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The growing market of counterfeit alternators poses a major threat to the industry, impacting productivity and creating unsafe work environments. Technical Review Middle East looks at measures taken by Cummins Generator Technologies to protect consumers from the perils of counterfeit machines
It is estimated that counterfeiting is a US$600bn problem that affects manufacturers in almost every industry across the globe. Counterfeit alternators continue to flood the international market posing risks to user’s reputation, finances and employee safety. These counterfeits are un-tested, non-compliant and not designed to work in harsh environments such as parts of the Middle East and Africa. Poor design and flawed assembly of such counterfeit machines often leads to serious mechanical faults that include the cracking and breakoff of cooling fans, casting defects on hubs, haphazard rotor overcoats and even loose wiring, all of which pose a danger to individuals working near the machines.
Trevor French, general manager of AvK global sales and marketing at Cummins Generator Technologies, said, “Although it is often the case that end users are not even aware machines they are using are counterfeit alternators, the consequences can be very severe.” “Put simply, counterfeit products result in poor fuel economy, reduced generator life and of course the financial implications of unforeseen down time. Most importantly, loose wiring, poor assembly and mechanical faults lead to counterfeit products posing a significant threat to personnel.”
Protection against counterfeits
Cummins Generator Technologies has launched its latest STAMFORD S-Range family of alternators, which apart from being a much anticipated refresh of its most popular machines also represents a further development in the company’s fight against fake products. The new range – from 7.5 to 5,000kVA – sees Cummins Generator Technologies leading the industry wide battle to protect end users and customers from the perils of counterfeit machines. The new S-Range of alternators incorporates new patented technology, as well as the visual markers of a genuine product.
“We adopt a zero tolerance approach to counterfeiters in order to protect our customers from what has become a global threat” noted French. “This involves significant investment in implementing a global anti-counterfeit strategy and to pursue counterfeit manufacturers in order to break the supply chain.”
A key component of the Cummins Generator Technologies’ counterfeit crackdown strategy is ensuring that the maximum legal protection is given to its alternators. This is achieved through the extensive registration of trade marks in all major markets, patenting new technologies, such as its latest CoreCooling innovation on the new STAMFORD S-Range family and making sure that the STAMFORD brand is visible on all its equipment.
According to the company, although the STAMFORD brand is legally protected, this does not always stop the most motivated counterfeiters. In order to give customers the chance to see if a potential alternator is indeed genuine, all Cummins Generator Technology machines have a unique high security 3D hologram affixed to its casing.
This gives customers a clear visual confirmation that the product is a genuine product. Moreover, each of its alternators has a unique serial number that can be verified online, which gives an instant ‘valid or invalid’ response.
“The fight against counterfeiting will continue across the manufacturing industry and its many sectors,” stated French.
“However, it is up to businesses to protect customers from criminal behaviour by giving them the tools to discover counterfeit products. After all, it is not only manufacturer’s reputations, which are damaged by counterfeit products,” he reiterated.