On 1st March 2023, compressed air systems specialist, Integrated Air Solutions, was appointed as the official agent for the provision of technical services to ABC Compressors’ installed base of PET high pressure oil-free air compressor in South Africa’s local beverage and packaging manufacturing sectors.
All the PET products manufactured by beverage and packaging customers must be food grade and the process requirements demand high pressure of between 38 bar to 40 bar. ABC high pressure oil-free compressors meet both these critical criteria, making these machines the best, most efficient solution for these applications. In terms of the distributor agreement, Integrated Air Solutions will supply spare parts and service for the ABC range of reciprocating oil-free machines.
Established in 1943, ABC Compressors is a leading global manufacturing specialist of efficient, robust and reliable air compressors for PET blowing and CO2 recovery applications. The company’s headquarters, based in the city of Eibar in the province of Gipuzkoa in the Basque Country of Spain, are supported by factories in China and Brazil. ABC has delivered compressors to over 130 countries, supplying products that are best adapted to customers’ needs and supporting them throughout their life cycle.
Aligning with the organisation’s commitment to consolidating its position as a global service provider, ABC is rolling out new service platforms in more countries, moving closer to customers by placing local agents on their doorsteps. “The ABC range of high pressure oil-free air compressors holds a large percentage of the market share in South Africa’s beverage and packaging industries,” says Wayne Jacobs, Managing Director of Integrated Air Solutions. “However, currently only half of this market is being serviced by ABC; this untapped potential presents the ideal local service platform for both ABC and Integrated Air Solutions with many added benefits for customers.”
Wayne was approached by ABC Compressors’ Area Sales Manager in late October 2022 (having noticed Wayne’s LinkedIn profile). During his visit to South Africa in early November, discussions were held around ABC’s requirements for a suitable partner to support their customer base in South Africa and Integrated Air Solutions’ competencies and capabilities. Established in 2018 by CEO, Graham Russell, Integrated Air Solutions holds exclusive distributor rights for premium medium pressure electric and diesel-driven compressor brands. “Our success in the local market, combined with our compressed air technology know-how and solid reputation for matching our superior quality products with after-market solutions, positioned us as the ideal partner for ABC Compressors in South Africa, sealing the agreement which was signed on 19th February 2023,” affirms Wayne.
As the high pressure oil-free compressor sector is a new market for Integrated Air Solutions, Wayne says that their initial focus will be primarily on pushing ABC after-market solutions including service, maintenance, parts and spares as well as machine upgrades. He points out that in addition to boosting Integrated Air Solutions’ aftermarket revenues, the agreement presents other excellent growth opportunities for the business too. “We now have access to a customer base that has medium pressure applications which we are also able to support through our high quality ELGi and FS-Elliott air compressor systems.”
“Although one could argue that, with a majority market share, ABC has reached saturation point, we believe that there is always scope for more business. This is especially true from a customer share perspective as many plants operate dual brands as well as old machines. Take for instance the CO2 units used by the beverage industry to carbonate drinks. Many operators are using German machines which are reaching their end of life. Furthermore, some of the ABC compressors are more than 10 years old. So, in addition to providing specialist support, there is also tremendous scope for growth through upgrading existing ABC machines and improving their efficiencies to bring them closer to the new generation units – a more cost effective solution for customers.” Wayne adds that they can also replace ABC machines that are not fit for refurbishment, with new compressors.
ABC Compressors now has a local partner who is closer to the end users which Wayne points out adds great value for customers who have access to a local sales and service provider through Integrated Air Solutions with the direct back-up of the OEM. “We offer all the benefits, from local payment terms to import logistics, to ensure a seamless customer experience. In addition, customers can improve their B-BBEE scores by dealing with Integrated Air Solutions, a certified level 4 company.”
Customers can look forward to professional service support from Integrated Air Solutions’ qualified team of technicians. The company’s dedicated high pressure technology specialist has a ten year track record and is supported by highly skilled medium pressure technicians and expert sub-contractors who also bring decades of high pressure compressor experience. The team has received the necessary technical service training from an ABC Compressors expert. Integrated Air Solutions is confident that the new agreement with ABC Compressors will serve to broaden its footprint into Southern Africa’s beverage and packaging manufacturing sectors. Wayne wraps up: “We are also in a position to extend our sales and service support for our premium brands to those locally based South African companies that have operations in neighbouring countries. As we continue to grow the business, we will look at expanding further into Africa, taking all our valued business partners’ products with us.”