The Finnish company Sako Oy is one of the world’s best-known firearm manufacturers. The strong hunting and target shooting brands of the almost one-hundred-year-old company are created with passion and by skilled people. Kontino is a long-term partner and raw material supplier for Sako, which supplies high-quality blanks for SAKO rifles.
Sako operates in Hausjärvi and Riihimäki and manufactures turn-bolt rifles for hunters and enthusiasts, as well as governmental and military organisations. 98 percent of the firearms are for exports, mainly to North America, Australia, New Zealand and Europe.
“Sako’s customers value quality. It is important to us that the customer knows they will receive an extremely high-quality firearm when they purchase a Sako rifle. The firearm must be accurate and reliable in various conditions, whether it is used to shoot a bear, a hare or a bird”, says Heikki Pitkänen, who operates as the company’s purchasing manager and is responsible for rifle production.
Sako’s quality is created by the professional work effort of both its own employees and its suppliers. One of the founding factors is the high-quality steel raw material, which following several work procedures and a streamlined process becomes a valued quality product.
In collaboration, in a skilled and timely manner
Kontino supplies Sako with round bar blanks that have been cut to size, and they are used to produce frames and barrels for firearms. Their collaboration has already continued for 15 years.
Special steel is used in firearm production, which is produced according to Sako’s own specifications at Kontino’s collaboration factory in Europe. This ensures unbeatable mechanical properties and good producibility. In the collaboration work, Kontino is responsible for the quality of the raw material and also offers Sako with insight concerning steel metallurgy, various mechanical factors and commercial success factors. “Kontino’s expertise is important to us because they are able to assess and ensure the delivery capacity of the factory as well as the quality of the raw material. They provide us with highly competent service. If necessary, we visit the steel factory together with Matti Palovaara and Jari Aalto from Kontino to confirm any quality issues and the smoothness of cooperation”, says Pitkänen as he describes the collaboration.
In addition to acquiring steel that meets quality criteria, Kontino stores the raw material, cuts it to size and delivers it to Sako according to an agreed schedule. The efficiency of the supply chain is very important; deliveries must be quick, goods must be packed well, and they must be available at Sako’s factory in a timely manner. Dimensional accuracy is also a key factor.
“In our collaboration, I value Kontino’s proactive attitude, enthusiasm and honesty, as well as the fact that communications are transparent and efficient in any problem situations. Interaction with Kontino’s people works very well. They have agile problem-solving skills and issues are quickly completed”.
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