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New Year, New Initiatives: Message from Shibaura Machine

ELK GROVE VILLAGE, IL, January 4, 2021 

Upon reflection, the health and financial challenges faced by our company, nation, and the world as a whole in 2020 have been unprecedented, at least within living memory.  I am extremely proud to report our management and employees have quickly and effectively responded and adapted to each challenge as it arose.  To cite just a few examples;

  • Within two days of management decision, we implemented a complete, nationwide “work-from-home” program, a program which has proven to be extraordinarily successful; effectively continuing all company functions, maintaining the health and welfare of our employees, and maintaining the safe operation of all Shibaura Machine Company, America facilities.
  • While our business has of course seen some challenges resulting from the general economic downturn, Shibaura Machine successfully refocused efforts on industries which have remained relatively strong, such as medical, household products, and many critical infrastructure industries, with clear and welcome success.
  • We safeguarded and enhanced our injection molding machine assembly operations to help ensure on-time machine delivery to customers manufacturing critical medical supplies for first responders, as well as customers supporting other essential infrastructure.
  • We continued to honor our spare parts commitments to customers by; 1) maintaining our essential parts inventory in excess of $15M and, 2) implementing warehouse safeguards and procedures to ensure no interruptions to “next day” parts delivery commitments.
  • We have continued our nationwide service support commitments, navigating the shifting state and local compliance requirements, while keeping our service teams safe and healthy.

I am also very proud to note we have been able to minimize employment disruptions and can today report our current number of full-time employees is the same as it was the year before on this date.

Finally, as we look back on 2020, I cannot say enough about our field service and technical support personnel who have continued to travel and maintain a high level of essential customer service during these very trying circumstances.  Also, through constant and careful monitoring of our facilities, both our warehouse and assembly operations have continued uninterrupted.

Looking forward, I am pleased to state our future is bright and business is trending upward.  We have identified new reserves of energy, focus and determination, and we are now in the process of turning our attention to improvements in our products, technologies, business processes, and customer support, all driven by our tireless commitment to customer satisfaction.

  • Industry 4.0 is the newest chapter in industrial development, which has ignited productivity in manufacturing via connected machines, people, data, and value chains. Shibaura Machine has been in the forefront of industry leading smart factory innovations for many years.  In 2021 we will continue to transform our machinery and technologies to the next level, where our customers will realize their Return of Investment (ROI) at a substantially faster pace.
  • Digital transformation marks a radical rethinking of how organizations use technology, people, and processes to fundamentally change business performance. Like many of our customers, Shibaura Machine also has accelerated our digital transformation goals to adapt to current market conditions and better support our customers and business partners.  I am pleased we are on track to reaching several important milestones on our digital transformation journey in 2021.
  • Shibaura Machine is committed to sustainability; supporting the development and commercialization of environmentally friendly plastics, biodegradable materials, and stronger, light-weight materials.
  • As a corporation we are also implementing organization reforms and enhanced investment to ensure added value and greater productivity in our manufacturing plants resulting in higher quality and reduced lead times.

Further, we recognize and acknowledge the difficulties many of our customers, and North American manufacturing in general, may face in 2021, and hereby affirm our steadfast intent to help our customers meet their manufacturing goals.  This will include the hiring of more service and technical staff in 2021 to further strengthen our customer support resources.       

I am proud to be president of this company and to lead such a fine group of talented and dedicated employees.  And while this greeting is not unique, it certainly has special meaning at this time;

I wish all of you a healthy and prosperous new year.

Sincerely,

Hiroshi Azuma
President & Corporate Executive Officer
Shibaura Machine Company, America

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