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That Sumitomo (SHI) Demag customer and employees magazine

New road ahead for automotive moulding

Mobility is changing and with it automakers are gearing up for the ultimate electric and digitally connected reinvention. Nigel Flowers, UK Managing Director of injection moulding specialist Sumitomo (SHI) Demag examines the future of connected cars, the mega technology trends just around the corner and how domestic tier 1-3 suppliers are scaling up production of micro-precision components in preparedness for the next phase of the automotive revolution. 

Pandemic accelerates automation productivity plans

As with most disruptions, the pandemic has amplified the focus on productivity and forced injection moulding decision makers to reconsider how automation and digitalised technologies can facilitate working smarter.  

German partners address micro and precision moulding inefficiencies

In a new strategic partnership, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag has announced its cooperation with Fraunhofer Institute for Production Systems and Design Technology IPK in Berlin. The aim of this strategic partnership is to develop an economical inline inspection process that achieves 100% control of micro and precision injection moulded parts in the shortest possible cycle time.

Debunking all-electric machine repair costs

All-electric injection moulding machines have many virtues - greater precision, higher power density and lower carbon emissions. Yet there’s a preconception that these systems are more expensive to repair. 

Keen to dispel this myth, Nigel Flowers, managing director of Sumitomo (SHI) Demag UK examines several of the metrics that counteract the reliability and service cost arguments and highlights where electric machines have the edge.

Sumitomo (SHI) Demag reports machine order increase during corona crisis

Compared with the first half of 2019, injection moulding machine manufacturer Sumitomo (SHI) Demag is ending the first half of 2020 with a healthy order book. During the first six months, the value of incoming orders for machines produced in Germany rose by almost 25 percent.

New Year ? New Machine !

To celebrate the start of a new decade, Sumitomo Demag have secured the following machines, available on immediate delivery, 

How the plastics industry is raising the safety bar

With the UK’s plastics industry turning over £23.5 billion each year and employing approximately 222,000 across 6,000 businesses, it’s no surprise that continued efforts are being made by industry figures to improve health and safety measures.

Trend Technologies & Sumitomo-Demag Shortlisted @ Med-Tech Innovation Awards 2019.

Congratulations to Trend Technologies for being short-listed together with Sumitomo-Demag for the Industry 4.0 Award at the prestigious Med-Tech Innovation Awards 2019. Sumitomo Demag's all-electric injection moulding machines, supplied to Trend Technologies' recently opened third ISO Class 7 (10,000) cleanroom in Mullingar, Ireland. 

Hot off the press ...

With lead times becoming more critical, here at Sumitomo Demag UK we have secured the following machines on quick delivery:-

Irish Plastic Processors to Benefit from New Partnership

Injection moulding specialist Sumitomo (SHI) Demag has teamed up with global material handling and dosing specialist TSM Control Systems, headquartered in Dundalk, appointing the team as their new Northern and Southern Ireland agent. 

Raising Workforce Standard

Last September, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag UK (SDUK) opened its new Training Academy, introducing a structured and progressive beginner to advanced level training programme. Aimed at the entire plastics workforce, in 12-months 22 companies have participated in the programme, including Bericap UK, Essentra Components, Piolax and Broanmain, with all delegates, ranging from mould tool setters to engineers, giving their course a 100% rating. 

Sumitomo (SHI) Demag consolidates its product portfolio

The competitive advantages of all-electric machines, such as greater precision and dynamics with greatly reduced energy consumption, are a few reasons why this technology is increasingly driving events on the market. This development has prompted growth at Sumitomo (SHI) Demag over the last few years, leading to increased investment in the efficient, high-precision IntElect machine technology.

Four hours of FREE hands-on plastic moulding training at PDM 2018

At PDM 2018, Stand C026, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag is running a series of live four half-hour injection moulding workshops over two days. Aimed at process technicians and engineers attending the exhibition on 19th and 20th June, anyone taking part in the PDM Training Courses can then register for a 10% discount on any training programme booked before 1st September at the Sumitomo (SHI) Demag Training Academy. Early registration for the free PDM workshops is advisable.

