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Atlas Copco main office in Nacka (2015)
|Traded as||Nasdaq Stockholm: ATCO A, ATCO B|
(President and CEO)
|Products||Compressors, vacuum solutions, generators, construction and mining equipment, industrial tools and assembly systems|
|Revenue||SEK 101 billion (2016)|
Number of employees
|Footnotes / references
The Atlas Copco Group is a global industrial group of companies headquartered in Nacka, Sweden. In 2016, global revenues totalled SEK 101 billion, and by the end of that year the company employed about 45,000 people. The company manufactures products at about 100 production sites in more than 20 countries. As of 2016, the United States is the company's largest single market, followed by China.[not in citation given] The firm's shares are listed on the OMX Stockholm exchange and both 'A' and 'B' classes form part of the benchmark OMXS30 index.
Atlas Copco companies develop, manufacture, service, and rent industrial tools, air compressors (of which it is the world's leading producer), construction and mining equipment such as rock drills, assembly systems. The Group operates in four areas: Compressor Technique, Mining and Rock Excavation Technique, Construction Technique and Industrial Technique.
In January 2017 it was announced that Atlas Copco plans to split in two and appoint a new chief executive. The split is expected to occur in 2018.
- 1 History
- 2 Business lines
- 3 Operations
- 4 Corporate social responsibility
- 5 Awards
- 6 Charity
- 7 References
- 8 External links
AB Atlas, as it was previously named, was founded by Edvard Fränckel, who was a Swedish industrialist, politician and senior official at Swedish State Railways. The company was established along with Andre O. Wallenberg, Johan W. Arnberg, Carl G. Cervin and Fredrik Didro. In its inauguration phase, Atlas dealt with the manufacturing, purchasing and selling of all types of material for railroad construction and operations. After the hard hit of the recession in the 1880s and the decline in railroad construction, Atlas diversified its undertakings and branched off into locomotives, central heating and tool machinery. In 1899, Atlas began developing their first air compressors and established itself as a compressor manufacturer. As older production branches started phasing out, Atlas teamed up with Diesel Motors in 1917 and the new company of Atlas Diesel emerged with two primary divisions: diesel engines and compressor air products.
The Atlas Diesel merger experienced significant growth during the First World War and towards the end of the war, export dominated 40–50 % of production. The depression years caused significant losses for the company, which led to several financial reconstructions in the 1920s and 1930s. The economy began recovering, demand started growing again in the mid-1930s, and Atlas Diesel experienced a boom in sales, where compressed air operations was the most expansive area.The Second World War remained an active period for the firm and a time when strategic planning for development played a principal role. Manufacturing capabilities were embellished and the purchasing along with the acquisition of manufacturing subsidiaries in Sweden and other countries, was a key component to Atlas Diesel's continued growth after WWII. The "Swedish method" was another war period strategy that strongly influenced the firm's pneumatic program, consisting of lightweight rock drills and drill bits with carbide tips. In 1948 the company terminated its diesel manufacturing and the name "Atlas Diesel" was no longer pertinent. The name Atlas Copco became official in 1955 and was inspired by the Belgian subsidiary Compagnie Pneumatique.
Post-war international expansion
The Swedish method that was founded during the war period laid the foundation for the international expansion Atlas Copco engaged in starting in the 1950s. The purchasing of the Belgian compressor company Arpic Engineering in 1956, was the firm's first major international acquisition. Eventually, Arpic's plants carried out a majority of Atlas Copco's compressor production. In 1960 another important acquisition was made with the purchasing of Craelius. In the 1970s, international expansion accelerated dramatically, due to various structural reforms and efficiency measures brought on by weakened economic conditions and increased production costs. These conditions meant that Atlas Copco had to accelerate and brake simultaneously in order to keep profitability up. A number of strategic acquisitions were therefore made including the French compressor manufacturer Mauguière. In order to strengthen their position in the United States, several strategic acquisitions were made in the Airpower business, including the key purchase of Worthington Compressors.
