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How do you find a good assembly partner?

How do you find a good assembly partner?

How do you find a good assembly partner?

Bart Smulders of B-Style on working with SixPointTwo:
“You have to understand each other, without having to explain everything”


In 1973, Ad Smulders invented the wheelchair van. That was the beginning of B-Style, the company now run by his son Bart Smulders. In the year 2022, B-Style delivered conversion kits from Oss to selected conversion companies around the world. This allows these companies to convert commercial vehicles of various brands into wheelchair vans, wheelchair buses, city buses or taxibuses. “More than 95% of our conversion kits are sent abroad, including Australia, Asia, the United States and Europe”, says Bart Smulders.

B-Style converted commercial vehicles for many years. The company sold them to customers in the Netherlands as well as other European countries. “In 2017, we decided to focus entirely on supplying conversion kits to conversion companies. This is because the market has changed a lot over the years. More and more conversion companies have joined in, while the legal requirements and certifications have become increasingly extensive and onerous.” The change is in line with the innovative nature of the company. “With a team of 20 people, we concentrate entirely on developing, supplying and servicing conversion systems and solutions for combined transport. We can now focus even more attention to product development: building and testing prototypes.”

Always a complete solution
Any conversion kit that B-Style supplies for a specific commercial vehicle application can be used anywhere in the world. “For this, we look closely at the market and at the legal requirements and certifications. For a Volkswagen taxibus, a conversion company in Finland gets the exact same conversion kit as a conversion company in the Middle East. That taxibus is then rendered suitable for driving on snowy roads and in the mountains as well as for trips in the desert. We thus increase the overall quality of the kit.”

Safety first
B-Style relieves its customers of their concerns. “We arrange all the paperwork concerning certification and legal requirements. Irrespective of whether a customer is located in Spain, India or Australia: they can be confident that our conversion kit will meet all local requirements.” B-Style also arranges all matters with the commercial vehicle manufacturers. “They issue a letter of no objection for the conversion kits we make for their commercial vehicles. Among others, we are a Premium Partner of Volkswagen and Van Partner of Mercedes. If a kit goes to Hong Kong, Volkswagen Hong Kong can immediately check whether it is conformant.”
All these precautions are necessary since we are concerned with passenger transport in this context. “The safety of people is crucial. We have to guarantee that the conversion remains in one piece even if an accident happens.”

The changeover to focusing exclusively on conversion kits has been a major operation. “For instance, we also ensure that the conversion companies we supply to are fully in control. For their part, they must be able to fully rely on the quality of our conversion kits. Each set must therefore be complete, down to the last nut.”
Many parts of the conversion kits, such as sheet metal parts, wiring harnesses and plastic parts, are made by partners. “Because assembly is a time-consuming process, we like to collaborate with partners who can not only manufacture components, but can also assemble larger components. The time we save in this manner can be invested in product development and service.”

Cooperation with SixPointTwo
After an introductory meeting with Iman Landheer in December 2021, a collaboration with SixPointTwo was launched early this year. “We were looking for a new party that can also perform assembly work. As agreed, we started small. We first requested quotations and then placed an order for making simple steel components. Step by step, we expanded that to components in larger series and to more complex components. We have now taken the next step: SixPointTwo now also assembles larger components.”

Assessing assembly partners
What is the basis on which B-Style assesses assembly partners? “The first requirement of course is that their product should meet our specifications. This requires that they interpret our drawing correctly! But we also expect them to think about smarter ways to make the product.” In addition, communication is important. “Do we get quick answers to our questions? Do they respond quickly, jointly examine solutions with us, and in case there are mistakes, do they also have the courage to reach out and follow through?”

Understanding each other is another requirement. “If, for instance, we specify that a product must not be sharp, our partner must understand why we require that and also what we mean by it. After all, everything we make passes through human hands, at SixPointTwo, at our end, in the conversion companies, and at the transporters’ end as well.” Another important aspect: you shouldn’t have to explain everything. “I once heard the story of an entrepreneur who had had components made for a consumer item from a foreign assembly partner. Those components met all the technical requirements. But they had one drawback: they stank beyond belief. That assembly partner was indignant when the entrepreneur called him out on it. Where in the specifications was it stated that this was not allowed? Well, if you have to explain that …”

The future
The phase of exploring what B-Style and SixPointTwo have to offer to each other is over. Bart Smulders is positive. “We will continue to work together. One problem is just that the market is unpredictable at the moment. The market has still not recovered from corona. Vehicles are being delivered with delays. As a result, we cannot look beyond two to three months at the moment. We discuss this with our customers and our partners. But if the market develops as we hope, then the collaboration with SixPointTwo will definitely grow!”

