PMB New Building Update

I enjoyed the opportunity to visit the new PMB facility in Milwaukee, WI in August and September of 2011. Because all marketing and training materials were sent to the new facility, it was necessary for me to locate and organize the department resources.

Sam Birel and his entire team has been hard at work for several months to make this new facility “home”. By the time I arrived, it felt like the plant had been there for years. All production equipment was up and running smoothly. The warehouse  looks like Leominster used to, only on steroids. The racks are taller, the rows are longer, and since the consolidation of all inventory, I was really struck by how much product we have. Employees in their new workstations and offices seem comfortable and going about business as usual.

It is remarkable to walk in and see the hustle and bustle, and to think that a few short months ago, the business was entirely different.  The PMB team has clearly accepted the challenge to bring the organization to the next level.

I am confident that you will be equally impressed by the facility and the staff on your next visit. Please see the website for some photos and additional information on the opening of the new facility.

Jim Ballou

New Roll-Over Hubbing Process at PMB

Among the vast of benefits of the consolidation of distribution facilities is the new marriage of the technical staff to the hubbing equipment. Sam Birel and his team have already implemented some new equipment which makes loading the hubs into the machine easier, faster and safer.

The next improvement to the equipment has been presented to the owners, the expense approved, and will be implemented this Fall. The entire mechanism that attaches the hubs to the wheels in the assembly line is being replaced by new technology that Mr. Birel happened to come across on one of his trips.

The new heads use a different process, which eliminates flashing that can be seen on many hubs that are presently in circulation. The occasional flashing does not pose a safety issue. Torque tests are accomplished on all hubbed wheels to ensure attachment integrity, and the current hubs are perfectly safe and reliable. The new equipment puts out a roll-over that is absolutely perfect in form, with no downside.

Old hubs (left) vs. new hubs (right)

You will start to see the new roll-overs on all grinding wheels, cut-off wheels and POLIFAN® Flap Discs in November. They will be widespread circulated by January.

PFERD Christens New Wisconsin Facility!

PFERD INC., the American subsidiary of August Ruggeberg GmbH and Co. of Marienheide, Germany, a 212-year-old world leader in the design and manufacture of abrasive tools, power brushes, maintenance brushes and power tools, has completed its consolidation of all U.S. production and distribution operations into a 100,000 square foot state-of-the-art facility located at 9201 Heather Avenue in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

The building was purchased by PFERD in January and all production equipment and inventory have already been moved to this location and have, in fact, been operating there for several weeks. Advance Brush products had previously been located in Menonomee Falls, Wisconsin while PFERD distribution operations and production work had been handled at the PFERD INC. headquarters location in Leominster, Massachusetts.

The PFERD Massachusetts building has been sold but executive headquarters with financial, marketing, and customer service staff remaining in that state will move to new offices located in a nearby community.
In making the announcement, PFERD President, Gene Huegin, pointed out all the advantages this investment brings to customers and to PFERD business operations.

“First, this consolidated facility means that our distributors will have one-order, one-shipment,one-invoice service they require to reduce their costs. Second, our combined inventory of abrasive tools and brushes is now more centrally located for distribution purposes, making for quicker and easier shipping to our customers. Finally, with the company’s strong growth in recent years, we needed a larger and more leading edge facility. When the opportunity arose to buy the 100,000 square foot manufacturing facility in Milwaukee it just made sense to purchase it and have ownership equity value along with a permanent and significant upgrade in capabilities,” he concluded.

Veteran PFERD executive, Sam Birel, led all details of the consolidation move and will remain as Vice President, Operations in charge of the new Wisconsin facility. He will continue to report to company President, Gene Huegin.

“This is a major investment by PFERD to put our company in the best position to serve our distributors now and in the years to come. This is our permanent home and we equipped and stocked it the way we know will enable us to meet the abrasive and brush product needs of the metalworking, welding and construction markets well into the future”, Birel said.