Determining the Connection Between Real-time Income and Plant Performance

Frasers – Network affiliate of Canadian Manufacturing.com – December 15, 2014 – There are two questions that anyone in manufacturing management needs to know – “How well is my plant running?” and “Am I making money?”

Manufacturing management needs a proven methodology to determine the profit dollar value of their decisions, connecting the plant floor to the income statement in real-time. Financial Overall Equipment Effectiveness (FOEE) can accurately quantify where a manufacturing company is making or losing money on a per part and per machine basis.

The foundation for Financial OEE starts with the metric Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE). OEE is defined as Availability multiplied by Quality multiplied by Performance. For example, world-class OEE is 85 per cent with each of the three factors being at 95 per cent. While OEE is certainly an important metric, it tells management absolutely nothing about the financial side of manufacturing. If you don’t know the relationship of the financials to OEE, the ability to laser target where to start to maximize profit potential is non-existent.

The bridge across OEE to Financial OEE is constructed with a few key planks that can be visualized as connecting the specific details on what is happening on the shop, at the per part level, per machine or manufacturing asset basis, to your income statement.

On the shop floor side of the bridge are the following inputs into Financial OEE:

  • Data generated by the manufacturing equipment and the operator input panel;
  • A mechanism to get data off your manufacturing equipment, such as MTConnect, FANUC FOCAS, OPC or any of a number of proprietary protocols and methods; and
  • Manufacturing Execution System (MES) or Manufacturing Operations Management System (MOMS).

Manufacturing management and operators alike are using shop floor monitoring systems to track the making of parts to improve their equipment utilization. As plants and shops start to utilize real-time data to monitor their shop floors, the next logical question is: “What are the financial impacts of the decisions that occur on the manufacturing floor?” In order to answer that question, we need to build the other side of our Financial OEE bridge.

On the financial side are the following inputs into Financial OEE:

  • An ERP system that has financials broken down to the individual part and manufacturing asset level and associated job-costing data;
  • Product standards and product-specific manufacturing data by product and by workstation; and
  • A shop Application Programming Interface (API) that is used to speak bi-directionally with ERP systems and other data silos.

There are many ERP systems being used today in shops and plants. The ability to speak to these systems in real-time in a bidirectional fashion is critical to the success of Financial OEE.

The true benefits from Financial OEE come when questions such as the following are asked, and ultimately answered, by a thorough understanding of this key FOEE relationship.

  • What continuous improvement path or roadmap should I take to improve my performance to maximize profits?
  • Where in the manufacturing operation should I start?
  • What specific activities make the biggest impact to maximize profits?
  • What is the ROI for effort expended?

Financial OEE allows leadership teams to see exactly how much “hidden factory” exists. Current profit will be more accurate and future profit projections based on projected volumes and upcoming product mixes will be much more realistic.

To read the full article, written by David McPhail, president and CEO, Memex Automation, and Dave Edstrom, CTO, Memex Automation, please click here.

To read the full article from Frasers, please click here.

Rick Mosca Joins Memex as Chief Operations Officer, USA, and Subscribes to Latest Non-brokered Private Placement

Burlington, ON – December 11, 2014 – Astrix Networks Inc., operating as Memex Automation (TSX-V: OEE) (“Memex” or the “Company”) has closed a non-brokered private placement totaling $348,000. A total of 2,900,000 Units were issued at a price of $0.12 each (“Units”). Each Unit is comprised of one common share in the capital of the Company (a “Common Share”) and one-half of one common share purchase warrant (a “Warrant”). Each whole Warrant entitles the holder to purchase one Common Share at a price of $0.16 at any time prior to 4:00 p.m. (Eastern Time) on December 12, 2016.

In connection with the private placement, the Company paid a finder’s fee on certain subscriptions of 6% of the proceeds raised via brokers and issued broker warrants (the “Broker Warrants”) equal to 6% of the number of Units sold. The total fees paid were $9,744 in cash and 81,201 Broker Warrants. Each Broker Warrant entitles the holder to purchase one Common Share at a price of $0.16 at any time prior to 4:00 p.m. (Eastern Time) on December 12, 2016. All securities issued are subject to a hold period, which will expire on April 12, 2015. The closing is subject to receipt of final approval from the TSX Venture Exchange.

As part of this placement, the Company’s newest Executive, Rick Mosca, now Chief Operations Officer of Astrix Networks America Inc., subscribed for 13% of the placement. Mr. Mosca is an IT executive with special expertise in leading all facets of business including client facing revenue development, sales channel development, applications development and enterprise systems delivery.

“I first became aware of Memex through my relationship with AMT as a member of the Technical Advisory Group of MTConnect,” explains Rick Mosca. “With a multi-year line of sight of the MTConnect products in development, it became clear to me that MERLIN is the most complete and robust forward and backward compatible solution. Based on my experience and industry knowledge, I am convinced that MERLIN has the potential to become the industry leading MTConnect-based MES solution, and I am thrilled to be joining this team as its American COO.”

