Contiweb B.V. trusts MB connect line

As a solution partner to deliver on industry 4.0 & IoT based services for offset printing presses

Headquartered in Boxmeer, The Netherlands, Contiweb B.V. is a global leader in the development, production, sales and support of state-of-the-art web offset printing presses and web-fed auxiliaries for a wide range of commercial, packaging and label printing applications.

Now complemented with the “Thallo” printer, their wide range of inline processing units can equip a variety of web offset printers, taking care of drying, coating, moistening, folding, cutting, packing, etc.

With an installed base of over 800 heavy machines worldwide, Contiweb B.V. made customer service a core value of the company business and accumulates to date, in 2020, a 25 year history of remote service, support & maintenance.  It all started with modems and then moved, some 10 years ago, to industrial routers, using connections over Internet, after the machine migration to Ethernet. 

The purpose was, originally, to let a qualified engineer be able to quickly respond to a support call, put a diagnosis on a fault and advise the customer how to tune and adjust the machine behaviour. It quickly evolved to more advanced services and the ability to collect information about the machine detailed status for post incidents analysis & product optimization.

 It is now a complete set of contractual services that is offered by Contiweb B.V. to its customers, who can check online, in their private service account, the production KPI’s of their machines, receive professional recommendations from their supplier’s engineers and subscribe to a continuous maintenance program.

The motivation for remote services remains the same as in the beginning: when dealing with complex machines, expert knowledge is required and that level of expertise can only be found with the manufacturer’s engineers.  As quality customer services optimize the uptime and the productivity of the equipment, it is an ongoing value adder and a good reason to buy or buy again from the same supplier.

“Service value starts when experts are online with the machine, everything else is an overhead”

When transitioning from modems to routers, around 2010, Contiweb B.V. engineers quickly realized that they spent a lot of time debugging the connection across the customer network and expert IT knowledge was soon required. Also, R&D specialists had to spend time on machine connection cases, loading Customer Services productivity with a considerable overhead.

Contiweb B.V. then started to list requirements and specifications for a solution that would make Customer Services independent again, keeping IT and R&D involvement to a minimum. Quickly, they found that, while they were pursuing with an own, self-made and resource hungry solution, MB connect line’s had all tag boxes checked right from the start.

The purpose is to make customer service autonomous again.

Today, Contiweb B.V. runs its own mymbCONNECT24 virtual machine, the private version of MB connect line’s Remote Services Portal (RSP). It is the central piece of the new Customer Services system architecture.

R&D is now only involved to create and maintain machine templates, a pre-set that can be applied to the configuration of a new router in the MB connect line solution.  IT is now only involved to maintain the RSP server, take regular backups and apply the updates & patches. On a new installation, Customer Services simply sets up the router with the R&D template and the job is done.

“Using mymbCONNECT24 RSP clearly simplifies both installation and operation”

No more IT expertise is required onsite: all that is needed is to let the OpenVPN port open for outgoing traffic, going from the mbNET router at the site, to the RSP server at Contiweb B.V. Using the templates prepared by R&D makes a new installation really straightforward, since each machine model has its template already prepared.

Engineers can connect, in just a click, to a machine and start a remote support or maintenance session, while the machine systems can communicate directly with Contiweb B.V. organization and securely transfer data to the central service database, using a unique feature of mymbCONNECT24.

Not only could Contiweb B.V. simplify its processes, it could also reach its Industry 4.0 service objectives and offer new service packages to its customers, from online visualization of productivity & maintenance KPI’s to a continuous maintenance service with personalized advices & recommendations.

Their new service portal (https://www.contiweb.com/mycontiweb) gratefully uses mymbCONNECT24 in the background and the new service architecture was officially launched in 2018. It serves today over 300 connected machines, growing steadily, year over year. All of it is now managed by two service people and the new devices administration is now just a side task, with only exceptional escalations for IT or R&D assistance.

The very serious way MB connect line addresses IT security is a relief for Contiweb B.V. It is a reference for the industry, as it is not just about features and penetration tests, it really is part of the MB connect line company culture.  

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