Each year the Stone Fabricator’s Alliance (SFA), hosted by Tenax, plans a trip to Italy to give a small group of fabricators a new perspective on stone products, the business and what it means to be in the industry. It also provides the fabricators an opportunity to learn from each other’s business experiences and offers fresh ideas of how to improve their own shop. After every trip, the board of directors for the SFA sits down to plan out ways to improve the more than week-long excursion. This year, they outdid themselves with another hugely successful tour that not only inspired, but also educated this group of fabricators on a range of topics.
The 2017 group was led by Joey Marcella, president of Mario & Son in Liberty Lake, WA. “The way we have the tour set up is to provide the annual attendees with a good all-around experience,” he said. “This includes a good mix of vendors, whether it is bridge saws, edging machines, stone processors, quartz processors, abrasive companies, etc., along with a healthy dose of Italian culture. The access to the host’s facilities and behind the scenes activities is unprecedented. For example, being able to interact in the Henraux quarry with a 50-year-old industry veteran is priceless education.