Ham-Let – Global Innovation
Ham-Let is a global manufacturer and provider of innovative and competitive products and applications, defined by reliability, high-quality and consistent performance.
2020 marks for Ham-Let 70 years of excellence, designing, developing, producing and marketing of fluid system components for the high purity and process industries.
Ham-Let is an innovating industrial company that offers its customers a broad range of instrumentation and delivery solutions with advanced control,” explains Amir Widmann, CEO of Ham-Let. “It was founded in 1950 in Israel by survivors of the Second World War as a small workshop. 70 years later Ham-Let is a global company with 8 manufacturing facilities and 12 regional sales and support centers, employing over 1,000 employees and being traded on the Tel-Aviv stock exchange.”
Ham-Let’s starting point has always been “What does the customer need?”. By establishing a close collaboration with its customers, Ham-Let global team can identify any special requirements and match them to Ham-Let’s extensive range of instrumentation valves & fittings.
“The high-level quality of our products is a winning selling point. We are not only investing in improving design and functionality of our products, we are also developing a variety of unique IoT technologies and solutions to deliver to our customers,” Widmann points out.
Ham-Let R&D, engineering and marketing teams are competent to create custom-made new products for the semiconductor, food, transportation, biotechnology, petrochemical, pulp & paper and natural gas.
As a global company, Ham-Let is not only manufacturing high quality and innovative products, Ham-Let is able to supply them to customers just where they are needed – a capability that is more important now than ever.
Widmann tells us, “Ham-Let’s global operational structure is very efficient especially now when COVID-19 restrictions are limiting global travel and transportation. We are capable to serve our customers locally in almost every part of the globe, providing both technical support and manufacturing, without depending on long-distance supply chains.”
70 Years of Reinvention
2020 is a special milestone for Ham-Let, marking 70 years since the foundation of the company.
“To mark this special event, we were planning global-scale celebrations with a big party for all employees. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 pandemic, we have to postpone it for 2021,” Widmann says. “In the meantime, we are preparing updated marketing materials that reflect Ham-Let achievements in 70 years, and honouring our employees with special corporate gifts.”
Of course, 70 years of business doesn’t mean 70 years of doing business the same way – Ham-Let has thrived by always being ready to adapt.
“We need to reinvent ourselves every year, in terms of how we build management, recruit people, make sure all of our acquired companies and subsidiaries are being served well and managed well,” Widmann explains. “The fundamental of Ham-Let growth has always been a solid three-year strategy, which is discussed and built not only by Ham-Let executives, but also by a broader layer of middle management, which is always a part of this process and is fully engaged in executing our strategy globally. We are investing in advanced IT platforms to enable our global teams change the way they interact with each other and our customers and do business going forward. In addition, we have launched special processes in the company to enhance operational and service excellence – all of these technologies are in play while we follow up on our strategy and execution.”
For Widmann, a strategy is only as strong as one’s ability to carry it out. He insists, “I’m a strong believer in strategy and execution, not just putting a vision together but focusing on making it a reality.”
This vision is built on a foundation of innovation and global development.
“We have established a unique global IoT development platform: we have a R&D and engineering teams here in Israel, and we also have IoT developers in Singapore,” Widmann tells us. “Regardless its size, Ham-Let has a strong position in the industrial eco system thanks to its technology incubator, Let-Lab, which is the only industrial 4.0 innovation lab in Israel. By collaboration with leading companies and having a direct access to Israeli start-ups, Let-lab is working to accelerate new technologies for the company and support its further growth. From a market perspective, Ham-Let is serving the most booming industries (semi-conductor industry, clean power, solar energy, LNG), and I think that with such capabilities we have a lot of potential for growth.”
Company’s growth potential is also stimulated by the strategy of identifying the markets and territories with the highest growth opportunities.
“We’re looking at growing markets. In the last 5 years we expanded into new territories: we acquired a factory in China with 12,000 square metre manufacturing facility, because we believe that choosing China as a strategic territory requires local manufacturing,” Widmann recounts. “We opened a new factory in Thailand, because of its strategic location in Asia that enables us to satisfy an increasing demand from Asian customers in the semi-conductor industry. We also acquired a company in Korea to assure direct access to the LNG carriers building companies. And we have factories in Europe (UK, Holland, Norway).”
Of course, to make this global vision a reality, we need the right people to execute it – human capital has always been important for Ham-Let.
“Human capital is a huge priority for a global company that employs 1,100 people. It’s part of our strategy to attract talent,” Widmann says. “We invest great deal in recruiting and retaining the professionals we employ: through academic training programs with for each employee and monthly webinars, we have established advanced training platform for our people to grow within the company.”
In 2020, Ham-Let, as all global companies, had to react to the COVID-19 outbreak and its impact on the company’s business. Fortunately, the international nature of the company has allowed Ham-Let teams to react and adapt quickly.
“As a global company, we faced the COVID-19 pandemic spreading from China to the rest of the world,” Widmann says. “We were and still are evaluating daily the situation in each country and adjusting our working instructions in line with official guidance from local authorities. As a result, other than a Chinese factory being closed for only a few days, Ham-let global manufacturing operations were not affected: employees not involved in direct manufacturing are requested to work from home, but overall Ham-Let continues to maintain its normal business activities without any major disruptions.
Looking beyond COVID, Widmann foresees exciting times for the company due to grow a great deal.
“In the last four or five years we’ve doubled the company and there’s potential in our current markets to further grow it to become a bigger one with stronger research and development, and greater capacity larger capabilities to serve its customers,” he explains. “This is the future, to grow the company and be an excellent supplier to our customers.”