Etoilepeople interviews: Riccardo Alberici
ETOILEPEOPLE INTERVIEWS: RICCARDO ALBERICI
TAILOR-MADE SOLUTIONS TO TACKLE THE MARKET
Riccardo Alberici is Sales Manager for many brands in the contract business and also Etoile’s Area Agent, sharing with the company a decades-long relationship.
As a result of this long common path, he can be considered a privileged observer of the office furniture industry, whose evolution and rapid changes he has dealt with in recent years.
We’re going to analyze with him the latest market trends in relation to the needs of buyers who are paying more and more attention to design, quality and well-being in work spaces.
Getting started, can you tell us how your collaboration with Etoile came about and what is your current role within the company?
I would say that the very beginning of my collaboration with Etoile lies in a “love at first sight,” a real ” lightning strike.”
I decided I would work with this company when I first visited their showroom and met the owners.
I suddenly realized the great potential of this industrial reality, not only under a purely economic point of view, but also in Etoile’s “calling” to create and manufacture beautiful, high-quality products.
A distinguishing feature that marks the difference and stands out in a highly competitive market.
I’ve always been a “beauty lover” and I definitely could not miss this opportunity.
Almost 20 years have gone by since then, during which I have constantly supervised Etoile’s business area with genuine satisfaction and passion.
In today’s complex and globalized market, the sales network is a crucial role for any company. What is the business philosophy behind Etoile?
I have worked with several companies in this specific industry, and according to my experience in the field, the best business philosophy is being able to promptly and timely respond to the customer needs with ‘tailor-made’ solutions.
I must say that Etoile fully supports me on this, providing the utmost flexibility in drafting designs and customizing projects.
How has the office furniture market developed over the years, particularly in Etoile’s target segment ranging from partitions to turnkey contract?
The office market has grown very quickly and I would say that it definitely did in a very positive way for our company. It is worth mentioning that nowadays partition walls are being used in 90-95% of cases, while in the past almost half of the buyers would opt for plasterboard or masonry walls.
In addition, years ago there was a stronger tendency to purchase one-off pieces of furniture (walls, desks, and chairs), whereas the current trend is to create design spaces, like cozy, comfortable and high-quality settings where to pleasantly spend one’s working hours.
Company welfare, workers’ well-being, acoustic comfort, environmental sustainability and space quality are all topics we hear more and more about. In your experience, is the market really paying attention to these values, or are we facing a fleeting trend or even worse, a mere aesthetic stance?
I personally spend a lot of time trying to convey how important these topics are to the managers I deal with, focusing on the positive impact they have on the quality and efficiency of their days at work. I have to say that I get a lot of people thanking me afterwards, and the outcome is that I get a huge payoff in both human and economic terms.
How important the research into materials, innovative technologies and design are, on which Etoile has significantly invested over the years for it to stand out from the main competitors in the market?
As previously mentioned, I would not be able to represent a company standing firm on its position revenue. I would say that constant research and evolution of products and materials is an utterly core value.
What do you see in the future for Etoile and what are your medium- and long-term goals in terms of both domestic and international markets?
I genuinely see an absolute bright future full of opportunities.
Etoile has all the assets to stand out among the top leaders in the scene of office partition manufacturers.
My goal is to accomplish all commitments with my clients in the best possible way, as I am profoundly convinced that this virtuous mechanism is the key to trigger more and more business in a viral way.
What are Etoile’s most popular products in your business area? And what are the ones that it misses although you think they are crucial in this market segment?
Etoile’s most popular product is definitely its fully glazed partition featuring maximum soundproofing.
In a ‘tailor-made’ perspective, Etoile’s range is so wide that it caters to every possible demand.
What has changed after the Covid years?
A lot has actually changed, but the biggest ‘revolution’ is arguably cultural.
People now choose the companies they want to work with based almost more on the overall well-being of the work environment than by payroll figure.
This should cause every entrepreneur to consider how important investing in the quality and functionality of workspaces is today.