Are you curious about what SixPointTwo can do for your company as an assembly partner? If so, please contact Iman Landheer, tel +31 6 4224 3466, e-mail


How do manual welders and welding robots work together effectively?

How do manual welders and welding robots work together effectively?

Aleš Pokoj: “Short preparation time and fast execution make the difference”


Sheet metal processing is one of SixPointTwo’s core activities. Welding is an important part of that. SixPointTwo deploys welding robots as well as skilled workers for this purpose. The combination of humans and robots has a clear added value, according to Production Manager Aleš Pokoj: “It allows us to meet our customers’ requirements quickly.”

“For each job, we think about the best way to execute it: manually – or using a welding robot”, Aleš explains. “We use the two welding robots for large production series. Our team of manual welders mainly works on single pieces and small series.”

Own welding jigs for greater efficiency
The welding process is completely set up to ensure efficiency. All the tasks of the welding robots, for example, are programmed offline on the PC, and consequently the welding robot never has any idle time. Another time-saver: “We design and make all welding jigs, both for the welding robots and the manual welders, ourselves. This makes us very flexible when we plan and execute orders. Because we are not dependent on others, we can respond immediately to customer demand. This saves us a lot of time.” Some recent examples illustrate the short lead times: “We delivered 500 components to a new customer in intra-logistics. This included the making the welding moulds; we completed this order within two weeks. For a new customer in agribusiness, we recently made five items, in series of 250 to 500 pieces. This order took three weeks, which included three days for preparing the welding moulds.”

State-of-the-art technology
Besides efficiency, quality is obviously a priority. When designing welding jigs, SixPointTwo uses the poka-yoke principle for good reason. “Each welding jig is designed to ensure that the welder cannot position the materials incorrectly.” It also employs state-of-the-art equipment from renowned companies. For instance, the welding robots are from Panasonic. Both manual welders and operators of the welding robots use Siegmund welding tables, which guarantee short preparation times. Cloos welding machines are also used.

Methods and materials
SixPointTwo has eight welding boxes and three sanding booths. “We can guarantee consistent quality since the eight welding boxes are identical.” The modern work areas are fully equipped in conformity with the requirements for safe and healthy working. The techniques used are MIG/MAG welding, and TIG welding with and without filler rod. The materials welded are steel, stainless steel and aluminium. “For example, our manual welders have worked on the aluminium frames that form the basis for Boat Lifts.” Components for cars are also manually welded. “These components have to meet specific requirements. We conduct penetration tests according to a checklist, to verify that the components are watertight.”

Investing in people
SixPointTwo’s two welding robots are operated by well-trained operators. SixPointTwo’s manual welders are selected with great care. “They must have the right qualifications, but that is not all. We also ask applicants to perform a trial job. The leader of the manual welders’ team puts together the trial job and assesses how the candidate performs the trial. He then decides whether or not the manual welder can be hired.” If the welder is hired, he is intensively supervised and familiarised with instructions and working procedures for the first few months. “The team leader also participates in this process; in fact, he is responsible for onboarding the new employees.”

The in-house advantage
The welding department contributes to SixPointTwo’s competitive edge in sheet metal processing, Aleš concludes. “Welding is something we do totally in-house. In the same manner, laser cutting, powder coating and assembly are also done in-house at SixPointTwo. The fact that we use manual welders and welding robots and design and make the welding jigs ourselves is a major advantage in this regard. This ensures that we are fast and flexible. Moreover, we need very little preparation time. If we have a good 3D model or a clear drawing, we can get straight to work.”

Wondering what SixPointTwo can do for your company with welding? If so, please contact Iman Landheer, tel +31 6 4224 3466, e-mail

How do manual welders and welding robots work together effectively?
Behind the scenes of online shops and parcel delivery …

Behind the scenes of online shops and parcel delivery …

Behind the scenes of online shops and parcel delivery …

Every link is indispensable


In December, children look forward expectantly to what Saint Nicholas and Santa Claus will bring. Grown-ups are equally anxious: will the presents arrive on time? Those making ‘normal’ purchases from online shops also want to know whether they will be delivered normally in the last month of the year. Millions of orders and millions of parcels are processed day in, day out in the Netherlands and in surrounding European countries. SixPointTwo is also a link in the logistics chain that ensures this. A look behind the scenes …

