Reggiani Group: we are not salesmen, we are partners

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Michele Riva (left) and the top management of the Reggiani Group
Michele Riva (left) and the top management of the Reggiani Group
Michele Riva (left) and the top management of the Reggiani Group

Reggiani Group is a global leader in development, manufacturing and marketing of textile printing, finishing and ennoblement all along the value chain with its trademarks: Reggiani Macchine, Mezzera, Jaeggli Meccanotessile, RPR and MTS. The manufacturing unit on over 22,000 m² in Grassobbio (Bergamo) with approximately 190 employees, boasted in excess of 69.3 million Euro sales end 2013 (+61% up from the preceding year). Let’s talk with the sales manager, Michele Riva.

GROUP VALUE

«The parent company is Reggiani Macchine, since the ’40s working in traditional printing», the manager recalls. «In the late ’90s the company became part of the group belonging to the Caccia Dominioni family and started to evolve towards the first digital industrial printing machine and the acquisition of 5 trademarks that now belong to wearereggiani.com namely: Mezzera (pre- and post printing textile ennobling and dyeing), Jaeggli Meccanotessile (cotton yarn mercerizing machines), RPR (yarn converting machines), MTS (spindles and accessories of textile machines). Our core business is still printing machines.aperHowever we do not sell machines, instead we offer a system to support our clients in the implementation of a product, of a project. The connection between printing machines and the finishing process not only makes our products attractive, it is our philosophy, our way to approach and live the market. This is the spirit of wearereggiani: a new concept of total solution offered our clients. It is based on process synergies: between RPR and MTS at the beginning of the textile chain, as well as between Reggiani, Mezzera and Jaeggli at the end of the process. To give an example, in this respect, Mezzera – a historical trademark in textile finishing, acquired in 2009 and boosted in 2011 – offers a strategically developed range connected with printing. Including also machines that have always been its battlehorse, like washing and post-printing machines, sold in parallel with Reggiani printing machines».

TECHNOLOGY AND KNOW HOW

«All this makes us build a common path to develop new technologies, innovations that we expect to be able to bring to market most profitably. We created and are establishing a network: including companies, products, human resources, know how… – he points out –Mezzera is also developing a comprehensive range of products, ranging from plasma applications in pre-finishing to treatments by ammonia to prepare yarns and fabrics, to what we call “indigo”, a new dyeing process of cotton yarns, with indigo. These are digital finishing processes running in parallel with finishing, as it is the case, e.g. with ammonia, useful to implement and improve pre- and post-printing steps. In connection with this highly important topic of innovation, we recently opened a new technology development centre in Holland: Reggiani Holland, in cooperation with the TenCate group and with the help of some Dutch universities. All this in view of a growing development of digital finishing and its applications in techtextiles. Also, at SGIA Expo 2014 (Specialty Graphic Imaging Association) a trade fair held in Las Vegas, we launched pigment application in digital technology for the industry, thanks to a synergy with Mezzera in textile preparation and post-printing finishing».

MARKET OUTLOOK

«At the moment digital printing machines are market leaders. Though we maintained a production level of traditional printing machines which we did not expect, while assuming a deeper slowdown – he suggests – actually, in the last 3 years we more than doubled the production of digital machines. From January 2013 until October 2014 we jumped from 4 to 10 digital machines sold every month. This fact gives a clear idea of where the market is going to. It is a market Reggiani was among the first to enter in 2004 with its first digital machine, later establishing its place in it with a second generation machine. Our top strategic markets, in terms of volume, are United States, China, Turkey and Brazil. On these markets we expect a remarkable growth of digital machines in the future, with more or less steady volumes of traditional printing machines. Europe is at a slightly lower level. On the other hand, we expect a revolution in countries like India and Pakistan, which are now experiencing the first requests of digital machines, eager to reach the top level in the medium term. Hence, in our strategy, we continue to cover these two markets through a traditional, local sales network, divided in geographic areas and/or product segments, whereas on first rank markets we established local units called Demo Service Center, in Shanghai, Atlanta, Istanbul and Sao Paulo, where our machines are available to customers, for them to get to know this environment hands on. These are direct units with a local service and sale of consumables (inks, and similar items).

TRADITIONAL vs DIGITAL PRINTING

«Let me mention an important subject: in our opinion printing quality and handmade are two different worlds. With the digital technique you can do what traditional printing cannot achieve and viceversa. It is not a question of higher/lower quality levels. A digital print is far from a lower quality product compared with traditional printing. On the contrary, digital printing often offers the opportunity to enlarge the range of shades obtaining a higher graphic quality. What makes customers go for traditional machines are the type of pattern, the measurements and the number of metres. On the other hand, a digital machine can deliver even smaller batches in a very short time, thus influencing size and production costs. It generates valuable energy savings which go hand in hand with the green economy. In this respect, the demand is continuously shifting towards digital machines; the shift originated as an alternative to traditional flatbed printing, for smaller high quality runs, soon conquering market shares. A demand that first came from the EU countries is likely to become the future of all markets».