This time last week I was fortunate enough to be at the product launch for a New Volkswagen Commercial Van. As you can imagine it was an incredibly well organised event. Timed to the minute, it was designed to perfectly showcase their new product.
What’s the van like? Well, it’s a terribly clever piece of technology. You’re probably familiar with cars that can self-park, well this is a van that can self-park — even with a trailer attached!
I was there because we are an award-winning manufacturer of fridge van conversions and I wanted to form an early view of what kind of product it could be after we modify it. But if the whole launch highlighted one thing it was the importance of innovation, and that brings me to my real point.
Innovation is our lifeblood. One of my mantras (I have a few) is that only innovation can truly set us apart from our rivals.
That’s because we operate in a demanding industry and we have to innovate constantly in response to a number of factors. It could be technical, like the arrival of a new vehicle like the VW or legal, with the introduction of increasingly complex legislation.
Innovation is also one of the reasons why we cultivate strong links with local schools, colleges and universities. This facilitates collaboration into research areas where we may not necessarily have the technology or budget.
Then there are constant advances in manufacturing processes, technology and materials. At CoolKit we focus intensely on the selection of components and materials with a view to achieving the primary objectives of low weight and high durability. These two factors are the Holy Grail but are often opposing, with one coming at the expense of the other.
Therefore, we’re on a relentless quest to find materials that are lighter and/or stronger. Right now, our design engineers are in the process of developing a new ultra-light free standing insulted body. We are doing that because it will allow us to address customers’ needs more satisfactorily.
Which is my final point. Innovation doesn’t exist in a bubble. We need to consider the market and fully understand our customers. That’s the only way we can hope to satisfy their needs and build long-term relationship with them.
And that’s precisely the idea that was being made at the van launch — the company had listened to the market.
Rupert Gatty | CoolKit Managing Director
How do we create innovative fridge van conversions?
To maintain the prestigious title of industry-leader for fridge van conversions it is vital that we keep innovating our manufacturing, providing superior quality, durability and reliability to our customers. Continuos investment in research and development, market research to understand customer’s changing needs and focus on our quality management systems, allows us not only to provide a superior product to the market, but also find solutions to new emerging obstacles, always staying two steps ahead of other manufacturers.