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Tennant - the drive towards reducing the cost of cleaning1st of July 2014
Tennant, the US based manufacturer traditionally associated with floor care machine technology, presented a number of innovations in other product areas during ISSA/Interclean. Yves Derycke, vice president EMEA, explained the company’s strategy in launching these new developments.
“For BSCs the economic crisis in Europe has definitely brought about a greater focus on cost,” he believes, “and that’s not just the pure cost of purchase but the total cost of use, the lifetime cost.”
Customers’ requirements of their suppliers have also changed gradually in recent years, Derycke says. “Increasingly they come to us and ask for total solutions, to help them reduce their cost of cleaning. They are experiencing growing pressure from their clients and that pressure is in turn being felt very much by the manufacturer.”
He believes that Tennant’s approach to the market wasn’t always the right one. “In the past maybe the company came across as a little arrogant, it was the market leader in the
USA but did not always acknowledge the differences between the American and European markets.
“I feel we are now really addressing the cost of cleaning, with a host of new products, rather than simply slashing costs.”
Tennant has invested significantly in bringing new cleaning technologies based on water electrolysis to the market through its company Orbio Technologies. The os3 system offers on-site and on-demand cleaning solution generation.
What is driving this level of innovation from the cleaning industry’s manufacturers? “In Europe at the moment the motivation is largely to reduce cost rather than the desire to be more sustainable,” replies Derycke. “A sustainable product simply will not be accepted if it does not offer cost benefits at the same time.”
He also concedes that introducing new technology such as Orbio into a market which is traditionally resistant to change is a challenge. “Very early in the process we identified customers who could be early adopters. The majority of the market is not ready for Orbio so we have invested dedicated resource in sales. A machine is a very tangible sell, whereas Orbio is a more conceptual approach.”
He continues: “Establishing a product like this will take time – and it could be a long time – and we will not lose focus on our core business which is floor care machines. However in the long term I believe Orbio could transform the company we are today.”