Changes for Otis, Prisma, Schmersal and Hyundai


The new science center at the university was built in compliance with BIM standards.

Otis Becomes Independent, Publicly Traded Company

Otis completed its separation from United Technologies Corp. (UTC) and began trading on the New York Stock Exchange the morning of April 3 as NYSE: OTIS. Otis said it is well-positioned for sustained, long-term growth due to urbanization, a growing middle class and digitization. Otis reported sales of US$13.1 billion in 2019. Its service portfolio generates recurring sales and “robust” cashflow.

As part of the separation, UTC shareholders received a distribution of one-half share of OTIS common stock for each share of UTC common stock held. No fractional shares of Otis will be issued. UTC shareowners will receive cash in lieu of any fractional shares. UTC shareowners will also retain their shares of UTC common stock.

Otis originally listed its common stock on the NYSE in April 1920 and remains “the world’s leading company for elevator and escalator manufacturing, installation and service.” Business drivers are new equipment sales, maintenance/repair and modernization. As the installed base grows, it will lead to even more service and maintenance/repair opportunities, the company states.

Otis President and CEO Judy Marks said:

“This is a historic day for Otis as we move forward as a strong, standalone company. Throughout our 167 years in business, we have experienced all types of markets and historic events — and rose to respond. We’re confident we will endure and succeed despite today’s current challenges. Otis continues to be well-positioned for sustained, long-term growth as our business model brings recurring revenue even in times of economic headwinds. Our vast global footprint and focus on strategic digital investments enable us to better serve our customers locally, deliver on our commitments worldwide and support our growth as cities expand.”

NBSL Acquires Italian Doormaker Prisma

NBSL M&E Technology Co., Ltd. of Shanghai announced in March it acquired a majority stake in Prisma Spa. of Mezanni, Italy, a global manufacturer and supplier of automatic doors for elevators. The acquisition was conducted through NBSL’s European holding company based in Bergamo, Italy. NBSL noted it has seen consistent revenue growth in both the Chinese and Indian markets. Company President Lu Feng said, “We are excited for the acquisition of Prisma, a company with a long history and formidable knowhow in the automatic door business,” adding that the acquisition is “one of the pillars” of the NBSL’s global strategy. Luciano Sorio, former major stakeholder, said he will remain president of Prisma’s board of directors “to guarantee a smooth and effective transition.”

Bellondi Tapped to Lead Schmersal Industrial Switchgear

The Schmersal Group has appointed Alberto Bellondi managing director of Schmersal Industrial Switchgear Co. Ltd., based in Shanghai. In this role, he oversees approximately 170 employees at a Shanghai facility that produces position and safety switches and lift switchgear for the Chinese and East Asian markets. Bellondi has worked in China for the past 10 years, holding senior positions at various companies. He has sales and production experience, paired with intercultural skills and knowledge of the country and market. Bellondi speaks five languages, including Mandarin. “China is one of the largest and most competitive sales markets in the world,” he said. “I am greatly looking forward to the opportunity to expand on Schmersal’s already strong position in what is a very exciting market.”


Elevator Safety Management Resolution

Hyundai Elevator reported that it held a “Safety Management Resolution” with its 330 employees and partner companies at its head office in Incheon, South Korea, in January. Goals laid out included “reducing the accident rate by 72% in comparison to the previous year and strengthening the safety system,” beginning by bolstering its safety leadership. This entails expanding the initiative to all business units, headquarters and managers. In particular, a zero-tolerance policy will be applied to management organizations if they do not comply with safety rules or see major accidents. Also, by expanding onsite inspection activities, sanctions and guidance will be carried out for violations of safety rules.

Safety training will also be expanded, with a planned increase of 1.4 times to 167,232 hr this year, with a focus on beginner technician training. A professional counseling program has also been established to help employees manage stress. Finally, the company is modifying safety manuals through process reviews in an effort to “achieve zero fatal accidents.”

Seoul Officials Approve Motor Group Tower

City officials in Seoul have approved the construction of Hyundai Motor Group’s new headquarters (ELEVATOR WORLD, July 2019), a long-delayed supertall set to rise in the South Korean capital’s trendy Gangnam district, Standard Digital reported. When completed in 2026, the 569-m-tall skyscraper is expected to be the country’s tallest building. Groundbreaking is planned in the first half of 2020, officials said. The approval comes more than four years after Hyundai offered about US$10 billion for the site, more than triple the market price. Construction was initially planned to begin in 2016 but was delayed after the country’s air force raised concerns that the tower would interfere with radar and military operations. Hyundai has entered into an agreement to resolve operational restrictions. The building is set to have 105 floors. In addition to offices, the plans call for a car theme park, hotel, concert hall and convention center. It will be home to 18,000 employees from 30 Hyundai affiliates.

Ziehl-Abegg: Strong Growth in All Markets

“2019 has been a good year,” said Peter Fenkl, CEO of Künzelsau, Germany-based electric motor and fan manufacturer Ziehl-Abegg. Turnover rose 8.6% to EUR633 million (US$684 million). The company identified “boom regions” as Asia, Europe and the U.S. The year 2020 also got off to a good start, it added, until the effects of the coronavirus pandemic began. The growth in sales was accompanied by an increase in the number of employees: 200 were added worldwide.

In addition to its fans and automotive divisions, the company’s elevator division had positive performance in 2019. Calling the elevator drives market “fiercely competitive,” it has established its brand in the market. Additionally, its frequency inverters are increasingly used to control and regulate various electrical parts of equipment.

European Lift Congress Heilbronn Announced

European Lift Congress Heilbronn has been scheduled for October 27-28 at the Heilbronn University of Applied Sciences in Heilbronn, Germany. Its theme “Challenges and Chances” focuses on the interdisciplinary world of elevator technology at the intersection of buildings and modern mechanical engineering, electrical engineering and information technologies of the future under the effects of progressing globalization. Efforts by the European Committee for Standardization will also be reported, and market susceptibility and how they operate in times of change will be examined in the form of examples from the European and Asian economic areas.

Some presentations will address how building information modeling (BIM) can help channel data, material and cost flow along the value-added chain. Additionally, a common topic is the lack of skilled labor,

which the European Lift Association (ELA) has taken appropriate measures to counter, the university said. The digitalization of existing installations and new plants using elements of predictive maintenance, new cloud architectures, added value by new business models, augmented and virtual realities and information-technology safety are incorporated into the context of elevator construction, it added. Finally, protection against fire and freedom from barriers are to be covered.

The event is chaired by Dr. Wolfram Vogel and supported by ELA, VDMA (German mechanical engineering association), VFA and VdTÜV. In addition to a new science center at the university (built in compliance with BIM standards), evening entertainment event is planned. For more information and to register, visit website: TAH.

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Elevator World | June 2020 Issue Cover