Corbeo accelerates investment plan, driven by de-globalization after Covid-19

19 Aug 2020

PRESS RELEASE - Zele, 19/08/2020

A few months after the move to the new company building in Zele and in the middle of the corona pandemic, Corbeo invests in a unique fully automatic 'ball winding machine'. This investment is in line with the corporate vision of realizing more added value locally in Belgium, a vision that is now fully supported by the #buylocal philosophy.

With the move to a new industrial building in Zele at the end of 2019, the production floor has been significantly expanded with the necessary space for new machines. After an expansion of the twining installations at the beginning of February, Corbeo is investing in the 2nd expansion phase and a new fully automatic ball winding machine was taken into use last August. As a result of this investment, a full-fledged second shift will start in September to expand the utilization of the entire machine park and to be able to meet customer demand. Due to the lockdown, the stores in Belgium were closed for a while, but Corbeo nevertheless saw a strong increase in its own production and foresees a turnover in 2020 that will at least equal that of 2019.

“The Covid-19 pandemic further demonstrated the importance of having control over the entire supply chain. Retailers and wholesalers like to work with local producers again. On the one hand to guarantee European quality and on the other hand to ensure the stores have a reliable supply. The more we can do ourselves, the better for our customers. ” explained by managers Silvie and Wilfried. The ball winding machine is the last missing link for Corbeo to be able to make all rope items internally: hanks, bobbins, rolls and now twine balls or tangle. The machine makes the typical balls of sisal or flax rope that are available in supermarkets or do-it-yourself stores. The new high-tech machine, made in Germany, allows production to run fully automatically, making production costs competitive. The raw materials are purchased worldwide, but the entire production process up to the end product takes place in Belgium. The increased sustainability due to less inefficient ocean transports is an added bonus.

The fully automatic ball winding machine is unique in its kind because it allows to produce to exact length. This assures retailers that they can guarantee the lengths on the packaging to the consumer. “Thanks to this investment, we can better control our inventory. With its 12 parallel winding nozzles, the machine can make up to 600 balls per hour”, Wilfried explains. “Instead of taking numerous articles that differ only in length into the warehouse, we now maintain a strategic stock of raw materials. This stock can be flexibly processed to the correct end product. This way we can improve deliveries to our customers without increasing our internal stock levels. Moreover, this allows us to seek new customers from European retailers. Many are rethinking their supply chain and looking for local suppliers where they can find short and reliable delivery times. ”

Corbeo is the Belgian market leader for the production of rope. Their products can be found in most DIY, garden or hobby shops under their own "Ledent" brand. In addition, they produce under private label for numerous Belgian and foreign retailers. As a family business with 25 employees, Corbeo is specialized in sourcing the raw materials for rope worldwide, twining cotton for macramé applications and creating and packaging the retail items in various formats. Various professional sectors can also count on Corbeo.

Posted by: corbeo