Interview with Oliver Zund

Face2Face
Oliver Zund
Oliver Zund
CEO
Zund Systemtechnik AG
Zund Systemtechnik AG

Sustainability as a concept extends over our entire value chain

Zund Systemtechnik AG, a family-owned business with operations worldwide, specialises in developing and manufacturing digital cutting systems.  Based in Altstätten, Switzerland, the company has been manufacturing and marketing modular cutting systems since 1984. CEO Oliver Zünd emphasises on sustainability and discusses challenges within the cutting systems in the textile niche.

How did Zünd come about? Tell us about the family that runs it.

The company's history began in 1984, when my father Karl Zünd founded the company. It has been a remarkable success story ever since. In 1988, Zünd became a corporation, and the first Zünd plotter was developed and then introduced the following year. Today Zünd Systemtechnik AG remains family-owned but has expanded with more than 300 employees and operations all over the world. As a specialist in developing and manufacturing digital cutting systems, Zünd is globally recognized as a market leader. 
Our customer base consists of manufacturers and suppliers in a gamut of industries, including graphics, packaging, garment and leather, technical textiles and composites. Its Altstätten headquarters hosts its R&D, marketing and production facilities. In addition to Zünd's own sales and service organisations in Bangkok, Hong Kong, India, Italy, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and the United States, Zünd relies on a worldwide network of long-standing, independent distribution and service partners. Since the 1990s, the textile industry has been one of the most important markets for our highly modular and high-performing single-ply cutting systems.

Which is the most productive cutting solution in textiles, composites and technical textiles at present?

The flexible Zünd D3 cutter has set new standards in productivity and is the perfect production solution for mass customisation. Its extraordinary performance is primarily due to its dual-beam construction equipped with up to three different modules, processing textiles simultaneously. Depending on the task specifics, this results in up to twice the throughput. The precision of the cutting system's direct drive, combined with the latest software and controllers ensure a highly efficient workflow from start to finish. The D3 series, just like the S3, L3, and G3, excels in precision across the entire cutting surface and offer maximum modularity and user-friendly interface and control software.

What are the recent software innovations in digital cutters?

Efficient and cost-effective operations warrant high-performance computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) software. Zünd Cut Center (ZCC) enables the cutter to perform at its best. For example, the comprehensive materials database included in the software greatly facilitates the operator's task by providing predefined cutting parameters. Intelligent coding can be used for automatic part placement, which minimises processing time and maximizes yield.

Which are the challenges that the makers of digital cutting system face? How do you overcome it?

For individual production phases, the textile industry has devised various innovative digital processes, which include design, data processing and file preparation, digital textile printing, digital cutting and sewing. Mass production will continue to play an important role even in the future. Moreover, as consumer behaviour is dynamic, the demand for more personalised products keeps growing. This trend can be seen not just in the clothing industry but in many other sectors as well and presents a typical challenge to the textile industry. Demand is extremely volatile as fashion trends keep changing rapidly.

Which geographies perform the best for Zünd?

We have sold and installed cutting systems in over 100 countries. Our single highest-performing country is the United States and the single best region is Europe in terms of units sold.

Published on: 01/09/2017

DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this column are solely of the interviewee, and they do not reflect in any way the opinion of Fibre2Fashion.com.

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