Managing the entire product lifecycle. These are the skills of Elemaster, which ranges from the design to the industrialization and certification of electronic instruments, from rapid prototyping to mass production, from the manufacturing of custom components, like the printed circuit board, to the supply of “turnkey” products, up to logistics and after sales service.
It operates in the sector of Original Design Manufacturing and of Electronic Manufacturing Services and nowadays its activity includes the design and manufacturing on a world scale of electronic equipment with high technological content. It is Elemaster Group, which in this issue of Electric Motor Engineering we have involved for a focus on industrial sector realities.
Today Elemaster is organized as an Electronic Technology Partner, as it can manage the entire product lifecycle: from the design to the industrialization and certification of electronic instruments, from the rapid prototyping to the mass production, from the manufactoring of custom components like printed circuit boards and custom cables to the electromechanical integration and the supply of “turnkey” products, up to logistics and after sales service.
Elemaster in particular works with a rising number of “fabless” companies, which outsource the manufacturing activity, focusing their strategic efforts on the marketing and sale of products. This market evolution has determined a new value proposal, meant as the offer of integrated services with high added-value generated by the research and development activity that concerns both products and manufacturing processes, increasingly oriented to the lean manufacturing.
The history of Elemaster started in October 1978, when in a basement in Merate (Lecco province) Gabriele and Rosella Cogliati, two people in their early twenties and recently married, lay the bases of a long entrepreneurial and family course. “The origin of our whole history, from 1978 until now, when we celebrate the fortieth anniversary since the foundation, stemmed from the courageous initial decision of giving up a stable and well paid job to undertake our own autonomous activity, aware of sacrifices and renunciations, putting at disposal our scarce economic resources”, starts explaining Gabriele Cogliati, today CEO and President of a Group worth 220 million Euros of turnover, over one thousand of workers employed in Italy, Europe and worldwide, with a strong bent for internationalization and a constant boost to technological innovation. Cogliati intended to offer a technical service of engineering and industrialization of the electronic product component to its customers and the latter immediately show a growing confidence: orders increase and, in addition to design, the demand for the prototype implementation starts. In Italy, it is the time of the development of electronic and information technologies, there is a growing demand for innovation and Elemaster finds its way with its own business model, becoming partner and reference reality for its customers. From the design and prototyping to the production of pre-series and then of turnkey finished products the distance is short. The space and the small group of collaborators of the origins are no longer sufficient, it becomes necessary to build a factory at Montevecchia, 2,000 square metres hosting about 50 employees: we are in 1988. Initially dedicated to the industrial automation sector, since 1990 onwards Elemaster has approached the energy and afterwards the medical sector, then gaining specialized competences in the transport sector, especially railway and avionics. At Montevecchia the development goes on with the vertical offer integration, through the establishment of a factory intended for the production of printed circuit boards (Eleprint) and, afterwards, through the widening of the manufacturing capacity with a new further local unit, taking up 3,000 square metres and hosting around 150 workers. In 1999, they establish a production site in Basilicata and start taking part in research projects, also due to noteworthy collaborations with the university world. In 2000, all the activities of research, development and hardware and software design are unified in a dedicated company: Eletech. In 2007, a new outstanding enlargement: Elemaster accomplishes the building of the plant at Lomagna that, on 23,000 square metres, can host over 500 collaborators, quadrupling the manufacturing capacity. In the last ten years, the Group has pursued a globalization process that has resulted in the presence, with dedicated design and production units, in Germany, United States, China, India and Africa. In 2016, they launched the “Vision 2020”programme, the industrial plan providing for the strategic development lines of the successive years that the company is currently implementing with great determination and has led to the setup of a commercial branch in France and to the recent takeover of a competitor with premises in Belgium and Romania.
Elemaster’s supervision of the complete productive cycle, besides allowing a direct control of all process phases, permits customers to rely on a single partner for the entire value creation chain: each of the 6,000 different products (electronic board, electromechanical subassembly or finished product) that the Group manufactures every year is the result of a tailor-made technological solution.
In the course of its history, Elemaster Group has widened the number of segments and market niches where to operate, today attaining a diversified business portfolio of over two hundred customers subdivided in ten industrial segments. Currently the range of action, on a world scale in high-tech sectors, goes from railway to avionics, medical, automotive, industrial automation and energy, with an all-round activity that allows a positive contamination.
The all-round activity of Elemaster allows a positive contamination, thanks to which the best practices of each sector are extended to other sectors’ productions. Wherever there is an innovative high-tech niche, Elemaster can propose its services in compliance with the highest qualitative standards.
Among high-tech solutions and services in mobility and automotive sector, in particular, the supply encompasses electronic and electromechanical components, besides completely assembled and tested equipment. Among the main applications, it is worth mentioning control systems for hybrid & electric vehicles, earth-moving machines and heavy vehicles; motor & automatic transmission controls; telemetry and localization systems.
We asked some questions to Claudio Accorsi, Corporate Business Development Manager of Elemaster Group, about the design and production activity for the electric mobility.
What are the growth prospects in the electric mobility sector and at what products does
“Elemaster has designed and produced the majority of the electric and electronic systems for the electric mobility for over twenty years. We rank among the primary players in Europe and we are steeply rising in the other continents (USA and China), too, we are working at the biggest machine today existing in the world for the electric mobility: the train. Besides, we supply all ground equipment for the traffic and fleet management. The mantra that accompanies us in the mobility world is Drive by Data”.
We are extending the offer for the electric mobility to the automotive industry: we are working with big customers both in Italy and in Germany, from electronic controls for the optimal energy management on board of vehicles to the functional control of sensors as support to the assisted drive. The successive step will concern the cars with autonomous drive.
On what know-how does Elemaster ground its offer?
“The expertise is consolidated and developed by constantly evolving projects, from the implementation of the functional safety in components to the management and reduction of consumptions. One of the most challenging projects for us is the wireless train: for the power supply, we will exploit new energy-accumulation systems applied to ultra-light trains that will travel in cities covering also “the last mile”.
Thanks to this know-how we are extending the offer for the electric mobility to the automotive industry: we are working with big customers both in Italy and in Germany, from electronic controls for the optimal energy management on board of vehicles to the functional control of sensors as support to the assisted drive.
The successive step will concern the cars with autonomous drive: in the next 10-15 years, they will become Wheel Robots in the mobility integrated with trains and planes”.
What companies of the Group are involved and what is their contribution in the project?
Eletech is protagonist in researching and exploring the most advanced technologies available on the market and in supporting customers through co-design services.
Elemaster, due to its ISO TS-certified factories, is the ideal partner to turn innovative ideas into mass productions.