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Putting the product in productivity

British businesses are forever being berated by government for their lack of productivity, which always seems like such an intangible and unquantifiable concept. Well, MPT Group has brought productivity gains into sharp focus with the release of the Bordatac S2, a newly improved version of its successful side-stitching machine.

The big headline is the huge time saving potential that the S2 offers to mattress manufacturers. Thanks to the machine’s incorporated Servo-controlled sewing heads, and swinging needle technology, the speed capacity of the Bordatac S2 is double that of its predecessor. For example, the production speed for a two-tack border configuration is an impressive 33 seconds per metre; a threetack runs at 50 seconds; and a four-tack at 1 minute. The actual set-up time of each sewing cycle has been cut too. With the S2, an operator only needs to key in the actual border width, and the machine automatically calculates the appropriate tack configurations.

“The set-up is a hugely time consuming process,” explains MPT Group owner, Andrew Trickett. “The S2 eliminates most of those manual configurations, saving businesses, on average, around 20 minutes for every time they switch. If you consider that a manufacturer might be changing the set-up on their machine roughly four times a day, then that is quite a considerable saving.”

The overall time saving is not the only big benefit. The S2 has been designed with the market firmly in mind. The machine can run up to eight tacks on a single border, giving manufacturers the opportunity to create much more sophisticated pattern selections. And, with the growing trend towards everdeeper mattresses, the S2 is able to extend these border effects from a 7 inch to a 17- inch mattress. MPT Group recently held an open day where it invited customers to see the S2 in action. “The event was very well received by our customers,” said Andrew. “They loved the flexibility of the machine, and found some of the new features would not only offer increased production but also far more flexibility in the range of border effects they could produce. “The most well received feature is the automatic tack configuration facility, this allows clients to simply select a border width and the machine will automatically calculate the various tack options possible at the touch of a button.”

Also recently released by MPT Group, the Matramatic Quilter. This machine gives mattress manufactures high speed and heavy-duty functionality, combined with computer control. But the Matramatic’s real unique selling point is its ability to quilt natural fibres, many of which cannot be quilted through traditional feed quilters. Materials such as latex, wool, horsehair, and cashmere can all be quilted with total ease with the Matramatic. “The feedback to the Matramatic Quilter has been very good,” says Andrew. “Especially from clients who are working with natural fibres in their quilting. The Matramatic also provides a great solution to the ever growing market for mattress toppers which generally have natural fibers as their primary filling.”

2016 was a busy year for MPT Group. Being an exporter, the political upheaval in the UK has so far not had much of a direct effect on the business and, in fact, sales are 10% up year-on-year. “Of course, there is a lot of uncertainty around right now,” says Andrew. “But we have been pleased to see that the market has remained relatively buoyant throughout 2016, and we have actually taken on some new business.” “We had lots of interest in our attendance at September’s National Bed Federation (NBF) event, which was our most successful NBF event to date.” MPT Group is not getting complacent though. 2017 will see the result of some serious investment back into the company’s R&D, with the release of the Mini Micro Quilting Machine. This machine is designed for smaller manufacturers who want to avoid a major capital investment, but would still like a machine that offers them more variety in their border effects. With its 3D border system, the Mini Micro Quilting Machine is an excellent value alternative to the all-singing, all-dancing machines required by major mattress brands. “We definitely saw a gap in the market for the Mini Micro,” says Andrew. “These smaller businesses still want to increase the variety of borders they offer, but they don’t necessarily want to spend big money to get all the other features. The Mini Micro is the perfect solution for them.”

After a packed year designing and selling machines that solve others’ productivity pitfalls, no one could accuse MPT of being remotely unproductive but how does Andrew want to move the business forward in 2017? “We want to keep doing what we are doing really: bringing out new products that offer clear and compelling benefits to our customers, and helping them to create even better quality products, quicker and easier than ever before.” “Being an exporter, the political upheaval in the UK has so far not had much of a direct effect on the business and, in fact, sales are 10% up year-on-year”.