BERBRAND: “MADE IN ITALY” WITH TECHNOLOGY, RESEARCH AND ECO-SUSTAINABILITY
A top level service offer, particularly in the logistics sector, combined with quality and competitive prices: these are the strong points of Berbrand from Adro (Brescia), a company founded in 1995 that over a short space of time has become a world leader in the processing of Pinctada maxima, the precious Australian mother-of-pearl. It comes in a variety of colours for fashion accessories such as buttons, whose production is entirely traceable and certified. Even the processing scraps are used for producing Superlativa sheets, unique products for the interior design of houses, yachts, aeroplanes, luxury cars, and mosaics for swimming pools, fitness centres and household furnishings.
We spoke about all of this with the managing director, Emanuele Bertoli, who is also the company’s founder, and asked him about its positioning in foreign markets and what the prospects were for the future. We focussed particularly on eco-sustainability, since Berbrand was the first company to obtain “Ecocrest” certification, also winning the 2006 “Premio impresa ambiente” (Business Award for the Environment), established by the European Commission Directorate-General for the Environment to promote organisations that contribute towards sustainable development.
Mr. Bertoli, what has helped your company grow?
Having focused heavily on vertical integration; our raw materials come from Australia, production is in Vietnam, distribution in Europe, and the brains are in Italy. This organisation gives our customers, who are mainly large fashion labels, awareness of the added value that certified and eco-sustainable natural buttons have.
How do you position yourselves in foreign markets?
Our development in Europe is connected to large designer labels, to which we offer a complete service. We are also present in Tunisia, Morocco, India, Bangladesh and many other countries, including China.
Is there any foreign market that interests you in particular?
We are focusing particularly on the United States, where we hope to compensate for our current weakness due to the revaluation of the Euro against the dollar.
Is there any market that might represent a future challenge?
It might surprise you to know that it is not China, because we consider that challenge already overcome. There is a lot of work to be done, however, in Central and South America. I’m thinking, for example, of Brazil.
Has the decision to invest in eco-sustainability paid off?
It is paying off, particularly in the English-speaking markets and obviously in Germany and France. In Italy, however, there is still a lot of work to be done in this area.
Who are your major competitors at an international level?
Certainly the Chinese and Asian companies. Nevertheless, we are successful in the market thanks to a certified quality that we are able to guarantee.
What is Berbrand’s greatest challenge?
To remain flexible and ready to keep pace with the dynamism of our customers, who, in a sector such as fashion, have to contend with a market that is continually evolving.