Balluff has become the first European company to join the Managing Board of the CLPA (CC-Link Partner Association) and will help steer the organisation in its plans for growth and development.
Balluff GmbH is a sensors and automation company, headquartered in Germany with eight production locations around the world and representation in over 50 countries. It is pursuing a long-term strategy of adding value to its sensor products through connectivity and systems integration, and joined the CLPA in 2008, partly to aid its development in China and other Asian markets. Balluff was also an early supporter of the CLPA's "Gateway to China" (G2C) programme, that helps European companies to increase their business in China and the rest of Asia by using CC-Link as an enabling technology.
CC-Link is a high-speed, high-performance open automation network technology, which enables devices from numerous manufacturers to communicate, resulting in a fast, deterministic control system. It is managed by the CLPA, the organisation of manufacturers and users of CC-Link technology, academics and other interested parties.
Jürgen Gutekunst, Vice President of the Business Unit Networking and Business Unit Systems at Balluff HQ in Neuhausen a.d.F. in Germany, describes his vision for the future of the CLPA: "Being invited onto the CLPA Managing Board is an opportunity that doesn't present itself every day! In this position we can actively help to shape the future of both the CLPA and the development of automation."
John Browett, General Manager of the CLPA in Europe comments: "We are very pleased that Balluff has joined the board of the CLPA. This is a substantial commitment that is not to be taken lightly. For a leading global business like Balluff to take this step is further evidence of how CC-Link is strengthening its position in Europe and around the world."
Gutekunst says that to be a global player, you must be active in the "˜big three' - Europe, the Americas and Asia - and understand their differences. For instance, decentralisation of automation is well advanced in Europe and North America, and in Asia it will remain an important topic.
Sometimes, there are different routes to the same end, explains Gutekunst. For instance, a low-wage region will not be so focused on production efficiency until it begins exporting and must meet the requirements of its overseas customers.
On a more immediate level, Gutekunst says Balluff is already integrating the open gigabit Ethernet-based network, CC-Link IE Field, in its distribution boxes. He says: "As a member of the Managing Board, we intend to work together with the CLPA on the market acceptance of this new generation of decentralised automation."
For further information about the CLPA (CC-Link Partner Association), please go to www.the-non-stop-open-network.com.