For the practical demonstrations, Academy trainers and process engineers James Hines and Darren Vater-Hutchison will use one of the company’s newest all-electric 50 tonne IntElect, guiding delegates through key topics to enhance precision, cycle times and component quality. “We are keen for people to put theory into practice using one of our flagship machines,” emphasises James

The four half-hour courses, which will run consecutively on both days starting at 10.30, 12.00, 13.30, 15.00 offers a combination of practical and theory-based learning to enhance understanding or provide a refresh on:

  • How best to calculate clamp force
  • Achieving cavity balance and shot-to-shot consistency, providing comparisons when award-winning activeFlowBalance software is applied
  • How to calculate cooling time, with the opportunity to test out thermal imaging technology from Micro Epsilon
  • How to achieve greater repeatable process consistency on high precision parts with activeLock, with active closing of the non-return valve reducing the risk of rejects and waste

“There is a serious skills shortage in the UK injection moulding industry and the easiest way to address it is to upskill our existing moulders to work with the latest equipment and techniques,” comments Nigel Flowers, managing director of Sumitomo (SHI) Demag UK. “We encourage process technicians and engineers visiting PDM to take advantage of this opportunity.”

SDUK are currently in discussions with Northampton College to deliver a Level II Apprenticeship in Polymer Operations. To discuss this or how the Apprenticeship levy can help your business in more detail please visit the stand.

Anyone taking part in the live training sessions will become eligible for a 10% discount on any training programme at the SDUK Training Academy in Daventry. Comprising a structured and progressive entry level to advanced engineer development programme, delegates and their employers have reported tangible productivity improvements and an increased sense of ownership and enthusiasm for their jobs.

This year SDUK added to their Academy programme launching a new four-day Mould Validation (MVal) course aimed at process technicians, which significantly helps to improve machine OEE reports James. “By following a structured approach to mould validation, customers quickly report that they are able to halve the number of tool trials before transferring over to production.” The first MVal course is in April with another scheduled for 17th September 2018.

To reserve a place on one of SDUK’s free PDM workshops, please email

SDUK Awarded Cogent Skills Partner Status

It’s official! We have now achieved Cogent Skills status. This is fantastic news for Sumitomo Demag Training Academy and Sumitomo Demag UK.

The qualitative and quantitative analysis conducted by Cogent Skills is an exemplary portrayal of our injection moulding training courses, based on Quality, Cost, and Delivery.  

 “Don’t forget we teach process specific and not machine specific training, which allows for non Sumitomo Demag customers to benefit from our training courses”.   

Industry 4:0: Prepping for Act 2

In recent years there’s been much talk about smart production frameworks, big data, enhanced machine connectivity and future proofing. Yet, apart from a handful of key Industry 4:0 evangelists, it’s all been a bit theoretical with the physical changes being slower to emerge than some might have anticipated. 

Rather than scenarios, Industry 4:0 sceptics are seeking tangible and practical applications before investing in Internet of Things (IoT) technology. Sumitomo (SHI) Demag’s UK boss Nigel Flowers reviews some of the latest developments to reach the injection moulding community and what the company is doing to help customers prepare for the second phase of this evolutionary journey.

Thinking thin - injection moulders push the boundaries of plastic thickness

Product wall thickness is a key consideration when designing and moulding plastic products. While thicker walls offer greater strength, the downside is warping can be more prevalent when the plastic cools in the mould.  To combat this and in their quest to reduce unit costs, many engineers and designers today go in the opposite direction, keeping parts as thin and lightweight as feasible.

Rigid plastics, which is the category thin walled containers sits in, is forecast to reach $226.4 billion by 2020 globally, with a growth rate of 4.4% annually for the next five years**. PE is projected to be the largest-growing segment during this forecast period. Light-weighting and consumer convenience are important factors in this expansion.

