The Group's 70th Anniversary, the outstanding figures recorded in 2021 and the "main pillars" of investments for 2022, among which innovation will continue to be the priority. These are the topics of the wide-ranging interview with the CEO Marco Mancini, published in the "Top 500" supplement of Il Resto del Carlino, and picked up also today in the national pages of the newspaper.
This year is the seventieth anniversary of its foundation: what does this achievement mean at this unusual and complex time?
The Seventy-year anniversary is, on the one hand, an important achievement while, on the other, it should be a stimulus to continue along a successful path based on ongoing innovation and sustainability, or rather, with a long-term vision that guarantees long life and a better future for our company. We shall apply the same logic as in the past as we set out along this path, focusing on both organic growth that aims at innovation, digital transformation and internationalisation, and on partnership research in Italy and abroad in all of the key sectors, to complete our solutions and technologies for machining wood, composite materials, glass or stone.
2021 was a positive year, as is clear from the figures on turnover and orders.
2021 was an excellent year for financial results both in terms turnover and order growth, into double figures compared to 2020, and at a level of profitability and cash flow. Equally positive are the non-financial results. Here are just a few: over 50 thousand hours of training distributed in situ and on-line by our Campus, approx. 35 million invested in R&D (each year we invest 7% of our turnover), 125 recorded patents (the highest in recent years) and another one hundred or so R&D projects launched. We have opened new SCM Subsidiaries in India and Turkey and a new Hiteco Subsidiary (Electro-spindle Division) in the USA. We signed strategic trade deals, like the one with the Swedish company, Randek in the field of systems for timber construction.
Will 2022 be a year for investments: in what areas?
As well as product innovation carried out non-stop with the programmes in recent years, that saw us continue to launch new products onto the market, important initiatives are planned with investments in digitalisation both of internal production and to support our customers' processes. In addition, further upgrading of the production capacity of industrial sites with particular focus on matters of sustainability. Of particular importance is the modernising and renovation of the area of the Foundry in Rimini, with the creation of a fully automated spare parts warehouse that brings considerable advantages in terms of logistics, efficiency and energy saving.
Why was there a Corporate reorganisation?
The reorganisation is in line with the group’s ambitions for growth. The founding families remain at the helm with a renewed governance set-up, of three equal quotas, that guarantees continuity, entrepreneurial dexterity and a common strategic vision. Scm Group is a family business that knew how to adopt multi-national managerial standards and make use of external professionalism to successfully face the ever more complex market challenges.
Problem of costly energy and the price of raw materials: what impact does this have on Scm Group?
Like everyone, we too find ourselves facing the well-known criticality linked to the rising cost of energy and materials and the difficulties of procuring components. Despite the fact that Scm Group is structured and benefits from the possibility of internally producing part of its components for machines, we fear that demand could, over time, drop if the lack of raw materials were to continue, resulting in lengthier delivery times and were accompanied by significant inflationary effects.
How important is innovation for a business like yours?
Customers and markets have "prompted" us to think, plan and develop technological solutions with an innovative content "of discontinuity". Possibly one of the best examples of all that saw us earn new market shares in the additive manufacturing industry is represented by the new solution LFAM (Large Format Additive Manufacturing) by our entirely owned CMS Spa: a machine capable of producing large-scale components with carbon content, with a process similar to that of 3D printers. In 2021, moulds were produced with this machine used in the construction of "restomod" (modified restoration of auto) parts, based on the Maserati 3200 GT produced by the company Bercella Srl in Emilia Romagna.
Other examples of innovative products manufactured in the group include the CMS technologies for machining stone used by the Tuscan artisan Claudio Claudi to reconstruct the rose windows in the Basilica Santa Maria Novella in Florence, and some high-automation SCM plants, including the 100-metre line inaugurated recently by Gautier, a leading French company, in the production of custom-designed furniture, and the project for the Chinese giant, Star River Bay: a 200 thousand m2 factory with over 50 of our technologies for contract furnishings.