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AirBench WB is designed specifically for flammable dusts which produce sparks when worked – for example titanium. WB uses a unique double-pass system of baffles to quench sparks in the integral water bath; filtering dust by passing through multiple water sprays.

Airflow is generated using a high-efficiency centrifugal fan, selected specifically for the high pressure needed to induce a water spray.

The new WB models include final H13 HEPA filtration, enabling use for welding in addition to grinding and similar processes. This allows users to centralise mixed-metal processing at a single workstation.

The UK’s most advanced solution to titanium dust extraction, now available from AirBench Ltd.

Visit for more information, or contact AirBench Ltd to discuss your extraction issues.

Wendy Hayward strengthens BCAS board as new Vice President


Wendy Hayward, Managing Director of Aircare Compressor Services Limited has been appointed as the new Vice President of the British Compressed Air Society (BCAS).

She joins Steven Rohan, BCAS President and the BCAS Board in continuing to drive standards, educate members and compressed air end users and provide independent advice to Industry.


With over 30 years’, hands-on experience in the compressed air industry, gained through her family-run distribution business, Wendy is familiar with the challenges faced by many smaller organisations and plans to bring this knowledge to her new role, as she explains:

“The compressed air industry is a highly skilled sector, with businesses offering excellent engineering services to their valued customers - providing technical advice on ways to reduce energy consumption, stay compliant, improve compressor performance and minimise maintenance costs to name but a few.

“However, while the industry comprises a wealth of engineering talent, managing the multitude of other priorities as a smaller business can be complex.  This is where I feel my experience as a compressed air distributor, together with the broad range of services available from BCAS, can really help.

“For example, we are working towards new apprenticeship groups for our members and their employees, with the aim of advising and supporting on how to recruit and retain apprentices in our industry.  BCAS can also assist with training, with courses available to fit around busy schedules.

“In particular, I’m keen to see our members sharing their knowledge around common problems, such as new ways to attract engineering talent into our industry or assisting each other with navigating changes in legislation and standards. BCAS is an excellent vehicle for this via its focus groups and committees.”

Vanda Jones, BCAS Executive Director and Company Secretary added:

‘“We have been working hard to ensure the Board is representative of all our members, so were delighted when Wendy joined BCAS as a Board member two years ago. Now, as our new Vice President, we are looking forward to drawing on Wendy’s experience further still.

“We truly value her contribution and the insight she brings as a compressed air distributor and business leader. We know this will be a great asset as she helps to advise members during her tenure.

“It is by listening to the views of all our members that we continue to develop the Society for the future, to ensure we provide the best advice, service and support to compressed air end users.”

For further information about the British Compressed Air Society please visit

Babcock Wanson Group joins the United Nations Global Compact



The Babcock Wanson Group, of which industrial process heating equipment and solutions specialist Babcock Wanson UK is a founding company, has joined the United Nations Global Compact, the largest international initiative for sustainable development and corporate social responsibility (CSR).

The Global Compact is a call to companies around the world to align their practices and strategies with ten universal principles, derived from the fundamental texts of the United Nations, in the areas of human rights, labour law, the environment and anti-corruption. Babcock Wanson Group joins the network of over 24,500 members, based in 167 countries, who share the same vision of a more sustainable and inclusive world.

At the heart of Global Compact is 17 Sustainable Development Goals, which aim to respond to the most pressing social and environmental challenges of our time by 2030. By joining Global Compact, Babcock Wanson has committed to respecting these principles and contributing to their achievement. In particular, Goal number 7, to ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all, is at the heart of Babcock Wanson’s business, as Cyril Fournier-Montgieux, Babcock Wanson Group CEO states: “This is in line with our most important reason for existing (raison d’être), which is based on our commitment to help make the world a better place by being a powerful force for energy transition in industry. This network will provide us with a framework for exchange and learning, as well as tools and resources to strengthen our CSR performance and report on our progress.”

For more information, please contact Babcock Wanson on 020 8953 7111 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or go to

International Women’s Day: ‘Louder voice’ from women will help everyone at work, watchdog bosses say



Two of the Government’s most senior officials regulating industry believe the ‘louder voice’ from a new generation of women will make everyone at work feel more comfortable.

