipment and the intelligent integration of machines – in addition to the evergreen themes of cutting manufacturing costs and increasing flexibility.

In addressing these topics and more, the rich array of solutions and outstanding expertise on offer by EMO exhibitors added up to a high rate of visitor satisfaction. More than ever, EMO Hannover impressed its audience as the international flagship flair for ‘Intelligence in Production’. “Across the board, visitor feedback is topping the scales,” said Welcker. The average length of stay by visitors went up slightly to two full days, attesting to EMO’s drawing power as an event that delivers maximum coverage.

EMO 2015 – Milano, Italy
The next EMO will be staged from 5 to 10 October 2015 in Milan, under the motto “Let’s build the future.”

Springboks vs. Scotland – Rugby World Cup 2015
Metalworking News and Trade Fair Travel are working on a package to include attending the Springboks versus Scotland rugby game in the Rugby World Cup 2015 before continuing on to EMO 2015. The game takes place on Saturday 3 October 2015 at St James Park, Newcastle. This is an exciting opportunity for you to combine a bit of pleasure with work. Hotel rooms etc. have already been booked in Milan for the exhibition but we will need to get an indication of numbers for this extra leg. If you are interested please contact the Editor – my details are in the front of the magazine – and we will keep you abreast of developments.


Some large machines were on display


Some large components were on display


Components machined in all different types of materials were on display


Keith Opperman of Duncan Macdonald & Co

Keith Opperman – Director, Duncan Macdonald & Co
Regarding the show, mine was a very short visit as I left for the UK on Wednesday 18 September for meetings. The EMO just highlighted what we all are experiencing. The recession is affecting the industry collectively with European suppliers now matching prices of the Asian manufacturers and moving away from the perception that European products are superior and therefore warrant a premium. Also there is the willingness of suppliers to do business with improved pricing and payback periods.

Most of my suppliers had new products available but I think the new digital thread depth TD-Gauge+ DI and the wireless solution from DIATEST are the most interesting. These new products will be useful for the motor industry as you will be able to measure the tolerance of tapped holes and record immediately on a spreadsheet for comparison purposes.


Brian Dixon and Trevor Petersen of Cliff’s Way Engineering


Aurelio Grech-Cumbo of RGC Engineering


Eric Hansen, Simon Halse and Richard Warren, all of Hansen Engineering


Nicky Dorfling and Dave Goodman, both of Spectra Carbide Tooling Technology with Milko Merlo, President of Walter AG

Dave Goodman – MD Spectra Carbide Tooling Technology
Representatives from Spectra Carbide Tooling Technology have attended the EMO exhibition since 1999 and see this venue as an excellent platform to meet its partners and view the latest trends being launched into the market.

Some of the highlights this year were the merging of the Safety and Pramet brands. We see this as a very positive move which makes the combined range very strong for us to compete in the South African market. Our other partners Mapal, Walter, Botek and Poliangolar had impressive stands as usual, with various new products and solutions on display. We pride ourselves as a company on having such innovative top quality partners.


George Di Gaetano of DMG Mori and Frans Studer of Retecon Machine Tools


David Huddy of HUD Engineering, Warren Petersen of Warren’s Way Engineering, Wynand Muller of HUD Engineering and Lemuel Serrao of HUD Mining Supplies


Louis Struwig of Samsung Machine Tools SA in the centre, with Jong Beom and Jae Kwon Lim, both of Samsung Machine Tools


Ray Cooper of WD Hearn, Jeff Huang, President of Chiah-Chyun Machinery and Garry Sleigh of Rheinmetall-Laignsdale


Simon Griffiths of WD Hearn PE, Peet Buitendag of EJE Industrial Electronics and Myles Crosthwaite of WD Hearn KZN


Rick Kline, President of Gardner Business Media Inc., Mark Albert, Editor-in-Chief of Modern Machine Shop and Travis Egan, Publisher of Modern Machine Shop


Dudley Meredith of Victor Fortune South Africa, DC Lio and Bert Huang, both of Victor Taichung and Alan Meredith of Victor Fortune South Africa


Carlos Figueiredo and Bart Pieterse, both of Machine Tool Promotions with MK Chang of Kiheung Machinery


Mike Lee of Puma Machine Tools and Marc Cocci of Derry Engineering


Brian Percival of Bell Equipment


Allan Conolly, Lance and Neil Hockly, Derek Walden and Dave Risk, all of Somta Tools


Hans-Peter Neth of Retecon Machine Tools with Johan Botha and Andries Uys, both of Aerosud

Hans-Peter Neth – MD Retecon (Pty) Ltd
The exciting world of machine tool manufacturers once again exhibited at the largest fair in Hannover in September 2013.

