Decades of Industrial Sealing Solutions Expertise

Dichtomatik Americas
Written by Jessica Ferlaino

For over thirty years, Dichtomatik has offered its customers a broad range of sealing products and the support of its extensive industry knowledge. With one of the best inventories in the industry, it carries radial shaft seals, O-rings, hydraulic seals, fittings and fastener seals, custom molded rubber and spliced and extruded cord. The company serves the energy and power generation, construction and agriculture, power transmission, fluid handling, lawn and garden material handling and trailer market segments.
Dichtomatik’s commitment to customer service and delivery has established it as the world’s most extensive, flexible and responsive sealing technologies specialist. The company’s exceptional inventory – a stock of over sixteen million seals – and distribution and logistics capacities enable it to satisfy the needs of the many industries that depend on their machinery being able to move or maintain a seal.

“We’ve got a very extensive inventory – in the area of $15 to $20 million in inventory. It varies,” noted Jerry McLain, executive director of sales. “So, when we receive orders, there is a high likelihood that we will have that product in stock. Our ability to process those orders, turn them around quickly and then ship them same day or within twenty-four hours, is something that is extremely well received by our customers.”

“We maintain in excess of a ninety-five percent on-time shipment rate. Our organization ships about fifty-seven percent of the lines we are receiving in orders in any day. We ship fifty-seven percent of them out in the same day that they are received and orders that are in stock and received into our system as late as 4 p.m. Central Time will also ship same day.”

In addition to its wide range of seals, Dichtomatik also offers in-house engineering support to satisfy any customer needs and can fill both standard and customized orders.

Dichtomatik helps its customers to save time, money and resources and maximize profit margins by delivering on-time solutions that are competitively priced. McLain believes that the company’s outstanding service model and commitment to inventory maintenance is the reason for its success.

“We dedicate a disproportionate number of our personnel resources to order fulfillment and everything that is attached to order fulfillment,” said McLain. That includes planning, the maintenance of product flow into the facility, details of logistics and shipping, as well as liaising with factories and customers.

“What differentiates us is, in addition to the outstanding service model that we bring to bear for our customers, we are also a very lean organization, and as such, we are able to be very competitive from a price standpoint. We have competitive pricing to go along with that outstanding service model, and we have the ability to support our customers in doing so.”

Dichtomatik offers competitively-priced products and superb technical resources, such as a quality and testing department to ensure quality products and service are delivered consistently. Dichtomatik maintains ISO certification as well as Nitrile UL Listing certification and adheres to the highest standards of quality.

“We do put emphasis on the quality, and it’s another one of the things that differentiates us,” said McLain. “We have an inspection process for all products that come in from the factories. When the product comes in, we will do some batched inspections, evaluating samples that we pull from every shipment.”

“If we find anything that is outside of the specifications for the part during these batched inspections, we’ll quarantine the entire shipment. We don’t want to take any chances with any products that might be outside of catalogue specifications, and as such, we are very committed to the batch inspection process and quarantine and then corrective action proceeds.”

Dichtomatik is a German subsidiary of Freudenberg. In 2002, Freudenberg purchased Transcom, American Seal, Nu-Seal and International Seal bringing the four together under the Dichtomatik Americas name. This partnership has fostered the integration of innovative technologies and engineering, as the strength of each entity advances the group.

“Those acquired companies were brought together under the Dichtomatik division name within the Freudenberg global sealing technologies business unit, and Dichtomatik’s place within that division of Freudenberg is to pursue growing market share in the U.S. – primarily oil seal, O-rings, and custom molded rubber product parts,” described McLain.

“Even though we are separate entities in the same business unit,” McLain added, “There isn’t any application or any customer requirement that can’t be fulfilled by either Dichtomatik’s capabilities or Freudenberg’s capabilities. Dichtomatik is a part of Freudenberg and collaborates with Freudenberg in terms of how to best deliver the right solution to every customer in the marketplace.”

Dichtomatik Americas operates out of Houston, Texas; Markham, Ontario; and Shakopee, Minnesota, where it is headquartered. The company supplies several agriculture-related machine builders in the area, and its Houston location is in high demand by the oil and gas market. McLain sees growth potential in the industrial distribution market in particular.

“Our company has been primarily an OEM and kind of a specialized-distributor-oriented business. But I think that there is significant opportunity for us within the industrial distribution segment, and we see our relationships growing and our share of business activity within that group growing much faster than the normal rate of industrial growth in the marketplace.”

Another point of difference for Dichtomatik is its people, McLain said. “The people who work at Dichtomatik have a tremendous pride of ownership and do a fantastic job in making sure that the bar that we’ve set as far as expectations around service, quality and reliability are met.”

“That is something that every employee here, from the receiving dock to the president of the organization, takes a tremendous amount of interest and pride in maintaining. Our people are fantastic, and as such, we’re pretty particular about the folks that we bring into the family at Dichtomatik as well.”

Dichtomatik is highly data-driven and has established key performance indicators (KPI) that help the team monitor and continuously improve performance in each of its operational divisions. “We measure and establish minimum KPI performance levels in every function of the business and hold ourselves to very high standards,” said McLain.

“In every department you would see, in customer service, in engineering, planning, finance, even HR, each group will have a weekly stand-up meeting, with KPIs on a white board, hanging in the department for everyone to see,” he says. “It’s a keep score culture, and maybe it isn’t for everybody but for folks who are compatible with that philosophy, it’s a great place to be.”

Moving forward, Dichtomatik will continue to use KPIs as a measure of performance, taking every effort to improve those metrics. Dichtomatik hopes to expand its market share with improved sales and expanded geographic footprint.

“Long-term goals are to be closer to all the customers in the marketplace,” McLain said. “I think that one of the things that Dichtomatik is going to be very focused on is, as we expand our business, and as we expand our physical presence in the market, will be to develop a group of what I call, future leaders, that will be able to handle expanded roles in terms of customer interface and operational responsibility.”

Dichtomatik, taking advantage of its association with Freudenberg, will continue to expand, creating satisfied customers along the way. By fully using its service model and extensive inventory, Dichtomatik’s reputation can only continue to grow.



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