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The market outlook

The market outlook
Official data released by the European Federation of the Parquet Industry (FEP) and testimonials from operators in the marketplace provide an overview of market trends and tips on what to look out for in 2015.

2014 has been a year of contrasts: the Italian market has continued to suffer the effects of recession while at the same time there have been some international opportunities for growth calling out for investment. This has been the basic trend in the wooden flooring sector this year. It is now time to look to the future with renewed hope and inject some optimism into business. After listening to what the operators have to say, it is clear that there is a good degree of diversification and several attractivemarket niches that had been overlooked in the past: new technologies, services with greater added value, corporate restructuring, attention paid to local markets, partnerships boosted in terms also of design and, of course,more focussing on foreign trade.
No one has remained idle over the past few months; everyone has striven to find the best way to get through this difficult moment. While some have decided to sit it out, many have taken a more proactive approach, with initiatives aimed at responding to (and even anticipating/ stimulating) demand for parquet flooring in Italy and abroad. Some have even chosen to contact potential clients directly.
Trade fairs serving this sector – fromBAUMunich to Made Expo – continue to be important for many firms, offering them the chance to come into contact with other professional figures, from designers to installers, architects to resellers. Yet it is also true thatmany have chosen to become involved inmore targeted – even itinerant – events. Some have organised road shows the length and breadth of Italy in order to meet potential clients on their home ground. As always happens during hard times, there is a clear distinction between light and shade; some have risked more than others and have boosted their turnover as a result.

The macro data at end 2013

In viewof these extremes, it is alwaysworthwhile analysing the data supplied by trade associations such as the European Federation of the Parquet Industry (FEP), which, after publishing the final data for 2013, has also just issued the performance figures for the first 8 months of the current year. In 2013, total consumption of wooden flooring in Europe amounted to 82,681,000 m2, a drop of 2.6% on the previous year, while total output (within the FEP area) came tomore than 67millionm2 (-1.8%compared to 2012).
Multi-layer laminar products accounted for 78% of total production, followed by solid wood 20%andmosaic flooring 2%. Themost popular timber was Oak (almost 71%), but alsoAsh (5.1%) and Birch (4.6%).
After analysis of the trends in each country we find that Germany is the number one producer (with 23.91% of all European parquet) followed by France (14%) and, in third position, Italy (9.39%).
Nevertheless, the numbers themselves show that, in Italy, there is a downwards trend,with output falling by 10.5% and consumption by 4.9%.
Output in 2013 fell to 155.000 m2 (solid wooden flooring) and 2,795,000 m2 (laminate flooring), making a total of 2,950,000 m2. The market was thus worth 7,214,000 m2 (some 6,012,000 of which were imported and 1,202,000 exported). The number of square metres actually installed amounted to 7,760,000 at the end of 2013.

How the first 8 months of 2014 evolved

If we look at the data for the 12 nations provided by the FEP for the first eight months of this year, there are no signs of a reversal of the slump seen in 2013.
Taking into consideration the differing characteristics of each area, we can see that Europe is clearly split into two groups: 6 nations are enjoying stability and even growth, while the other 6 are clearly in decline. The only nation where themarket is actually growing is Sweden, with a 3% rise due mainly to increasing demand for detached houses with wooden flooring. Four nations are experiencing ‘flat’ trends: Spain, Norway, Belgium and Denmark. Surprisingly, for the first time in a decade, Switzerland has not seen any growth, with mosaic parquet and 3-strip sales actually falling and LVT flooring rising.
The market in Spain is holding its breath, waiting for the tax reforms promised by the Government; sales remain stable, but at the lower end of the price range. The parquet market in Norway is also stable. The same goes for sales in Belgium, where the trend is very similar to that during the same period in 2013, as is also the case in Denmark.

A push towards change

Unfortunately, the other six nations in the FEP parquet market have produced negative results, even reaching double figures in some cases. Austria, Finland and Germany are experiencing falls of between 1%and 7%. The Germanmarket fell by between -1%and -2%in the first 4-5months of 2014; sales then picked up briefly in May only to become negative again in June, July and August. Sales fell by -3% in Austria, while Finland saw its figures drop by between -5 and -7%, due partly to a fall in demand from Russia, a major importer.
The situation in Holland is completely different: the data show that the Dutch industry is suffering fromover-production as a result of a fall in demand in recent years. Despite the slow economic recovery in this country, sales of parquet flooring are still falling. Dutch producers have no option but to concentrate on exports.
France and Italy have been particularly affected by the negative trends in the parquet sector. According to FEP data, the fall in sales has now reached double figures. In fact, there was a fall of between 10% and 12% in France during the first eightmonths of the year. It is expected that the final figures for 2014 will be negative.
Italy has fared even worse, with a fall of - 20%. The forecast for the last fourmonths of the year is very depressing, unrelieved by the fact that there has also been a 15%fall in sales of ceramic tiles to September. In view of this analysis of the situation in Europe, there is now a real need for some real incentives and support at a governmental level – perhaps in the shape of an investment programme and tax cuts – in order to turn the tide in the building industry and the parquet sector.