In the early 1980s Atlas Copco was the world leader in rock drilling and pneumatics. Seeing the potential in industrial tools, they purchased Chicago Pneumatic Tools in 1987, which opened up the important American, French and British markets. Atlas Copco then became one of the world's largest manufacturers of pneumatic tools and monitoring systems. At the end of the 1980s the company's geographical foothold grew and assortments expanded due to several acquisitions including the French company Ets. Georges Renault that manufactured pneumatic power tools. The British company Desoutter Brothers Plc. that supplied industrial tools and monitoring systems was purchased in 1990. In 1992 AEG Elektrowerkzeuge was purchased and in 1995 Milwaukee Electric Tool was acquired, which further strengthened the company's reach. In 1997, Atlas Copco made its biggest and most important acquisition with the purchasing of the Prime Service Corporation, which was the largest machine leasing company in the United States. The North American Rental Service Corporation was purchased in 1999.
From 2017, Atlas Copco has five main business areas: Compressor Technique, Vacuum Technique, Industrial Technique, Mining and Rock Excavation Technique, and Construction Technique. They all focus on the design, manufacturing and marketing of a large range of products for different industry segments.
Atlas Copco's Compressor Technique area creates products such as industrial compressors and vacuum solutions, oil and gas treatment equipment, air management systems, and gas and process compressor/expanders. The products are mainly used in the manufacturing, oil, gas and process industries. Their compressor solutions are used in ships, trains and hospitals, and in other facilities and applications. Their main market competitors in this area are Ingersoll-Rand, Kaeser, Hitachi, Gardner Denver, Cameron, Sullair, and Parker Hannifin.
Atlas Copco’s Vacuum Technique business area provides vacuum products, exhaust management systems, valves and related products mainly under the Edwards, Leybold and Atlas Copco brands. The main markets served are semiconductor and scientific as well as a wide range of industrial segments including chemical process industries, food packaging and paper handling. The business area has a global service network and innovates for sustainable productivity in order to further improve its customers’ performance. Principal product development and manufacturing units are located in the United Kingdom, Czech Republic, Germany, South Korea, China and Japan.
Atlas Copco's products in Industrial Technique are mainly developed for the automotive and aerospace industries, but are also used in industrial manufacturing and maintenance and vehicle service. Products manufactured include assembly systems, industrial power tools, quality assurance products and various types of software. Their main competitors in this area are Apex Tool Group, Ingersoll-Rand, Stanley Black & Decker, Uryu and Bosch.
Mining and Rock Excavation Technique
These products are developed for underground mining, infrastructure development and geotechnical applications such as blasthole drilling for ground engineering and aggregate production and drilling for oil, water, energy and gas. Drilling and rock excavation is the main industry the products are manufactured for, but they are also manufactured for work in underground, open pit mines and mineral exploration. The company's main competitors in this area are Caterpillar, Sandvik, Furukawa and Joy Global.
This area produces portable compressors, lighting towers, pumps and generators, paving equipment, compaction equipment, demolition tools and construction tools for a wide variety of infrastructure projects. These include civil works, road construction, gas and oil, and drilling construction projects. The company's main competitors in this area include Doosan Infracore, Kaeser, Sullair, Volvo, Caterpillar and Wirtgen.
Atlas Copco manufactures critical equipment components in-house and co-operates with business partners for non-critical components. Approximately 75% of the production cost of equipment represents purchased components and around 25% are internally manufactured core components, assembly costs and overhead. Equipment represents less than 60% of revenues and the manufacturing of equipment is primarily based on customer orders and only some standard, high volume equipment is manufactured based on projected demand.
Atlas Copco has customer centers in about 90 countries and sales in about 180 countries. Sales and service are primarily direct, but also channeled through alternative sales mechanisms, e.g. distributors. Sales of equipment is performed by engineers and service and maintenance are performed by technicians. Service is the responsibility of divisions in each business area. The responsibility includes development of service products, sales and marketing, technical support, service delivery and follow-up. About 40% of revenues are generated from service (spare parts, maintenance, repairs, consumables, accessories, and rental).
The Atlas Copco Group has dozens of brands around the world, including Chicago Pneumatic for compressors and tools, Edwards for vacuum, BeaconMedeas for medical gas solutions, and SCA & Henrob for automotive assembly solutions.
