Kerama Marazzi invests in SACMI Deep Digital

Viktor Osetskiy, Marketing Director of Kerama Marazzi, describes the latest technological investments for the doubling of the Continua+ line, which integrates the new digital decoration solutions.

Kerama Marazzi has recently made major investments aimed at strengthening its pivotal role in the Russian market as a manufacturer of high-quality designer ceramics. Founded in 1992 and now part of Mohawk Industries, the company is an industry leader with 21 offices and over 350 single-brand stores in the Russian Federation, Belarus, Central Asia, the Caucasus, Ukraine, the Baltic States, Romania and Moldova.

We spoke to Viktor Osetskiy, Marketing Director of Kerama Marazzi, about the recent doubling of the SACMI Continua+ line equipped with the latest Digital Decoration & Glazing solutions.

CWR: What made you decide to double the Continua+ line?

Viktor Osetskiy: It’s the world’s best and most versatile technology for the manufacture of traditional slabs and every type of sub-multiple. With Continua+ we can count on high speeds, less waste regardless of size, fast double filling, quality and full repeatability thanks to digital synchronisation of the entire process. Ever since it was founded, Kerama Marazzi’s mission has been to supply the highest quality ceramic products to the Russian market. For this reason, we have always chosen the best technology the market has to offer so we can provide our customers with new products and services that meet the strictest quality and design standards. Moreover, we have a longstanding relationship with SACMI that goes back to 2007 when we placed our first orders for complete plants.

CWR: What are the new features of this second line?

V. Osetskiy: Our investment aimed to meet the specific market need not just for high quality products with outstanding aesthetics but above all for the ability to produce different sizes and decorations with the utmost versatility, free from the restraints of fixed sizes and traditional decoration systems. That’s why we opted for SACMI Deep Digital, the new platform integrated on Continua+, for our investment in doubling capacity. This platform allows us to synchronise dry and wet decoration processes and deposit colours and materials at extremely high resolution, thereby making products with revolutionary aesthetics.

CWR: More specifically, how is the new line configured?

V. Osetskiy: Downstream from the compactor, the line is equipped with a SACMI DHD inkjet decorator with the new DDG, which can perform selective application of a layer of grits to give the tile a wealth of texturing and depth effects. We installed and started up the solution at the end of 2019 and it immediately brought a significant improvement in efficiency in managing our existing product portfolio, allowing us to think about developing and launching new products.

CWR: What sizes are you producing?

V. Osetskiy: Kerama Marazzi naturally has its sights set on the medium- to high-end sector. With Continua+ we currently produce sizes ranging from 80x80 cm up to very large slabs, all with the same quality and efficiency. We must always bear in mind that to be competitive in today’s market it is essential to be able to work efficiently with small batches. Thanks to the seamless integration between ink and material application systems, we’re free to focus on creativity and maximise added value.

CWR: Any new investments on the horizon?

V. Osetskiy: Remaining with SACMI Deep Digital, we may in the future double the DDG capacity so we can incorporate further glaze or material deposits with digital technology. In the current configuration, synchronisation of powder application with upstream DHD graphics already allows us to create entirely new colours and decorations that differentiate Kerama products from those of our competitors.

CWR: How do you see the recovery of the Russian market following the Covid emergency?

V. Osetskiy: Our investment policies have a medium- to long-term outlook and we’re confident that the markets we supply will bounce back. International supply chains are already returning to normal and at the same time our communities are keen to get back to work after being hit hard by the emergency. Of course, to do this it is essential to have the right tools. Our company’s strength is rooted in our continuous investments in the best available technology, a factor that allows us to look to the future with determination and confidence.