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The Lean Kaizen Award recognizes CORTICEIRA AMORIM’s

Raro, a member company of the CORTICEIRA AMORIM Group, was given the award for "Excellence in Productivity" at the 1st Kaizen Lean Award competition organized by the Kaizen Institute. This award recognizes the enhanced performance and increased efficiency in the production of capsulated cork stoppers.

The awards ceremony will take place tomorrow, Thursday, April 19th, at 3:00 p.m., at the Cupertino de Miranda Foundation, in Oporto, Portugal, with the presence of Masaaki Imai, the founder of the Kaizen Institute and author of the Kaizen method.

The beginning of the collaboration between Raro and the Kaizen Institute dates back to 2007, the year when Raro embarked on a Total Flow Management project, a productivity improvement method supported by various tools, such as the 5S method. After a consultation process that took place recently, Raro was distinguished for its successful use of this program and its compliance, so far, with the measures identified as priority for its success. The Kaizen Award distinguishes companies that excel in a deep-rooted culture to strive for continuous improvement and increased efficiency.

"This award honors us greatly and demonstrates the importance of CORTICEIRA AMORIM’s commitment for continuous improvement, process innovation and training of its employees as a way to ensure an excellent, sustainable and competitive performance. The emphasis on continuous improvement is critical to the success of Raro; to that end it is essential to have qualified and motivated staff prepared to innovate and fulfill the most demanding operational requirements" said Victor Ribeiro, CEO of Amorim & Irmãos.

CORTICEIRA AMORIM has been implementing the Lean Kaizen program since 2007 with a view to enhancing operational efficiency across all Business Units. An average of about 3000 hours of training is allocated annually to this purpose.

The Company recorded a total of 38,786 hours of training in 2011, an average increase of 2.1 hours of training per employee. This has been a relentless process; in fact, in 2009, approximately 50,000 hours of training were provided. Our objective is thus to ensure adequate answers in terms of quality, deadlines and productivity with a view to meeting the business activity requirements.

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