Sarah Albon and Lisa Pinney MBE say that while progress has been made, women working in heavy industry today are still provided with ill-fitting protective equipment and unsuitable welfare facilities while working on site.

The chief executives of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and the Coal Authority respectively, regulating traditionally male-dominated sectors, were speaking ahead of International Women’s Day.

“As more and more women join these industries, they’ll become a louder voice,” said Sarah Albon, who leads HSE.

“With just little bit of thought – and you see our best companies do this – more places can make those extra few steps, not to make a woman feel that she has to ask, or somebody is doing her a favour, but just to make her feel as comfortable and on an equal footing with all of her male colleagues,” she continued.

Improving conditions on site will benefit men too, Sarah Albon added: “Because when I look at some of these sites, I’d say it’s not suitable for anyone. But it’s the fact that women are coming in and looking at it, perhaps with 21st century eyes and saying, ‘you expect me to put up with that?’ ”

“Men have perhaps just become ingrained and used to it in those heavy industries over decades and decades. But that right to have dignity at work, it applies to all of us, men and women.”

Lisa Pinney, chief executive of the Coal Authority, sympathised with how difficult not being comfortable at work can be. “It’s so much about confidence. If you’re meeting on site or if you’re doing something and you’ve got sleeves down to the floor and feel like you’re wearing a tent, it really affects your confidence in terms of being able to do the best job that you can do.”

Both women started their careers when they were in a significant minority, and overcame barriers to progress.

But the inequality once denied Lisa a job: “I didn’t get a job once because they didn’t have women’s toilets. I was the top candidate, but they wouldn’t have me on site.”

“We have come a long way”, added Sarah, “but we’ve still got a long way to go.”

Enabling Net Zero

A wide-ranging discussion between the pair covered a range of different topics including the role each organisation plays in protecting the environment. They were talking at a site run by the Coal Authority, where water from abandoned mines was being treated before entering the wider water system.

Sarah Albon said: “One of the things that we at HSE, and here at the Coal Authority we can offer is being really part of that next wave of technology, safe Net Zero technologies and thinking about how we can all do our bit for climate change – and doing that in a safe way.”

Lisa Pinney said: “Public safety is the absolute ethos of both our organisations.”

Marking big anniversaries

Over the next 12 months, both HSE and the Coal Authority will mark significant milestones. It will soon be 50 years since HSE was formed on 1 January 1975, and 30 years since the Coal Authority was borne out of the Coal Board.

Sarah Albon said: “We’re enormously proud that generations of people working in HSE over the last 50 years have made huge strides in improving the safety of Britain’s workforce – we’re one of the safest countries to work in now.

“As we push forward into the next 50 years, we’re wanting to bring that same effort into health as we’ve done in safety. We’re still seeing people unnecessarily made ill through the work that they do.”

Lisa Pinney said: “It’s about celebrating our journey. We were created to support the coal industry when it was privatised, and to deal with some of the challenges around that. Over the last 30 years we’ve seen so much change, things like treating mine water, protecting drinking water and into the future thinking about opportunities like mine water heat.”

The pair were speaking on visit to the A-Winning mine water treatment site in Derbyshire, a scheme operated by the Coal Authority, of which Lisa Pinney is the chief executive.


Their full conversation has been converted into a 15-minute podcast which can be found here: 


ICML Board welcomes Paul Dufresne

Florida-based M&R consultant and longtime ICML technical contributor steps into leadership role.












The International Council for Machinery Lubrication (ICML) is pleased to announce the selection of Paul Dufresne of Reliability Playbook to serve as the newest member of its Board of Directors.

Dufresne has been president and CEO of Reliability Playbook since 2017, following 31 years holding various management and leadership roles in the maintenance and reliability space, both military and civilian. He has maintained ICML certification since earning his MLT I in 2007 has been an active and engaged ICML volunteer for many years.

