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FLSmidth shares its response to Covid-19 pandemic

Published by , Deputy Editor
World Cement,

With nearly 12 000 people operating in 100 different countries, FLSmidth is feeling the effects of the Corona virus. It has plans in place to secure the health and safety of its employees. At the same time, it is securing the critical supply of spare-parts and services to customers. These activities are essential, not only to the cement producers, but also to society as a steady supply of cement is needed to keep infrastructure projects going.

FLSmidth shares its response to Covid-19 pandemic

“Cement is a basic, vital component in keeping societies going now and in the future. We are therefore taking all the necessary steps to ensure a continuous supply of the equipment and service to our customers around the world so that they can maintain their operations” says Jan Kjaersgaard, President of Cement at FLSmidth.

With offices and production facilities across the globe, FLSmidth has felt the impacts of the Corona virus right from the beginning. “China was hit hard early this year, but parts of the country are up and running again now. After an extended closure after Chinese New Year, our large workshop in Qingdao re-opened 10 February and is now fully up and running. To a large extent our supply chain is secure,” Jan said.

Kjaersgaard continued, “We are monitoring the situation closely, obviously in Europe, the US and Canada, but also how it will impact India and the southern hemisphere. Right now, particular focus is on Italy, and to comply with new initiatives from the government to contain the virus, we have closed down our production in Lombardy for the next two weeks.”

In the wake of Corona comes a series of restrictions and travel bans – a challenge FLSmidth is prepared for with a range of services available for remote, digital monitoring and predictive maintenance and support for issues that may not require on-site work. “We do see that the appetite for large scale investment in the global market is hesitant these weeks – and understandably so. But we also see a continued demand for digital solutions as manufactures need to secure their productivity,” says Jan.

Cement producers will, and some are, already facing issues such as having to reduce the numbers of workers on the ground or even temporary plant shut-downs are in the pipeline. In times like these, the 140 years of experience and global reach is an advantage to FLSmidth that can bring process knowledge, digital tools and an online support network to all corners of the world.

At FLSmidth’s headquarter in Denmark, more than 80% of all employees will work from home as of this week. “I am very proud to see this agility from all my colleagues,” Jan explains. Last year, FLSmidth reorganised and localised parts of its cement business to get closer to its customers and avoid a lot of travelling, to that Jan adds, “The last few weeks, have proven that we are indeed a digital company and can manage the business remotely – our customers now benefit from that.”

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