- AGRE Kompressoren
- ALUP Kompressoren
- American Pneumatic Tools (APT)
- Ceccato Aria Compressa
- Chicago Pneumatic
- Creemers Compressors
- Desoutter Tools
- Edwards (vacuum)
- Fiac Air Compressors
- Fuji Air Tools
- Gamma Vacuum
- GrassAir Compressoren
- Guangzhou Linghein Compressor Co.
- Houston Service Industries (HSi)
- Innovative Vacuum Solutions (IVS)
- Leybold GmbH
- Liuzhou Tech Machinery Co.
- Mark Compressors
- Pneumatech Medical Gas Solutions
- Precision Plus
- Puska Aire Comprimido
- Quincy Compressor
- Seti-Tec Line
- Shanghai Bolaite Compressor Co.
- Worthington Creyssensac
- Wuxi Shengda Air/Gas Purity Equipment Co.
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Atlas Copco's organization is based on the principle of decentralized responsibilities and authorities. Their operations are organized into four business areas and more than 20 divisions. The organization has both operating units and legal units. Each operating unit has a business board which reflects the operational structure of the Group. The duty of a business board is to serve in an advisory and decision-making capacity concerning strategic and operative issues. It also ensures the implementation of controls and assessments. Each legal company has a legal board focusing on compliance and the legal structure of the Group.
Atlas Copco has five elements in their corporate social responsibility approach: innovation, business ethics, safety & health, resources, and teams.
Atlas Copco conducts research and development in a wide range of technologies at their global research centers, where each division has its individual area of focus and resources. Training and workshops have been rolled out in customer centers and product companies in Europe and China. The divisions work with eco-design achievement templates that are integrated into marketing material for customers. The Construction Tools division introduced two innovations that significantly increased market sales in 2015. The Rammers LT 5005 and LT 6005 won the 2015 iF Product Design Award and the Grand Award of Design in the Public's Favorite category. The Construction Tools division also introduced the HRD100, the electro-hydraulic hand-held rock drill developed in collaborations with customers in South Africa.
The Atlas Copco Business Code of Practice has been translated into more than 30 languages and is based on the following international standards and guidelines:
- United Nations International Bill of Human Rights of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
- The ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work] has identified the following core labor standards: freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining; the elimination of forced and compulsory labor; the abolition of child labor; the elimination of discrimination in the workplace.
- The United Nations Global Compact is the means by which businesses worldwide can align their operations and strategies with 10 core principles in the areas of human rights, labor standards, the environment and anti-corruption.
- The OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises are a set of government-backed standards for responsible business conduct in areas such as employment and industrial relations, human rights, the environment, information disclosure, combating bribery, consumer interests, science and technology, competition, and taxation.
Safety and health
Atlas Copco has a global Safety, Health and Environmental (SHE) policy that sets standards for workplace safety, health and ergonomics. Each division's president, general manager and manager has operational responsibility for safety, health and environmental performance as well as the implementation of the Atlas Copco Group SHE Policy. The Group SHE Council maintains and updates policies, which is subject to approval by Group Management. Atlas Copco companies provide training in SHE awareness and all employees are responsible for complying with safety and health regulations. The company evaluates business partners, such as suppliers, subcontractors, joint venture partners and agents in accordance with SHE regulations. Customer centers with more than 70 employees and all product companies shall be certified according to OHS-AS 18001 and ISO 14001. Each division and reporting company is responsible for the reported information and key performance indicators are assessed by the annual Executive Committee Meeting (ECM).
Atlas Copco has been the recipient of multiple awards for areas such as technical innovation, product design and sustainable business approaches.
- Grand Award of Design - In 2015, Atlas Copco was given this award by the Association of Swedish Engineering Industries for the design of the LT 6005 Rammers series.
- Red Dot Award - In 2015, Atlas Copco was given this award for their MicroTorque screwdrivers and the MT Focus 6000 controller.
- Industriepreis - In 2016, Atlas Copco was given this award for the R TEX handheld pneumatic breaker in the industrial and mechanical engineering category.
Water for All
Atlas Copco's main community engagement initiative is Water for All.  This charity, which builds infrastructure for clean drinking water in countries in need worldwide, was founded by Atlas Copco employees in 1984, and it is still driven by employees. It is financed by employees together with the company.
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