“We are excited to welcome Paul to our board,” said ICML Executive Director Leslie Fish. “His experience in maintenance and reliability leadership, coupled with his passion for helping practitioners achieve their best, will further advance the relationship of lubrication-centric credentials to broader M&R successes. This is very timely for ICML as we continue to assert lubrication’s relevance to asset management goals and increased uptime at any given plant through the use of such means as the ICML 55® Standard.”

“I am excited to join the ICML Board of Directors, and I look forward to working with the team to continue to create and deliver value to the organization, and also to continue delivering on the mission of ICML to our members worldwide,” stated Dufresne.

After completing a long stint in the U.S. Army in 2003 at the rank of captain, Dufresne spent the next several years in the corporate world, where he designed and implemented maintenance and reliability (M&R) programs at such companies as Georgia-Pacific, Trico Corporation, and Koch Industries. In 2013 he received the Senior VP Award for Reliability from Georgia-Pacific.

Since starting his own company, Dufresne has worked with his customers to help them set in place and improve a culture of excellence pertaining to plant lubrication and M&R best practices. Incorporating knowledge from his military and business careers, Dufresne uses a hands-on approach to train, coach, and mentor plant personnel at all organizational levels. Throughout this time, he has also been a featured speaker, keynote presenter, and workshop facilitator at national and international conferences.

Dufresne is the past chairman of the Society of Maintenance and Reliability Professionals (SMRP) Best Practices Committee, earning recognition as SMRP’s 2017 Volunteer of the Year. He is a member of the Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers (STLE), and his Reliability Playbook company is a recognized training partner with ICML, where he also maintains an active role with our subcommittee work.

Dufresne holds credentials through STLE as a Certified Lubrication Specialist (CLS); through ICML as a Machinery Lubrication Engineer (MLE)® and Maintenance Lubrication Technician (MLT) Level I; through Mobius Institute as an Asset Reliability Practitioner (ARP); through SMRP as a Certified Maintenance and Reliability Professional (CMRP) and Technician (CMRT); through the Association for Facilities Engineering as a Certified Plant Maintenance Manager (CPMM); and through the Association of Asset Management Professionals as a Certified Reliability Leader (CRL). He is certified in predictive maintenance technologies such as vibration analysis and thermography and has authored several articles and technical white papers.

Dufresne is a Distinguished Military Graduate, with a bachelor’s degree in history and a minor in military science from the University of Central Florida. He and his wife, April, have four children.

Easily turn your phone into a personal radar

Which items or assets should be on your radar? With our innovative EXA81 add-on your phone and tablet can pick up any RFID labelled item within 15 metres. See highlighted assets on-screen, and home in. No line of sight required. Are you interested?

Brady’s EXA81 turns any smartphone or tablet into a personal radar that can pick up radio signals from all RFID labelled items, assets, tools and equipment within 15 metres. Easily select any item and home in with sounds and visuals.


Watch EXA 81 in the short video:



Find without searching

Easily read up to 1000 RFID-labelled items per second within 15 metres, with a single scan. Select the item you need on your smartphone or tablet screen, and quickly home in with sounds and visuals. Line of sight is not required, and you will not need to find, move, flip or rotate items and assets to scan a barcode.

Your phone. Your apps.

Easily empower your Android and Apple phones and tablets with the EXA81 to add an RFID read range of up to 15 metres. Firmly attach mobile devices with screws or Quadlock and link your phone or tablet via Bluetooth 5.3 or USB-C. Your device now has an ergonomic pistol grip to trigger scans of UHF RFID labels, barcodes, 2D codes and NFC labels for up to 24 hours on a single charge.


In addition, we can provide an app to get you going, develop a custom application tailored to your business needs, or adapt an existing company app to present incoming data in any way you want.

Full inventories on your phone

And that is not all. Quickly check centralised inventory data with actual inventories by comparing incoming data from items and assets identified with battery-free RFID labels. Just walk through while scanning to cover the entire space, or get support from fixed RFID reader systems. Home in on excess inventory and highlight missing items, or forward actual inventories for comparison at a later time.

