23 February 2006

New Centre of Excellence confirms John Crane's confidence in India

Bangalore, 23rd February 2006: JOHN Crane EAA has announced the opening of a new £1.5 million manufacturing, service and support centre in Bangalore, India. The move represents a significant addition to the companys global network and in particular it adds extra capacity to the ability of John Crane - part of the global engineering business Smiths Group - to support its customers in the growing Indian and Asian markets.

Keith Butler-Wheelhouse, Chief Executive Smiths Group, speaking at the inauguration of the new facility said expanding in India moves us closer to our customers and closer to an area of high growth. This new Centre of Excellence also enables us to benefit from the pool of high quality people here in Bangalore.

The company has underlined its confidence in the emerging Indian economy by selecting Bangalore as the location for its new Centre of Excellence which, in addition to serving local customers, will provide a variety of services to other parts of the John Crane network. Located in Bangalores Peenya industrial area the premises have been designed with flexibility and future expansion in mind. With an initial 25,000 sq ft factory capacity plus 20,000 sq ft of office accommodation they house 120 people with a range of world-class skills and abilities. Bangalore region offers a well-educated high quality workforce that can provide engineering-oriented people to help support the design elements of the new Centres activities.

Commenting at the inauguration Mr. Mike Mansell, Managing Director John Crane EAA said, This represents a crucial step for John Crane and is a mark of the faith we have in the people here in Bangalore & India. Bangalore as the location for our new Centre of Excellence is an obvious choice for us since John Crane has had very positive experiences ever since we opened our first facility here in 1995. Bangalore offers a pool of well-educated, engineering-oriented people who we can call on to support the Centres design activities. We have a great deal of confidence in their expertise and abilities and we look forward to a long and successful association with all of our employees.
The Centre will also be a key-manufacturing hub for John Crane seals for the domestic market, fully assembled power transmission couplings for both the domestic and Asia Pacific region plus coupling components for assembly at other John Crane facilities.
 
Today, John Crane offers the complete suite of Engineered Mechanical Seals, Sealing Support Systems and Mechanical Packings. This facility is an important addition to our global network. Designed with flexibility and future expansion in mind, it will further improve our ability to support our customers in the growing Indian and Asian markets, added Mr. Ashok Vasudevan, Director & General Manager John Crane India.

Additionally, engineering and technical back up for the John Crane network will be provided including a newly created CAD 3-D modeling service. Support for John Cranes software development, database administration and web maintenance activities will also be available from Bangalore, along with project support, administration services plus market analysis and research capabilities.  Bangalores international time zone position makes it an excellent location for this new Centre as it will share part of its working day with John Cranes European and Asian facilities allowing projects to be progressed on a round-the-clock basis.

John Crane already has regional and local branch offices in Chennai, Delhi, Mumbai, Baroda, Kolkata, Jamnagar and Surat with the original Indian International Support Centre being established in Bangalore in 1999. This modest operation laid the foundations for the companys progress in India to date.

John Crane has an international network of more than 6,000 employees and over 200 facilities (including 20 main manufacturing sites) in more than 40 countries.

ENDS