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An Interview with Johannes Leppihalme – Managing Director – at Atexor OYPosted on: 6.7.2018
Atexor is celebrating a successful few months, which has seen our international team grow coupled with large contract wins and an expansion to our production and warehouse team. As such, we thought it would be an ideal opportunity to catch up with our MD Johannes, to get under the skin of the business and learn more about the company’s future plans.
How long have you worked at Atexor and why did you choose to join the company?
I have been working at Atexor since January 2012. I was greatly impressed by the exceptional technology and capabilities that the company possesses. As a family owned business, I found that the values implemented throughout Atexor aligned strongly with my very own values and, with this, I clearly saw an opportunity to drive the business forward with a strong supportive foundation, which has very much been the case.
In brief, please could you describe what Atexor do?
We develop, manufacture and sell EX-lighting solutions. Founded on 30 years of knowledge and skills, we pride ourselves on being able to apply this in order to provide our clients with solutions – not just products. We have an impressive portfolio of work demonstrating repeatedly how we have applied our capabilities to deliver solutions to meet – if not exceed – the demands of our clients.
What do you think makes Atexor stand out from its competitors?
Our capabilities for sure. The knowledge in which our team of 40 possesses is unrivalled and with that it means that we have an excellent internal training programme allowing us to share this knowledge with our new members of staff.
Despite being a fairly small company, our capabilities and deliverables are that of a larger company. Some companies rely on book knowledge and theoretical approach, whilst others sell products developed by other companies. What makes us different is that with our in-house technical knowledge, expertise and experience we can deliver at speed and manufacture superior products and solutions to meet the highest of standards.
Please tell me about Atexors manufacturing capabilities
Our manufacturing facilities are located in Finland. These were built in 2012 so are modern housing some of the latest equipment. We have practiced lean manufacturing for years now and we are improving each day. However, as the lean philosophy says, you are never ready. It is a path of continuous improvement and every person at Atexor is able to influence this. Our working methods allow flexibility and we aim at “ludicrous speed” deliveries. Yes, we stole that phrase from Tesla, but we understand that quite often our customer needs appear suddenly and we endeavour – and on most occasions achieve – to meet those.
Are there any new developments at Atexor?
As a company we are continually developing and investing in our staff and equipment to constantly improve our skills, knowledge and practices. As such, our investment pays dividends as this is then applied in our new products enabling us to continually improve our quality and speed of service.
We have recently successfully launched a new product that was a large contract to Atexor, which led us to increasing our production and warehouse teams. The product was client centric, focusing on their specific needs and was an excellent demonstration of our capabilities to solve challenges and deliver bespoke solutions.
How long has Atexor Ltd been established and how has the business adapted since having a stronger presence in the UK?
Atexor Ltd was established in July 2016 during the deep crisis in Oil & Gas Offshore industry. I could not be happier on the progress that we have made to date. We have succeeded in establishing our presence and customer base faster than anticipated.
We still have a long way to go and we are extremely confident that we will continue to grow as the team in the UK is exceptional at what they do, representing the company and its capabilities to its fullest.
How do Atexor Oy and Atexor Ltd operate together?
Our customer care team is international. There are people working in Aberdeen and in Finland as one team. We have centralized IT-systems, field sales and processes in place with daily communication. We have succeeded in developing a united team without geographical borders, having weekly meetings and continuous communications.
Are there any further developments with the team in Russia – MICA OOO?
The team in Russia serves our customers in Russia and Kazakhstan. Regulations and customer demands are somewhat different from European, so local support is essential. Headed up in St. Petersburg we are extremely pleased with how the team is operating and again, we work as one team with continuous communications.
How has the business progressed throughout 2018?
The business has significantly grown since the start of the year and this is largely due to our successful product launch that was secured because of our capabilities. The contract has meant that Atexor has increased its production team by 10. We are also in the process of recruiting sales people and expanding our supply chain.
We are extremely confident to report that 2018, even though we are only half way through the year, is going to be a record-breaking year – in terms of both sales and profitability – in the company’s 30 years of trading.
What is your vision for the next 12 months?
We have ambitious plans over the next five years to continue to build upon our capabilities and knowledge to focus strongly on providing customer specific solutions, as this is something that we really excel at.
We will continue to have standard products also, but whereas products in this industry are becoming more and more alike, Atexor can add value on solving complex customer problems by developing bespoke solutions.
What are the plans for the future at Atexor?
We are a Finnish family owned company and we belong to a larger Finnish family owned group, Teknopower. Our “business quartal” is 25 years, so we are here for long term. We continue on building our capabilities in terms of EX-lighting technology knowledge and speed of delivering product and services.
Developing EX-lighting requires knowledge as it is highly regulated and applications are always about work safety. This is the business that we know inside and out and we recognise our responsibility to ensure that businesses operating in hazardous areas protect their workers with the very best solutions.
If you would like to know more about Atexor, please feel free to drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.