Find out more about the EXA81 >>

Free Guidebook: How to give every asset a unique digital identity

With RFID, assets can be given unique digital identities that enable you to identify and locate them all at once, from a distance, in real time, without needing line of sight. As a manufacturer, we can realise the technology’s full potential in any unique workplace by fully customising our RFID solution and by making it work for you, in your working environment. Brady offers a complete, fully customisable RFID solution that can generate considerable efficiency gains, both on operational and decision-making levels.

Download the free RFID guide >>

BRADY Corporation

EngineeringUK responds to Spring Budget 2024


We welcome the Government’s commitment to invest in crucial sectors, such as engineering and technology, and Small to Medium Sized Enterprises in the UK, including for example the Green Industries Growth Accelerator (GIGA). We also share the pride that the Chancellor clearly felt when talking about how the UK is becoming a leading force in the technology sector, comparing it to the Silicon Valley.

“However, given all this, we are extremely disappointed that there is no mention of the need to invest more and focus on skilling the future workforce. Without more skilled young people coming through the UK education system, UK businesses will struggle to grow and stay competitive compared to other countries.

“There is an acute STEM teacher shortage affecting young people’s STEM education and therefore their ability to pursue careers in these vital sectors, yet there was no mention of teachers and how the Government intends to support them. There was also a lack of focus on how crucial training routes, such as apprenticeships, will be enabled to grow into the future, and how this will be funded.

“We renew our ongoing call for the Government to develop a clear and properly funded STEM skills plan. This should include investment in careers outreach and education, apprenticeships for young people aged 16-19 and commitment to sustaining existing funding levels for STEM teacher professional development.”



Schaeffler Group improves profitability in 2023


  • Schaeffler Group revenue up 5.8 percent at constant currency to 16.3 billion euros (prior year: 15.8 billion euros)
  • EBIT before special items improved to 1,187 million euros (prior year: 1,046 million euros), EBIT margin before special items at 7.3 percent (prior year: 6.6 percent)
  • Automotive Technologies considerably improves EBIT margin before special items, Automotive Aftermarket reports strong revenue growth, and Industrial reports market-related decline in margins
  • Free cash flow before cash in- and outflows for M&A activities of 421 million euros better than guidance despite increased investing activities
  • Proposed dividend of 0.45 euros per common non-voting share
  • Guidance reflects planned merger with Vitesco Technologies

Birmingham, UK | March 5, 2024 | Schaeffler AG published its results for 2023 today. The Schaeffler Group’s revenue for the year amounted to 16.3 billion euros (prior year: 15.8 billion euros). Revenue grew by 5.8 percent at constant currency, in line with the guidance for 2023 [revenue growth of 5 to 8 percent]. The constant-currency increase in revenue in 2023 is mainly attributable to increased volumes. Sales prices had an additional favourable impact on revenue.

In 2023 the Schaeffler Group generated earnings before financial result and income taxes (EBIT) of 834 million euros (prior year 974 million euros), a figure that was influenced by 353 million euros in special items. EBIT before special items amounted to 1,187 million euros (prior year: 1,046 million euros). The group’s EBIT margin before special items of 7.3 percent (prior year: 6.6 percent) solidly met the guidance for 2023 [EBIT margin before special items of 6 to 8 percent], despite the challenging market environment. The increase in EBIT margin before special items was mainly due to the favourable impact of volumes and sales prices.

The Schaeffler Group’s free cash flow before cash in- and outflows for M&A activities totalled 421 million euros in 2023 (prior year: 280 million euros), exceeding the full-year guidance [free cash flow before cash in- and outflows for M&A activities of 300 to 400 million euros]. Net income attributable to shareholders of the parent company amounted to 310 million euros in 2023 (prior year: 557 million euros). The decline in net income was mainly influenced by 313 million euros in special items, which were primarily attributable to the transaction with Vitesco Technologies Group AG announced on October 9, 2023. Net income before special items amounted to 623 million euros (prior year: 610 million euros). Based on net income attributable to the shareholders of the parent company and without the adjustments above, earnings per common non-voting share were 0.47 euros (prior year: 0.84 euros).