MASSIMO GASPERINI - President of CP Parquet

Gasperini How did your company fare in 2014?
Enormous satisfaction is perhaps the best way to describe our results in the Italian market, which still accounts for 70% of our total sales. Our bond with our clients is as strong as ever despite the continually daunting crisis.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
Our work systemhas also been based on personalized production. This positions us for the targeting of themid-high segment of consumers in search of exclusivity who feel less the effects of a crisis.
What do you foresee for 2015?
We’ll be making even more investments to grow in foreign markets as well: 2015 will be both strategic and structural for our company’s future.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
We’ll be presenting our new planking and new finishes at Domotex, including our new Quadrotte and the CP Parquet Lab Design, the creative laboratory dedicated to exclusive, made to measure projects ranging from parquet to interior décor items.

LUCA STACCHIOTTI - Sales Manager (Italy), Bauwerk

Stacchiotti How did your company fare in 2014?
2014 has been an important year for us and we’ve had some great results. We sowed the seeds in 2013 and are now reaping the benefits: we’ve expanded our sales network, seen our turnover improve and exceeded our expectations.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
We’ve been active on three fronts. Firstly, we’ve expanded our sales network: an indispensable move for a relatively new company on the Italian market such as Bauwerk.At the same time we’ve highlighted a few areas for potential growth that were “frozen” in 2013. Thirdly, we’ve invested in a communications strategy aimed at both the general public (the end users) and resellers and parquet fitters.
What do you foresee for 2015?
We’re confident that we’ll continue to enjoy success in 2015. We forecast further growth in our turnover and a strengthening of our sales network.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
The most important date for us in 2015 is that of BAU inMunich, rather than Domotex.We are still uncertain whether or not to take part inMade, as the Bauwerk sales strategies for 2015 have yet to be finalised. The final decision will also affect on our participation in Expo 2015.

MIRKO DE BLASIO - Sales Director (Italy), Kährs

De-Blasio How did your company fare in 2014?
On a global level, 2014 has been another positive year for the Kährs Group. More specifically (i.e. the wood flooring sector and the Italian market), we have experienced gradual growth ever since our direct entry on the national market in 2011, despite this having been a hard year generally for the Italian economy.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
No special measures. We believe in supplying consistently top quality products, using the most advanced laying technology, offering modern attractive designs, meeting customer requirements and asking an average price that most can afford.
What do you foresee for 2015?
We expect to see the current trend for growth continue into 2015 and a consolidation of our position on the Italian market. Moreover, we will be launching some new collections that will further broaden our already wide product range.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
As usual our Group will be at the German trade fairs, presenting some new collections to enrich our product range.
These will include several innovations and will be based on natural elements.

Renza Altoè Garbelotto - Managing Director, Parchettificio Garbelotto and Master Floor

Garbelotto How did your company fare in 2014?
We’ve invested heavily in our production plant in 2014, reorganising and revamping our machinery and laser cutter technology. We’ve taken part in several Italian and international trade fairs.
Having said that, however, the Italian market is currently in free-fall, with several partners facing insolvency, no movement in the construction sector and an escalation in the number of defaulters.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
Thanks to our investments, we’ve boosted our exports, which has allowed us to offset the fall in our Italian turnover. The current trend in Italy is a demand for lower prices, even if this means resorting to imports.
What do you foresee for 2015?
We have a strict code of ethics and always respect the client and the end user’s wishes.We invest in new technology and products on an ongoing basis: this will continue to be our strategy in foreseeable future.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
After much thought, we’ve decided not to take part in Made Expo.We’ve chosen to attend other trade fairs that share our philosophy and which have welcomed us with great enthusiasm.We shall be at Domotex as usual, however, as this is the major international exhibition for our sector.

