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MDA Technologies 3/2015

MDA Technologies 3/2015

From Chicago via

From Chicago via Birmingham to Zweibrücken This year, HydraForce was present at the Hannover Messe for the first time. We spoke with Enrico Raschi, European Sales Director, and Markus Bissbort, Key Account Manager, about the background of the participation, the origins of the company, and the new location Zweibrücken in Germany, as well as the membership in the VDMA (German Machinery and Plant Manufacturers’ Association). According to their own statements, HydraForce is the world’s largest private manufacturer of cartridge valves. The company from Chicago, has its European headquarters in Birmingham and also maintains a location in Zweibrücken, Germany. At Hannover Messe, we spoke with Markus Bissbort, Key Account Manager at Zweibrücken, and Enricho Raschi, European Sales Director, about the importance of the new branch office and much more. What led to the establishment of the location Zweibrücken? Raschi: For HydraForce, the Germanspeaking market has the greatest market potential in Europe. Therefore, we want to further strengthen our position in this market with our own office in Germany. Another reason, are our customers: we have three of our key accounts located here, so we need to have a special team developing the business with these key accounts. Mr. Bissbort, what tasks do you and your colleagues perform in Zweibrücken? Bissbort: Zweibrücken is a location for sales and development. Here we service and develop applications for our German customers. HydraForce is the world’s largest private manufacturer of cartridge valves. Our modular products allow us to collaborate and quickly develop optimized system solutions for our customers. Throughout the years we have developed 01 02 38 MDA Technologies 3/2015

MEASUREMENT AND CONTROL I INTERVIEW the capability to support electro- hydraulic system development. In doing this we can provide total system control for our customers, which is ideal because no one knows how to control our valves better than us. We also support software development from Zweibrücken. How do you help your customers in finding the right valve? Bissbort: HydraForce offers its own proprietary software for developing manifolds. The software, i-Design is available and free to download from www.hydraforce.com. With easy drag-and-drop tools, this software allows our customers to specify components, configure a hydraulic schematic, and define any special parameters that HydraForce needs to follow in producing their manifold. But we do not simply deliver what the customer requests; we offer our expertise and optimize their design. This is part of the value our Zweibrücken office brings. We then take this pre-developed design and manufacture the control block at our plant in Birmingham Where does Hydraforce come from? Bissbort: HydraForce is an American company. The worldwide headquarters are in the U.S. near Chicago in Lincolnshire. The company has been developing and manufacturing cartridge valves for over 30 years. Since the beginning, our primary focus has been on providing the highest quality components and the best customer service, an approach that has led to meteoric growth. In 1998 we became the largest manufacturer of cartridge valves and now offer control blocks with integrated electronics and sensors in order to develop and deliver complete sub-systems. We now have three plants in the U.S., our headquarters which houses our manifold and cartridge assembly, our precision machining facility where we manufacture control blocks and piece parts, and an innovation centre where we conduct our design and testing. From the Birmingham facility in England, HydraForce serves the European, Indian and African markets. The main application of our product is in the off-highway segment, anything from agricultural machines to construction equipment to material handling equipment: One can find HydraForce solutions in any machine that lifts, claws, spins, digs or sprays. Hydraforce is a member of the VDMA (German Machinery and Plant Manufacturers’ Association) since the end of 2013. Why did you join? Bissbort: As already mentioned, Germany is a very important target market where we want to be present and a small piece of the puzzle is the membership in the VDMA. On the one hand, to build a network, but on the other hand also to profit from information. In that way, we learn for instance which norms are to be revised in the future. Furthermore, we of course also profit from additional offers, such as the participation in the joint booth here at the Hannover Messe. Hydraforce is present at the Hannover Messe for the first time. What do you expect from this? Raschi: We are mainly looking for new distributors. We know very well that this exhibition is focused on the industrial markets; and our distributors are typically focused on these markets, too. Thus, all our existing distributors are here and it is a good opportunity to meet them all in one place. On the other hand, it is also a good opportunity to meet new potential distributors. The plan is to expand our distributor network in East Europe and strengthen our existing network of technically competent distributors. Many thanks for the interview. Photos: Svenja Stenner, O+P Redaktion, Aufmacher fotolia www.hydraforce.com 03 01 Markus Bissbort, Key Account Manager HydraForce, and editor-in-chief Michael Pfister 02 The company is showing its enhanced ‘next-generation’ drop-in valves 03 Interviewing Enrico Raschi, European Sales Director at Hydraforce About Company name: Hydraforce Headquarters: Lincolnshire, USA Products: : Multi-function valves, Solenoid Valves, Directional Valves, Electro proportional Valves, Flow control valves, Pressure control valves, sandwich valves, Hydraulic integrated circuits. MDA Technologies 3/2015 39

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