In the sorting centres of Amazon and DHL, among others, many parcels are transported by the sorting lines 24 hours a day. These lines contain numerous subcomponents and modules produced by SixPointTwo. They are part of large sorting systems and perform their work inconspicuously within them. They have in the meanwhile become indispensable …

Sorting system for parcel dispatch
Automated, fast parcel handling that limits human activity to the minimum: that is what parcel dispatch is all about. A good example is the bulk sorting system used by an international logistics service provider in a network of regional mail sorting centres. SixPointTwo has made several components like roller conveyors with side guides, for this sophisticated system. These roller conveyors ensure that parcels move steadily and smoothly. The side guide prevents parcels from falling off the track. We also made other systems with powered rollers for this bulk sorting system, to shift parcels to another conveyor.

Cross-sorting system
An international parcel delivery service provider processes hundreds of thousands of parcels from more than 1,000 collection points every day. This is done in two automated sorting centres. Together, these huge sorting centres cover more than 10,000 square metres and are equipped with fully automated conveyor belts, robotics, OCR (Optical Character Recognition) and high-quality image recording. We created modules for this logistics system, with which the flow of parcels can be slowed down or accelerated as required. This ensures streamlined delivery of parcels to the sorting station, from where they can be sent to the appropriate distribution points. From there, they are then distributed to recipients.

Reliability is crucial
In a sorting system, every link is important. This is because the whole line comes to a standstill the moment even one part fails. The result: delays, extra costs and disappointed recipients. Obviously, this cannot be allowed to happen. SixPointTwo has built in extensive quality control to prevent downtime. All the subcomponents and modules we deliver are carefully assembled according to work instructions. They are then fully tested according to a test protocol based on the four-eye principle. Products equipped with motors pass through additional functional testing before they are released by our Quality Department. We use a FAT (Factory Acceptance Test) for this purpose.

The final component in SixPointTwo’s quality assurance is our own track-and-trace system. Although our customers do not make this a hard requirement, we consider traceability a must. With the track-and-trace system, we can trace the corresponding batch numbers of all components and raw materials used for the final product by means of the unique product number. We can also always retrieve the assembly date and release date from the quality department.

We make sure that things run smoothly …
The flow of online orders and packages is constantly increasing. From the consumer to the delivery person: everyone in the logistics chain wants to ensure that the process runs smoothly, literally as well as figuratively. Not just in the month of December, but on all days of the year. SixPointTwo is happy to contribute to that!


Working at an internationally oriented company

Working at an internationally oriented company

Pascal Claessen: “Each day is a learning experience”


Lots of variety and lots of contacts, with colleagues and with customers. That was stated in the vacancy for Commercial back office at SixPointTwo. That was the reason why Pascal Claessen decided to apply. Now, one and a half years later, he has another job at SixPointTwo that suits him even better.

Pascal had just completed the MBO (secondary vocational education) Transport and Logistics course in Venlo. Previously, he had had part-time jobs in the hospitality industry, did internships at several warehouses and did transport planning, among other things. “Commercial back office at SixPointTwo was my first real job.”

Future-oriented agreements
Pascal had just commenced his associate degree in Technical Business Administration.
At SixPointTwo, the agreements were clear. “I started off with the intention of progressing to HBO (higher professional education) level within the company. I have regular meetings with my supervisor Willian van Eerd about what is going well, what the areas for improvement are, and how I can develop further.”

Combining work and study
Pascal works four days a week and attends school/college on Thursdays. “If I have a test on a Monday evening, for example, I can take time off during the day. That is never an issue; we have clear agreements about that as well, as my supervisor also considers my development important.” Working and studying is tough. “I was very busy, particularly when I started off. I was often busy with school during the evenings and weekends. That has now reduced, since I have nearly completed my course.” He will graduate in February 2023.

Next job
Thanks to his education and development, it has already been possible for him to take a new step. “Since February 2022, I have been working as a calculator/work planner. That ties in nicely with my education.” What does the job entail? “The sales manager submits customer requests to me. We discuss these together and/or jointly with the customer. Using our programmes and my knowledge, I calculate the cost price. I then present it to the sales manager. Together, we discuss the calculation and work out a quotation based on the same.