OSCAR PANSERI - General Manager, Chimiver

Oscar Panseri How did your company fare in 2014?
Definitely not an easy year. To tell the truth, 2014 has proved to be the hardest year since 2008 in general terms, marking a -50% fall in the sector over the last 5-6 years!
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
We’ve set up an anti-crisis hotline! I’m joking, of course. Thanks to our 50 years in the business and staff of 57 (including 12 dedicated to R&D), we’ve invested a lot of time and energy in coming up with new ideas for the parquet industry, to the benefit of the producer, the fitter and the end-user alike. We’ve also been monitoring the markets for the (pesky) alternatives to parquet.
Exports have also been a crucial element.
What do you foresee for 2015?
We hope to return to previous figures (13,000,000 square metres of new or restored parquet flooring), that the Italian Government will reduce the cost of politics by 50% and cut taxes by 50%!We also hope that undertakings and promises will be kept and that people can smile again and feel confident in the future.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
We live on a day-to-day basis, as always! We’ve many new ideas and are doing all we can to continue growing, despite the poor economic conditions. Domotex will be the first showcase chronologically.

PATRIZIO DEI TOS - Director, Itlas

Patrizio Dei Tos Howdid your company fare in 2014?
This year has been very confusing. In other words, we’ve had to stop and think before undertaking each new project. Indeed, we’ve found that it’s been very worthwhile doing this on some occasions rather than taking rash decisions in the heat of the moment.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
Let me say this: we’ve learnt how to do business like the Chinese. Not in the sense that we’re now selling our products cheaply, but that we’re content to watch and wait.
What do you foresee for 2015?
I believe it’s important to maintain a positive outlook in business. There are signs of a fixed purpose and a serious approach from on high, which in the real world can be translated as pointing to confidence. There is a market for our products; it’s just that there isn’t enough trust and faith in the future.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
These events are extremely important for us, if we want to export Italian products around the world. We believe in their validity and so we’re getting ready to take part with great enthusiasm and impact.

ANGELO GIANGIULIO - Product Manager Wooden Flooring Line, Mapei

Angelo Giangiulio How did your company fare in 2014?
2014 closes on a positive note for the Mapei Group. It goes without saying that the overseas markets have allowed us to grow, especially in the case of our parquet products. I estimate that our total turnover in the parquet sector will about € 45 million by the end of the year.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
Mapei has always adopted the same strategy: continuous monitoring of the markets, paying particular attention to customer needs, in order to develop new products offering new solutions. Our top priority is to protect human health through respect for the environment.
What do you foresee for 2015?
We expect another year of great sacrifices on the Italian market. Nevertheless, we’ll continue to develop new products to offer new solutions.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
We started preparing for Domotex, BAU and Made Expo 2015 in September. However, I can’t disclose anything yet. All I can say is that we will most definitely present an innovative product!

CARLO COMANI - Italian Sales Director for Gazzotti

Carlo Comani How did your company fare in 2014?
2014 was a big year for Gazzotti. We have been very busy in the research & development of new products: as many as 74 new developments were presented to the market, still others are currently in the pipeline awaiting immediate launching.We are clearly no longer referring to a crisis, and we are not patiently waiting for the market to recover.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
We took action all across the board, maximizing the efficiency of our internal organization and sales team while channeling greater effort into research, as mentioned above. It’s hard for me to comprehend how a ceramic product - even with excellent chromatic definition - can take the place of an irreplaceable raw material such as wood. Our new Vintage finish is an undeniable step forward for the entire sector. Already renowned for its extraordinary naturalness, Vintage is now also incredibly scratch-resistant: this parquet can be laid in bathrooms, in kitchens, and in high-transit areas with all wood’s warmth and naturalness. Does that seem like a small accomplishment? What do you foresee for 2015?
Predictions on the performance of a market that is regularly violated by politicians and bureaucrats in 2015 are difficult to make. Fortunately, our expectations for our own performance are high because our ambitious development programs are clearly defined. Sales in foreign markets as well obviously rank among of our prime objectives.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
We will not be participating in either Domotex or Made: we’ve decided to exchange a large part of our trade fair exhibition with methodically organized meetings with professionals and clients: more than additional visibility, we need to communicate the quality of our products, the advantages of choosing a Gazzotti parquet, the power of Made in Italy production.

