July / August 2020, Issue 4 | Panels & Furniture Asia 32 | FURNITURE MANUFACTURING NANXING AND OKELO JOIN HANDS TO WELCOME A NEW ERA OF SMART FURNITURE PRODUCTION Okelo’s new plant Groundbreaking ceremony at the site of Okelo’s new plant A collaboration between Nanxing Machinery and Okelo helps the latter to break out of traditional furniture manufacturing method. T he sudden outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has brought huge challenges to the customised furniture manufacturing industry. Despite the uncertain outlook in the global market, Okelo went ahead and collaborated with Nanxing Machinery to build an intelligent manufacturing production base. Since the plant officially started operating in March, over 2000 sets of cabinets, wardrobes and other customised furniture have been produced. With an output value of more than 26 million yuan (US$3.7m), the new plant is well on its way to meet the designated output and profit targets. “The efficiency of our new production line has increased by 35% comparedtotraditionalproductionlines.Wehavereducedourstaffby half,yetourentireproductionhasmanagedtoyieldadditioinaloutput value of about 20%,” said Li Guohua, Director of Okelo. ALL SET TO PRODUCE FIRST BATCH OF FURNITURE AND PROJECTS The new plant at Guangxi Autonomous Region is all set to produce Okelo’s targeted output of 50,000 sets of cabinets and whole-house custom projects in 2020. Costing 174 million yuan (US$24.6m) to build, the 35,000 sqm plant is expected to yield a designated annual output value of 400 million yuan (US$56.6m), while profits and taxes are expected to exceed 40 million yuan (US$5.6m). Half a year later, the Okelo team will be anticipating another breakthrough – Guangxi will welcome its first smart and highly automated furniture production line. Originally a barren land in Chongzuo, a prefecture-level city in the south of Guangxi Autonomous Region, it is now transformed into a high- technology manufacturing base.