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Portfolio relaunch questions and answers
We have recently relaunched our industrial oils, greases and transmission products ranges. Naturally, such changes prompt questions such as why have you made the changes?
We have changed our product portfolio to make it easier and simpler for you to select the right lubricants for your operations. This gave us the opportunity to introduce new-technology lubricants and adopt a new, simpler and more logical naming system. It follows the success of similar work with our heavy-duty and automotive motor oil product ranges.
Download a full list of frequently asked questions and answers, or contact us to find out more.
Questions and answers
1. Why has Shell relaunched its range of industry oils, transmission fluids, greases and motorcycle oils?
Following the successful relaunch of our automotive engine oils (Shell Helix and Shell Rimula) and the positive reaction to this, Shell has decided to apply the same approach to its range of industrial oils and greases, transmission oils and motorcycle oil.
Lubricant ranges are typically complex and often include a number of different brands and sub-brands. This can make it difficult for customers to understand and choose the correct lubricant for the right application, risking lubricant performance, equipment operation and efficiency. The relaunch will make it easier for customers to identify and realise the performance benefits of our lubricant solutions.
Part of the relaunch includes creating a consistent range of industrial oil, greases and transmission fluids that will be available on a global basis. The brands, including a new global brand for greases, include:
- Air Compressor oils = Shell Corena
- Bearing & Circulating oils = Shell Morlina
- Gas Compressor oils = Shell Gas Compressor Oil
- Gear oils = Shell Omala
- Grease = Shell Gadus
- Hydraulic oils = Shell Tellus
- Motorcycle oils = Shell Advance
- Transmission fluids = Shell Spirax
2. What are the benefits of the relaunched range?
Each brand includes a range of products based on protection/performance, starting from S1 and S2 tiers for products which provide reliable, cost effective protection/performance; up to S4-S5 tier products (including high performance synthetics), which provide value adding benefits including; increased oil life, energy efficiency and enhanced protection in challenging environments.
To clearly highlight the performance benefits of individual products, Shell has also included a logical suffix system, such as M = manufacturing/machine – factory environment, E = energy saving/high efficiency and T = temperature. Additional visual communication elements such as pictorial icons will be used to support product suitability and benefits.
For example, manufacturing companies can choose from the “M” range of hydraulic fluids, e.g. Shell Tellus S2 M, which provides reliable protection in factory hydraulic applications, or Shell Tellus S4 ME, which provides extra long oil life and the ability to reduce energy consumption whilst operators of mobile hydraulic equipment such as excavators would choose from the “V” range (versatile/vehicle use).
The relaunch has been designed to demystify lubricant and fluid selection. Customers will be able to easily match a product against a machine/application’s lubrication requirements using the new tiering system. This will be supported by the new product packaging that will clearly highlight the main applications and benefits.
This consistent approach to Shell’s product portfolio structures and naming will ensure that products are easier to understand, helping customers to make confident choices. Shell’s distributor partners will find the range easier to stock and sell, and there will be increased availability of value-added top tier and synthetic lubricants.
Global customers will also have the added benefit of being able to select a core range of industrial oils, greases and fluids on a global basis to ensure each site/factory achieves the same, optimum levels of performance. Smaller customers, who purchase through distributors and resellers, will be much more informed in their lubricant selection through the simplified tiering system and consistent branding.
3. How can I find which product is right for a specific piece of machinery / application?
One of the main drivers behind the relaunch is to make the understanding and selection of industrial oils, grease and fluids much less complex. The new tiering system will be supported with new product packaging that will clearly show the main applications and benefits..
For current customers, Shell will be providing a range of supporting tools and materials to help customers move from the old to new portfolio. Product packaging will include both the old and new product names for a limited period to assist in the transition. New and current customers will also be able to use Shell’s free online lubrication recommendation tool, Shell LubeMatch.