At the extraordinary general meeting on February 2, 2024, Schaeffler announced that a dividend payment of 0.45 euros per common non-voting share will be proposed to the annual general meeting on this basis (prior year: 0.45 euros). This represents a dividend payout ratio of approximately 47.3 percent (prior year: 48.3 percent) of net income attributable to shareholders before special items. The company also announced that the dividend payout ratio will be raised from previously 30 to 50 percent of net income attributable to shareholders before special items to 40 to 60 percent going forward.

“During the past financial year, the Schaeffler Group generated good results and continued to consistently pursue its transformation based on its Roadmap 2025,” says Klaus Rosenfeld, CEO of Schaeffler AG. “In a challenging market environment, our diversified positioning proved to be a competitive advantage once again. We will propose an attractive dividend of 45 cents to the annual general meeting in order to share the company’s success with our shareholders.”


Key financials of the Schaeffler Group



in € millions
















• at constant currency





EBIT before special items 1









• in % of revenue









Free cash flow 2








€ millions

Net income 3 before
special items















Shareholders’ equity 4








€ millions

Net financial debt









Net financial debt to EBITDA
ratio before special items
















1 Please refer to the annual report 2023, pp. 27 et seq., for the definition of special items.

2 Before cash in- and outflows for M&A activities.

3 Net income attributable to the shareholders of the parent company.

4 Including non-controlling interests.


Automotive Technologies – EBIT margin before special items improved considerably
The Automotive Technologies division generated revenue of 9,772 million euros in 2023 (prior year: 9,498 million euros). The constant-currency growth of 5.4 percent year on year resulted primarily from a market-driven increase in volumes.

In the E-Mobility business division (BD), revenue was in line with the prior year’s level at constant currency, while order intake of 5.1 billion euros was once again considerably above the targeted range of 2 to 3 billion euros per year. The constant-currency increase in revenue in the Engine & Transmission Systems and Bearings BDs was largely driven by growth in the Europe region and amounted to 5.3 percent and 5.6 percent compared to the prior year. At 24.1 percent, the Chassis Systems BD reported the strongest constant-currency growth rate. The main drivers here were the Europe and Greater China regions.

The Europe region grew the most, recording an increase in revenue of 12.4 percent at constant currency. While the Americas region reported a constant-currency decline of 2.8 percent, revenue in the Greater China and Asia/Pacific regions rose by 2.0 and 7.3 percent at constant currency. The overall increase in the division’s revenue was less than the growth rate of global automobile production.

EBIT before special items in the Automotive Technologies division amounted to 435 million euros in 2023 (prior year: 292 million euros), representing a considerable increase of approximately 49 percent and an EBIT margin before special items of 4.5 percent (prior year: 3.1 percent). The marked increase in the EBIT margin before special items in 2023 was mainly due to the impact of volumes.

Automotive Aftermarket – strong growth, strong margin
The Automotive Aftermarket division reported revenue of 2,253 million euros in 2023 (prior year: 2,040 million euros). The considerable constant-currency increase in revenue of 11.8 percent was due to the favourable impact of volumes and sales prices. Increased procurement costs were passed on to the market.

In the Europe region, which generates the highest revenue, the Automotive Aftermarket division reported constant-currency growth of 10.3 percent, driven primarily by the considerable increase at the Independent Aftermarket business in Central & Eastern Europe. Revenue in the Americas region rose by 12.0 percent at constant currency in 2023. At 28.7 percent at constant currency, the Greater China region reported the strongest revenue growth in 2023, primarily driven by the considerable increase in e-commerce business. In Asia/Pacific, revenue was 11.8 percent higher at constant currency in 2023 than in the prior year. At 367 million euros, EBIT before special items was 41.2 percent higher than the prior-year figure of 260 million euros. The resulting EBIT margin before special items of 16.3 percent (prior year: 12.8 percent) exceeded the guidance. The continued growth was predominantly the result of a higher gross margin due to a favourable revenue mix and adjustments to sales prices.