In Hall No. 2 DMG/Mori Seiki exhibited 95 machines, from the latest ECO models right through to the high end turn mill machines and the super accurate Dixi Machining Centre. The various models of the DMU MonoBlock series, of which they have sold 1 000 units over the last three years, were displayed in various configurations of 5-axis machining with automation equipment.

Their displays clearly indicated the strength of DMG/Mori Seiki in the world of machine tools and their 18 world premiers indicated their strength in development of newly designed machines with the assistance of customer responses and requirements. The launch of the CELOS control marks a new way of thinking when it comes to control innovations. During the week of the fair DMG/Mori Seiki sold 1137 machines at a total order value of € 276 million.

Furthermore, our principals of the Schleifring stand showed various new designs in cylindrical, surface and profile grinding, as well as tool and cutter grinding. Studer, being the technology leader in cylindrical grinding, exhibited with their highly productive models S22 and for larger components, their S41. Walter presented their automated tool and cutter grinding machines with part loaders, as well as grinding wheel changers.

GF Agie Charmilles had an inspiring stand of CNC die sinking and wire cutting machines and Andrea Richina showed us, as well as customers, their latest designs and advances in this technology.

In the gear cutting and gear grinding sector, our principals, Liebherr and Kapp Niles, had impressive displays of their gear cutting equipment showing off their latest machining technologies in dry cutting with high speed tools and dressable wheels on the grinding machines integrated into the process.


Lance Deysel of Pressure Die Casting and Malcolm Moriarty of Retecon Machine Tools

Lance Deysel – Technical Director Pressure Die Casting
How does one put in context what you can see at the world’s biggest machine tool show? In short, it’s not just a machine tool show – anything and everything that could cut, form, bend, machine, hold, rotate, measure, weld, laser oblate metal including a huge emphasis on associated automation was on show. (And I’m sure I’ve missed out many other competencies).

Germany is without doubt the trade fair capital of the world. Typical German efficiency is evident wherever you go from the moment you present your passport. The Hannover Messe grounds are huge – EMO occupied 19 of the 27 halls but more probably around 75% of the available space.

I was the guest of Retecon (Pty) Ltd whose principals, DMG Mori Seiki, occupied an entire hall. World premieres of different machine types were on show at almost all of the notable machine tool manufacturers. The significance placed on automation was very evident in many exhibits where anything from the mundane robot assisted material handling to highly sophisticated automated measuring was catered for.

For South Africans in the metal or associated industries, this show is a must – the difficulty we all experience from being relatively far away coupled with a weak currency should not deter one from visiting.


Detlev Börner of Walter Meano Engineering

Detlev Börner – MD of Walter Meano Engineering
It is a while since I last attend the EMO and one quickly forgets the magnitude of the exhibition and the rate at which technology is changing.

Relating a discussion that I had with one of the exhibitors would be the best to convey this.

I was at the Okuma stand with Sean de Andrade and we were discussing some improvements with one of the software engineers, and the representative from the Nordic countries was assisting with the explanation. During the discussion he asked what machines we have and I said that when I get back home I would be taking delivery of a LB 45, which is a standard 2 axis lathe. His response was, oh a roughing machine. Clearly I was not that impressed by him referring to my new machine as a roughing machine, so I asked if the finishing cycle was an optional extra. We all had a good laugh and he explained that one of his customers has one and that it is a good solid machine that can handle big components that require a lot of material removal. That sounds more like Africa to me.

This leads me on to my thoughts on the technology that is available to us and that we are rapidly falling behind in using it because of the lack of skills. Somehow our industry needs to combine and have a common goal with government and society to take advantage of the massive potential that we have.

Finally, the trip was worth the expense as I came home with new ideas, particularly on the use of auxiliary equipment that will help increase our productivity. As well as an insight into the potential that there is with the new high speed multi axis machines, that unfortunately have been designed for environments with high technical skills and economies in scale, that we do not have.

But, as with the two shoe salesmen who arrived in a country where nobody wore shoes. The one said ‘we are wasting our time, nobody wear’s shoes’, the other said, ‘just think of the market potential’.