Shell LubeMatch enables companies to match the most appropriate Shell products. By simply selecting the type of application and model, Shell LubeMatch will give operators instant advice on the most appropriate Shell lubricant to use in that application. The service is available in over 94 countries and 19 languages, and can be accessed at www.shell.com/lubematch.
4. How many products have been affected by this change?
Approximately 700 products are affected worldwide, although this will vary on a country by country basis. The portfolio reflects the current and future lubrication requirements of Shell’s customers.
5. Will there be a cost impact to the customer?
For some customers there may be some time and cost impact to update lubrication and maintenance documentation, training, etc. Shell will be working with its customers to minimise this effort and to help organisations maximise the benefits of the relaunched portfolio.
6. Have any new products been introduced to the portfolio?
Some new products have been introduced into the portfolio including (please insert list). This is to enable Shell to offer its customers a full tiering of products by brand so that customers can select the right level of protection/performance for their equipment.
Shell has also increased the availability of key products such as its top-tier oils including Shell Tellus S4 ME which provides extra long oil life in factory hydraulic machinery and the ability to reduce energy consumption within the equipment in which it is used.
7. What has happened to established brands such as Shell Donax, Shell Alvania and Shell Tivela?
As part of the process to simplify the products Shell offers to its customers, it has focused on streamlining the number of brands, while still ensuring that it offers a comprehensive range. Part of the relaunch involved Shell analysing its product portfolio and incorporating the best of previous brands including Shell Tellus, Shell Corena, Shell Omala, Shell Morlina, Shell Gadus and Shell Spirax.
Other previous brands will no longer be used. For example, under the new portfolio, Shell Tivela S will now be named Shell Omala S4 WE.
8. Will there be less choice and a reduction in products?
No, there will not be less choice. The new portfolio has been specifically designed to cover the vast majority of the lubricant needs of industrial customers in major sectors including; automotive components, general manufacturing, metals, mining and power. Streamlining the ranges has been achieved by removing older products and rationalising products which are currently addressing very similar needs. The new range will include a wider availability of top-tier products which have the potential to offer maximum benefits to customers.
9. Shell has recently relaunched Shell Rimula/Rotella (heavy-duty diesel engine oils) with a similar approach. What has been the feedback from customers so far?
Customer feedback continues to be very positive. The simple, intuitive approach to product tiering and the improved product support documentation has been widely welcomed as it has helped to demystify what was previously seen as a confusing product category.
To ensure the relaunch of Shell’s industrial oil, greases and transmission fluids achieves similar success, Shell has invested significant time in engaging end users and distributors in the developing the new range.
10. Have equipment makers approved the new products for use?
Yes. The majority of equipment makers have been consulted and have granted new approvals / recommendations for the new products. In fact, due to the focus of streamlining the number of brands, some products have been awarded additional approvals / recommendations. Over 2,500 approvals have been granted to date, with over 3,000 approvals expected by the end of 2010.
11. What should companies do with old branded stock?
Old branded stock can continued to be used, with the like-for-like equivalent being introduced as and when required. Distributors can continue to sell old branded stock.
12. Will companies need to flush systems before introducing the new products?
Unless there is a significant change to the type of fluid, then companies can maintain their current lubricant maintenance practices and introduce the updated branded product(s) when required. However, if customers decide to upgrade from a mineral to synthetic oil to realise additional performance benefits then customers should contact their local Shell representative who can advise on the best course of action.
13. What is the roll out schedule of the relaunched portfolio?
The new portfolio should be fully launched globally by mid-2011.
14. Will Shell’s services portfolio be affected by the industry portfolio re-image?
No. The existing portfolio of services such as; Shell LubeAnalyst, Shell LubeCoach and Shell LubeMatch will continue to be offered and will not be affected by the change. The relaunched product portfolio in combination with our portfolio of services will help customers develop and maintain the optimum lubrication solution for their operation.
15. How can organisations find out more information?
For further information please contact your local Shell representative.