Karl Mayer’s service technicians from China, India and Bangladesh, working on a large project in Bangladesh.
Karl Mayer’s service technicians from China, India and Bangladesh, working on a large project in Bangladesh.

Asia is, and will continue to be, a lucrative market for the global textile machinery building sector – a market that should be nurtured carefully. Karl Mayer, too, has seen a growing demand from the countries bordering China, especially for tricot machines.

Together with its sales operations, this leading producer of warp knitting machines and warp preparation machines has, therefore, also been expanding its service operations in this region. This targeted expansion in capacity has focused on Vietnam, Bangladesh and India.

According to Karl Mayer, it relies on its global network of subsidiaries, particularly on Karl Mayer (China), to provide its customers with technical support more efficiently on site.

“Our Chinese service technicians are, therefore, located close to our growth markets - in terms of location, culture and language,” explained Martin Hornig, the Head of Service Division. This is all the more important since many business people of Chinese descent located in the countries bordering China also operate in the warp knitting sector.

Help from neighbours: support for Vietnam and Bangladesh from China

Karl Mayer has taken on two service technicians to provide its Vietnamese warp knitting customers with technical support, and they were trained for their future practical jobs in the spring of 2017.

The training was carried out by the Karl Mayer Academy China. These highly qualified specialists are now based in Ho-Chi-Minh City and Hanoi, so that they can be deployed from the north to the south of the country.

Karl Mayer also relies on its Chinese subsidiary for its operations in Bangladesh. Service technicians from Changzhou City and other service hotspots in China are supporting their colleagues in the region with carrying out a large project.

From February to the end of May 2017 alone, roughly 60 two-bar HKS machines were installed at the premises of a domestic producer of mosquito nets. More machines are to be sold in the middle of the second quarter. A colleague from India also helped the Asian team with the extensive assembly work.

Thu Minh Tang, the Supervisor of Service Projects, provided this high level of coordination from the parent company in Obertshausen. As far as warp knitting machines are concerned, Bangladesh is a relatively new market for Karl Mayer, but one which is currently developing in a very promising way.

India: a market requiring technical support

India is seen as less of a new market and more as a market offering a great deal of potential. Since the end of April, Peter Stutz has been working in India as Karl Mayer’s new Service Manager in order to strengthen the company’s customer relations in the warp knitting sector in this traditional, textile-producing country, and to be able to react even better to their needs.

The experienced specialist is shaping the dialogue there, and is also coordinating the operations of the company’s own technical support team. This team, which provides technical support for warp knitting machines, is currently made up of 12 service technicians and three employees working in the office.

Meanwhile, Karl Mayer is currently introducing its KARL MAYER CONNECT app onto the Indian market to effectively complement its technicians operating there. If required, customers can communicate efficiently and without any errors with the service organisation of this textile machinery manufacturer via mobile terminals.

To send off a service request, all that has to be done is to scan in a QR code from the machine’s touchscreen display. The main machine data are transmitted in order to explain the problem. Pictures and comments can also be sent.

All the machines operating in India built from the year 2010 onwards can be given a specific software update to enable them to use this communication tool as quickly and easily as possible. The work is scheduled to take place from the beginning of February to the end of June 2017, and applies to about 630 machines.

Close network provides rapid support

To strengthen its customer relations in Asia, Karl Mayer is also stepping up the activities of its customer service engineers. These highly qualified specialists are helping to strengthen customer relations in the long term. They visit customers, determine what their needs are, help to solve problems, and act as trend scouts as they go about their business. The team of eight is made up of German and Chinese people and one Japanese person.

“With our global network of customer service engineers and service technicians, we can offer our customers technical expertise and a high degree of flexibility, especially in Asia. Roughly three-quarters of our customers operate there. Wherever our technical support is needed, we can be on site quickly to provide expert technical assistance,” says Martin Hornig.