Lusail Iconic Stadium in Qatar, J.F. Kennedy International Airport in the USA, Porsche Design Studio in Germany, Terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport in the UK, Hilton Hotel in Poland or Millenium Shopping Mall in China. Do you know what these places have in common? All of them feature high-quality TechniStone® material. It can be revealed that this material is of Czech origin. We discussed its advantages and future applications with the technical director of Technistone, Tomáš Duda.
Quality quartz material is increasingly being sought after by anyone who desires timeless furniture. It is not only a Czech tendency, but a trend that, following the traditional popularity of quartz in the southern European states, has also taken off in the Scandinavian countries. Why do you think this product has become so popular?
Indeed, quartz stone has been booming in the last few years, and its popularity is growing rapidly. Of course, this trend is also evident in the Czech Republic, although its use in the Czech Republic is still less common than abroad.
What do you think are the reasons behind this?
There are many aspects to this rise in popularity. A significant role is played by the tradition of stone materials being commonly used as work surfaces for kitchen countertops or bathroom vanities. Unfortunately, our country does not have the traditions of Italy, Brazil or Turkey, where working with stone is a very ancient and widespread craft. The great advantage, and actual reason for the creation and development of this now popular material is its enormous physical resistance. This is an unrivaled attribute it has over natural stone, which over time and years of use suffers and loses its beauty. Our big advantage is also the production technology itself. Compared to the devastation commonly found among surface quarries in the extraction of natural stone blocks, it is very environmentally friendly.
It is also necessary to mention the flexibility to react to the fashion trends of design and architecture, where the original inspiration of nature creates irresistibly unique works. An indisputable advantage is the property of hardened stone, which the customer will appreciate simply in the everyday use of the material in the kitchen, bathroom or other interior areas. Water resistance, health safety, high resistance to staining from paint, oil and natural juices, high mechanical and chemical resistance, and especially the easy maintenance of hardened stone, are the key features for the end user in the selection of household materials. Thanks to the above features, our TechniStone® brand quartz stone retains its original beauty for years and can thus serve several generations.
You have outlined the benefits of quartz. If someone decides to choose it or wishes to see it with their own eyes, where can they come across products directly from your company?
With our extensive distribution network in more than 75 countries across five continents, TechniStone® can be found virtually all over the world. The share of production for the Americas has increased significantly, and for North America in even more so.
In Russia and Poland, where we also have local branches and local stocks to speed up customer service. The largest customers in Europe are customers from the Benelux, UK, Scandinavia, Italy, Baltic among other countries fromacross the continent. Major commercial projects have also been implemented in the Middle East, Australia, Indonesia and North Africa.
To be specific, I can mention Lusail Iconic Stadium in Qatar, JF Kennedy International Airport in the US, Design Studio Porsche in Germany, Terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport in the UK, Hilton Hotel in Poland, Shopping Mall Milenium in China – just a few names of world-class projects where TechniStone® is proud to be showcased
In the Czech and Slovak Republics, TechniStone® can be seen in Prague’s Nová síň Gallery, in the Cinema City cinemas network, as well as in the Panorama City office and residential complex, and in a wide range of hotels, shopping centers and restaurants.
What is the hardest thing for company management in terms of keeping up with the pace of progress? If we could speculate for a moment – can you forecast the future of stone production in, say, 10 years? Do you expect to be affected by the onset of robotization in production?
Along with trends and new product launches, the development of new machine technologies and their incorporation into existing production lines goes hand in hand. This is a considerable annual investment cost that is a necessity in our hard stone industry. Investments ensure that TechniStone® products are innovative, competitive and maintain high quality standards.
Already now, all our production lines in Technistone are fully automated, so the operators only oversee their operation. However, I can imagine that we would also fully automate the transport of slabs within the production plant, where the individual lines, pressing and polishing, will be interconnected with the dispatch warehouse. Industry 4.0 is an important concept for Technistone and it will definitely follow this path in the future.
Finally, according to the available resources, your business results are very good this year. Does this mean that, unlike other companies, you do not have to fight to attract quality employees? If so, how do you keep them?
It doesn´t mean that we cease battling to find technically skilled candidates on the market. On the contrary, we feel a considerable lack of high-quality technically-oriented applicants. All the more we value our loyal team, thanks to which we can continue to grow. The variety of vacancies on the employment market is interesting for my colleagues, but the vast majority remain true to TechniStone® and our luxury product. We use standard tools, such as HR marketing, in order to retain employees. The results must then be adapted to our tactics, such as extending employee benefits.