Interview with Jordi Carbonell, MATIC administrator, in the Spanish Magazine Sector Ejecutivo

MATIC has more than 50 years of experience selling machines and accessories for the textile manufacturing sector and today, it is also present in the solar protection, digital printing and technical curtain sector.

MATIC was founded in 1969 in Barcelona with the aim of selling machines for the textile manufacturing sector. The company designs and manufactures complete solutions, from cutting, welding and sewing machines, to handling and storage equipment. Committed to offering innovative products, state-of-the-art technology and high-quality services, MATIC has more than 50 years of experience in the sale of machinery and accessories for the textile clothing sector, but today it is present in the solar protection sector, digital printing and technical curtain. Jordi Carbonell is an administrator at MATIC.

You started in the textile sector, but you have evolved. How do you define yourself today?
We have gone from being a company that resold machinery for the clothing and upholstery industry of other brands only for the Spanish market, to being a brand that manufactures its own solutions and machines for two very specific market niches that they have nothing to do with the sectors of their beginnings and that sells them all over the world. We have reinvented ourselves in less than 20 years with the same human team that we were, we have only been adding people as we expected to grow.

How has MATIC evolved to adapt to changes? What sectors are you targeting?
We have reinvented 90% of what we make and sell today and it has been like a very far flight in a short time. And how is this achieved? It is achieved thanks to the performance of two fundamental engines that we have: the brand and the human team, both need and feed off each other. The human engine must maintain and develop its values, the values that describe it and that are perfectly aligned with the company. In our case they are: the initiative to make decisions and challenges; innovation, not only for the product, but in all aspects related to a company; perseverance in meeting our objectives; the adaptability to face new opportunities and threats; empathy with our clients and colleagues; fast communication with the members of the organization and the market, and respect for our competitors.
Our business is focused on three sectors: one is which was in our origins and which we continue to maintain, which is distributors of industrial sewing machinery and which accounts for 10% of our turnover, and the other two, which represent 90% of our business volume are: the manufacture and distribution with our own brand of solutions and machines that will be used for the production of solar protection products such as awnings and shades; and the last one, the manufacture of solutions and machines for the production of textile advertising products such as banners, lights, flags, etc.

What type of machines do you offer and what are their differential characteristics?
We offer smart warehouses for the spools of fabric that our clients store; fabric cutting machines (we offer different cutting technologies as required by the fabric composition: blade, ultrasound and laser); automatic sewing machines (here there is a great diversity of models and types of sewing); welding machines by thermal resistance, hot air and ultrasonics; and the machines for the packaging of the finished product and all the necessary software for the optimization of the fabric to be used and for data storage during the production process, which are important to have identified. Our machines are recognized by the brand we have created. Getting people to say 'I have a MATIC' has been possible thanks to the development of our advantages as a company: always being two steps ahead has allowed us to distance ourselves from our competitors and the technical knowledge of the sector (of the problems of our clients in throughout its long production process) are our main characteristics and competitive advantages. We have not obtained all this by luck, but by the talent that develops over the years. When you are surrounded by talent, you have to be humble and know that you can continue to enrich it.

What profile of professionals works at MATIC?
We have a great diversity of professional profiles, always due to the mix between implementers, conductors, persuaders, promoters, liaisons, collaborators, coordinators and analyzers. What in soccer would be kickers, passers, dribblers, spikers... To build a high-performance team, all skills must be identified and grouped, so they complement each other.
We are not looking for people who come to work hours, or who are waiting to be told what to do. People who enjoy their work and feel proud to be helping others are needed. Their work must make sense until it reaches a level of service. In this way, they will surely contribute to the purpose of the company. I would like to add that we are very clear that companies are made by people, not only because they are people, but also because they are and contribute to business.

MATIC presents novelties on the market every year. How do they achieve that capacity for innovation?
That's how it is. But we don't have a constant goal. The decision will be based on the needs of niche markets, the firm's production capacity, and the company's ownership objectives. We have been able to develop new products for three years, between three and four machines per year, but there have been years when we have only made one. In this section, we use 75% of our own resources and the other 25% are subcontracted.

What does MATIC do to bet on sustainability?
Three years ago, I remember that there were three objectives that contributed to the annual objectives. Photovoltaic solar panels were installed and we avoided printing commercial catalogs and business cards. We developed a machine that consumed less energy in the machines section. This led us to expend a lot of R&D resources to replace an extremely popular machine with a new one that uses electric motion elements instead of pneumatic ones. Using an electrical machine, we do not need compressors to generate energy, since losses occur in this process of energy transformation. Sustainability is no longer an objective; it is part of our consciousness, our way of thinking, and the way we behave.

What is your level of internationalization? We have reached a level of 70%. What are the main challenges for the future of MATIC?
For the next three years we have the objective of growing our turnover in two digits per year. We have been preparing for it for three years. Capital investment in other companies that are linked to the metallurgical sector is one of the great challenges for the present and next year. We have a capital investment budget of up to 8,000,000 euros in companies that contribute to generating more value for our clients and this could be completing the product range and that already have the know-how implemented, as could be the case of a company that is dedicated to the cardboard packaging sector or an engineering for product development, or a company that is dedicated to the assembly of machinery. This last case does not contribute to generating value, but it does contribute to increasing our productive capacity to meet our growth objectives in terms of turnover. But the biggest challenge will be to help and collaborate in spreading our own culture and governance system to other companies and workers. This would be a social contribution of which we would be very proud.

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