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The Rupp Report: Textile Machinery Made In Germany

Jürg Rupp, Executive Editor

In the current issue of Textile World , you will find  a report on textile machinery for technical textiles and nonwovens. In view of the next Techtextil - to be held in Frankfurt in June - Germany is the focus of attention. But Techtextil is not the only motivation for doing this. Germany is the largest manufacturer of textile machinery in general, and of technical textiles and nonwovens machinery in particular. For the last 10 to 15 years, nonwovens and industrial fabric applications have been enjoying double-digit growth every year. The overwhelming success of these products is due not only to the constant development of better raw material, but first of all to the success story of the ever-so-sophisticated machinery.

Among all manufacturing countries, Germany plays the one of most prominent roles. The German machinery manufacturers are organized into the German Engineering Federation (VDMA) Textile Machinery Association. The VDMA has more than 3,000 members divided into 39 specific branch associations. The textile machinery manufacturers branch represents approximately 95 percent of Germany's total production volume in this sector. Some 120 member companies are grouped in the textile machinery sector.

In an exclusive interview, Fritz P. Mayer, chairman of the VDMA Textile Machinery Association and managing partner of Karl Mayer Textilmaschinenfabrik GmbH, gave his thoughts on the VDMA and the current situation on the world markets.

Information A Prerequisite
Regarding the market situation, Mayer said the German textile machinery sector experienced in 2008 the strongest slump since World War II. Overall exports declined by 22 percent. However, technical textiles and nonwovens are still quite promising sectors. With a 29-percent rise in Germany's exports of textile machinery to the United States, that market performed well in 2008 - in particular, US investments in nonwovens technologies increased. In general, the business for nonwovens and technical textiles production machinery performed better than other sectors.

Mayer also mentioned that information is one of the key elements to being successful in the markets for nonwovens and technical textiles. TW's report, titled "German Nonwovens And Technical Textiles Machinery," is an excellent opportunity to learn more about the machinery offered by the German manufacturers.

Thanks To VDMA
The VDMA, and especially its press officer, Nicolai Strauch, helped a lot with the compilation of the report. Thank you very much, Nico. TW prepared a questionnaire that was sent out by the VDMA to every member company. More than 20 companies replied. The feedback from the companies was overwhelming, and the size of the report is far too big to be published in full length in the magazine.

Posted this week as part of the May/June 2009 Web edition of TW, the online version of "German Nonwovens And Technical Textiles Machinery" includes a link to the feedback from the responding companies. So, if you read this week's Rupp Report before you receive the current issue of TW in the mail, please check the other parts of this week's e-newsletter and the online issue for links to the report and the feedback.

May 19, 2009