2020-12-10

A robotized SBA furniture component factory was launched during the pandemic

Laminn, one of the most modern and fully automated furniture component factories in Europe, was launched in the SBA Technology and Innovation Parkin Klaipėda district, next to a logistics centre. It will centrally supply furniture manufacturing components and blanks to companies in the SBA furniture sector. Investments in the 13,000 sq. m. building and its facilities reach approximately 15 million euros.

"Thanks to our dedicated team, the pandemic did not hamper our strategic development plans. We are continuing to "build our muscles" to be able to successfully compete in the global markets. The new factory that has been built in our developed industrial innovation cluster is currently the most advanced in its field of specialization and has the most efficient cutting line in Europe. Its holistic and streamlined logistics and production system allow it to achieve maximum efficiency. By centralizing the production of blanks, we can optimize our logistics chain. The rational use of resources and transport significantly reduces the impact on the environment," says SBA Vice President Egidijus Valentinavičius. 

According to him, when the project is fully implemented, the new factory will have 4 efficient, fully automated production lines and 6 robots. They are being installed by SBA company Robotex. 40 trucks loaded with products will move from the new factory to other furniture manufacturing companies all over Lithuania daily. It is estimated that they will transport more than 90 million pieces of furniture components and blanks per year. The new factory uses raw materials more rationally. Its automated processes improve occupational safety and reduce product defects. 

"We can safely say that Laminn is the most digitized and automated furniture manufacturing company in Lithuania. This is a big step towards the fourth industrial revolution, focusing on technologies, digitization and robotics. Our production lines can "cooperate", meaning that they are connected via a common network and transfer to each other information on how much output has been produced, as well as how much output must be produced by certain lines, and when. An automated factory also requires fewer employees. For example, only two people are required to service one line," says Arūnas Bakutis, director of the newly established Laminn factory. 

According to him, a general electronic system has been installed for accepting orders for blanks, forming cargo, and estimating the time of its delivery to furniture factories. After transporting the blanks, the same truck returns with the finished products to the logistics centre located next to Laminn. This complex system has been implemented with the help of IT specialists of the SBA Competence and Service Center. 

"The factory enables us to be among only a few companies in Lithuania who use information collected with the help of big data technologies so widely and extensively. This allows us to apply centralized management of processes between related companies, analysis and identification of potential problems, and summarization of information. There are five times more computer network points – sensors, smart devices – than employees in the factory. Such modern software solutions can handle huge amounts of miscellaneous information. Processing such amounts on paper or in Excel files would simply be impossible," says Vaidas Paulauskis, IT Services Team Leader at SBA Competence and Service Center.

The recently launched factory is steadily increasing its volumes towards maximum capacity. It is currently using three out of four of its production lines and has 45 employees. After the installation and launch of the fourth production line, the number of qualified employees capable of operating automated lines is expected to increase by 30 percent. 

The total investments of the SBA Group in the first two stages of the SBA Technology and Innovation Park (a factory, a logistics centre, and facilities thereof) have exceeded 30 million euros. Both the logistics centre, which is managed by the SBA company "Innovo Logistika", and the Laminn factory were developed by the SBA real estate company Urban Inventors. After the first two stages of development, which were partly financed by Swedbank, the number of newly created jobs in the SBA Technology and Innovation Park will approach one hundred, however further development of this cluster is also planned in the future. 

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