Stone World

Turkish supplier continues to expand

September 1, 2005


Established in 1990, leading Turkish stone supplier, Tekmar, has undergone several trans-formations in the past 15 years - significantly increasing its size and production capabilities. In the last two years alone, the company has expanded its size by 36%, and it now employs a staff of 750 workers. Currently operating three fabricating facilities and six quarries, Tekmar is continually working to remain competitive and increase its role as a leading player in the international stone industry.

After initially building its first facility in Bilecik, Turkey, in 1990, which went into production in 1991, Tekmar established a second factory nearby in September of 1996. While the first operation sat on almost 475,000 square feet of land, the second site encompassed a little more than 150,000 square feet. A decision was soon made to name the two factories as one - Tekmar Bilecik. Today, this operation has a production capacity of approximately 21.5 million square feet, and loads 400 containers per month, which are shipped all over the world.

The company's third factory is located in its Yatagan quarry region, and consists of about 86,000 square feet of covered area and 108,000 square feet of open space. According to Tekmar, the company opened this plant to serve its customers better and faster. Annual production capacity of this plant is approximately 4.3 million square feet.

All of the company's factories are equipped with state-of-the-art machinery from Italy and Turkey. Among the equipment at the Bilecik factory are eight multi-disc Este saws, four complete tile polishing lines, an automatic conveyor unloading unit and accompanying complete tile polishing line with filling unit, three tile machines and three splitting machines.

Additionally, the Yatagan plant is fully equipped with two computer-aided gangsaws, two bridge saws, one tile polishing machine, one slab polishing machine, one edge polishing machine, one chamfering machine and a 35-ton mobile crane. The original plant at this site, which measures approximately 20,000 square feet with a little more than 7,000 square feet of covered area, includes one multi-blade cross-cutting machine, one horizontal splitting machine, two semi-automatic vacuums, one automatic strip loader and a 30-ton crane.

Recent additions to Tekmar's factories include resin and filling lines, which allow the company to produce quality commercial products out of sub-standard blocks, it explains.



Marketing

In the last five years, Tekmar's production capacity has increased by 15%, the company reports. Its materials are used in 77 countries around the world, and it is continually looking for new markets. As of now, 33% of Tekmar's materials are shipped to the Middle East, 25% to the Far East, 25% to Europe and 17% to the U.S.

Among the products offered by Tekmar are 11 materials from its own quarries, which operate 24 hours a day year round. These include: Rosa Bellissimo, Bianco Royal, Crema Nuova, White Oyster, Bianco Rosa, Rosalia, Rapsody, Byzantium, Crema Unico Light, Crema Unico Dark and Crema Nuovita. Additionally, the company carries several materials from other quarries, such as Salome, Cremo Bello, Rosso Levanto and Rosa Tea.

To meet the demands of its international market, Tekmar offers a range of product sizes and finishes. Slabs are available in 2 and 3 cm, and polished and unpolished finishes. Tile sizes include 12 x 12, 16 x 16, 18 x 18, 12 x 24 and 24 x 24 inches.

Quality control is a very important part of Tekmar's fabricating process. The company wants to ensure top-of-the-line products to its customers. With this objective in mind, Tekmar has plans to further expand its market and revenue. Next year, the company intends to reach $35 million in exports, and future plans include reaching $50 million in exports.