The year in pictures

Automotive division

The High Lift Follower is a precision-molded part that was manufactured for the first time using cold forming technology. Its technically demanding design enables significant fuel savings. Production was started in both Heerbrugg (CH) and Medina (USA) to serve customers from a local supply base.

Riveting division

GESIPA® filed a patent application for the Flow Drilling Riveting® (FDR) system, a new technology that will help to secure its leadership in the blind riveting market. The FDR® system allows pre-drilling and setting operations to be completed in a single step. This significantly shortens the riveting process and optimizes costs.

Construction division

SFS takes advantage of synergies between the operating segments to sharpen its competitive edge. The Construction division has successfully implemented its new top-quality C class logistics systems – developed by the Distribution & Logistics segment – for several customers. Other promising projects are in an exploratory stage.

Distribution & Logistics division

SFS acquired Thomas Minder Holding AG in the spring of 2015. This strengthened the position of Distribution & Logistics in the Swiss specialty trade, hardware and home improvement markets. The core company acquired is Allchemet AG, the leading provider of specialized hardware and tools for demanding professionals in Switzerland.

Automotive division

The trend toward autonomous cars is a key catalyst for innovation and growth. SFS is capturing this trend as a developer and manufacturer of actuators for electronic brake systems. An important milestone was reached in 2015 with the ramp-up of production for these actuators, which are used in active brake systems.

Distribution & Logistics division

The latest generation of SFS logistics solutions (“M2M by SFS”) gives customers a competitive advantage. Prestigious companies such as the Swiss Federal Railways have decided to source operating materials and supplies from SFS unimarket. Total order volume for the 2016–2025 period is about CHF 40m.

Electronics division

Besides the successful realization of initial projects for leading Chinese smartphone manufacturers, Unisteel (Electronics division) is well positioned to capture various growth opportunities in the consumer electronics market (smartwatches, adventure cameras or augmented reality glasses).

Industrial division

SFS products accompany countless people through each and every day and they often perform critical functions. For example the miniature components SFS makes for hearing aids: The world's smallest screw thread with a diameter of 0.5 mm for fastening plastic parts is manufactured using cold forming.

Automotive division

SFS was presented with a “Premium Supplier 2015” award from Continental / INA Schäffler for its “outstanding performance” in terms of quality, reliability, cost efficiency and innovative drive.

Construction division

Finishing operations were relocated from Heerbrugg (CH) to the Czech Republic, so they are now closer to where the end customers are located. The space in Heerbrugg freed up by the relocation will now be used to realize growth projects. All of the employees affected by this move have been assigned new tasks at SFS.

Industrial division

Business developments at the still small division of Medical Components were very positive in 2015. SFS was recognized as a strategically important supplier by a global leader, which is further proof of its premium performance capabilities, especially as a provider of highly material-efficient titanium cold-forming solutions.

Riveting division

The Riveting division (GESIPA®) made good progress in its efforts to internationalize the business and reach new customer groups. For the first time ever, it supplied a leading manufacturer of flat panel displays with blind riveting systems.

 
 

Industrial division

Sales of fastening systems for Airbus A350 interior panels nearly doubled in 2015. Compared to the previous systems, these products weigh less, can be installed more quickly, and reduce vibration, which lowers noise levels in the interior of the aircraft and enhances passenger comfort.

Electronics division

The lean management philosophy at SFS is a reflection of its constant quest for improvement. In Q3 2015 the “Lean2020” campaign was initiated at all Unisteel sites (Electronics division). It shows how important optimized processes and lean organizations are.