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Major UK System Integrator becomes an ABB partner

02 March 2010

ABB has signed a system integrator agreement with MacDonald Humfrey Automation (MHA), one of the UK’s largest privately owned system integrators. Read more

Left Steve Ruddell, ABB; right James Jordan, MacDonald Humfrey Automation
Left Steve Ruddell, ABB; right James Jordan, MacDonald Humfrey Automation

MHA is involved in two joint ventures, Exmac Automation Limited, with Excel Automation, which offers turnkey material handling and robotic solutions and MHA Stopford, with Stopford Projects, specialising in process engineering. James Jordan, director of MHA Stopford, sees the link with ABB as enhancing MHA’s appeal to customers. “Variable speed drives have always been a part of our offer, but we are now seeing an increasing trend away from direct-on-line starters and towards drives. We are seeing growth potential in the process industries, particular energy sectors such as waste-to-energy, nuclear and carbon capture and ABB drives can cut pump and fan costs in these applications.”

With experience of projects across every sector, MHA has the resources to handle all stages of a project in house. “We are quite unique in this respect,” says Jordan. “Most other system integrators will subcontract out elements of projects, but we have the resources and the capabilities to undertake all aspects of a project. This gives greater flexibility to our customers as well as keeping quality control in one place.

“We offer breadth across all industries and can bring best practice from industries like automotive production to airports – we have defined General Motors global conveyor standards and have also provided automation systems for most of the UK’s airports baggage handling systems.”

The agreement will build upon the strengths of both of the two companies, allowing them to combine to win projects. “From our customer focused culture, we do find that a large percentage of our work comes from repeat business from customers happy to use our services again and also seeking our advice on the best possible solutions for their projects, whereas ABB is a more sales orientated company. When selling drives, ABB can get to know of projects that we could do and similarly we can see an opening for ABB drives in our customers’ projects.”

Jordan also praised the support that ABB provides for MHA: “ABB is very committed to us – they discuss where they are going, which products are applicable to what type of jobs and which potential projects are coming up. They also train our staff on their equipment so we can easily integrate their products into our customers’ projects. The benefit for our customers is that we can develop a closer relationship with them and offer them a lot of product support as we know the drives well and of course always have the backup of ABB itself.”

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