GIAN LUCA VIALARDI - General Manager, Woodco

Gian Luca Vialardi How did your company fare in 2014?
If we ignore the first quarter of the year, 2014 has been more than satisfactory for Woodco. Although the market was sluggish at the start of the year, we’re now reaping the benefits of some initiatives and these figures would appear to be an improvement on last year.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
We launched our new website to improve our offer; we invested in more communications; we presented new collections – including Contatto, featuring the innovative Uniclic dry click system – and we introduced some specific services for designers.
What do you foresee for 2015?
We have high expectations for 2015, since not only will we be presenting innovative materials in the BerryAlloc range, but we’ll also introduce two new parquet collections dedicated to two completely distinct price brackets and stylistic needs.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
We’ve decided not to invest in trade fairs, preferring to meet our resellers by means of a road show. In the Spring of 2015 this will travel around Italy, thus allowing people to actually touch and feel the newWoodco collections and understand all their advantages and potential applications.

NICOLA MULARONI - Marketing Director, ALI Parquets

Nicola Mularoni How did your company fare in 2014?
Much as we did in 2013. Once again we’ve introduced innovations and increased our product range, timbers, finishes, laying techniques and customer service.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
We’ve offered our customers greater product personalisation, while still guaranteeing fast delivery. We’ve also invested in ICT solutions: we’re the first in our field to be able to show customers what a given parquet will look like in their homes before actually buying it. Thanks to the RealityRemod app for tablet iOS and Android, we can replace the floor in a photo with any of our parquets to show how the room will look. Then there’s the ALI Vision web interface on our website for 2D and 3D rendering of new or renovated structures.
What do you foresee for 2015?
Unfortunately nothing points to any significant improvements in the Italian economy. Having said that, we are investing in certain rapidly developing foreign markets, some of which have already responded quickly and positively to our solid wood pre-finished parquet.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
We are currently in the process of deciding which of these three initiatives we should concentrate on. Expo is, of course, a very interesting opportunity and we expect to book enough space in the Italian pavilion to draw attention to our products.

RITA CADORIN - Marketing and Development Director, Cadorin

Rita Cadorin How did your company fare in 2014?
I believe that we should consider ourselves very fortunate to be attracting orders in view of the current economic climate. However, on second thoughts, it isn’t just a matter of “luck”: every day we profit from our decision to concentrate on the manufacture of top quality parquet, both in terms of technical and aesthetic quality, the real strength of the “Made in Italy” label.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
Tenacity, professionalism and ongoing research and development… Luckily the exceptional quality and beauty of our collections mean that our products are always appreciated in Italy and overseas.
What do you foresee for 2015?
Most importantly, we have no intention of changing our values: quality and beauty in our products; respect for mankind and the environment; professional and humane ethics. Over the years these have proved very successful and we trust they’ll continue to do so in the future.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
Three events that are very close to each other and so particularly challenging. Novelty guaranteed.

MAURO MARANCO - Director, Stemau

Mauro Maranco How did your company fare in 2014?
Another difficult year commercially. Italian and international politics give no cause for optimism; fear has caused consumers to cut back to the bare essentials and there are no signs of growth.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
Promotion of the “Made in Italy” label overseas and on emerging markets. The launch of a new B2B portal any day now. Restructuring and participation in prestigious tenders, such as the Aula Magna for the Faculty of Architecture at the Roma 3 University in Rome.
What do you foresee for 2015?
That the real estate and mortgage markets turn around: only by assisting the building industry can the entire market recover. Lower taxes, too.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
We have great expectations concerning the number and quality of the visitors, projects and ideas. We hope we’ll not be disappointed.

FEDERICO DA RE - Head of Marketing and Export at Tover

tover How did your company fare in 2014?
I believe that 2014 was the most complex of recent years. In addition to the difficulty of maintaining previously acquired positions in the national market, in fact, we’ve had to deal with the instability of the world’s economic situation and the tension between Russia and Ukraine that has compromised the export market.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
Tover has faced the last two years with determination, even going against the current trend by making investments: we opened a new warehouse in Nova Milanese (MI) in order to offer better service to local clients, in the same way as with the warehouse we previously opened in Vedelago (TV) that covers Northeast Italy. We also expanded our productive unit by purchasing a new industrial hangar to be used for the expansion of various departments and the creation of a specific area for the development of industrial finishing systems.
What do you foresee for 2015?
Although it’s hard to make long-term plans, I believe in the validity of the choices we have made thus far, first of which, the constancy we’ve shown in the development of our new products with lower environmental impact currently being certified to European Standards (German DIBt, French A+, etc.), and for this reason I can look to the future with confidence.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
As regards our forthcoming trade fair commitments, we’re working on finishing systems that offer the highest resistance while leaving the top surface with a completely natural feel and shade, practically invisible surface treatments, so to speak. Our objectives also include the presentation of a range of bi-component water-based varnishes that are completely free ofom isocyanate.

