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Windings Component Instrumental in Safely Lowering Curiosity to Surface of Red Planet

SYSPRO, a developer of best-of-breed, award-winning enterprise resource planning (ERP) software for on-premise and cloud-based utilization, announced today that Windings, a manufacturer of custom electric motor and generator components and a user of SYSPRO ERP software since 1998, is the producer of a key component of the sky crane’s braking system that safely lowered Curiosity to the Red Planet for the rover’s explanatory journey of the Mars landscape.

While smaller rovers of past Mars mission have utilized airbag landing systems, the size of Curiosity necessitated the utilization of a special landing system to provide a soft landing for the huge vehicle.

According to Windings President and CEO Jerry Kauffman, this was not the first time that a Windings-built component has been instrumental in assisting in the exploration of planets, as well as the earth’s nearest neighbor, the moon. However, he did indicate that the Curiosity mission is the first time a Windings component has been utilized in the braking system of a device to safely land a large, mobile instrument package on the surface of a planet.

Windings, which is based in New Ulm, MN, has utilized SYSPRO ERP software since 1998. Prior to that time, Windings had been utilizing an IBM System 36, which lacked the flexibility to deal with the mixed-mode manufacturing operations utilized by Windings to produce both standard and custom electromagnetic motors, generators and sub-assemblies for numerous industrial uses, including factory automation, renewable energy, automotive, medical, defense and aerospace.

According to SYSPRO USA President, Joey Benadretti, “Congratulations to Windings for helping to land Curiosity safely on Mars and, more importantly, for helping to further man’s quest to explore distant planets and add significantly to our body of scientific knowledge. It’s gratifying to think that SYSRO ERP played a small role in helping produce the essential, critical Windings component that facilitated Curiosity’s safe landing.”

Windings is exemplary of how Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) grow their businesses using ERP software that enables process standardization, reveals untapped efficiencies, reduces costs and provides managers with insights that contribute to informed decision making.

About Windings, Inc.

Windings Inc. is a privately held company headquartered in New Ulm, Minnesota, U.S.A., with production facilities located in New Ulm and Agua Prieta, Sonora, Mexico.

Windings Inc. was established in New Ulm in 1965 by J.W. McKinney. Upon McKinney’s retirement in 1983, Windings Inc. was sold to Roger D. Ryberg, the Company’s current Chairman. In 1989, 1991 and 2005 the New Ulm facility was enlarged and upgraded for added operations. Also in 1991, Windings Inc. formed a relationship with Windtech, Inc. in Agua Prieta to further expand its manufacturing capacity and provide greater flexibility in the pricing and delivery of finished assemblies.

In 1998, Windings Inc. formed an ESOP (Employee Stock Ownership Plan) for a planned purchase and transition of Company stock to the employees of Windings. The higher sense of responsibility that comes with employee ownership has made Windings even more responsive to customer needs and encourages innovation to bring greater value to its customers. In 2008, the company became 100% employee-owned.