“It is with great pleasure that I welcome Rick Mosca to the Memex senior management team as the COO of our American subsidiary,” reports David McPhail, CEO. “Rick brings with him a wealth of global experience and a proven track record of building effective, profitable and lasting relationships at the CXO level within the Fortune 500.”

About Memex Automation

Memex Automation (TSX-V:OEE) is the leader of manufacturing Machine to Machine (M2M) productivity solutions and the measurement of Overall Equipment Effectiveness (“OEE”) in real-time. OEE is the measurement of plant-wide capacity utilization. MERLIN (Manufacturing Enterprise Real-time Lean Information Network) generates OEE enterprise-wide, plant by plant, machine by machine. As published in Automation.Com in July 2014, by using MERLIN in its 800,000 square foot Kentucky plant, Mazak, the largest machine tool builder in the world, increased the utilization of its own machines by 42%, and now offers MERLIN on their price list. Okuma America Corporation, a world leader in CNC machine tools, announced in April 2014 that Memex Automation became a Partner in THINC. On April 15, 2014, PEM awarded the Company the 2014 Plant Engineering & Maintenance Award for ‘Best Company Under 50 Employees.’ Frost & Sullivan awarded MERLIN its 2013 Technology Innovation Leadership Award for Machine Monitoring. Microsoft picked MERLIN to be its mid-market ERP machine connectivity solution. For more information, please visit: www.memex.ca.

For more information, please contact:

Memex Automation Inc.
John Rattray, VP Sales and Marketing
Phone: 905-635-0590
Email: jrattray@memex.ca

Thomas Smeenk, VP Business Development
Phone: (905) 536-3138
E-mail: thomas.smeenk@memex.ca

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation services provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

To see the full article, please click here.

Are your machines as productive as they can be? This tool can find out.

Frasers – Network affiliate of Canadian Manufacturing.com – December 11, 2014 – “If you can measure it, then you can manage it.” That’s the motto of Burlington, Ont.-based Memex Automation, a leader in the connection, monitoring and management of machines, sensors and processes in manufacturing.

The company’s MERLIN OEE tool monitors machines in real-time.

“To be able to visualize how quickly your machines are operating allows you to react quickly to situations,” the company says. “Measuring what actually happens on the shop floor allows you to fine tune your processes using Lean manufacturing techniques. By applying the Theory of Constraints principle to monitoring and identifying a constraint, you can improve operator productivity and satisfaction by helping them perform faster, reduce their data collection overhead, all by using automatic and accurate tracking systems. Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) is the key performance indicator that drives this machine monitoring process forward.”

There are many clear benefits to machine monitoring. Users can see the productivity and increased profitability as it happens in real-time, and identify problems fast. This can increase plant-wide productivity in the range of 10 to 50 per cent. Dashboard metrics are available for everyone on the shop floor to see, and it’s a time-saving, money-saving solution that will increase productivity and profitability in the long run

MERLIN is designed to monitor every machine in your shop — CNC machines, non-CNC machines, fabrication centres and manual processes — all tied together in a production process manufacturing execution system.

MERLIN OEE solution software can find every little area for improvement in your cycle times to best utilize your machines. It knows when the machines are in cycle and when they are not in cycle, and what is causing the machine to slow down. While most companies believe they are operating to their full capacity, it turns out they are, in fact, far from it. MERLIN OEE will show you that there is always room for improvement, and you will always be able to operate faster, and more efficiently, than you already are.

If you can identify the constraints (where the bottlenecks are happening in the production process), then you can improve your throughput and increase your overall profitability.

To see the full article, please click here.

Magellan Aerospace sees huge savings thanks to new Manufacturing Execution System

Frasers – Network affiliate of Canadian Manufacturing.com – December 12, 2014 – Alignment and automation are key success factors for Magellan Aerospace. But the Kitchener, Ont.-based company was experiencing a challenge: its standalone machines were not reaching production targets. There were far too many downtime events happening on the shop floor — so much that the company was at the point of considering buying another machine to make up for the missed targets. Shop floor supervisors would manually record information regarding the start and end times, and quantity produced during the shift, but the information didn’t provide the detail that was needed.

Magellan’s relentless pursuit of excellence led it straight to MERLIN, a Manufacturing Execution System (MES) and Machine-to-Machine (M2M) communications platform by Memex Automation. MERLIN (Manufacturing Execution Real-time Lean Information Network) can use MTConnect and other protocols to connect the shop floor to the top floor, so that anyone with a need to know can use its information to increase production and income from operations, all while raising Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) to world-class levels.

Magellan met with Memex Automation’s executive team in 2011, and installed the MERLIN hardware and software on various machines at its Kitchener plant. Jonathan Ung, the continuous improvement co-ordinator in charge of tracking the plant’s progress with MERLIN, gathered some very promising ROI results.