More >>>

Raising plastic workforce standards

Last September, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag UK (SDUK) opened its new Training Academy, introducing a structured and progressive beginner to advanced level training programme. Aimed at the entire plastics workforce, in 12-months 22 companies have participated in the programme, including Bericap UK, Essentra Components, Piolax and Broanmain, with all delegates, ranging from mould tool setters to engineers, giving their course a 100% rating.

All seven courses, run at SDUK’s Daventry-based Academy, are designed to be modular and offer logical progression from basic tool setting to advanced process engineering, creating a skilled workforce that addresses workforce retention and labour shortages. Research released by Engineering UK in 2017 indicates that 265,000 skilled entrants will be required annually to meet demand for engineering enterprises to 2024*. 

read more >>> 

Actively protecting mould safety

Cared for and maintained properly, the average injection precision mould running 10-second cycles should have a lifespan of over 10 million cycles over five years. However, there are a number of different elements, including melt pressure, clamp design, and the corrosiveness of the material being injected that can weaken the mould structure and impact the quality of parts being produced. To help enhance and preserve the longevity of moulds, injection moulding specialist Sumitomo (SHI) Demag recently launched its highly sensitive activeProtect feature. 

read more >>> 

activeCell fills compact, cleanroom injection moulding gap

Once the preserve of pharmaceutical and medical device injection moulding, cleanroom production facilities are now cropping up in the automotive, micro-electronics and bio-technology sectors too. Yet, cumbersome planning and smaller factory footprints means many moulders seeking to eliminate contamination from plastic parts are shifting their thinking from large, fixed cleanrooms and seeking more compact, mobile systems, observes Nigel Flowers, Managing Director at Sumitomo (SHI) Demag UK.

Read More >>>

Getting a grip on injection moulding clamp force

James Hines and Darren Vater-Hutchison, Process & Training Engineers at Sumitomo (SHI) Demag UK, explain why it is important to set clamp force on injection moulding machines correctly.

Clamp force is the pressure required to counter the material pressure during the injection and holding phase of the plastic injection moulding process. Filling of the mould during this phase takes place at high pressure and this must be countered if the mould is not to be forced open. It is usually quoted measured in metric tonnes, imperial tons or the more technically correct kiloNewtons (kN).

Read More >>>

New IntElect advances precision for Britain’s £6bn automotive market

Sumitomo (SHI) Demag has unveiled its new all-electric IntElect injection moulding machine. Designed with automotive trade moulders in mind, it is 20% smaller than its predecessors and gives manufacturers of vehicle components the precision required to expand their production in the growing £6bn UK supply chain sector.

Read More >>>>

All Eyes On IML Packaging

In today’s overcrowded consumer market, it’s the tactile and visual finishes of a container that gives it a unique standout on-shelf and in the consumer’s hand. When it comes to creating head turning packaging in the food, personal care and consumer sectors, In Mould Labelling (IML) using injection moulding has the advantage over adhesive printed labels for quality, production costs, sustainability and those all-important emotional brand connections. Kevin Heap, packaging expert at Sumitomo (SHI) Demag UK explains why.

Read more >>>


New Northern Area Sales Manager - Iain Wallace

Iain joins Sumitomo SHI Demag as North UK and Ireland Sales Manager with an extensive 30 years polymer industry experience.

Iain began his polymer industry career at Hepworth Building Product as an R&D Engineer covering all aspects of new product and process development from concept to commercialization for injection moulded, compression moulding and extruded products involving a wide range of polymer materials with a hands on approach across all stages. He gained an MSc Polymer Engineering in this 11yr position with previous qualifications being and automotive apprenticeship, HND Mechanical & Production and OND Engineering Technology. He also holds a number of industrial patents from this position.

With increased involvement of bridging product design and commissioning of new process lines to commercial launches he moved to capital equipment sales in the polymer industry which extends to 20yrs of commercial experience with Davis-Standard, Beta-Lasermike, Pipe Coil Technology and the Manufacturing Advisory Service. This role has taken him Worldwide covering 6 continents.


