Tuesday 04 June 2019

Savoie Transmissions veut digitaliser la maintenance

INNOVATION. Savoie Transmissions – the SME based in Chavanod retails high-tech transmission machinery that is developed by leading companies. It is now launching Maintenance 4.0 with dedicated solutions for each level: curative, preventive, predictive and prescriptive. It is a diversification that puts innovation at the heart of its strategy with the objective to bring more digital technologies to its customers so as to optimize the industrial tool.

In 2014, Savoie transmissions opted to develop maintenance for industrial transmissions with the objective to innovate via maintenance 4.0. “Specialists help us develop 4.0 solutions to manage remotely the maintenance operations of our customers” explained Pierre Arboireau, the CEO who initiated that change 5 years ago when he bought the company.

4.0 to serve maintenance

That strategic choice today means ST offers a complete range of services that are hosted under the Mataki brand. There are 4 levels of maintenance: curative, preventive, predictive and prescriptive. For each of them Savoie Transmissions has developed a dedicated solution, like 3D printing, subcontracted to Initial, that helps to quickly replace parts that are no longer available on the market. It also developed an Enhanced Reality headpiece for which it created an app with hyperfunction so as to prevent, gain time and guaranty operations. With regards to predictive maintenance, ST came up with a captor. Placed on the machine, it is cordless and measures once or several times a day, the temperature, the atmospheric pressure, the hygrometric pressure and the magnetic field as well as the vibrations along 3 axes as per ISO standard 10816. The customer systematically gets an email when the thresholds they defined are reached. “The interest of conditional maintenance is to be able to intervene as soon as a weakness point is noticed” highlights the manager. Also, prescriptive maintenance is a large box with many captors to “analyze the vibrations remotely and recommend a balance, a laser alignment or a change of bearing”.


Reduce the early obsolescence of the industrial tool.

According to Pierre Arboireau, those tools will allow customers to optimize their machinery and reduce early obsolescence of the machines. “The earlier we intervene, the lower the costs with an optimized maintenance.” At the end of the day, one saves 10 to 20%. As a proof of its capacity to innovate, Savoie transmissions was shortlisted for the European IoT4Industry  project (it is the only one from the Mont Blanc Industries Cluster) and it is working with Inventhys on a new captor to widen its maintenance 4.0 offer.



Deploy the Maintenance 4.0 offer as a franchise

That will help boost its turnover in the coming years. Today, Savoie Transmissions has signed 16 global maintenance contracts and is aiming at 50 within 2 years. Pierre Arboireau also aims at extending its offer to other companies as a franchise and may seize opportunities if they exist. He did just that in late 2018 when he bought CMP (€1M. and 10 employees) a small swiss manufacturer of varnishing and polishing machines for watch makers. Indeed, exporting is a possibility that the  Mont-Blanc Excellence Industries Cluster experts have confirmed as being noteworthy.


A new governance

Within its strategy and the improvement of its profitability per activity (distribution, maintenance and peripherals), Savoie Transmissions started the 2nd cycle of the Excellence label. “The 360° audit of our practices did confirm we had a good hand; we just need to play those cards well for the company to progress. It also allows to compare ourselves to the industrial environment and to see what other SME do to define ways to improve.”

“We have made bricks ; let’s build a wall”,  claims Pierre Arboireau. It will mean to adapt the managerial practices to the new size of the company as its priority will switch from investments to organization. Over the last 5 years, the annual growth has been 5 to 10% with a TO of €4.5 M. in FY 2018. The distribution activity represents 75% of its TO while maintenance is 25%. The objective is to reach 2/3 vs 1/3 within 3 years with a TO of €6M.


Patricia Rey, journalist