Sustainability

Next step towards a circular economy

Next step towards a circular economy

Next step towards a circular economy

Reconditioning large bearings instead of buying new ones has become increasingly popular among users in recent years. This is not only cheaper, but also meets the megatrend towards sustainability. With its remanufacturing offerings, SKF is thus supporting the transformation from a linear to a circular economy, recording double-digit growth rates compared to 2020.

"Remanufacturing large bearings increases their service life and offers huge environmental benefits," says Nadine Korell, SKF industrial sales manager for Central Europe. "In addition, given the current shortage of goods and disruptions in the supply chain, remanufacturing bearings can create security of supply. The carbon footprint of such a bearing can be up to 90 percent lower than that of a new component, depending on the scope of the measures." That's why SKF offers bearing reconditioning as a service to its customers right away. "Double-digit growth rates for our service are coming from all major industries, such as the metal, pulp and paper, mining and energy sectors," elaborates Hannes Leopoldseder of SKF's reconditioning unit in Steyr, Austria. "SKF offers this service worldwide."

Focus on sustainability

When it comes to bearing remanufacturing, energy and material efficiency are obvious considerations, but until now, cost benefits have tended to be the deciding factor for customers. This has changed. As a result of the 2016 Paris Climate Agreement, many countries are accelerating their efforts toward a circular economy. The results in the marketplace are tangible: More and more companies are reviewing how their supply chains can have a lower impact on the climate. In doing so, the transition from a linear to a more circular economy is essential.

"The topic of sustainability has clearly come into focus in recent years - regardless of company size. We are receiving more and more inquiries from customers about our environmentally friendly services to maintain sustainable operations in production," says Hannes Leopoldseder. And Janne Westerlund, Head of Engineering, Services & Solutions for the Swedish industrial market, also sees great potential in the markets. He adds, "That's why we combine our products and services to reduce environmental impact."

More than "just" products

The focus is not only on the renewal of large bearings, but of entire bearing units, bearing housings or seals, as well as lubricant management. SKF currently operates remanufacturing centers around the world. "Sales in this segment have increased substantially within two years and demand continues to grow," Janne Westerlund knows, adding, "SKF offers customers a comprehensive service. We capture both the environmental value, for example through reduced energy and lubricant consumption or lower CO2 emissions, and the economic value through increased production and reduced costs. We have developed customized calculation models for this purpose. These show how many CO2 emissions the customer can avoid by becoming an SKF partner."

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