Meet our new Area Sales Manager for UK South - Stephen Sutcliffe

Stephen Sutcliffe  joined the company in October 2016 following seven years as Head of UK Sales with Superior Seals, the largest UK  manufacturer of rubber Seals and O Rings. Here he worked with technically demanding OEM customers and developed a newest of account management skills to add to his many years of sales experience.

Stephen has an extensive knowledge of selling injection moulding machines in the South of the UK, following 11 years with Arburg and 2 years with Boy. He has experience in specifying machines for a variety of applications and managing bespoke projects that include robotics and automation. He has great ambitions for Sumitomo (SHI) Demag in the South of the UK, and plans to further enhance the company's standing in this area.

Stephen trained as an  apprentice  engineer with Anderson Strathclyde, before becoming a CNC programmer for Terex, both in Motherwell, Scotland. He  then went on to gain a B.Sc. (Hons) Degree in Engineering Business Development.


Innovative 3G remote diagnostics solution wins plastic industry technology gold

For the second consecutive year, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag has scooped the coveted title of Best Technology Application of the Year at the Plastic Industry Awards 2016. Judges at the ‘Great Gatsby’ themed event noted that activeREmote, an encrypted and secure cellular access remote diagnostics tool developed in-house by the company’s IT team would  “benefit all aspects of product cost, quality and efficiency as a result of rapid machine diagnostics and elimination of downtime" >>more

Sumitomo (SHI) Demag records 2015 as the most successful year in its corporate history

Sumitomo (SHI) Demag has presented record results for 2015, with sales at EUR 234 million, up 11% on the previous year, and a significant increase in strategic market shares. These impressive growth figures are the result of the strategic changes initiated in April 2015, i.e. the focus on core competencies, the pooling of the two German production sites into one production centre and the capacity expansion at Demag Plastics Machinery in Ningbo/China. more

Nigel Flowers hails 2015 as ‘watershed year’

When asked to sum up the last 12-months of trading, UK boss Nigel Flowers says that in his eyes 2015 will be remembered as the year that Sumitomo (SHI) Demag “reclaimed its rightful place as the industry leader in injection moulding.”

More >>

SD Appoints New Global Aftersales Manager - Andreas Holzer

Sumitomo (SHI) Demag appointed Andreas Holzer (49) as new Head of After-Sales Service at Sumitomo (SHI) Demag Plastics Machinery, effective 1 October 2015. Andreas Holzer has thirty years of experience in machine engineering, and has worked as Head of After-Sales Services for three plastics machinery manufacturers for a total of seventeen years. Before his latest appointment he worked for an Austrian competitor, where he was responsible for customer service. 


Short shot technology wins Plastic Industry gold gong

Sumitomo (SHI) Demag has won the coveted title of Best Technology Application of the Year at the 2015 Plastic Industry Awards. Judges noted that the success of activeFlowBalance “successfully improved product quality and product efficiency” and was a good example of the application of technology.


Career Opportunities at Sumitomo Demag UK

We currently have vacancies in our UK team for:-

1. Area Sales Engineer – North & South (Two Positions).

§  strong track record in injection moulding or manufacturing

§  ability to communicate with people at all levels

§  strong negotiation skills

§  able to work own your own initiative and as part of a team

2. Service Engineer - South.

§  Strong electro-mechanical background – holding a recognised electrical qualification.

§  Apprentice trained

§  Extensive travel throughout the UK & Ireland.

§  Ability to work on own initiative.

Please contact :

SDUK Shortlisted for TWO Plastic Industry Awards 2015

SDUK have been shortlisted for TWO of the prestigious Plastic Industry Awards 2015. Our entries into the “Supplier Partnership - Prime Machinery” together with Essentra Ltd. and “Best Technology Application of the Year” for our activeFlowBalance technology have clearly impressed the judging panels !