“We deployed MERLIN on our FMS/Makino cell,” said Ung. “There are four robot-controlled CNC machines in the cell, and we also outfitted three standalone CNC machines configured in a cell-like environment. The standalone machines utilize the MERLIN Ax9150 hardware board along with the G55 handheld scanner, giving us visibility of the machines that we previously did not have. The Makino cell has the MERLIN Operating Portal deployed on it, which gives us detailed machine information right on the shop floor. We feed MERLIN with work order and product standard data directly from our CINCOM ERP system.”

The MERLIN data indicated there were far too many downtime events occurring. Magellan shared this information with its team, and with the help of the MERLIN software, was able to reduce those downtime events from 400 hours per month to 100 hours —  a net increase in machining capacity of 100 hours per month per machine.

“Multiply that by the hourly machining cost and Magellan was able to capture real savings of over $30,000 per month against an initial price of $20,000 for MERLIN,” said Ung. “That’s a very satisfying payback on the technology.”

Memex applied its “Roadmap to Success” methodology, a valuable tool to use in analyzing and interpreting the information MERLIN makes available. After completing the corrective actions the Roadmap suggested, Magellan was able to show that MERLIN brought its OEE up from 36 per cent to a sustained 85 per cent. The time spent previously gathering data was decreased dramatically because the data was now available to management and operators.

Magellan now sees there is more possibility for MERLIN on the shop floor. The company believes it is just scratching the surface of MERLIN’s capabilities and is looking forward to seeing what else can be accomplished with the system.

To see the full article, please click here.

Rick Mosca Joins Memex as Chief Operations Officer, USA, and Subscribes to Latest Non-brokered Private Placement

Marketwired – Burlington, ON, Canada – December 11, 2014:  Astrix Networks Inc., operating as Memex Automation (TSX-V: OEE) (“Memex” or the “Company”) has closed a non-brokered private placement totaling $348,000.  A total of 2,900,000 Units were issued at a price of $0.12 each (“Units”).  Each Unit is comprised of one common share in the capital of the Company (a “Common Share”) and one-half of one common share purchase warrant (a “Warrant”).  Each whole Warrant entitles the holder to purchase one Common Share at a price of $0.16 at any time prior to 4:00 p.m. (Eastern Time) on December 12, 2016.

In connection with the private placement, the Company paid a finder’s fee on certain subscriptions of 6% of the proceeds raised via brokers and issued broker warrants (the “Broker Warrants”) equal to 6% of the number of Units sold.  The total fees paid were $9,744 in cash and 81,201 Broker Warrants.  Each Broker Warrant entitles the holder to purchase one Common Share at a price of $0.16 at any time prior to 4:00 p.m. (Eastern Time) on December 12, 2016.  All securities issued are subject to a hold period, which will expire on April 12, 2015. The closing is subject to receipt of final approval from the TSX Venture Exchange.

As part of this placement, the Company’s newest Executive, Rick Mosca, now Chief Operations Officer of Astrix Networks America Inc., subscribed for 13% of the placement.  Mr. Mosca is an IT executive with special expertise in leading all facets of business including client facing revenue development, sales channel development, applications development and enterprise systems delivery.

“I first became aware of Memex through my relationship with AMT as a member of the Technical Advisory Group of MTConnect,” explains Rick Mosca.   “With a multi-year line of sight of the MTConnect products in development, it became clear to me that MERLIN is the most complete and robust forward and backward compatible solution.   Based on my experience and industry knowledge, I am convinced that MERLIN has the potential to become the industry leading MTConnect-based MES solution, and I am thrilled to be joining this team as its American COO.”

“It is with great pleasure that I welcome Rick Mosca to the Memex senior management team as the COO of our American subsidiary,” reports David McPhail, CEO. “Rick brings with him a wealth of global experience and a proven track record of building effective, profitable and lasting relationships at the CXO level within the Fortune 500.”

About Memex Automation

Memex Automation (TSX-V:OEE) is the leader of manufacturing Machine to Machine (M2M) productivity solutions and the measurement of Overall Equipment Effectiveness (“OEE”) in real-time.  OEE is the measurement of plant-wide capacity utilization.  MERLIN (Manufacturing Enterprise Real-time Lean Information Network) generates OEE enterprise-wide, plant by plant, machine by machine.  As published in Automation.Com in July 2014, by using MERLIN in its 800,000 square foot Kentucky plant, Mazak, the largest machine tool builder in the world, increased the utilization of its own machines by 42%, and now offers MERLIN on their price list.  Okuma America Corporation, a world leader in CNC machine tools, announced in April 2014 that Memex Automation became a Partner in THINC.  On April 15, 2014, PEM awarded the Company the 2014 Plant Engineering & Maintenance Award for ‘Best Company Under 50 Employees.’  Frost & Sullivan awarded MERLIN its 2013 Technology Innovation Leadership Award for Machine Monitoring.  Microsoft picked MERLIN to be its mid-market ERP machine connectivity solution.  For more information, please visit: www.memex.ca.

For more information, please contact:

 Sales
John Rattray, VP Sales and Marketing
Phone: 905-635-0590
Email:  jrattray@memex.ca

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation services provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

To see the full press release, please click here.