Work preparation requires a lot of consultation. “I maintain close contact with the buyer in Weert and the buyer in the Czech Republic. I also consult with my Czech colleagues about engineering, planning, manufacturability and the specifications of the product to be made. I also frequently interact with customers, especially about specifications and delivery times. I like to know exactly what the situation is. Once the customer’s requirements and specifications are clear, we can, if necessary, present the customer with a recommendation, in order to optimise the design to improve their products. This may involve improving physical aspects such as product strength and material selection, as well as cost savings for the customer.

Greater challenges
“Commercial Back Office was nice to start with”, says Pascal. “But as a calculator/work planner, much greater demands are placed on me. That’s even more challenging for me!” He handles several requests simultaneously. He also answers questions from customers and colleagues. “It’s therefore important to work in a structured way. I did have to learn that. I discussed with my manager how I could tackle that. Things are constantly improving on that front. Calculating prices has been going well from the start. Communicating with colleagues and customers is something I enjoy and also do well; that is a strong point.” After graduating with an associate degree in technical business administration, he already has plans to take up a 3D drawing course. “Because I also do a bit of engineering, it is useful if I can make drawings myself and adjust customer drawings where necessary. This will allow me to assist and advise the customer even more directly. In addition, I am provided opportunities to develop further in the technical field through other training or courses.”

The challenges in his work are important, but he also likes the working atmosphere. “It is extremely pleasant to work at the Weert office. We are a small club of ten people and help each other out wherever necessary. If there is a challenge somewhere, we jointly try to find a solution. We always succeed in the end. The joint lunch and drinks on Friday afternoon ensure that we end the week on a pleasant note.” We also enjoy close contact with Czech colleagues. “The Summer Party is organised in the summer, for which we go to the Czech Republic. That strengthens the bond with colleagues there. I’ve been there several times.”

Continuous growth
How does Pascal see his future? What are his ambitions? “I want to keep developing myself. SixPointTwo gives me plenty of room for that. Guidance, training and courses: you don’t get that everywhere. Besides, the company is growing and I learn new things every day. There are still plenty of challenges here; I would therefore like to grow along with the company!”


Working at an internationally oriented company
How do you distinguish yourself as an employer?

How do you distinguish yourself as an employer?

How do you distinguish yourself as an employer?

Magda Rajdlová: “We are a medium-sized professional company with a family atmosphere”


It is a challenge for every company: acquiring, ensuring the commitment of and retaining the right people. HR Specialist Magda Rajdlová and Chief Operations Officer Petr Matl explain how SixPointTwo tackles this.

“HR is closely linked to marketing these days”, says Magda. “We want to demonstrate that we are a professional company with an open, family atmosphere. Because that sets us apart from the larger companies with thousands of employees.”

One team, one task
Magda projects an image of SixPointTwo that is in line with the company’s Corporate Social Responsibility policy. This is based on the premise that employees work as a team. To ensure this, it is important that colleagues can find each other and remain in touch with each other. “HR staff are regularly present on the factory floor and talk to employees about their concerns. CEO Marco Wielink and Petr walk around regularly; any employee can speak to them directly.” “Marco knows almost all the 100 permanent employees by name”, emphasises Petr. “Our people feel seen”, says Magda. “Every employee gets a personal letter from management at Christmas. And on your birthday, you get a card with wishes from your colleagues.”

Informal activities
A focus on team building is characteristic of SixPointTwo. Outside working hours therefore, there are all kinds of collective activities such as sports competitions, summer parties and the Christmas Party, in which colleagues come together. “Those are also good occasions to talk to employees”, says Petr. “At the Christmas Party, we take a quick backward look at the past year, and also look at the future of our company. Team managers also discuss this and the monthly newsletter also focuses on it.” This ensures that employees remain informed as well as involved in SixPointTwo’s development.

Employees recruit new colleagues
Employees know better than anyone else what makes working at SixPointTwo special. HR therefore involves them in recruiting new colleagues. “They could be a family member, a friend or an acquaintance, for example. You receive a bonus if the candidate you propose is hired. For production, we have already acquired several new colleagues this way”, says Magda. “This approach is also successful for management and technical positions”, says Petr. “As an employee, you don’t just recommend someone without reason, that’s why it works.”

Sponsorship and visibility
As part of personnel marketing, it is also important to be highly visible as a company. SixPointTwo therefore maintains a clearly visible profile in Humpolec and in the surrounding area. “We sponsor events such as the horse races and the autocross, among others. We have also financially supported the football club in its 100th anniversary celebrations”, says Magda. “At such events, we have free attractions for the children. While they play, we take the opportunity to talk to the parents.” Pushing vacancies and advertising is not the goal here, explains Petr. “It is about letting people know we are there and that our door is always open, even when there are no vacancies. See also our poster at the main entrance of the company.”

