CEO summary, from the start of a new decade

We have officially crossed the threshold of the new decade. In honor of the occasion, let’s reflect on the year behind us – and then turn to face the future

Last year marked big changes for FB Ketju: we laid the foundation for growth for many years to come. Our largest — and likely most prominent — individual investment was Rauma’s new unit in Lappi. With Rauma’s factory, our industrial production area more than doubled, and our production capacity grew by 30 percent.

Thanks to these modern and spacious premises, we were able to develop our production methods and logistics solutions while modernizing our equipment to ensure competitiveness. This considerable size increase also improved our occupational safety standards and worker wellbeing in the form of a more spacious and bright working environment with better air quality.

We also invested in our personnel during the past year. We hired new people, trained qualified workers and developed our own skills comprehensively. As a result, our entire employee portfolio has been modernized and our competence portfolio has been updated significantly. There has, of course, been some turnover – but overall, our staff has grown by 15-20 percent.

How does this all look from the customer’s perspective? In short: even better quality and more timely deliveries. Although our product quality has been good up to this point, there’s no reason why we shouldn’t continually strive for excellence.

As a company, we want to offer customer-specific and customized chain products, delivered flexibly and crafted from high quality European materials. Our quality and service level separates us from many of our competitors, especially those operating from Asia. If we hold true, I believe our business will remain stable regardless of market conditions.

Looking forward at what’s to come

This year we will expand our business and invest more in overseas markets like Russia and other Eastern European countries, in addition to Denmark and Spain. At the same time, we will offer sales support to FB Group’s sister companies and the prerequisites they require to offer our products in their market areas.

Actively developing our sales and marketing strategies have a big role to play in our future. Clearly, there’s demand for our products – we’ve heard as much from the field – but where in the world can our products actually be acquired? This question is now being addressed with more sales and customer visits, and by investing in after-sales support.

On the marketing side, we can depend on the expertise of an external partner. Last year, we began our cooperation with Jenga Markkinointiviestintä Oy, a marketing agency from Tampere. Jenga has helped us in building our corporate image and communications strategies, and together we’re developing sales support materials for our retailers and sister companies.

In the big picture, we’re now developing operations that enable us to make durable products from high quality materials and deliver them flexibly to our customers – even overseas. This is the direction we’re developing our business, premises and people. I trust that this road will carry us through – no matter the situation.

Matti Vekkeli