Wikus Terblanche of Knorr-Bremse SA and Mathys Bessellaar of Retecon Machine Tools


Thomas Adlam of Adlam Engineering with James Morrison of Pilot Tools


Joe Angus of AMT


David Waghorn and Peter Guy of Hurco

Peter Guy – Export Sales Manager Hurco Europe Ltd
EMO has always been a busy period for Hurco and this year was no exception. We were fortunate to welcome visitors from many of our export markets including current users of Hurco machines, prospective new clients and companies interested in Representing Hurco in their own particular countries.

The British contingent on our multi-national stand during the week included three Applications Engineers, our Managing Director Dave Waghorn and myself. However, it was my duty only to be present for the full period.

Our Applications Engineers were kept busy with machine and control demonstrations for both customers and representatives and had the valuable opportunity to liaise with their German counterparts to exchange information and discuss the new refinements to both machines and controls. Of particular interest this year are the new control programming features which add to the already powerful conversational aspect of the controller, which include:

  • Improved versatility and programming abilities of standard NC and 5axis
  • The new, versatile “SRTi” 5axis machines with swivel head and integral rotary table
  • The new “HSi” high speed machines with HSK spindles; the new rebranded machine concept and,
  • The unique “Ultimotion” control giving far smoother motion and significantly shorter machining times while increasing surface finish

Increasing numbers of visitors from our export market countries leads us to conclude that better economic times may not be far away. We are now receiving regular enquiries from areas previously hit hard by the recessionary period. And, during the exhibition, we at Hurco Europe succeeded in appointing a new representative in Scandinavia.

Sadly, we saw few visitors from South Africa. But we do appreciate the current economic situation is not at its best just now. Nevertheless, South Africa is an important market for us and our business in South Africa continues to grow year on year. This year is no exception.

Our plans for the coming year are to add a Service Engineering function to strengthen the overall business and present a more comprehensive and solid offering for our customers – new and old (we hope to be making a positive announcement on this vitally important subject very shortly), and to work hard to dispel the misconception that Hurco is focussed entirely on conversational programming and is not a serious option for those employing only NC.

We are also acutely aware that the Hurco name is still not very well known in the country and that we have only been established in South Africa for (nearly) five years, which still leaves us with a lot of work to do in a tough market environment. In short, we have made a positive entry into the market in South Africa. We are continuing to strengthen our team and our support. We have new, refined products with new and unique features to offer. Our business is growing and we are determined to make South Africa a success story for Hurco.

All in all there was much to offer from Hurco at this year’s show with a lot more development continuing in the background. Next stop, MACH 2014, Birmingham, UK. Hope to see you and many more South African visitors there.


Vaughn Hanwith-Horden of Forest Engineering


Richard Poalses of F & H Machine tools with Chris Riley of Toolquip & Allied


Adriaan du Plessis and Francois Steyn, both of DCD Ringrollers


Danie Delport and Peter Hughes, both of Toolquip & Allied

Danie Delport – MD Toolquip & Allied
The scale and diversity of the exhibition is what impressed our team the most at EMO 2013. With over 2100 exhibitors from 43 different countries, EMO represented an excellent forum of what is available in the modern day metal removal, forming, measuring and inspection sectors. The event was well organised and Hannover was the perfect city for an event of this magnitude. The only drawback was the exorbitant cost of accommodation during the week of the exhibition.

Over 60 of Toolquip & Allied’s suppliers exhibited at EMO with some notable product launches and activities.

  • Carmex celebrated its 25th anniversary and they also launched new grades and coatings for hard materials as well as products for deep hole threading
  • Cosen introduced their Smart CNC control system for bandsaw machines as well as launching various new models
  • Do-All exhibited their new TC-75NC circular sawing machine with carbide tipped saw blade for the first time
  • Focus CNC displayed the new FNL-250Y turn-mill with Y-axis and FCL-200MC with C-axis and live tooling
  • Geka introduced the newly developed Sigma 110 beam drill and Bendicrop 60 iron worker
  • Gravotech displayed their range of Technifor and Propen marking systems. Toolquip has been appointed sole distributor for the Propen range
  • Hassay Savage displayed their new box set of keyway broaches as well as broaching tools for CNC applications
  • Heinrich Kippwerk launched their mobile app
  • Homge introduced their new range of Super Opening CNC HVV precision vices
  • Korloy introduced their new Powerbuster range, anti-vibration extension bars for BT40/50 face milling, KGEHR internal and external grooving tools and the new generation PC 5400 universal grades
  • Noga introduced their new owners at a formal dinner attended by over 40 dealers from all over the world. They also launched their new catalogue
  • Rong-Fu displayed their new range of Smart CNC mills for small precision parts, moulds and training applications
  • YG-1 introduced their new range of Alu-Power with mirror finish, new generation 4G milling cutters for high speed and close tolerance applications and X-speed rougher for various materials
  • Yunnan displayed their new CY-PTC economical CNC lathe

