möbelfertigung: Mr. Paasivaara, on June 15 you became CEO of HOMAG Group AG. What has been your experience of the woodworking industry so far?
Pekka Paasivaara: It is certainly a very dynamic sector, particularly the furniture industry, which is the driving force behind many developments — including for the HOMAG Group. There is a lot happening at the moment. Around the world, furniture customers are thinking about how they can make their production processes more efficient. They are also thinking about what their product range will be like in the future because the general trend is toward flexible furniture design. And I don't mean just the very big companies; smaller businesses are also interested in automation solutions.
In the HOMAG Group, we adjusted to this requirement at a very early stage. Our advertising specifically addresses the fact that companies can grow with us because our machines can be extended, and we offer solutions both for small trade businesses as well as for industrial customers. In that respect, it's an extremely interesting industry sector.
möbelfertigung: Have you had any previous experience in the woodworking industry in your career?
Pekka Paasivaara: I actually already knew the HOMAG Group. In my time at Mannesmann Indramat around 15 years ago, we supplied automation technology to HOMAG. So I already knew the Group as a customer, such as in the area of CNC processing centers. At that time, the linear motors, drive units and control systems came from my former employer.
möbelfertigung: Why exactly did you decide to take on this role at the HOMAG Group?
Pekka Paasivaara: I was working in Oslo, as the company I used to work for in Hamburg was sold to a company there. One day I got a call asking me if I remembered HOMAG. Right from the start, it sounded very interesting. The very stable position that HOMAG was in after the majority stakeholding was acquired by Dürr, and the outlook for the Group over the next few years, were particularly interesting. And by that I don't mean short-term success in one or two years. I'm talking about a long-term strategy based on the very stable foundation that has now been established.
möbelfertigung: So it was the outlook for the future that particularly appealed to you?
Published in the möbelfertigung 7/2015. The HOMAG Group thanks the editor.