LinkedIn and agencies
SixPointTwo does indeed regularly launch eye-catching, playful recruitment campaigns for advertising purposes. “For example, we once drove an orange tuktuk through Humpolec with a big orange balloon. That helped us bring in a lot of production workers”, says Magda. However, such campaigns are less suitable for recruiting technicians and managers. Petr: “For those positions, we remain highly active on social media. We request our employees to share vacancies via LinkedIn. We want to make the most of our network.” We also cooperate with employment agencies and sometimes headhunters as well. “To get good English-speaking technical people for example, because they are almost impossible to find.”

Discovering technical talent yourself
Meanwhile, SixPointTwo also looks for technical talent via another route, says Petr. “We cooperate with secondary technical education schools and target students aged between 14 and 18. We invite them to do their compulsory internship with us. This way, we get to know them and we can show them how SixPointTwo differs from large, anonymous companies with thousands of employees. We then try to attract promising young people. We have already achieved success with that.”

Perspective for current employees
Attracting new people remains a necessity, as SixPointTwo wants to continue to grow. At the same time, it is important that current employees remain happy and motivated. A healthy, safe working environment is a prerequisite for this. Collective activities also contribute to job satisfaction. “In addition, we encourage employees to grow.” Petr cites examples: “Production employees who started doing higher-level work after training. Operators who have progressed to technical positions and even management positions.” Those who want to do so can develop themselves by attending training and other courses. “For instance, we organise Czech language training for foreign employees and English language training for technicians and managers. And production managers can take training in lean methodology, for example.”

Start-up and further development
In personnel marketing, SixPointTwo maintains a high profile, says Magda. “Many companies attract people who already have all the skills for a particular job. For us, it works better to hire people and provide them with opportunities to develop further within the company. We are different in that too!”

Assembly: to outsource or not to outsource, that is the question?

Assembly: to outsource or not to outsource, that is the question?

“Competitive lead times and golden Czech hands”


Do it yourself or outsource? Companies in the Western European manufacturing industry are asking themselves this question on a regular basis. After all, the labour costs for manual assembly processes and/or installation are a strong cost factor. As such, companies are looking closely at the relocation of their assembly processes. And the Czech Republic, where the hourly wage of professionals is lower than that of their Western European colleagues, is one such consideration. Lead times and quality play a role in the decision whether or not to outsource. Iman Landheer (Sales manager), Tomáš Benda (Assembly Manager) and Karel Bartasék (Technology Manager) explain what SixPointTwo can offer in the field of assembly.

Meetings with companies that are considering outsourcing take place at the SixPointTwo offices in Weert. “Naturally, companies want to know a lot about us. Can SixPointTwo deliver? What about lead time? How can the quality requirements be guaranteed? And does it actually save costs?” says Iman Landheer. “After we have answered these questions, the company have all the information they need to make a good decision. If you want to visit Humpolec (Czech Republic) or if a feasibility study is required, we can take care of that as well of course.”

Communication is crucial
The assembly process from start to finish is Tomáš’s domain. “I am responsible, along with my team, for all the new assemblies that we carry out in Humpolec. We ensure we have received all the necessary information before and during the assembly process so we can achieve an optimal end result. If there are any questions, we contact the team in Weert first. We then check with the customer to see if any changes are required, or we propose an improvement.”

The start of a new assembly process
SixPointTwo will receive the required information about setting up and starting the assembly process from the customer. In principle, this can be done in three ways. “The first option is the customer makes some 3D Data available along with a prototype of the product. We can derive the production process from that.” The second option: “The customer provides us with the data and then comes to Humpolec as we run the assembly process for the first time. The customer then provides instructions on site to enable us to carry out the work independently.” The third option: “We receive 3D data, drawings and instructions. If we have any questions about following the instructions or clarification of the specifications, we will ask. We then have all the information we need to begin the assembly process.”

Flexibility and craftsmanship
SixPointTwo can take care of a wide range of products and as an example, these include frames for cable reels, complete housings for many machine types, as well various sub-assemblies that customers can then install into their end product. “We are quite flexible: we have laser cutting, welding, bending, component manufacture and assembly in-house,” says Karel. “We can also take care of any processes involving sheet products prior to assembly,” notes Iman. “The Czech rates for these processes, just like assembly, are lower than those of comparable suppliers in Western Europe.” Karel adds that various surface treatment requirements can also be applied, such as powder coating (in-house process), electroplating and KTL lacquering.” And then there is another important factor: “The craftsmanship of our people. People often speak of golden Czech hands, and for good reason.”