ELIA BOLZAN - owner and General Manager, Friulparchet

Elia Bolzan How did your company fare in 2014?
The much awaited economic recovery (especially in the building industry) has yet again failed to materialise. New construction sites are far and few between and statistics point to a situation that is likely to continue for years to come. We are now mainly focussing on the renovation sector: our new materials and finishes meet with the approval of an ever more demanding clientele with an eye for quality.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
Luckily, all the efforts we’ve made in the past to attract foreign clients are now finally paying off. We have strengthened our already good ties with various countries, where our product lines have met with great interest.We’re also putting the final touches to a new business plan for the next 3-year period and we’re convinced that our future success lies in our ability to export our products.
What do you foresee for 2015?
We’re still confident and see the glass as half-full. After all, our company has been around for a very long time, with the fourth generation now becoming involved. We therefore feel it’s our duty to continue with what the past generations started, if for no other reason than respect for those who believe in our company and our great products.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
We’re considering these, but have yet to decide which of the three we want to attend.

LORENZO ONOFRI - Sales Director, Stile

Lorenzo Onofri How did your company fare in 2014?
Definitely a complex year for us, but full of new opportunities. Stile has faced a major upheaval, having changed its social structure and medium/long-term goals.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
Rather than introduce any “anti-crisis measures”, we’ve actually eliminated a lot of our structure and reorganised our activities in order to guarantee better efficiency and a more dynamic response to both the Italian market (currently losing its strategic importance for Stile) and our overseas markets. North America in particular.
What do you foresee for 2015?
The future promises to be very positive. After repositioning the company and innovating our “men and means”, we’re now convinced that sales will start to pick up again. The 2015 Pricelist is guaranteed to surprise!
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
To be honest, Domotex 2015 is of little interest to us, given that it’s being held at the same time as BAU. Neither are we particularly interested in Made.We don’t really see the point in taking part in the major ‘umbrella’ exhibitions, particularly in Italy. We like to focus on something more specific, especially in our new markets.We are, however, preparing for Expo 2015 and already have something interesting up our sleeves.

LUIGI GALLO - Director, Interwood Representative for Italy, Boen and Osmo

Luigi Gallo How did your company fare in 2014?
All things considered, I reckon we’ve managed to defend our position quite well given the economic/financial situation here in Italy. With hindsight, our results might have been slightly better if we’d run more risks by making more use of payment guarantees.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
We’ve continued to supply top quality materials, provide before- and after-sales services that guarantee customer satisfaction, with the result that our clients feel supported and are happy to put their trust in us. What’s more, our business relations have been strengthened by the fact that our representatives respect each other’s sales areas, without feeling the need to encroach on other areas to sell a few extra metres.
What do you foresee for 2015?
We’re confident, as always, that we can achieve a gradual recovery in turnover and that this will return, sooner or later, to pre-crisis levels. Our companies, Boen and Osmo, make available to us all the tools we need to continue improving our presence on the market.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
Boen and Osmo, like most major European firms, will be at BAU Munich, the biennial exhibition that continues to rival Domotex for prominence when it comes to our type of product.

GIUSEPPE CIAMBELLA - Director, Ciambella Legnami

Giuseppe Ciambella How did your company fare in 2014?
2014 has been a year of contrasts as far as we are concerned: excellent results in the first six months, followed by a marked drop at the end of the summer, due essentially to a fall in demand from certain foreign quarters (responsible for driving our constant growth in the past). This has been especially true in Russia.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
In practice, we’ve doubled our expenditure on visibility, especially in Russia, by purchasing whole pages of advertising in the most prestigious magazines.We’ve also taken part in several important trade fairs, such as Made Expo WorldWide Moscow, etc.
What do you foresee for 2015?
It’s difficult – or at least it is for us – to make clear medium/long-term forecasts. All too often reality disappoints our expectations. Nevertheless, we’re looking further afield and putting more effort into expanding into certain parts of the world that we’ve neglected in recent years.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
For years our preferred showcase has been BAU Munich, after having been present at Hannover for many years. We shall, however, watch the other events very closely.

