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GF Piping Systems
at a glance

As the leading flow solutions provider for the safe and sustainable transport of fluids, GF Piping Systems creates connections for life. The division focuses on system solutions and high-quality plastic and metal components for a diverse installed base. The portfolio of fittings, valves, pipes, automation, and jointing technologies covers all water cycle applications. Simultaneously, specialized solutions, including engineering, customizing, and prefabrication, provide expertise at every project phase.

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Strategy review  

In 2015, GF Piping Systems developed the Strategy 2016–2020 to foster profitable growth through differentiation. The division made good progress in all four thrusts of the strategy, increasing the focus on customer needs, introducing exciting innovations, focusing on high-value solutions, and further strengthening its global presence. Various new products and solutions have been successfully launched and new market segments are being developed.

Further strengthened global presence

GF Piping Systems invested significantly in its market-leading production facilities and expanded market presence in focus territories. In Canada, Indonesia, and Brazil, this has provided a key step change in market strength alongside expanding its prefabrication network across all regions. GF Piping Systems acquired a leading marine service provider in the USA to strengthen its presence in this important segment. In addition, the divisional headquarters and global training center in Schaffhausen (Switzerland) were expanded and refurbished with state-of-the-art office workstations.

Focus on high-value solutions

GF Piping Systems continues to benefit from global megatrends driving the growth of several key market segments. The division enjoys leading positions in attractive global niche markets, including microelectronics, data centers, and marine. Big international players dominate these global markets and require partners like GF who can support their requirements globally. The high-value systems and specialized solutions of GF Piping Systems are often mission-critical to their success, providing the vast potential for differentiation and helping the customers’ sustainability targets.

Exciting innovations introduced

Thanks to exciting developments, including the pioneering Hycleen Automation System and the COOL-FIT pre-insulated piping system, and the adoption of design thinking principles, customer-focused innovation at GF Piping Systems continues to grow. Winning the prestigious iF Design Award and Red Dot Design Award for the relaunched Ball Valve 546 Pro underscores the successful implementation of the highest design standards. Further to this, the Hycleen Automation System, Smart Actuator, and Weld Bead Inspection (WBI) Tool demonstrate the importance of digitalization in developing innovative solutions for our customers.

“We understand that everything is connected.”

Joost Geginat, President of GF Piping Systems

What was the biggest challenge for GF Piping Systems during the last strategy period?

Although we outperformed markets in terms of growth and profitability, driven by our strong global set-up, we faced currency, geopolitical, and, most recently, pandemic-related headwinds that have kept us from reaching our full sales potential.

How has COVID-19 influenced the five-year strategy of GF Piping Systems in 2020?

COVID-19 had a significant negative impact on our business in 2020, but thanks to our well-balanced portfolio, long-lasting customer partnerships, and important megatrends supporting our business, we could demonstrate a very high resilience against the pandemic. With an expected increase in hygienic and sanitary requirements, continued growth in emerging markets, and more focus on precious resources like water, we look optimistically in the future.

How is the demand for more sustainable solutions driving growth at GF Piping Systems?

We understand that everything is connected – if we provide energy-efficient, environmentally friendly products, and services, our customers can decrease their environmental footprint. What we do contributes to the efforts to create a more sustainable world. We support the SABESP water loss program in São Paolo, which aims to save 75 billion liters of water every year. State-of-the-art pressure management technologies such as the NeoFlow PRV can help utilities reduce non-revenue water, estimated to be USD 39bn annually, by preventing pipes from being over-pressurized while delivering stable flow capacity to utilities. Reducing water leakage by 5% alone can save up to 225’000 metric tons of CO2 annually. A typical three-story building needs about 3’000 meters of piping to convey chilled water for air conditioning. Using a copper system equates to 17.5 tons of CO emissions. These emissions can be reduced to 5 tons when using our COOL-FIT System. These are just a few of many examples that highlight the sustainability impact of our solutions.

Are there any points that you are not satisfied with? What do you want to focus on in the next strategy cycle?

We will use our solid foundation and positive momentum to focus even more on the additional potential of our high-value solutions in Strategy 2025. Improving global collaboration with regard to innovation and operational excellence will further enable us to strengthen our market positions in the next strategy period.

GF Piping Systems Success Story

Finland’s commitment to the environment is no secret: the “land of a thousand lakes” is a world leader in sustainability. This nationwide commitment is reflected in the business approach of organizations like the Helsinki Region Environmental Services Authority HSY, which signed a new agreement with GF Piping Systems in 2020.