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Innovation separates companies and FenCon 19 blends proven European Automation with North American Creativity

February 20, 2019  By Al Dueck

Feb. 20, 2019 – Dave Hogg, experienced LEAN educator comments “Innovation is the buzzword of this century – and its pursuit is already accelerating in preparation for the decades to come. It’s increasingly separating the competitive company from the non-competitive, every day.”

A powerful combination of Platinum sponsor Thorwesten Maschinen Bau from Germany, Joseph Machine Company from the USA and Precision Motion Controle and AquaSurTech from Canada delivers a very unique mix to this segment of FenCon19. These unique and innovative companies bring unique perspectives as well as different presentation approaches to FenCon workshops.

European manufacturing operations have tended to approach and create solutions from somewhat different perspectives. Thorwesten Maschinen Bau has been highly successful as they have delivered production equipment to some 53 different countries. Christian Holtman, applications engineer with a wide range of experience, will lead an hour long session on their unique approach to automation. This should prove to be a highly informative session as Euro style window products have begun appearing in N.America in greater numbers and higher efficiency, modular, “lower touch” manufacturing has also been gaining momentum – even in small to medium size companies. Euroline Windows in Vancouver, Canada is one of those operations which seems to be thriving with its own unique approach.

The workshop combination of Joseph’s Sanjay Parikh and PMC’s Paul Breault promises to be a highly stimulating session also as each brings a unique set of skills and ideas “to the table”. Joseph has some new Automation flow processes in development and Sanjay wants to use this session as something of a test case to present the progress and get some feedback from the industry. Joseph Machine Company has achieved some remarkable success with some other their systems, producing some 300 systems per year for the past 10 years.


Paul Breault brings some unique “robotics perspectives” to the conference. PMC has applied its unique skills to a variety of industries including window and door manufacturing. PMC will again be offering some new, cutting edge ideas and concepts that PMC is in the process of implementing.

Maria Jasminez’s workshop will be focusing on finish products – paints and stains – and how they apply to fiberglass door panels. However, AquaSurTech has also been moving aggressively into the supply of automation equipment for door panels. Maria’s 20 plus years of experience in the industry will certainly bring some new insights into this option for innovation and automation.

As we all know, innovation and automation is mostly about people and another workshop brings this crisply into focus! Todd Leroy, Senior VP of Loewen Windows and Cheryl Partridge, Opportunities For Employment, highlight some special approaches to personnel and leadership. Todd takes great pride in the progress they have made in adapting their production process to greater access to women while also opening a much higher level of leadership by women also. OFE has a very effective program in introducing many more “non-traditional” members of the workforce – ranging from recent immigrants to employment challenged – and will highlight how production facilities can benefit.

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