Gazelle’s New Production Plant Put into Operation
DIEREN, the Netherlands – Royal Dutch Gazelle has put its brand new, state-of-the-art bicycle factory into operation on the 1st of June. With this most modern factory in Europe Gazelle aims to become the number one premium brand in electric bicycles in Western Europe.
Last week employees of the biggest bike maker in the Netherlands started assembling bicycles and e-bikes at their new workplaces which is best described as an architectural masterpiece connecting history with modern manufacturing.
Lean and clean
As Gazelle started making bicycles in 1902 in Dieren, the Netherlands (while there’s even an older wall supposedly from the paintshop which dates back to 1860) there are lots of historical building at the site where the bike maker’s is still based. These are now wonderfully connected to the new assembly hall.
Gazelle (and its owner Pon Holdings) have put a lot of effort in this well thought out architectural approach. Thus, the wall of the section from 1902 is, thanks to a roofing structure, entirely conserved. The main building, dating from 1912, has been completely refurbished and is via the company restaurant connected to the new, spacious and bright, newly built assembly hall. The whole operation from old to new has been dominated by ‘lean and clean’.
Offices and factory are connected
Also the Beltman wing from 1950’s has been completely refurbished. The walls now have large windows which connects the assembly hall with the offices. Through a life-size picture on the wall of the restaurant, the image of the 1902 factory is brought to life.
New assembly process
With the all-new paintshop, which is already operational since one year, production now takes place according to the ‘lean’ principle. With the new assembly process put in operation this is further perfected. It means that waste is meticulously prevented. The same goes for the efficiently handling of stocks which resulted in the cancellation of one planning phase and less stock at assembly workplaces.
48 hours lead time
Next to the ‘lean’ principle’ Gazelle also operates according to the 5S system. Through that continuous improvement is realized. The entire production process, from an unfinished frame to a complete new bike is now completed within 48 hours. It stands for a big efficiency improvement. Noteworthy is that the factory remained operational during the two-year overhaul.
Click on the photos underneath for a comprehensive insight into what’s currently Europe’s most state-of-the-art bike factory.