Mr. Stefano Benedetti

Mr. Stefano Benedetti, VP Marketing & Sales, shares with us a detailed insight about the present industry scenario:

woodandpaneleurope Do you consider the American market to be in a developing state?
  Stefano Benedetti:Yes, this market is beginning to recover even though recovery is progressing at a very slow rate.
woodandpaneleurope Give us details of the highest-selling machine.
  Stefano Benedetti: Our best selling machine at this moment in time is the DynaSteam, a system which has numerous advantages, the main ones being:

• 15-30% increase in production capacity
• Better board properties, especially in the case of MDF panels
• Condensation free panels.
• Decrease in the amount of resin consumed, a benefit discovered at an MDF facility where the customer, rather than increasing production capacity, preferred to focuson reducing production costs, due to its own marketing strategies.
Result: over 10% reduction in resin consumption

woodandpaneleurope Do you see the construction industry booming in the region?
  Stefano Benedetti: The construction industry seems to be recovering but we wouldn’t say it is “booming”.
woodandpaneleurope Are there further expansion plans for the organisation in 2014?
  Stefano Benedetti: IMAL has continued to expand ever since its establishment. Today it leads a group of companies that count over 300 employees, the majority of whom are qualified technicians or have a university degree. “Innovation” is one of our fundamental concepts and this drives us towards a natural expansion of the corporation.
woodandpaneleurope What will be your predictions for the second half of the year? Where do you see the wood industry sailing in the coming few months?
  Stefano Benedetti: Our predictions for the second half of the year are positive and optimistic, both for the company as well as for the group. GLOBUS, the group’s latest member, is achieving some truly rewarding results as a consequence of their specific expertise and the commercial synergy that has formed and which is living up to expectations.

woodandpaneleurope Where do you see your competitors in the future?
  Stefano Benedetti: Here we need to distinguish between the various markets. If we take the market for complete plants, our competitors clearly have much more experience, but we are catching up with them fast. We are taking huge strides and the market has welcomed this new player with positive interest. On the other hand, if we look at a market which is a more traditional and consolidated one, then we are light years ahead of our competitors. We have the most extensive range of laboratory and on-line quality control equipment which the market can offer, no other competitor can claim to have the vast experience we have and our customers are aware of this and appreciate it.
woodandpaneleurope How important are awards and recognition for IMAL?
  Stefano Benedetti: It is always pleasant to receive an award, as it is an acknowledgement from third parties who appreciate the work which has been done, although the best acknowledgements for us are the orders from our customers, who, after installing the equipment and seeing for themselves the kind of results which can be achieved, immediately place more orders for other lines of theirs which is exactly what is happening with the DynaSteam and the Hi-Jet resination system.
woodandpaneleurope How would you sum up the fiscal year 2013?
  Stefano Benedetti: In one word: positive! For both IMAL and the other members of the group; and a positive attitude is what is needed to build a solid future in times like these.
woodandpaneleurope What are the upcoming products that we can expect to see in future?
  Stefano Benedetti: We have about 30 people working in the IMAL R&D department and approximately the same number working overall within the group. We can say that about 20% of our workforce works full time on the development of new products, an area which is given our continual support and which produces numerous benefits. The most sensational news will probably come from GLOBUS in the very near future, but we would rather not say any more now.
woodandpaneleurope What do you think of the woodworking fairs in the industry? How much helpful does it prove to be?
  Stefano Benedetti: The fairs are an important point of contact with the customers, they constitute an occasion for manufacturers to meet their regular and potential customers from all over the world and which naturally turns into an economical opportunity as well. This year however, we found the Xylexpo 2014 a little disappointing, but since it is our fair, we can’t miss it.
woodandpaneleurope How was the feedback for Dynasteamat Xylexpo 2014?
  Stefano Benedetti: The feedback for the DynaSteam is excellent, irrespective of the Xylexpo 2014, because it’s the results that can be achieved with the system that have this effect. A brief glance at our reference list shows that we have already sold 12 units to date in 2014, doubling last year’s average.

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