The Mitsubishi Group is the crown jewel of Japanese business, and Järvenpää-based Mitsubishi Logisnext Europe Oy has been part of the story for twenty-five years. The operation of the Järvenpää unit has three diamonds, as in the company logo. What are they, and how can logistics automation technology be presented to customers?
Juha Nyman, head of the Logistic Solutions unit, says: “Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, which includes the Järvenpää unit, is a huge, multi-sectoral company. It has hundreds of thousands of employees, makes more than 30 billion euros in turnover and manufactures, among other things, onehundred thousand forklifts a year. The role of the Järvenpää company as part of this large entity is threefold. We are the largest of the three factories manufacturing forklifts for the European market. In addition, product development for the European forklift business is managed by the Järvenpää company. A third important role is global logistics solution services, which are one of the six growth areas of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. You could say we are one of the jewels within the group.”
Oskari Lindstedt, responsible for sales and marketing of the Logistic Solutions unit, says: “We are very proud that we have the know-how and that we have been given the responsibility to develop the products further. In the parent company, it is customary to award prizes for the best product development efforts annually. We have been awarded five years in a row – and many years with the main prize. The winners have dinner with the company’s Japanese CEO. It is an inspiring occasion for our engineers and a source of great pride.”
The world talks a lot about electric cars and dreams of self-driving vehicles. Juha Nyman says: “Our AGVs (automated guided vehicles) are automated electric vehicles that sense their surroundings. They work under the guidance of artificial intelligence to make processes as efficient as possible. Automated vehicles have been commonplace for us for over 40 years.
The city of Järvenpää’s support for companies is significant, for example, in expansion projects. We are also grateful for the excellent cooperation with Business Finland, which effectively uses tax money to support business ecosystems and technology development. The support helps us to offer jobs to skilled people. As part of a vast group, internationality and global operations are common for us. We have around five hundred employees in Järvenpää, some of whom come from Japan and Europe. Järvenpää is an excellent location because there is a smooth flow of goods and people. You do not have to take the goods to the bottlenecks of the capital region, and it is easy for workers to come here because they drive against the traffic flow. Of course, visiting international clients is easy because the airport is so close.”
Oskari Lindstedt adds: “Forklifts have been manufactured here in Finland for 80 years, but especially in recent years, we have renewed ourselves and developed from a traditional forklift factory to a service provider. We are professionals in material handling and material flow services, and we want to take this know-how to our customers so that they can succeed in their core business. We help customers do better business.”
Innovative Demo Center
Juha Nyman says: “A few years ago, we set out to connect the artificial intelligence applications we developed with manually operated forklifts. We wanted to join human agility and problem-solving ability to tireless robots that can do routine work flawlessly. With these solutions, we can serve customers even better, especially when we supplement the selection with shelving, conveyors or other more traditional means of material handling. We founded the Logistic Solutions unit based on the former automated forklift unit, aiming to expand our offering to third-party products.
We realised that we need to have a permanent place where we can demonstrate solutions. Previously, we had to organise customer reference visits that required planning and travelling. We wanted to show how robotics works and what it can do while you can safely look at the devices closely. This was the origin of the Demo Center showroom. The concept has proven to be a successful solution that is constantly evolving. The first guests were received in February 2022, and the place has been actively used ever since. We also utilise the Demo Center for meetings, training and marketing needs. That is where new products are photographed, future innovations are presented, and devices are tested and shown selectively to joint-development partners.”
Mitsubishi Logisnext Europe Oy
Mitsubishi Logisnext Europe Oy is a high technology driven designer, manufacturer and provider of logistic solutions, including wide portfolio of forklift trucks, automation systems, and related solutions and services.