Lead time
As stated previously: lead time is another factor that counts. “Lead time depends on, for example, the complexity of the assembly process,” says Tomáš. “And some components used for the product to be assembled can have a long delivery time. For more simple operations, a lead time of 5-6 weeks can be expected.” “Our lead times are without doubt competitive, and we make agreements about this with the customer,” says Iman.

Quality assured
Tomáš and Karel are involved in the assembly process from start to finish. “Working with the team, we carry out both the full First Article Inspection and the Final Inspection. The customer receives a report from both. We do everything we can to ensure the products fully meet the customer’s requirements and specifications for both the first series and the subsequent series.”

Assembly: to outsource or not to outsource, that is the question?
Aluminium boat lift sales are not lagging behind

Aluminium boat lift sales are not lagging behind

Aluminium boat lift sales are not lagging behind

Rene Blom: “Corona times have caused a boom”


During corona, people were looking for safe and attractive ways to get out and about. “Lots of people bought boats. And because there is a shortage of storage space for boats, the demand for boat lifts also grew,” says Rene Blom. He tells us Blom Bootliften responded to this and how SixPointTwo contributed.

Rene is in his element on and near the water. “The more active the sports, the more interesting it becomes to me. I have always loved sailing and windsurfing, but kite-surfing is my favourite at the moment.”

Own design
Water sports keep Rene very busy outside his free time as well. It all started with a polyester boat he once bought. “I needed a lift for it. There were plenty of steel boat lifts. But I really didn’t need a steel boat lift in my garden. I was working for a door manufacturer company at the time and they had their own aluminium construction department. So I decided to design and make my own aluminium boat lift.” This was initially purely as a hobby: “One for myself, one for a colleague, then one for an acquaintance, etc.”

Own company
Rene started his own business eight years ago involving two activities: on the one hand renovating real estate, while designing and marketing boat lifts on the other. Initially, the boat lifts were an afterthought. “First I developed the initial design and range.” Setting up a professional website was an important next step. “It has been non-stop ever since. Turnover has almost doubled in the past two years.”

Protecting the boat
Rene works with his son Rens in Blom Bootliften. “We supply and install aluminium lifts for light boats. This includes fibreglass boats and aluminium boats.” A boat lift offers protection. “A boat lift prevents a boat from getting stuck in ice or hitting the quay when there are a lot of waves. And the boat stays clean: which means you will not get any growth from algae or shellfish. Anti-fouling protection measures are therefore unnecessary, which is also better for the environment.” Theft prevention is another advantage: the lift can be equipped with a lock. Aluminium also has an important advantage. “Steel needs to be treated, galvanising for example, but it still remains sensitive to rust. Our lifts are made of untreated aluminium and last longer.”

For boats up to 900 kg
The product range consists of three types. “Type A is suitable for boats up to 500 kg. We can add supporting frames to make them suitable for jet skis as well.” Depending on the customer’s wishes, the boat is equipped with manual or electrical operation. Type B is suitable for boats up to 750 kg, and can be equipped with manual control and/or electric control. Finally, Type C can be used for boats up to 900 kg. “This type is only available with electrical operation.”

Rene gradually perfected his design. “Our boat lifts have a fixed frame and a lifting frame. The lifting frame is identical for all types, which gives us more flexibility. We assemble the lifting frame in our workshop. We can then assemble the lift at the customer site, we can attach the lifting frame to the fixed frame in one simple operation. The frames are also made in such a way that we can make adjustments with our own welding machine.”

In the beginning, Rene made the boat lifts himself in the evenings. But the sales volume increased and made this arrangement impossible. And so production was outsourced. “I worked with the first supplier for two years. I was not satisfied: hardly any orders were delivered that didn’t have something wrong with them.” Fortunately, through his hobby, he came into contact with Marco Wielink from SixPointTwo. “I taught him how to kite-surf.” And three years ago, that chance meeting led to him choosing to entrust the production of the frames to SixPointTwo. “They deliver great work: We have a 99% satisfaction rate. And if there is a problem, it is solved without any problems.”