EMO once again emphasised how far the South African manufacturing Industry has fallen behind the developed countries in technology, productivity and quality. Time is running out for South Africa to make up some of the lost ground. The recent depreciation of Rand is driving up investment costs for manufacturers, the delays in implementation of the NDP and the skills shortage will make it even more challenging for local companies to compete against imports and create export opportunities. EMO highlighted the speed of development and other developing economies are taking advantage of the opportunities.


Donald Miller and Doug Starrett of Starrett with Gary Willis and Steve van Wyk, both of First Cut


Keong-Bae Kim, President of Korloy Inc with Fanie Oosthuizen of Toolquip & Allied


John and Ian Robbie of E Fuel Systems


Dave Cameron and Dave Aldridge, both of FEW


Leigh Lockhart and Dave Carter of Feedback Systems


Peter Soeler of Kinkelder with Mike Cronin of Elquip Solutions


Sean de Andrade of Sylton Engineering

Sean de Andrade – Director Sylton Engineering
The last time I went to EMO in Hannover was 2001, a few days after 9/11. The world has grown, in terms of technologically, since then!

The exhibition was totally overwhelming to me then as it was now. It is a must see event, on the bucket list for anyone with a passion for machining.

Then we were using cell phones for basic communication, now our ”Smart” phones are our digital PA’s doing everything from free video conferencing to monitoring our entire plant status to making coffee. Ok a few more years for the coffee!

The same goes for machine tool and manufacturing technologies. Back in 2001 only big brands, the likes of Okuma, Mazak, Mori Seiki and DMG had five-axis and multitasking machines. Now 90% of all the brands at EMO have an armoury of such machining weapons in their product line up. Now the big brands have 13-axis plus machines for complete single operation machining including turning, milling, five-axis contouring, hobbing, skiving, grinding, heat treatment and inspection! Wow!

My question is who will supply, commission, service, train and offer on-going support and spares for these cutting edge masterpieces of metal? With most machine tool dealers having a plethora of brands under their product umbrella how could they possibly offer the high service levels of the international brands?

I think what is needed is less of a “sell a machine” mentality from a “sales engineer” who doesn’t know how to switch the machine on, to more of a “machining solution” driven mentality from an experienced “application engineer” where specialised single brand importers strive to become our “Technology Partners”. Offering machine and machining know how to maximise our machine usage to its designed potential would ensure our and their on-going business future.

The sad and depressing thing is how far behind South Africa is and will we ever catch up? I remain hopeful that if the rest of the world can do it surely the tenacious South African spirit will prevail.

Go to EMO, see how it’s done!

PS Well done to Peter at Trade Fair Travel for offering a great value and comprehensive package and to Bruce Crawford for being a fabulous host and Hannover tour/eisbien/beer guide.


Graeme Cooper of WD Hearn

Graeme Cooper – Recently appointed Sales Director WD Hearn
News from our perspective from EMO is that we are now the sole agents for Joemars EDM and WEDM for South Africa. We will be ordering one ZNC50 and one WEDM machine for stock and a complete range of spares will be kept locally in South Africa.

WD Hearn will also be representing MAS for their line of Multitasking machine – similar to the Mazak Integrex: http://www.kovosvit.cz/en/multicut-500/

Generally we all enjoyed the show, which was organised with typical German precision. There was fantastic technology on display and many of our eyes were opened as to how far behind we are when it comes to genuine factory automation.

I do find the trend of company mergers frustrating and uncertain, as it makes our lives extremely difficult when we have such movement with our principals. Just look at MAG and the FFG group. This is one of the principal reasons that being present at these shows is so important for machine tool dealers – to try and understand who is doing what and realise where we stand in the grander scheme of things with our principals.

Many of our suppliers have told us they were happy with the turnout and they believe there was about a 5% increase in visitors compared to other years. The general feeling out there is that 2014 is going to be a good year. Let us hope that this sentiment is correct.