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Published in: Coating & Converting | C2 Europe 73 | February 2019
Author: Martin Hirschmann
Industrial fans are only one aspect of the main business of Venti Oelde. The converting market is also an integral part of the diverse activities of the company from Oelde in Germany – reason enough for a visit by the C2 team
The view from the company car park of Ventilatorenfabrik Oelde GmbH to the surrounding fields and forests on the edge of the small town in the German Münsterland is certainly picturesque. This is all the more reason to be impressed by the sheer size of the Venti Oelde factory site. The manufacturer's innovative air technology is used in numerous industries and requires components and systems in a wide variety of sizes and designs. "Our business is not limited to dryers, but also includes systems and components for extracting, conveying or separating air," explains managing director Thomas Gandt in an interview with C2.
About 255 employees are currently working for the traditional company, which was founded in 1930 and achieved a turnover of €48M in 2017. Although Oelde has a rather rural character, large cities such as Dortmund, Münster and Bielefeld can be reached quickly – the infrastructure connection is ideal, as Gandt further emphasises.
Business model based on three pillars
Venti Oelde's diverse business activities are divided into three divisions: First and foremost are the fans, which are used as tailor-made models in the industrial exhaust air sector. Strategically, the company wants to be more successful in quality not quantity. In the coating industry, these high quality requirements are reflected, for instance, in designs in which a fan could be integrated in the smallest possible space.
The second "pillar" in the business is plant construction: de-dusting, classic filter systems, cyclones, scrubbers, process gas cleaning, exhaust air treatment systems, drying, cooling and air conditioning are all part of this area. "If we take the example of a printing press, our range does not just include the device itself," explains Gandt. "We can also optimise the energy efficiency and air conditioning of the pressroom. We offer a complete package for air ducting in a production facility, which can also include edge trim extraction and material recovery."
Venti Oelde's third main activity is service. It starts with consulting and also includes support during full production. Installation and commissioning as well as maintenance and repair and online troubleshooting can keep the production running at the customers’ sites.
Process optimisation thanks to air technology
Like every industry, the paper and film industry also has its own specific processes, from which the respective multi-layered requirements for ventilation technology are derived. Here, air is required for production, cooling, drying, conveying and manipulation, as well as for selection, cleaning, separation, discharge, recycling and air conditioning.
As an experienced system supplier, Venti Oelde is very familiar with the complex processes in the printing and paper industry as well as film production and processing. Wilfried Pape, sales manager exhaust air cleaning, is particularly proud of the knowhow that the technicians in the company have accumulated over many years: "If we can contribute our specific specialist knowledge at an early stage in the planning process, we can fully exploit our strengths," he emphasises. "In this way, we can achieve the highest levels of efficiency, i.e. the best possible performance with the greatest possible energy savings. We rely on holistically integrated process solutions in which all components are functionally interlinked."
The experts at Venti Oelde always ensure that their work is customer-oriented. Thomas Gandt: "We only supply one component for complete systems, some of which are complex, to the customer. For larger systems, we therefore also cooperate with other manufacturers. Here it is the respective customer that determines who manages the interfaces." The managing director proudly points out that many customers demanded that their plant manufacturer integrate Venti Oelde ventilation technology.
Long-term experience in networking
When asked about the ubiquitous industry 4.0 trend, Wilfried Pape emphasises: "Mechatronic networking, the higher-level control technology that is now on everyone's lips under the buzzword Industry 4.0, has actually been around for a long time here. It would be unthinkable otherwise, as we have to integrate the control system that we supply for our part into the higher-level control system of the machine as well.
Venti Oelde is also very well positioned in customer service: In addition to a 24-hour hotline, the company offers a comprehensive remote maintenance service and a network of supervisors who look after and manage the worldwide service.
At the end of our visit, Gandt sums up: "We stand for innovative solutions. We are particularly proud of the fact that we can offer the printing and paper industry unconventional solutions that work even in the tightest of spaces. Tailor-made projects such as fans with multiple blowouts, which can save pipes and branches, are also important success factors for our business. Through the developments that we initiate together with our customers, we also continue to develop ourselves further. Some of the companies we supply are ten times as big as we are – nevertheless, we are regarded as specialists there and are approached for all air technology challenges!"