You can see the full list of finalists here :

Slovenia’s first ‘one stop’ moulder accelerates switch to all-electric

Iskra ISD Plast d.o.o. is continuing to fast track its switch to all-electric injection moulding (eIMM), adding to its extensive range of Sumitomo (SHI) Demag machines with an IntElect 220-560. Operating out of its headquarters in Kranj, Iskra was the first plastics processor in Slovenia to offer its extensive global automotive and white electrical goods customers a complete moulding, product design and moulding making service, including the full assembly of units on request.

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Curtain falls on all-electric cascade challenge

Responding to market demands for higher production output in injection moulding facilities, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag has resolved one of the key challenges in the production of high volume, low value packaging components - how they cascade from multi-cavity moulds on all-electric machines. The company’s new ejector technology addresses the issue of plastic parts bouncing around, giving manufacturers the cycle time, speed, precision and repeatability of a hydraulic system currently favoured in mass-production environments.

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Sumitomo Demag UK - 40 Years Young

Sumitomo (SHI) Demag UK is celebrating 40 years in business. Managing Director Nigel Flowers reflects on some of the key milestones and how the injection moulding landscape and market has evolved over these four decades, and invites Barry Taylor, the MD back in 1974 to share his memories of the company during this era of rapid change.

Nigel comments: “Since our foundation in September 1974, the UK & Ireland market has changed beyond recognition, both in terms of size and technology. From the beginning, we’ve been at the forefront of addressing production challenges, whether it’s fast cycling or energy consumption.



Driving down defects in automotive mouldings

Nifco UK, one of Europe’s largest suppliers of automotive functional plastic components, has recently installed its seventh Sumitomo (SHI) Demag injection-moulding machine.   The company, based in Stockton-on-Tees for over 40 years, has built up a solid reputation for an unswerving attention to quality and technical innovation, supplying major automotive assembly plants, including Honda, Nissan, Toyota, Ford and Jaguar Land Rover.  Nifco’s newest Sumitomo installation is the all-electric IntElect, which is delivering instant results. Besides cutting the company’s carbon footprint it is significantly reducing scrap waste, cutting noise pollution on the processing floor, and boosting output. 


Top PPMA polymer prize awarded to Sumitomo (SHI) Demag UK

Sumitomo (SHI) Demag, has won the prestigious title of Polymer Equipment Manufacturer of the Year at the PPMA 2014 Awards.

Celebrating manufacturing capabilities and achievements across all facets of the industry, the polymer title was presented to the UK team for its collaboration with precision moulding manufacturer forteq UK.  Sumitomo (SHI) Demag’s “great approach to customer service” proved to be a winner with the PPMA judges, who also praised the company’s “ability to juggle multiple suppliers to find a winning solution”.


Faster colour changes save time and money

Many areas of application involve the production of identical plastic parts with different colours.

Download PDF

Sumitomo showcase 12 performance boosting upgrades at PDM

Manufacturer of injection moulding equipment Sumitomo (SHI) Demag is showcasing 12 ‘active’ technologies to help moulders improve product precision and productivity at PDM this year. On stand CO27A, Sumitomo will demonstrate how the economical plug-in innovations can be easily retrofitted to existing hydraulic, hybrid and electric presses, giving aging equipment a new lease of life.

Download PDF


Turbulent flow temperature control cuts cycle times at Warden Plastics

Fitting Sumitomo (SHI) DEMAG temperature control units on two of its highest output machines has enabled injection moulding specialist Warden Plastics to not only stabilise its process but also accrue significant financial savings by shaving 10% off cycle times. Download PDF

Liquid colourant system revolutionises colour change process

A new breakthrough pigment dosing technology from Sumitomo (SHI) Demag promises to dramatically shorten colour change times when producing injection moulded coloured parts. By applying colour when the plastic is in liquid state, the activeColourChange liquid colour metering system effects instant colour changes at the touch of a button. This means uniformly coloured pieces can be produced after only a few cycles of new pigment being added, enabling processors to benefit from less waste and reduced change over duration. Download PDF

New Technology Centre in Strongsville, OH

Wednesday, April 10th. Grand Opening of New Technology Center in Strongsville, OH, New, 8,000 square-foot facility to showcase innovation and technology with all-electric, hybrid and hydraulic machines from 56 to 652 U.S. tons Sumitomo (SHI) Demag announced today that the company will hold a grand opening for its new Technology Center on April 10, 2013, in Strongsville, OH.