LUIGI CUZZOCREA - President, Carver

Luigi Cuzzocrea How did your company fare in 2014?
2014 was another difficult year. However, we’ve managed to keep our sales figures steady, countering the slump in Italian sales with an increase in exports.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
We’re reduced our warehouse stock and cut our overheads. I should stress that none of these anti-crisis measures have had an effect on the quality of our products, which continues to be extremely high.
What do you foresee for 2015?
We foresee a slow turn-around on the Italian market. Our foreign markets continue to grow and so we expect this trend to continue in 2015.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
We will be at Domotex as has been our custom in recent years.As regards Expo 2015, given that our head office is inMilan many potential and existing clients will be able to visit our premises in Rodano during this event.

ANDREA MARGARITELLI - Sales Director, Listone Giordano

Andrea Margaritelli How did your company fare in 2014?
There’s been a gradual yet substantial recovery in overseas contracts, while our domestic markets have remained stagnant, as these are mainly based on retail sales and so easily affected by the drop in confidence and nominal purchasing power. Listone Giordano has seen growth in several international markets, both in the retail and the contract supplies sectors. This growth has mostly involved exports to Asia and the Middle-East.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisis measures?
We’ve recently completed a lengthy and painstaking process of product development. Our product range is now split into three lines: the Classic line (technology and elegance), the Atelier line (tradition and artisan quality) and the Natural Genius line (design and innovation). We now have a stronger and clearer base from which to face future challenges. Not to mention Listone Giordano’s constant investments in marketing tools and sales support.
What do you foresee for 2015?
We intend to continue doing business with courage and coherence, with an emphasis on promoting open dialogue with the world of furniture and interior design.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
We’ve recently taken part in Cersaie (ceramic tiles and bathroom furnishings), much to our satisfaction, as well as in other international events dedicated to the world of professionals and design in Rotterdam, Paris, Singapore, etc. We now need to catch our breath before making any new commitments.

DENNIS BORDIN - President and General Manager, Progress Profiles

Dennis Bordin How did your company fare in 2014?
2014 has been a good year for us: Progress Profiles continues to grow. Our company – a leading producer of technical and decorative profiles, finishing membranes and many other innovative systems – is about to close 2014 with growth in two figures thanks to the efforts of a highly creative and professional team.
Have you adopted any special anti-crisismeasures?
Many investments: in quality, service, human resources and an increasingly widespread sales network with professional sales personnel and technical experts.We continue to invest in research and development, as well as in in-house and external training courses. All this, plus hi-tech production systems, to guarantee exceptionally high product quality and total customer satisfaction.
What do you foresee for 2015?
Progress Profiles looks forward to 2015 without reservations. We’ll continue to invest in advanced technology, training and design. We already export to more than 50 countries and so will continue to expand our customer base in 2015, aware that people are becoming more willing to invest in genuine Italian quality.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
We’ll be presenting our very latest products to the market, including our patented PRODESO HEAT electrical heating system, as well as some recent and already highly successful systems, such as Proleveling, the Proled System and the Proshower. We’ll also use these trade fairs to present many new profiles with modern shapes and finishes to add elegance to any room.

ERCOLE BIBIANO - Managing Director, Klindex

Ercole Bibiano How did your company fare in 2014?
Our company has a worldwide reputation as a leader in the treatment and polishing of marble, granite, stone and ceramic tile flooring. We’ve recently expanded and boosted our range of wooden flooring sanding and polishing machinery. Given that we’re already successfully established in many markets (and especially so in Germany, Benelux, the UK, France and East Europe) thanks to our famous Timba sanding machine that has replaced the more conventional roller and band machines, in 2014 we decided to invest in R&D, in order to design new machines capable of meeting the needs of our customers operating in the wooden flooring sector. We’ve recently patented and started production of our new Mini Timba: the only floor sander that lets you sand edges and awkward areas (such as under radiators) without having to kneel down, as is the case with other perimeter sanding machines. Despite the general crisis, 2014 has been another good year for Klindex with an overall increase in sales of 10%, mainly due to exports.
What do you foresee for 2015?
We’re confident that the upwards trend will continue in 2015. Indeed, we’ve just opened a new branch in America, confident that our technology and competitiveness will ensure our success on such far-flung and fiercely competitive markets such as the USA and Canada.
Domotex, Made and Expo 2015 are approaching: what steps have you taken?
As for Domotex, Made and Expo2015, we feel these aren’t the right exhibitions for us at the moment, as our target clients don’t attend this type of event.

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