Polish container manufacturer JK teams up with steel supplier SSAB to get stronger and lighter steel.
ZPUH JK Milosz Kiedrowski, a container manufacturer located in northern Poland, started in 2001 to closely cooperate with the Swedish company ILAB Container AB, thus accessing the Scandinavian market. In 2008, JK launched the production of light containers made from high-strength steel.
From the very beginning, it was clear to the management of JK that the steel they used must be produced by SSAB due to its superior quality and because a majority of Scandinavian customers expected containers made from SSAB steel. The initial challenges for ILAB and JK included understanding the new material and learning how to take advantage of its benefits. From the start, SSAB specialists provided excellent support and assistance.
JK purchased state-of-the-art machines for cutting and bending, as well as new welding trucks. Some of the trucks are semi-automated. The purchase of the machinery was partly funded from the EU budget.
The new containers are lighter and stronger than the other makes and can take up to one tonne more per load. Along with their more streamlined shape, they offer fuel savings during transportation of around 14%. Thus the profits are both environmental and financial. Sales in Scandinavia have since risen, and today they remain at a steady and high level.
Since taking over control of the company, CEO and owner Milosz Kiedrowski has managed well; production has risen from 11,000 containers in 2015 to 15,500 in 2017.
Ninety per cent of all containers produced by JK for the Scandinavian market are light containers made from SSAB high-strength steel. The main steel grades that JK buys from SSAB are Strenx™ 700 CR, Strenx™ 700 MC, Hardox® 400 and Hardox® 450. The Polish company is also a member of the two SSAB customer programs: Hardox® In My Body and My Inner Strenx™.