Global Fastener News

2011 FIN – Bossard Aims to Double Sales

May 31
00:00 2013

April 25, 2011 FIN – The 180-year-old Bossard Group has a goal of doubling global sales by 2015 – an achievement that will require an average of 15% growth per year. Bossard’s 2010 sales rose 25% to 477 million Swiss francs (US$517m).

CEO David Dean emphasized that it isn’t just growth. “We are only interested in profitable growth.”
The growth goal is part of Bossard doubling its Züg, Switzerland headquarters warehouse capacity, relocating its Beijing operation and plans for a new integrated facility in Malaysia.
“To grow we need capacity,” Dean said.
Dean told Fastener+Fixing editor Phil Matten that Bossard seeks organic growth rather than adding sales totals through acquisitions.
“There is no point in acquiring just to get the customers, when we have to change the acquired business totally to fit Bossard,” Dean explained. “Better to go out and win the customers we want, based on the values in which we know we can be totally confident.”
Dean is confident of the growth potential within Bossard business units rather than by acquisition. “Acquisitions would only be highly targeted.”
When Dean joined Bossard in 1992, 80% of the company’s business was in Switzerland. The Bossard family decided to develop a global business and to sell off its tools and hardware business to concentrate on fasteners.
“Bossard recognized that it had to follow its customers,” Dean recalled.
Today 80% of Bossard’s business is outside Switzerland. There are 53 service locations across Europe, Asia and the Americas.
In the U.S. Bossard is headquartered in Cedar Falls, Iowa, with satellites in California, Texas, Tennessee, Ohio and Wisconsin.
There are Bossard facilities in Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, China, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina and India.
“The essence of our approach to servicing our customers, wherever they are is to be ‘glocal’ – to be global but to act local,” vice president for group sales & marketing Tee Bin Ong told Fastener+Fixing.
That requires Bossard’s global team of 1,600 employees to recognize and respond to local culture.
Approximately 48% of Bossard sales relate to machine industries; 35% to electronics; 16% metalworking; with remainder primarily construction.
“It’s all about execution at the end of the day,” Tee Bin Ong acknowledged.
Bossard encourages creativity throughout its operations. “Do what we feel is right, even the unconventional.”
Bossard’s “total cost of ownership” approach revolves around the 15:85 rule, with 15% being the value of the fastener and 85% in procurement control, warehousing, logistics, pre-assembly and assembly.
“We have to be comparative in the 15% area, but to provide best results for the customer we have to be effective in the 85% area,” Dean said.
“Making a saving of 10% on the fastener costs delivers just a 1.5% improvement on the total cost of ownership,” Dean pointed out. “Make a 10% saving on all the other additional values – the 85% – and the reward is an 8.5% reduction in total cost of ownership.”
Bossard installed 200,000 “smart bins” worldwide since 1998, which monitor weight of remaining, inventory. The data transmitted to Bossard automatically sets replenishment orders at pre-determined levels.
Newer software allows Bossard to reconcile customer forecasts against history as an early signal of ramp ups. “The number of times we have been able to prevent shortages is remarkable,” Dead finds.
“We are not just in technology for the technology,” Dean stipulated. “There has to be a value, one that we can sell and that delivers genuine benefits to the customer.”
Dean observed that frequently production people “are the ones that recognize the potential savings that can be achieved.”
Bossard has 60 engineers for everything from research to providing fastening technology seminars for customers and personnel.
Andreas Bertaggia, vice president for purchasing & logistics, cited the Bossard Technical Centre in Taiwan. “It is not typical for a fastener distributor to have its own R&D,” Bertaggia told Fastener+Fixing. “We don’t want to make the parts ourselves. We do want to combine application solution and supply.”
In addition to its own R&D, Bossard has partner-ships with fastener manufacturers.
The down economic year of 2009 was a test for the Bossard system.
“While I certainly did not like the experience, 2009 was a fantastic test to see if what we had built between 2004 and 2008 would hold – and it did,” Dean reported. “Bossard today is significantly different from how it was six or seven years ago. Web: Bossard.com ©2011/2013 Fastener Industry News and Fastener+Fixing.
Editor’s Note: The above article is based on excerpts from a Fastener+Fixing article.

For information on permission to reuse or reprint this article please e-mail: FIN@GlobalFastenerNews.com

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• Bossard Group

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