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Insulation properties and the energy efficiency of many thermal insulation materials, such as polyurethane or mineral wool, can be considerably enhanced with the use of Walki facings. Helped by a significant investment in new production technology, Walki Group can offer an even wider palette of premium-quality insulation and construction facing materials to building material and insulation manufacturers – while at the same time produce less waste during production.

Walki Group, a leading supplier of technical barrier laminates and protective materials, has its eye set on the fast-growing insulation and construction facing materials market. With the Group’s latest investment in new manufacturing technology, the company can offer its facing materials to an even wider market, while at the same time further enhance the quality of its products.

-With rising energy prices and more focus on sustainable use of resources, better insulation plays a key role in moving towards increased sustainability. This also creates higher demand for facing materials, which can improve the insulation properties of our customers’ products significantly, notes Business Line Manager Kari Salminen. 

Quality improvement through new technology

High-quality facings are an integral component of building materials and insulation products. In addition to enhancing thermal performance, highly engineered facing material can also act as a vapour barrier, and help to reduce the risk of corrosion and mould growth in the materials.

In mid-August 2012, Walki’s production line in Valkeakoski, Finland, has been re-engineered to run more efficiently. It also has the capability to utilise a much wider range of raw materials now, in order to meet the challenges of new and emerging demands of customers and markets. 

- Walki has always strived to be a leading facing materials supplier on the market and this we seek to achieve by listening closely to our customers. What Walki has learned from this exchange of views is that there is a growing need on the market for even more stable and better performing facings, says Salminen.

- Helped by the investment Walki is prepared to meet the needs of its customers even quicker than before. The latest in-line facility improvements will allow us to produce facings which are modern and stable and avoiding holes or pitting of lacquers, or uneven surfaces that can lead to corrosion.

Helping businesses to create a better brand image

Building material and insulation manufacturers can support and expand their brand by having facings with their brand logos and product names printed directly on the facing material of their final products.

Walki is an environmentally responsible company therefore it uses only water-based inks for printing. 

- Our new in-line printing technology is a clear asset for many of our customers, who want to increase their brand image in a cost-efficient and environmentally sustainable way, says Walki’s Plant Director Timo Saahko.

Walki’s production line also features a web tension control system, which delivers higher production efficiencies in addition to improved and more stable quality. 

- It also means the company generates a lot less waste during the manufacturing process.

Future growth especially in radiant barrier products

Pierrick Girard from Walki’s sales office in France has been actively working with French providers to identify new end uses for Walki’s products. This he believes will open doors for Walki to the fast-growing radiant barrier foil insulation industry as well as other sectors. 

-After the investment, we have received very good feedback on the first trials with our customers on the quality of our materials. Customers have noted, for instance, that the tension of the reels and thickness control is excellent. 

The high-level stable profile of the rolls is appreciated and welcomed and will contribute substantially to improved runnability on our customers’ machines, adds Girard. /ins

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