When the Minister of trade & Industry presented his budget to parliament some ten months ago, he was able to claim that the automotive sector was the country’s largest manufacturing sector and the third largest sector in South Africa economy, contributing more than 6.4% to the GDP in 2003. Considerable impetus was provided to the sector by the government when the Motor Industries Development Plan (MIDP) was introduced.
Initially applicable to Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) only it was subsequently extended to include manufacturers of automotive components, thereby giving stimulus to a sector that has grown by leaps and bounds. The automotive industry is among the most demanding when it comes to quality and in order to succeed, component manufacturers have had to work very hard to achieve the necessary standard and consistency.
They have been assisted in this by such programmes as the Workplace Challenge as well as the various so-called Automotive Clusters that engage in benchmarking to ensure that World-Class standards are attained and maintained. The Durban Automotive Cluster us one that has enjoyed conspicuous success abd several Pietermaritzburg manufacturers have enjoyed the benefits of the information-sharing and rigorous quality initiatives that characterize a cluster. It may be quite small in terms of the number of manufacturers, but our city contributes significantly to the progress of the component sector.
With the development of an export capability on the part of assemblers, many components end up in cars and trucks driven overseas, even though the manufacturers may not export directly themselves. Some do, however, for their products have developed a world-class reputation and are used by OEM’s in many other countries. Among the most notable of exporters is Shurlock.
Over time, this local company has developed a research and development capacity that has placed it at the forefront of automotive electronic solutions. The design of highly sophisticated electronic components has been supported by extremely high levels of productivity and quality. A modern motor vehicle is full of electronic devices controlling almost all aspects of its operation.
Such is the quality of Shurlock products that they are to be found in a large number of vehicles, including BMW, Toyota, Renault, Nissan and Volkswagen. The company is also a supplier to Bentley, Daimler Chrysler, General Motors and Lotus, for whom it has designed and manufactured the instrument panel. Kaymac Rotomoulders and its division called Kaymac Structural Foam have achieved record turnovers as they have increased their supplies to the automotive industry.
The moulding process which enables the company to manufacture fuel tanks for vehicles has been extended to include the design and manufacture of fuel systems, and not just the tanks themselves. Kaymac systems are employed by all South African motor manufacturers except BMW and Toyota, bur ironically the latter is the largest consumer of the structural foam product, re-usable packaging.
This product emerged from the American technology by which Kaymac was able to introduce to the market a highly effective plastic pallet.The packaging is essentially a bin with sides that fold down so that it can be easily stored and transported and used again and again. It has proved ideal for the carriage of automotive parts. Another supplier to Toyota on quite a large scale is Ramsay Engineering.
ARTICLE BY THE WITNESS
Kaymac Structural Foam (Pty) Ltd has advanced into the complete systems and packaging solutions provider through their ability to specialize in rigid plastic components manufactured through rotational moulding and low-pressure injection moulding processes. Kaymac's plastic performa pallet, collapsible bin and chemtainer have developed their market position in the complete systems and packaging supplier.
Kaymac's products have been successful in supplying and servicing both the Automotive market (both original equipment and first-tier manufacturing) and the Industrial market.
Kaymac have become market leaders through its aggressive goal-driven desire to be recognised by the consumer market as the preferred choice in complete systems and packaging specifier. Kaymac's successful growth is due to their belief in the benefits of using returnable/ reusable plastic packaging over single-trip packaging and communicating those benefits to their focus markets.
To reinforce their determination to grow the returnable/ reusable plastic packaging market, Kaymac has continued to invest in complementary moulds to enhance both the collapsible bin and the performa pallets since manufacture began in 2002.