Q: How has your business performed this year and what are you proudest of when you look back on 2019?
A: It has been an economically challenging year for the Middle East at large, fueled by the political instability in the region. We have, however, stayed on course: meeting challenges head-on to achieve the targets we set ourselves at the beginning of the year.
Looking back on 2019, what makes me proudest is my team. Their commitment and drive has made it a fantastic year for Cosentino in more ways than one. We have done exceedingly well in terms of projects, maintained our retail presence, spread our roots in Kuwait with the appointment of a distributor and set the stage to get a Saudi-based country manager to handle the growing needs of the market.
Q: What are your objectives for 2020 and what are you looking forward to the most?
A: Our primary objective for 2020 is to build the façade business in the region. We hope to achieve this by building awareness on our ultra-compact surface Dekton as the ideal material for architectural skins, educating the market on ventilated façade systems and promoting best practices in façade design. In parallel to this, we will also focus on growing our presence in KSA.
Q: What were your biggest product launches this year?
A: Our biggest product launch this year was Dekton Stonika – a collection of six colours inspired by the look of natural stone materials. The collection is the result of new findings in our manufacturing process that has allowed for sharper ultra-realistic designs, spectacular shine, unrivaled durability and great resistance to thermal shock and impact. We have received a lot of interest in the collection and hope to expand the range in the coming years.
In addition to Stonika, we also launched Dekton Slim – the lightest and slimmest possible Dekton slab, with a thickness of 4mm. Its light format makes it ideal to use as cladding for furniture, doors or large panels, and more.
Q: If you could have one Christmas present for your business what would it be?
A: To have our very own Cosentino warehouse in the UAE, with a fleet of trucks and dedicated in-house team to manage our logistics.
At the moment we are affiliated with a third-party party logistics operator, holding in stock around 2,000 slabs and managing our day-to-day operations. Hopefully by end-2020, we should be able to turn the wheels forward on this dream.
Q: And finally, what is your favourite festive joke?
A: What goes ‘Oh, Oh,Oh?’ Santa walking backwards!