NEWS & MEDIA
This press release is submitted and shown here in its original form, unedited by Furniture Today.
To maintain its leading position in China’s fast-growing furniture market, Kuka Home turned to Lectra for digital transformation of its design, development and production processes.
Kuka Home’s innovative spirit has made it a trailblazer in the Chinese upholstered furniture industry. To cement its place at the forefront of the industry and manage the impact of rising material and labor costs, the company chose to undergo a digital transformation of its product development and leather cutting processes.
Digitalization allows Kuka to virtually design and develop a significant part of its products, and evaluate prototype feasibility and product quality in the early stages of product development. With an automated leather cutting process, Kuka achieves consistently high quality cut pieces without relying on operator skills, optimizes leather consumption and boosts efficiency.
Lectra proposed a smart manufacturing process incorporating DesignConcept, its virtual prototyping and product development solution, and Versalis, the automated leather cutting solution.
Lectra also provided its professional services, based on 30 years of expertise, to ensure the success and continuous improvement of Kuka’s production process.
Quality, design and value
Founded in 1982 by Mr. Gu Yuhua, Kuka Home has become one of the biggest furniture manufacturers and brands in China. The company supplies a wide range of products, including leather and fabric sofas, upholstered beds and mattresses to over 2,500 branded stores. It also exports its products to over 120 countries and regions.
Kuka is one of the first companies in China to pursue the digital transformation of its production processes, replacing its manual processes with innovation-driven product development software and smart cutting technologies. “Digitalization and automation have become major trends in the upholstered furniture industry. The whole industry is pursuing higher efficiency and process optimization,” says Tu Jiahui, Director of Product Development.
Choosing a partner for change
Kuka reached out to Lectra in its pursuit to put digital technology at the heart of its operations. “In the last few years we have been in discussions with many equipment manufacturers and carried out various trials. Lectra was more mature and more aligned with our current business model,” explains Mr. Pan Chaoping, Lean Production and Planning Management Director.
Implementing digitalized processes also enables Kuka to resolve a challenge experienced by many companies in the industry. “As labor costs have spiraled, we are looking to increase the cost competitiveness of our furniture and increase manufacturing efficiency,” says Mr. Chaoping.
Entering a new digital era
DesignConcept, Lectra’s 3D design and product development solution, allows Kuka to connect product development and production processes, and address any feasibility or quality issues. “With a digital process, we combine product engineering and design phases, followed by evaluation and confirmation. This method has enhanced our development capacity,” says Mr. Jiahui.
Modernizing its leather cutting process with Versalis, Lectra’s Industry 4.0-ready leather cutting solution, reduces Kuka’s dependence on operator skills for productivity and product quality. “Adopting digitalized cutting techniques has boosted our manufacturing efficiency. We are now able to handle smaller batches and reduce costs. The resulting products are of a better, consistent quality, in keeping with Kuka’s requirements,” says Mr. Chaoping.
In addition to their new solutions, Kuka has also benefited from consulting services concerning training, best practices and process optimization provided by Lectra’s professional services team. “Kuka Home and Lectra have a strategic relationship. I hope that we can continue our valuable, win-win collaboration,” says Mr. Jiahui.
For more information, please visit en.kukahome.com