Natuzzi furniture producer and retailer expects sales of Italsofa plant it owns in Baia Mare to go beyond 130 million euros in the next two years, after having finished production capacity expansion one month ago.
"This year, the plant's revenues will get close to 100 million euros. I forecast we will reach 130 million euros in the next 24 months," said Pasquale Natuzzi, chairman and chief designer of the company, in an interview with ZF.
Natuzzi entered the domestic market, with production operations, in 2002, through the greenfield investment in Baia Mare, the group's biggest plant supplying the European market. Since that year, the value of investments operated by the Italian company has hit 46 million euros.
At present, around 1,400 people work at the plant of Baia Mare, but the company will have to hire more people in the wake of capacity expansion.
"We are hiring people every day. We should get 1,000 people in the next 24 months (...)," said Natuzzi.
The Natuzzi plant of Baia Mare has a 60,000 sqm-area and is one of the biggest greenfield investments in the domestic furniture industry. In recent years, investors have been reluctant to invest on the domestic market, with the latest greenfield investments being made in the wood processing industry.
Revenues generated in Romania account for around 15% in Natuzzi's overall activity, a percentage due to rise following production capacity expansion.
This year, Natuzzi has also made its first step under its own brand on the retail segment of Romania, through a store it opened after it signed a representation contract with Class company owned by Camelia Sucu.
"(...) The decision to have a store under Natuzzi brand here came amid the development of our sales through Class stores," added Natuzzi.
In 2008, Camelia Sucu plans to open another two Natuzzi stores, in Cluj and Constanta, in the wake of investments worth 0.6 million euros.
Natuzzi is present worldwide through two brands, Natuzzi, positioned on the high-end segment of the market, and Italsofa, a production line created in 2001, designed for the commercial segment of the market. Italsofa products are manufactured in China, Brazil and Romania.