New developments
Blom bootliften is focused on a market segment that is still growing. “Many new housing estates are being built near the water. If you have a terraced house and want to store a dinghy round the back, the space is quite limited. This means you need a smaller and lighter type of boat and boat lift.” Meanwhile, René is thinking ahead. “I can see a floating boat lift based on an aluminium construction that would be suitable for boats heavier than 900 kg, as well as houseboats.” Something to follow up of course!


The Netherlands and the Czech Republic: the best of both worlds

The Netherlands and the Czech Republic: the best of both worlds

Do you want to do business? We speak your language!


“Praat Nederlands met me”, sings Kenny B in his number 1 hit Parijs in which he sings about how nice it is to meet someone that speaks his native language. After all, it’s best to talk about important matters in your native language. And with someone who understands exactly what you mean. One such interlocutor is SixPointTwo. Customers of SixPointTwo can get the best of both worlds: the Dutch production and process control method, and the Czech work ethic.

A fruitful business relationship starts with good communication. Our sales office in Weert (the Netherlands) plays a central role in this. The people who work here can talk to you in your own language. Our employees not only speak Dutch (their mother tongue), but also fluent German and English.

A contact person
Rapid contact is crucial for all our clients. This is why we keep the lines of communication short. As a SixPointTwo customer, you will have one fixed contact person to deal with from the start. He/she will translate your requirements and wishes to our colleagues in the Czech Republic. And something else important to know: your contact person is in direct contact with the Dutch management in the Czech Republic. This means you have a direct point of contact for every phase of the project: someone who always has the latest up-to-date information about your project, and someone you can always turn to.

Two success factors
SixPointTwo lets you take advantage of the benefits offered by nearshoring. This can be put down to two success factors: the Dutch approach (streamlined processes from preparation to implementation) and the Czech work ethic. Starting with the first success factor: our production site is modern and highly automated. Naturally, we comply with international standards concerning quality management, the environment, and health and safety. Our work processes are efficiently organised and carried out by our excellently trained Czech employees. They are highly motivated and extremely involved. And that’s our second success factor: the work ethic of our people

Tangible Benefits
With the best of both worlds, you benefit from cost savings and exceptionally short lead times. And with product quality as a certainty, we have optimally safeguarded quality within our organisation. Would you like to know more? We would be happy to tell you face to face and in your native language what this means for your company. So don’t hesitate to set up a meeting…


The Netherlands and the Czech Republic: the best of both worlds
Win-win situation for customers and SixPointTwo

Win-win situation for customers and SixPointTwo

Win-win situation for customers and SixPointTwo

EDI connection: taking the stress out of the order process


SixPointTwo wants to continuously improve by making business and production processes ever more efficient. We recently made an important efficiency improvement in our order process. We now work with Gatewise, a platform for EDI connections, and this means we can save our customers and ourselves a lot of time. Hedi van Heugten, software developer, explains how this works.

“You can hardly imagine it, but all our incoming orders were still being processed manually ten years ago,” says Hedi. “Each line was manually entered into the project. The order process was partly automated later on. Customers placed their orders by sending us an Excel file that we then loaded here automatically using a script. But it was still manual work for the most part. We had to get the document files from somewhere, and the execution of various checks was still done manually.”

Time ripe for full automation
SixPointTwo took the step towards full automation of the order process last year. “We noticed more and more of our customers were demanding this. This is why we made the decision to implement the Gatewise platform. The platform lets us use EDI connections with customers who want it.”

Repetitive orders: time saving of two days
The EDI connection is ideal for new repeat orders. “This is useful for customers who regularly have us make the same items for them.” How does that work? “A customer places a new order with us. All orders for known items are recognised by the system. These are automatically loaded at night; they are then ready for our production department in the Czech Republic the next day. SixPointTwo can save two days doing this because repetitive orders no longer need to be checked by an employee, the system takes care of it all. This means repetitive orders for our customers can go into production faster, shortening our lead times. So it’s a win-win situation!”

In order to get the maximum return from the EDI connection, good coordination with the customer is necessary in advance. “To streamline the information exchange, good agreements have been made and extensive testing has been carried out on how outgoing and incoming data should be processed. This concerns incoming orders and outgoing order confirmations, reconfirmations, shipping documents and invoices. This means several different specifications and preferences are looked at, including delivery dates, prices, specific colours, different delivery addresses and different customer departments. In addition, the entire invoicing process is automated, which ensures sales invoices are sent to the customer directly from our ERP system via the EDI connection. This prevents various unnecessary processing being required on both sides, which saves even more time.”

