Widening the horizons of service
The purposes, methods of delivery and business partnerships defining pulp and paper industry services are changing and have been for some time. The pay-as-you-go or onrequest services of years gone by are diminishing and longer-term agreements between Metso and its customers are in the forefront. Such agreements can cover, for example, maintenance outsourcing, roll maintenance services, supply chain management of consumables and process improvement programs.
These agreements and the Metso - client business relationships behind them are based on maintenance effectiveness, pulp and paper making performance as well as good delivery logistics, inventory control and cost management. Of course, the papermaking know-how developed over many years and in a wide variety of customer mills is an important element which adds even more value to these services.
Full-time presence at mills
Metso is now known as an effective and performance-focused business manager for its clients’ physical maintenance needs, consumables supply management and cost controls. Rather than being a “call in when needed” participant in mill maintenance Metso now has a full-time presence in many mills.
Jukka Tiitinen, President of Metso’s Services business line, Pulp, Paper and Power, defines Metso’s business relationship with customers: “We aim to have a seamless capital equipment sales and service organization to make it easy for our customers to deal with Metso and to take advantage of the added value in our services. That value, which comes from our know-how, will result in more productive and sustainable processes.”
With 5,000 employees and 70 service centers Metso’s Pulp, Paper and Power service organization is certainly global, but Tiitinen emphasizes the importance of local expertise and customer support. “Our local people are close to our customers and understand their needs, so our local engineering teams can deal with customer without translation,” he says. The local people are backed up by the global network of expertise.
Tiitinen explains that Metso’s value-added also comes from focusing on services related to a more sustainable operation, including reducing raw materials and resources – including water, fiber and energy. In fact, Metso is dedicating significant research and development efforts in these areas.
Headline news, underlying trends
Juha S Ojala
, Metso’s Manager of Concept Development for Services, gives his view of the current direction of maintenance services: “There is a clear trend that a growing number of our customers are looking to outsource certain business processes. The prime example is, of course, maintenance outsourcing which now has an important role also in Metso’s services portfolio. I believe the next success story will be comprehensive solutions regarding production consumables, such as fabrics. The logic of being able to reduce the cost and performance risk of consumables is compelling.“
There are major agreements that have been reported recently in the pulp and paper trade press and are catching the interest of the industry. Saica’s whole-mill outsourced maintenance concept appointed Metso as the primary maintenance provider for the new Partington, UK mill for a six-year period, including the mill start-up period. This landmark agreement is based on Saica’s positive experiences with Metso outsourced services over several years and other similar reference production lines in Europe.
Later this year, Amcor Packaging will start up the new Metso-supplied B9 board machine at its Botany mill in Australia with a multi-year mill maintenance agreement. Metso will assume full responsibility for the establishment of maintenance operations, mill maintenance services and management of improvement projects for the stock and paperboard production facilities as well as the mill utilities.
Holmen Paper in Hallsta, Sweden is another example of a mill which has shown its confidence in Metso’s maintenance services. They recently signed a three-year contract for comprehensive roll maintenance services through Metso’s local roll shops and with an active Metso presence in the mill. The mill expects better production line performance from this agreement, which is in line with many customers’ expectations.
Underlying these news headliners there are many other agreements which are not headline grabbers but still define the trends in the services business. These agreements can be as varied in scope and implementation as there are customer needs. However, many are driven by the same basic requirements. New production lines need to start up and reach productivity milestones quickly to ensure that return on investment goals are met or exceeded and to continue on that path of improvement for years after. In the same vein, existing production lines need to improve maintenance effectiveness and production line performance and keep costs in line or reduce them.
Numerous examples of these types of contracts have been customized to local requirements using local staff and facilities.
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Widening the horizons of service