Kimberly-Clark is a 140-year-old company and the name behind well-known global brands such as Kleenex, Huggies, Kotex, Babysoft and Depend – used daily by over 1,3-billion people in more than 150 countries.
With these significant investments, K-CSA confirms the strategic role of the Epping facility as a best-in-class personal care production site.
‘With its investment, K-CSA is well positioned to generate improved returns and support the rapid business expansion of our Huggies and Kotex brands in sub-Saharan Africa – a significant growth opportunity for our portfolio of products,’ notes K-CSA’s Enrique Dominguez.
In July 2012, K-CSA installed its second diaper line, designed and fabricated by Kimberly-Clark, with its secondary packaging line from Focke & Co. The brick bundler bundles multiple bags before shrink wrapping them for warehousing.
‘With its large range of applications, the automatic machinery from Focke & Co is the ultimate solution for highly-efficient packaging. It can be used for a variety of absorbent disposable products, such as baby and adult diapers, pants, pads, puppy pads or panty liners,’ notes Reitech SA’s sales engineer, Olaf Socher.
Focke & Co’s secondary packaging line is holding its own against the impressive speeds achieved by the diaper line. ‘The line is running well and breaking one record after another. From the first start-up we’ve been achieving an average rate of over 40 000 diapers/hour,’ Enrique enthuses.
K-CSA’s new femcare line for its Kotex pads was officially launched in January and produces up to 1 000 pads/minute. This machine was designed in partnership by Kimberly-Clark and CSS and fabricated in Italy.
On this line, Focke & Co’s stacking and bagging machines are capable of handling various formats.
It’s possible for one stacking machine to be combined with one or more bagging machines. Its features include high compression rates, servo technology, and a seal station for quality bag seals and modular design for optimised flexibility.
‘Focke & Co provided our team with good, solid training, both locally and at its site in Germany, to ensure teams are properly equipped in all areas of operations, and technical and quality assurance,’ Enrique adds.
According to Nielsen, the local disposable nappy market is worth about R2,4-billion in sales with over one-billion disposable nappies now sold in South Africa annually, compared with 480-million sold in 2005 at a value of over R909-million.
‘Kimberly-Clark takes sustainability seriously and, with our new state-of-the-art technology, 99% filtration efficiency is being achieved, environmentally-friendly air is generated and we’re seeing a reduction in energy use,’ Enrique notes.
Kimberly-Clark’s Sustainability 2015 Strategy encompasses and activates the power of its global businesses, brands and employees and is built around a framework of its people (social sustainability), the planet (environmental sustainability) and its products (from raw materials and manufacturing to it supply chain). The strategy is a holistic way of weaving sustainable business practices into everything it does and an integral component of the company’s global business plan.
Wesgro financed K-CSA’s new assets and its CEO, Nils Flaaten, comments: ‘We’re excited about the completion of this project. The two new lines are significant contributors to the Western Cape GDP and create much needed employment opportunities. We wish Kimberly-Clark continued success.’
Focke & Co