SMC Corporation Japan, a world leader in pneumatics and industrial automation component technology, has announced a significant expansion of its global operations with the opening of a new subsidiary in Johannesburg.
The creation of SMC Pneumatics South Africa will enable customers in both South Africa and neighbouring countries to have easier access to SMC’s range of over 12 000 basic components available in over 700 000 variant forms. Further benefits to both machine builders and end users will be the increased levels of high quality technical support and the availability of customised products and local assemblies produced in the state-of-the-art Johannesburg factory.
Established in 1959, the Tokyo based SMC Corporation has steadily expanded into international markets worldwide and now has global production with factories and local subsidiaries in 50 countries, plus 400 sales offices and a distribution network in a further 32 countries. This expansion has been supported by a team of more than 1400 research and development engineers at SMC Technical Centres in Japan, China, USA and Europe.
Globally, SMC now employs around 22 000 people and in line with its focus on face to face customer communication. This approach has helped SMC to achieve a global market share exceeding 30%.
Adrian Buddingh, recently appointed as general manager of SMC South Africa said, “I’m thrilled to be joining SMC. We have a brand new 4000 square metre office, with trade counter, showroom, warehouse and manufacturing facility under construction. It is a very exciting time.” The company’s planned investment not only includes some of the most experienced people in the pneumatics industry, but also an extensive stock inventory plus state-of-the-art machinery to make local assembly and customisation possible.
Buddingh is no stranger to the industry with a 28-year career that spans the pneumatic, automation and mechatronic industries. He is also an active member of the South African Institution of Mechanical Engineers. He holds a qualification in mechanical engineering and was employed as engineering manager for a large local German pneumatics firm for 13 years, after which he was appointed as the managing director of an Italian pneumatics company with offices in South Africa. Adrian has a keen passion for education and was one of the founding members of the PneuDrive Challenge mechatronic design competition for engineering students. Furthermore, he is a keen sportsman who has competed in various Ironman competitions and completed the Comrades Marathon seven times.
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