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SOMEFLU: Expertise, innovative projects

SOMEFLU: A company that is committed to the industry of the future

Expertise, innovative projects

Alexandre Lacour, SOMEFLU director

Expertise, innovative projects put manufacturers in a good position in this «industrial revolution» that is being driven by digital technology. For the family business, 2018 was characterised by many internal changes. Feedback on a year that witnessed extensive transformation, with Alexandre Lacour, SOMEFLU director.

Confidence, commitment and vision are all part of the SOMEFLU DNA. How are these 3 values still manifest in your company today?

As a manufacturer of Corrosion-resistant centrifugal pumps since 1962, SOMEFLU has always had Expertise, innovative projects and products as a primary concern. Initially recognised for its ability to manufacture specific pump-related equipment, over the course of the years the company has had to deal with the challenges involved in the standardisation of the market. To achieve this, it has reconsidered its strategy and business model in order to maintain sufficient added value and to be able to export. Today, whilst working on the evolution of our products, the raw materials with which they are manufactured and the services that we provide our customers with, we are also evolving to embrace the digital revolution. For us this constitutes a real societal commitment. Our machines, in addition to the fact that they increasingly continue to reflect customer requirements (TCO reduction, modular, bespoke and scalable pumps), must also meet requirements in terms of sustainable development and protect the role of humankind in dealing with the challenges of tomorrow. We are working in particular on developing products with a long lifespan and are focusing our research on bio-sourced plastics.

In concrete terms, what changes have taken place over the last year at SOMEFLU?

Within the teams themselves, all of these changes have resulted in the appearance of new skills: in electronics, in digital technology professions and in mechatronics. Changes to various processes within the company were also initiated in 2017, in particular with the fusion of the design office and methods office activities around a CADM solution (computer-aided design and manufacture). This made it possible for new processes to be developed in terms of how missions are organised. For example, the research designers and engineers are now working in close collaboration with the industrialisation engineers, whereas previously they had very little to do with each other. An ERP (enterprise resource planning) deployment project was also launched in 2018 and should continue to take shape in 2019. This aspect required us to review a certain number of our internal processes at our various production sites.

And in the future? Are any further developments planned?

Other development projects concerning both machining and assembly lines are currently in the planning stages with technical teams. We are investing in production and also in innovative tools that will improve our industrial performance. We would really like to encourage and foster the development of initiatives within the teams so that they have more autonomy in terms of the way they mould their working environment. So revealing and harnessing the power of collaborative proposals within the production units and teams is one of our priorities for 2019.

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