Frankfurt, Germany: Sales in Germany’s precision tool industry increased seven percent in 2017, exceeding 10 billion euros (US$12.3 billion), according to a report by the German Mechanical Engineering Industry Association (VDMA). The industry is forecast to grow five percent in 2018.
The industry’s growth drivers in 2017 include the increase of sales (nine percent) in clamping technology, followed by a seven percent increases in sales of cutting tools. Toolmakers saw sales growth of five percent.
“In terms of cutting tools and clamping tools, domestic demand has finally picked up again, so we expect decent growth for these areas in 2018,” said Lothar Horn, chairman, Precision Tools Association, VDMA.
The industry expects to see ongoing collective bargaining and commodity price developments; particularly the rapidly growing battery production for electric drives competes with the tool manufacturers for important raw materials such as cobalt, tungsten or tantalum. This is expected to lead to significant price increases.
The recruitment of young talent is still a key issue for Germany’s precision tools industry. Most companies are committed to training talent, with some of them already within the framework of the Young Talent Engineering Foundation.
“We are pleased to announce that in the next few months a new location of the foundation will be operational at a precision tool company, at Paul Horn GmbH in Tübingen,” informed Markus Heseding, managing director, Precision Tools Association, VDMA.