Industrial – market-related decline in margin
The Industrial division increased its revenue by 3.9 percent at constant currency to 4,288 million euros in 2023 (prior year: 4,271 million euros). The constant-currency growth in revenue resulted from the positive contribution of the Ewellix Group, acquired early in the year, which amounted to 219 million euros and was reflected in the Industrial Automation sector cluster. The decline in the remaining sales volumes, primarily due to the weak market environment in the Greater China region, was only partly offset by a favourable impact of sales prices.

The Europe region reported a constant-currency increase in revenue of 7.0 percent. In the Americas region, revenue rose by 11.3 percent at constant currency. In the Greater China region, the weak market environment had a considerable adverse impact on the revenue trend. Revenue in this region was down 6.3 percent year on year at constant currency, while revenue in the Asia/Pacific region increased by 5.3 percent at constant currency.

EBIT before special items amounted to 385 million euros in 2023 (prior year: 493 million euros), with an EBIT margin before special items of 9.0 percent (prior year: 11.5 percent). Factors influencing earnings included a decline in gross margin as a result of a change in the revenue mix, primarily due to the market trend in the Greater China region and the market-driven overall decline in production volume.


Key financials by division




in € millions







Automotive Technologies











• at constant currency





EBIT before special items2









• in % of revenue









Automotive Aftermarket


















• at constant currency





EBIT before special items2









• in % of revenue




















• at constant currency





EBIT before special items2









• in % of revenue









1 Prior year information presented based on 2023 segment structure.

2 Please refer to the annual report 2023, pp. 27 et seq., for the definition of special items.


Free cash flow – better than expected despite increased investing activities
Free cash flow before cash in- and outflows for M&A activities amounted to 421 million euros in 2023 (prior year: 280 million euros). The year-on-year increase is primarily attributable to working capital expanding less extensively than in the prior year, despite higher capital expenditures on intangible assets and property, plant and equipment.

Capital expenditures on intangible assets and property, plant and equipment (capex) rose to 938 million euros during the same period (prior year: 791 million euros), representing a capex ratio of 5.7 percent (prior year: 5.0 percent). The reinvestment rate amounted to 1.00 (prior year: 0.88).

As at December 31, 2023, the Schaeffler Group’s net financial debt amounted to 3,189 million euros (December 31, 2022: 2,235 million euros). The ratio of net financial debt to shareholders’ equity (gearing ratio) increased to 81.7 percent (December 31, 2022: 54.0 percent).

The Schaeffler Group’s total assets amounted to 15,006 million euros as at December 31, 2023 (December 31, 2022: 14,284 million euros). As at that date, the number of employees was 83,362, 0.7 percent more than the prior year figure of 82,773.

“Schaeffler achieved its targets in 2023 and once again demonstrated its financial and operational strength with a free cash flow before cash in- and outflows for M&A activities of 421 million euros,” Claus Bauer, Chief Financial Officer of Schaeffler AG, states. “In a dynamic environment, we are succeeding in expanding our competitive position in the right places by making targeted investments in new technologies.” 

Guidance for 2024 reflects planned merger – considerable revenue growth expected
For 2024, the Schaeffler Group expects to account for the 38.87 percent of the shares in Vitesco Technologies acquired in January 2024 using the equity method from the date of acquisition up to and including the third quarter of 2024. Furthermore, it is anticipated that the merger with Vitesco Technologies will be entered in the commercial register in the fourth quarter of 2024 and that Vitesco Technologies will be fully consolidated in Schaeffler’s consolidated financial statements upon this registration.

Based on this, the Schaeffler Group is forecasting considerable revenue growth at constant currency in 2024. At the same time, the company expects to achieve an EBIT margin before special items of 6 to 9 percent, and anticipates free cash flow before cash in- and outflows for M&A activities of 300 to 400 million euros.

A voluntary outlook on the performance of the divisions is omitted in light of factors such as the planned structural adjustments in connection with the merger of Vitesco Technologies into Schaeffler.


