E.G.O., a global manufacturer of domestic appliance technology, components and products for manufacturing radiant heating elements, made a name for itself in 1931 when the company invented the original hot plate. Since 1982, E.G.O. has housed their North American headquarters and main warehouse in Newnan, Georgia, bringing its first production line to the facility in 1996. Today, the company has 6,000 employees in 17 countries and holds more than 1,000 official patents.
In the 1990s, E.G.O. helped grow the smooth top electric range market with their invention of the radiant heating element used in all smooth top electric ranges. E.G.O. continues to lean on their innovation team to look at least five years out for new products, technologies, materials and more, to keep them ahead of the curve. “To stay relevant, we need to know what’s out there that can help our customers be more competitive not just today, but tomorrow and the day after that,” said Keller. To continue to be forward thinking, Keller thought it was important to connect his team of innovators with GaMEP, part of the MEP National Network™. He said, “Our European plant utilizes technology scouting, so for us it just made sense to bring in our partners at Georgia Tech.” He continued, “By involving GaMEP and the Georgia Tech name, we are able to have conversations with inventors and companies that we wouldn’t have had access to.”
GaMEP has all of the resources to connect you to the right person and help solve problems. They are a huge benefit for small and mid-size manufacturers and are a cost-effective resource. Whenever I need help finding a solution, I immediately call Larry and his team.
— David Keller, CEO
For the past five years, Ed Murphy, technology scouting project manager at GaMEP, has worked with the E.G.O. team and independently to learn more about a variety of technology applications. Murphy said, “We started with six opportunities. I have spent time talking to inventors, our connections at the United States national labs, conducting research, and introducing my contacts to Georgia Tech researchers, students, and additional technologies. I then bring my discoveries back to E.G.O.” Today, Murphy and the E.G.O. team have narrowed the initial six technologies down to two and are still monitoring them for a final decision.
As a next step, E.G.O. is looking at ways to improve their inter-connectivity of their machinery and maintenance equipment. Keller said, “By looking at ways to incorporate Industry 4.0 into our plant, we will be able to dramatically improve our operational equipment effectiveness.”
Could your company benefit from assistance with technology scouting? Connect with your local MEP Center for more information.
The Georgia Manufacturing Extension Partnership (GaMEP) is the official representative of the MEP National Network in Georgia. The MEP National Network is a unique public-private partnership that helps small and medium-sized manufacturers generate business results and thrive in today’s technology-driven economy. The MEP National Network comprises the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NIST MEP), the 51 MEP Centers located in all 50 states and Puerto Rico.