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Scooped by Deb Nystrom, REVELN!

Global Innovation Challenge: 160 Yr. Old Parent Challenges Freudenberg North America to Target Zero Manufacturing Waste

Global Innovation Challenge:  160 Yr. Old Parent Challenges Freudenberg North America to Target Zero Manufacturing Waste | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? |

"Freudenberg's North America companies are targeting zero manufacturing waste in response to a challenge set by parent corporation, Freudenberg and Co., during a recent internal Global Innovation Forum on raw materials and innovation."

Going green in the North America continues to be an important business goals for companies, including the long time global veteran, Freudenberg and Company.



Freudenberg has a 160-year history of conducting its business with integrity and a commitment to the welfare of its plant communities.


In an ambitious drive to reach zero manufacturing waste ...Freudenberg North America's 16 companies will pursue processes that focus on ...recycling, lower water and energy consumption and increased use of sustainable materials over the next decade.

"All of the companies are engaged in implementing processes and programs that will improve the environmental sustainability of their products and plants," said Leesa Smith, president, Freudenberg North America Limited Partnership.

"The confluence of new environmental challenges and this long-standing corporate culture is pushing our people to develop green industrial innovations that will help solidify our success - and the health of our communities - into the next century."

Freudenberg-NOK Sealing Technologies, in Plymouth, Mich., is pursuing dozens of technological innovations aimed at reducing the company's reliance on scare natural resources, lowering vehicle emissions, improving engine and transmission performance, supporting development of wind and solar energy and incorporating more recycled content in its products.

Some examples from the Plymouth company:

  • Low Emission Sealing Solutions (LESS) components use one quarter of the energy a conventional radial shaft seal uses, thereby reducing fuel consumption and lowering vehicle emissions.

  • FluoroXprene® fluoroelastomers are a unique group of newly-developed materials that bridge the technology gap between PTFE and rubber while substantially reducing CO2 emissions and energy usage. FluoroXprene materials are completely recyclable. 
  • The company is also pursuing ultraviolet (UV)-curable sealants that will reduce energy consumption, lower Co2 emissions and reduce cycle times.

Read the full press release story here.

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Scooped by Deb Nystrom, REVELN!

Shedding Legacy Industry Practices: Bank To Store & Coffee Shop Innovation

Shedding Legacy Industry Practices: Bank To Store & Coffee Shop Innovation | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? |

Customer experiences are delivered year after year without challenging the approach in what they do.  This unique bank reinvented their customer service approach and culture.”  

The banking industry is one of the more entrenched, which drew my attention to this innovation case example.


CEO Ray Davis Explains His Decision to Change Umpqua’s Purpose:   Umpqua Bank has a quirky, lighthearted nature for a financial services company, perhaps because they started with the simple goal to help loggers and farmers with their banking.

...Observing Umpqua’s lack of a clear customer-service approach, CEO Ray Davis decided to make a change. In a move away from traditional banking, he renamed Umpqua locations “stores.”  In redesigned “stores,” “shoppers” could browse products and services, stay as long as they wanted, sit a spell with their legs up on a comfy chair, and sip a cup of coffee. And when they were ready, they could tap an Umpqua associate to help them with their banking needs—all without the red ropes.

At Umpqua, customers are not herded into a line for service, and they don’t have to stand in separate lines to get different services. Dedicated associates assist each customer from start to finish.

“Umpqua Bank is part Internet café, part community center, and part bank. The coffee’s good and it’s not a bad place to sit and read a book.”

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