The one-day event will feature seven molding demonstrations, including medical, automotive, ultra-high-speed thin-wall packaging and closure applications and more, including an El-Exis SP 450 hybrid machine running an ultra-high-speed, multi-cavity closure molding application at the opening of the facility.

New El-Exis SP delivers outstanding performance benefits

These include a 15 % increase in mould movement speed, 20 % improvement in injection speed and new enhanced NC5 plus control system which aids greater production reliability and a prolonged machine lifespan.

Based on proven El-Exis technology, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag made subtle design changes to create the SP model which helps high volume manufacturers of packaging products, caps and closures, and technical and medical products to achieve greater outputs with reduced cycle time and lower energy consumption. The El-Exis SP hybrid machine uses a carefully crafted blend of drive technologies including a servo driven hydraulic clamp unit to achieve precise movements, a hydraulic accumulator delivering high injection rates, and an electric screw drive for parallel plasticising, all of which shave tenths of a second off the cycle time enabling manufacturers to profit from increased margins.

Those benefitting from the efficiency gains include caps manufacturer GCS Group, which reduced its cycle time by 25 % using a 250 tonne El-Exis SP system whilst maintaining the same uptime and product quality performance. Further to this, a leading European container manufacturer conducted an internal energy comparison between their new 250 tonne El-Exis SP machine and existing injection moulding equipment, to find that the new technology reduced their energy usage by 24.5 % saving the company in excess of £12,000 pa.

Committed to meeting customers’ high expectations regarding product quality and prolonged machine lifespan, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag’s design team used the latest techniques to increase reliability, improving the clamp unit dynamics, creating higher speeds and smoother more linear transitions, protecting the mould from damage and guaranteeing repeatable performance. The machine’s new NC5 plus control system also focuses on mould protection with a built-in mould safety system which monitors the status of the mould during opening and closing strokes, anticipating potential problems and quickly reacting to minimise potential mould damage. Further to this, the easy-to-use NC5 plus system allows operators to individually optimise each machine axis for maximum performance, as Technical Sales Manager Dave Raine explains: “Using simple individual machine movement slide bars via the touch screen, the machine setter can make adjustments and see in real-time how the machine reacts to each change made. This visual process helps reduce set-up time, optimising the machine to maximise speed and product quality”.

Managing Director Nigel Flowers adds: “The SP model has been fine-tuned in all areas to improve product quality, quantity and lower energy consumption. For high volume plastics manufacturers, these enhancements aid company profitability and give capacity flexibility to meet future growth demands.”

Double whammy for Sumitomo, winner of two plastic industry awards

In just one week, injection moulding equipment manufacturer Sumitomo (SHI) DEMAG, was named Polymer Equipment Manufacturer of the Year 2012 at the PPMA Awards and declared runner-up in the Supplier Partnership (Prime Machinery) category of the Plastics Industry Awards 2012.

“Two awards in one week is an incredible achievement,” comments Sumitomo (SHI) DEMAG Managing Director Nigel Flowers. “Winning these accolades not only recognises our technological prowess, it most importantly honours our team for their ability to manage complex turnkey projects meeting every aim and objective set by the customer.”

Both awards were presented to Sumitomo for its work with Irish-based general plastic components manufacturer Molex, who required a 350 tonne injection moulding system with two 8+8 cavity moulds to annually produce 3.5 million unique multicomponent 2-shot connectors for a new energy efficient water pump product manufactured by Grundfos. Working as a system integrator, Sumitomo oversaw the entire Molex project which required a new production process, new moulds, technical expertise relating to material capabilities/bonds, machine design and build.