Hudson Rubber to exhibit at IATF

Hudson Rubber, the largest rubber extrusion manufacturer on the African continent, will be exhibiting at the 2023 Intra-African Trade Fair (IATF) in Egypt from 9 - 15 November.

The company provides standard and customised manufactured rubber and plastic products for the automotive, mining, marine, offshore, construction, logistics and retail industries. Hudson Rubber, is a South African-based company operational for 64 years.

“We are committed to working with customers and distributors on the African continent, and believe as a continent, we need to become more self-sufficient and focus more on import substitution,” said Hudson Rubber MD Stoney Steenkamp.

He added: “Localisation will benefit buyers in providing opportunities to customise or make modifications to products in a relative short space of time, adapting to country-specific requirements. Import substitution can also increase innovation which in turn generates better products and benefits the continent’s economies,” he said.

While the perception is changing regarding locally produced products and import substitution, more needs to be done and at a much faster pace. Policies within many international companies are restricting local subsidiaries to substitute for local products, he said.

As an example of import substitution, Mr Steenkamp said Henkel South Africa is partnering with Hudson Rubber to locally fabricate Henkel’s vehicle rubber sealing and acoustic solutions for OEM vehicle panel reinforcing, noise reduced and vibration protection.

Henkel’s patented technology of 2D and 3D sealing and acoustic solutions along with damping materials for the body shop provides robust noise, vibration, harshness protection - while ensuring protection against water and other environmental elements that can disrupt passenger comfort and reduce vehicle performance. 

Paul Bergset, Head of Sales IND Solutions and Durable Goods at Henkel South Africa, commented on the partnership: “We are delighted to collaborate with Hudson Rubber to produce vehicle sealing and acoustic solutions for our customers in Africa. We continue to ensure unrivalled quality and performance of our adhesive products that binds excellence with reliability.

“The innovative technology, supplied by Henkel China as a rubber-based material, is an expandable thermos-setting product that, when exposed to heat, will expand between 1000 to 3000 times its original dimensions.”

The material is put into vehicle components such as doors and pillar posts where it fills cavities to reduce noise within the vehicle that improves the driving experience.

Ford Motor Company SA will be the first Henkel-Hudson partnership customer where it will be used in the Ford P703 Ranger Model manufactured in Silverton, Gauteng.

Bergset said there has been interest from a number of other local OEMs as the industry strives to deliver more local content to the models built in the country.

“This will be the first manufacturing and extrusion plant of its type in Hudson Rubber and could in the future supply the electric vehicle market due to the rubber-based products being able to deliver significant weight reduction opportunities to the manufacturing industry in Africa.”

Mr Steenkamp added, “We are looking to partner with more distributors and end-users across the African continent. This includes the design and manufacture of customised solutions. We are committed to manufacture in-country to service the African continent.”

Hudson Rubber is a member of National Association of Automotive Component & Allied Manufactures (NAACAM) and AAAM – African Association of Automotive Manufacturers.