We’ll open the gate like this…
SixPointTwo can make EDI connections with many different customers via the Gatewise platform. “We can easily open the gate. And we know exactly how to work with the customer to quickly set up and test the connection.” Our experiences at SixPointTwo and on the customer side with EDI are positive. In the meantime, work is already underway to expand the functionality. “We are investigating how interim changes in orders can be processed automatically.”

Would you like to know how much time an EDI connection with SixPointTwo will save your company? Please contact Hedi van Heugten.


Reverse engineering: “SixPointTwo made it happen!”

How do you find a reliable second source supplier?

Reverse engineering: “SixPointTwo made it happen!”


A supplier that guarantees constant top quality is worth its weight in gold. But as good as it is, it is never a good idea to simply depend on one supplier. And this is certainly true now delivery times of raw materials and semi-finished products are under pressure, and prices are rising. How does a company today find a reliable second source supplier? Lead engineer of Enclosure Company*, Wessel de Vos, talks about his experiences with SixPointTwo.

“Sound cabinets are an important part of our products. We have used one regular supplier for years and they have always delivered to our full satisfaction. We had been looking for a second source supplier in recent years, but had always been unsuccessful. Recently, when metal prices rose sharply, we made another attempt. Our director knew Iman Landheer so we invited him for a meeting at Enclosure Company. We showed him the sound box and discussed what our expectations were of a second source supplier.”

Challenge: replace the extrusion profile
“Until now, our sound boxes have always used a patented aluminium extrusion profile. Copying this profile was not an option: it is too expensive. We agreed that SixPointTwo would make a replacement metal profile using sheet metal working techniques. SixPointTwo received a CAD model of the sound box from us in order to do this. We also shared information about the materials to be used such as fasteners, locking systems and insulation materials. We were presented with the replacement metal profile six weeks later. The corner pieces were attached with pop rivets. The use of pop rivets was unacceptable to us. The corner pieces are the pillars of the sound box and must be sturdy. And even though they may be strong; they didn’t look strong. Customers expect a robust, heavy cabinet that makes no noise when you hit it with your hand.” Another solution was discussed. “After five minutes or so we had a solution. Working closely together, we decided to make a hole in the profile, weld it full, and then grind it smooth.”

The first two prototypes
Two sound box prototypes were delivered in the final week of August. “Looking at them from a distance, you can’t see any difference with the original cabinet. You don’t notice see the welding spots on the corner pieces at all: they look fantastic!” There were still a few things that needed to be adjusted. “A mistake was made with the metal working of a few of the panels. They were 32.5 mm instead of 34.5 mm.” Another mistake involved a strip that was attached to the outside instead of the inside. “A customer would never notice that.”

Furthermore, on closer inspection we discovered a useful adjustment. “The original cabinets are always fitted with white plastic rings. Because SixPointTwo temporarily couldn’t get hold of white rings, they used black ones. We want to leave it that way now because the advantage of this is that we can see where a cupboard has been made.” Wessel discussed his feedback with Iman. “It would be wonderful if such a process went perfectly in one go. I initially assessed the work as an easy 8, but with the processing of the feedback it can become a 9.5 or a 10. As soon as we achieve that, we will start working with SixPointTwo.”

Short work
The two SixPointTwo prototypes arrived at Enclosure Company four months after the introductory meeting. “An advantage was that SixPointTwo could use our CAD model. The new element they had to think about was the metal profile with the corner pieces. And they had some calculations to do in order to be able to fit the sound box into their production process.” All in all, it went very quickly, says Wessel. “Another big advantage was that we were able to do all of this with a Dutch partner. Things are different with English or Chinese companies, and sometimes there is an intermediary between us and the client. I always had direct contact with Iman, which was handy. A joke that a Dutchman gets straight away can be misunderstood by an Englishman or a German. They may even take it as being strange or as criticism. It is also much easier to call another Dutch person. The conversation can be very short. Didn’t we agree on this and that? Yes!? Okay. Then you know enough and you can move on.”

Wessel knows from experience that things can turn out differently. “You don’t want to be in a position where you look at the product and say: this is not what we asked for. But SixPointTwo lived up to their promise: we can make that sound box.” And now Enclosure Company has already placed an order: SixPointTwo is going to make 65 sound boxes for us.

* (At the company’s request, both the company name and name of the interviewee have been changed.)
Would you like to know more about what SixPointTwo can do for your company in terms of reverse engineering? Contact Iman Landheer, tel: +31 6 4224 3466, e-mail

Reverse engineering: “SixPointTwo made it happen!”