An efficient network
The Geberit Group operated 29 plants in the reporting year, 23 of which are located in Europe, three in the US, two in China and one in India. The plants fall into the following three categories depending on the processed materials and production technologies:
- Ceramics (10 plants)
- Plastics & Metal (12 plants)
- Composites & Metal (7 plants)
Flow production principle as a guideline
All Geberit plants display an ongoing capability for renewal. Despite the diversity of the materials and production technologies used, the approach is determined uniformly: all improvements are consistently geared to the principle of flow production. Maximum efficiency and flexibility are targeted in this way, which is reflected in the reliable, timely supply of products to customers and savings in important resources such as working time and materials. The benchmarks of flow production are set out in the Geberit Production System (GPS 2.0). GPS 2.0 is the guideline for production processes in which the principles for efficient manufacturing are combined.
Numerous measures were again initiated, promoted or brought to a conclusion in the reporting year, with the aim of optimising the efficiency of production processes, increasing capacities, and improving energy and material efficiency. The “FlowFit” project in Rapperswil-Jona (CH), “Progress 2023” project in Pfullendorf (DE), mould building centre in Ekenäs (FI) and expansion of high-pressure casting capacities in ceramic production are just some of the many major and minor improvements made in the production processes:
- State-of-the-art systems were set up at the site in Rapperswil-Jona for the technically demanding large-scale production of pressfittings for the new FlowFit supply system. These systems allow for fittings that are ready to install and packed ready for shipment to be manufactured in a single, uninterrupted pass.
- At the plant in Pfullendorf, an expansion of production capacities for concealed cisterns was started in order to also be able to cope with continuously growing demand in future. At the same time, the existing flow production will also be optimised further. To do this, structural measures will be implemented and additional production lines set up.
- In Ekenäs, work has started on developing a second mould building competence centre for the demanding ceramics high-pressure casting process. In future, all high-pressure casting tools required in ceramic production across the Group will be manufactured here and at the plant in Bromölla (SE).
- New production lines with state-of-the-art high-pressure casting machines have been set up at the ceramics plants in Ekenäs (FI), Slavuta (UA) and Kolo (PL). The high-pressure casting process ensures stable processes and very low scrap rates.
Positive impacts of the brand switch
The streamlining of the brand portfolio (see the section on Customers) had a direct effect on the production plants. The replacement of Keramag in the previous year and of Allia, Pozzi Ginori and Sphinx with the Geberit brand in the reporting year required a special effort that will pay off in the medium and long term through the significant reduction in complexity of the existing product range.
Environmental management in production
As already mentioned, continuous improvements at the plants are aimed at increasing efficiency by saving resources. GPS 2.0 ensures that the goals associated with a continuous improvement in sustainability are also taken into account. One example of this is the use of recycled plastic. At the plants in Pfullendorf (DE), Ruše (SI) and Rapperswil-Jona (CH), bought-in plastic regranulate is used to manufacture components for actuator plates, fill and flush valves, and for the Monolith sanitary module.