STARCO is now KENDA Europe Specialty

The Reinventing the Wheel Innovation and Clustering Platform

Responsibility is not just a buzzword

KENDA Manufacturing HR are on an ever-evolving journey that puts environmental and social responsibility at the forefront of how we work. Now, we are launching a new project called the Reinventing the Wheel Innovation Cluster and Platform, which you can learn more about here.

Preserving our global and local environment for future generations is a collective matter. We are therefore inviting other manufacturers, suppliers, buyers, individuals, educational institutions, and innovation partners to join us in making a positive difference.

Together, we can work to make our businesses and communities more resilient to the impacts of climate change. We can do this by contributing with constructive solutions to the social and environmental challenges we all face and minimise any negative effects our business has locally and globally.

By engaging with our local community, adopting new technologies and continually learning to do things more efficiently, we are not just reducing our impact on the environment but also creating social and economic value.

The Project

In mid-2023, we launched the project Reinventing the Wheel. It is aimed at making investments in technology and processes that position KENDA Manufacturing HR as a leader of green and smart innovations. Achieving this goal will have a positive impact on our products, employees, partners and customers. It can also positively affect the local and regional industries and their ecosystems.

With a total investment of approximately 4.5 million Euros, a significant portion comes from the Norwegian Financial Mechanism through EEA and the Norway Grants Program. Additionally, the investments are made possible by a special development loan from the Croatian Bank for Reconstruction and Development, HBOR, and special project funds invested by KENDA.

The funds from Norway Grants are part of The Business Development and Innovation Programme in Croatia, funded by the Governments of Norway, Iceland and Lichtenstein and operated by Innovation Norway for Green Industry Transition in Croatia and 14 other target EU countries.

The project has been designed, developed and implemented in cooperation with Eupolis Group Ltd and International Development Norway. Eupolis Group Ltd is a Croatian consultancy focused on system innovation, development, fundraising and global clustering initiation in the intersection between economic, social and ecological issues. International Development Norway, or IDN, is a spin-out of SINTEF Foundation, the largest contract research institute in Scandinavia, focused on circular and green manufacturing transition support. Together, we are transforming our factory and taking significant steps on our responsible journey.

Our Journey

Sustainability is a process and our journey toward a responsible and holistic change starts with improving the energy efficiency of our manufacturing plant by fortifying its insulation, integrating solar panels and reducing our waste.

We are currently implementing new technologies across the entire production flow, including robotics and digitally controlled wheel manufacture. These will achieve a reduction of waste in the painting process and improve the working area through better lighting, stronger insulation and improved air quality.

Preserving our global and local environment for future generations is a collective matter. We are therefore also inviting other manufacturers, suppliers, buyers, individuals, educational institutions, and innovation partners to join us in making a positive difference.

By engaging with our local community, adopting new technologies and continually learning to do things more efficiently, we are not just reducing our impact on the environment, but also creating social and economic value.

Collaborating for a greener future

We believe that sharing resources and best practices is the way forward. Knowledge sharing and collaboration are therefore also central parts of the project, and we want to facilitate the exchange of experiences and knowledge and encourage clustering (working in or cross sector to achieve benefits between normally unconnected companies, entities and individuals) around sustainability and green innovation themes.

Below, you can get an overview of the knowledge sharing activities and themes we are especially interested in collaborating around. For more information on these initiatives and activities, do not hesitate to contact us via the form at the bottom of this page.

Clustering themes

Education

During and after this project, we are planning to host site visits and organize short trainings on our experiences and efforts.

Together with our project partners at Eupolis Group Ltd., we do innovation events including workshops, hackathons and creathons.

These activities aim to not only co-create lean and green transition processes, products and services but also to support disruptive innovation across companies, manufacturers and supply chain stakeholders in Croatia, the EU, the Western Balkans region and globally.

Asset Sharing

Asset sharing is a key strategy for optimizing resources.

For instance, if we have excess capacity in certain processes, like CNC machines, we can offer to produce components for local businesses or subcontract the resources for sharing.

Likewise, if other companies have resources that we need, we can explore sharing arrangements. Additionally, sharing workshop areas, which is already part of our project, will be tested for further replication and scaling.

 

Personalization Without Excess Consumption

Meeting market demands without excess waste is crucial.

We are focused on collaborating with entrepreneurs, innovators and research institutes on finding ways to personalise our products and services without encouraging unnecessary consumption.

We are also developing new business and value proposition models for various clients. We will be addressing these topics in our co-creative workshops and follow-up projects with interested stakeholders.

 

Circular economy

We want to find ways for other companies to utilize our waste effectively. 

For instance, we could grow tomatoes with the excess heat from cooling our wheels in a greenhouse next door. Or we could explore how other companies can repurpose our excess steel.

Looking ahead, we’re also focusing on developing new business models, such as product-as-a-service and cradle-to-cradle design. These efforts aim to reinvent steel and wheel manufacturing and similar industries.

Get in touch with us about clustering