Schaeffler Group

Revenue growth[1]

Considerable revenue growth


EBIT margin[2]

6 to 9%


Free cash flow[3]

300 to 400 million euros




Planned merger Schaeffler and Vitesco Technologies – leading Motion Technology Company
The planned merger with Vitesco Technologies Group AG announced by Schaeffler AG in 2023 marks a further pivotal step along its path toward becoming a leading Motion Technology Company. The transaction is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2024. The integration of Vitesco Technologies will substantially broaden and expand the Schaeffler Group’s business and technology portfolio, particularly in the field of electric mobility. The Bearings business division, previously part of the Automotive Technologies division, is already being combined with the Industrial division in the first quarter of 2024. Following the merger with Vitesco Technologies, the Schaeffler Group will have four focused “pure-play” divisions, each holding a strong position in their respective markets: E-Mobility, Powertrain & Chassis, Vehicle Lifetime Solutions, and Bearings & Industrial Solutions. The regional structure with its four regions will remain.

Schaeffler AG’s public tender offer to the shareholders of Vitesco Technologies Group AG was successfully completed at the beginning of 2024. Together with IHO Holding, the Schaeffler family’s holding company, Schaeffler AG currently controls approximately 89 percent of the share capital and voting rights in Vitesco Technologies Group AG. In addition, Schaeffler’s shareholders almost unanimously approved the proposed conversion of the common non-voting shares into common shares with full voting rights at the extraordinary general meeting of Schaeffler AG and the separate meeting of the common non-voting shareholders in early February 2024. The share conversion is conditional on the merger becoming effective either previously or simultaneously. Going forward, Schaeffler AG will then have only one class of shares and all shareholders will have equal voting rights.

The merger of Vitesco Technologies into Schaeffler, the third step of the overall transaction, now requires the approval of the annual general meetings of both companies in particular, which will take place on April 24, 2024, (Vitesco Technologies) and April 25, 2024 (Schaeffler). An integration committee consisting of an equal number of members from each company was set up in December 2023 to promote rapid integration and achieve the planned revenue and cost synergies of 600 million euros a year as soon as possible. The committee meets weekly and receives operational support from central integration teams that coordinate the integration activities for both companies.

Klaus Rosenfeld, CEO of Schaeffler AG, explains: “The merger of Schaeffler and Vitesco Technologies brings significant benefits for our stakeholders. We are convinced that the transformation will make Schaeffler shares more attractive. The positive signals from the capital markets in response to the planned merger confirm that we are on the right track with our intent to create a leading Motion Technology Company.”

You can find press photos of the Board of Managing Directors here:


[1] Constant-currency revenue growth compared to prior year

[2] Before special items

[3] Before cash in- and outflows for M&A activities

An Equal Opportunities Problem – Unscheduled Downtime

Unscheduled downtime is a negative contributor to any company’s bottom line. It impacts production, sales, customer satisfaction, and of course company revenue. Senior management in most organisations would recognise it as an issue and yet it appears as though unscheduled downtime is simply thought of as a phenomenon that has to be accepted and happens in every industry across the entire world.

According to a recent report by Siemens in 2023, unscheduled downtime costs Fortune Global 500 companies a staggering 1.5 trillion dollars in lost revenues, or about 11% of their annual turnover.

Unplanned downtime occurs across every major industry. As one insightful commentator put it, ‘Unscheduled downtime is an equal opportunities problem’. It is estimated that over 80% of companies have experienced at least one unplanned downtime in the past 3 years. Of all the companies polled, 70% did not have a full knowledge of when important pieces of equipment were due for scheduled maintenance or replacement. Of course, the cost of an unscheduled breakdown varies according to the industry, the length of stoppage and the remedial costs. But one fact is certain; the cost of breakdown goes way beyond the cost of replacing the components. Some reports put the average cost of unplanned downtime at $250,000 per hour and $2 million per event. With so many companies operating on a basis of JIT, then damage to supply chains and reputation must be considered and can prove more costly than the simple loss of production. As a result of this, more companies than ever before have ‘zero unplanned downtime’ as a number one goal.

One of the key challenges to any maintenance manager is identifying potential breakdowns before they happen. In recent years many tools have become available to assist engineers to predict failure in key items of plant hence enabling preventative maintenance to be carried out before catastrophic failure takes place. Thermal imaging cameras are capable of detecting hot spots in gearboxes and bearings whilst more recently, through quantum leaps in technology, acoustic cameras have saved companies huge amounts of revenue by detecting faulty components and inefficient operating systems.

FLIR Teledyne, formed in 1978 is a world leader in the development and marketing of thermal and acoustic imaging cameras. Since then, they have supplied almost every industry around the world with market leading cameras and instruments representing the latest technology.

Building on the highly successful Si124 launched in 2021, FLIR are pleased to announce the launch of a new acoustic imaging camera, the Si2. With an improved frequency range of 2 – 130kHz the camera can detect minute leaks from air systems, ensuring maintenance can be carried out at an early stage before production is adversely affected. Those hard-to-reach areas of plant, such as elevated compressors or simple transfer lines are no problem for the FLIR Si2 with it’s built in lighting system and huge 100+ metre detection range.

Over the years, many production plants have simply accepted compressed air leaks as ‘the norm’ and at best, a minor irritation. But as any production director will know, with energy costs continuing to escalate, compressed air is expensive. A well known compressor manufacturer has estimated that the average leakage rate is about 25% with some plants losing about 80% of their compressed air through leaks. Any air or gas escaping through leaking joints is a false economy and directly impacts the bottom line.

To make life easier, the FLIR Teledyne Si2 camera not only detects leaks in air systems, but thanks to built-in advanced software actually calculates the financial implications of the identified leaks.

To find out more about the FLIR Teledyne Si2 acoustic camera and other products in the extensive FLIR Teledyne range of predictive monitoring tools please contact your local agent or distributor.


Gill WearDetect IoT – Next level predictive maintenance – view right into the heart of your rotating equipment


WearDetect IoT combines Gill’s market leading oil debris sensors with Gill’s new IoT data platform to provide seamless equipment oversight for confident asset management.

Gill’s WearDetect oil debris sensors reduce unplanned downtime by continuously monitoring ferrous wear debris in lubricating oil to give the earliest maintenance warnings. This real-time condition monitoring, right in the heart of the equipment, is made all the more powerful when combined with the ability to collect, visualise and analyse that data using the Gill IoT Platform.

WearDetect IoT also allows alerts to be configured from multiple assets and multiple locations and sent straight to your PC, phone or other device, providing insight into gearbox and rotating equipment health, at your fingertips.

  • Enhanced data collection & analysis – data assimilated from remote sensors in one simple-to-use platform.
  • Remote monitoring and control – remote asset oversight enables timely maintenance.
  • Scalability and flexibility – additional sensors can be added to the platform enabling systems to meet changing requirements.

WearDetect IoT offers:

  • Real-time condition monitoring – live updates, alerts and machine wear data insights direct to your device.
  • Precision sensing – WearDetect employs advanced solid-state sensors (no moving parts) to detect both fine and coarse ferrous wear debris.
  • Trending data for predictive analysis – the Gill IoT Platform allows data visualisation for clearer insights supporting informed decision making.
  • Instant alerts – user specified alarms ensure users are aware of changes as soon as they occur.
  • User-friendly intuitive interface – easy data access and setting configuration puts the user in control.

Typical applications include:

  • Industrial machinery – centralising wear data for rotating equipment allows maintenance professionals to pinpoint issues and minimise downtime.
  • Automotive production – visualising wear data provides clearer and earlier maintenance insights on production lines with numerous loaded gearboxes.
  • Cranes – heavily loaded critical gearboxes in hard to access locations benefit from remote wear monitoring.
  • Wind farms – supports wind turbine gearbox monitoring and proactive, data-informed maintenance scheduling.

All Gill products are solid state, with no moving parts for minimal maintenance and low cost of ownership.

Gill Sensors & Controls is an established leader in the design and manufacture of advanced measurement sensors. Gill specialises in providing cutting edge products for level sensing and real-time ferrous wear detection, delivering market-leading performance and reliability. 

Gill is based in the UK with facilities including R&D, manufacturing, sales and customer support but also sells across the world through a long-established base of highly experienced distributors.



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