Dear BEYSAD Readers;
We have yet another interview with our main industry companies. Following our visit to Kayseri, details of which you can find within the pages of this issue, we are interested in introducing the valuable firms of Kayseri and we have started with Kumtel, the company we first visited during our visit. We will also be knocking on the door of other Kayseri firms as we prepare other issues of the magazine. In this interview; we hosted Münir Öztaş, Kumtel’s Marketing & Sales Manager. We are grateful to him for giving us his precious time in spite of his quite busy schedule.
Dear Münir Öztaş, could you please tell us a little about yourself and your career so far?
I am the Marketing & Sales Manager of Kumtel A.Ş.
What is the secret to your success? Could you please tell us about the way you work and your principles?
Our business philosophy is to work in a customer-oriented manner.
What is your position in the management chart? Could you inform us about Kumtel’s management chart?
We are a sole-proprietorship company; our entire team works with a team spirit, with everyone’s duties and responsibilities in place.
Could you please tell us about Kumtel’s establishment and development?
The company started manufacturing in 1972. Embarking on the business with manufacturing coin-operated telephones, the firm moved on to the production of carpet sweepers, heaters and small ovens later, becoming a major actor in the industry for many years. We have attained our current position thanks to creating the Luxell brand in the 90s and increasing our production variety.
Kumtel brand name was created by joining the abbreviations of two words: KUM for “Kumbara” (money-box) and TEL for telephone. The prevalence of coin-operated telephones and having a monopoly on its manufacture back in the day increased Kumtel’s brand-awareness. Our brand expanded in domestic and foreign markets and increased brand-awareness thanks to its investments in R&D efforts, increasing of production variety, improving of service network, existing presence in the local market and foreign markets as well as the more efficient use of visual and print media.
What is your take on the level the white goods industry has attained in Turkey? Where are Kayseri and Kumtel positioned in this development?
The white goods industry in Turkey has been developing quite rapidly in recent years. We are a part of this business. The important thing is to keep up with these developments and ensure their continuity. Our aim is to become one of Turkey’s top three firms without compromising quality and trust, for which aim we have taken a significant distance. From our technical personnel to management and sales team, we are looking for answers to the question of “How can we improve further?”
As Kumtel, we are an established company in Kayseri, with more than 40 years in the business. Our company reaches to customers with two brands: Kumtel and Luxell. With a daily production capacity of 30 thousand units, we are the leading manufacturer in the sector.
Kayseri is a market that is capable of rapidly adopting developments and changes, such as foreign country experience. Could you please inform us on Kayseri’s white goods industry?
We are a company that addresses the entirety of Turkey, which also makes exports. Kayseri is not prominent in our trade activities, yet we market our goods to this region, nonetheless.
What portion of your production in Turkey do you export and to which countries? Could you please share your opinions on competition conditions, especially about the countries or brands you regard as rivals in the local and international market?
The majority of our production in Turkey is exported. Competition is quite tough; however, we need to offer products which appeal to the particular demands of countries and customers. On the other hand, the support our country provides particularly in placing receivables under guarantee encourages us. Our brand is an international one, with 70% of the production being exported. Our company, ranking among the largest 500 industrial establishments of Turkey, takes its development one step forward every day.
What about Kumtel’s long-term targets?
Kumtel aims to obtain a more effective position in the sector as well as achieving competitiveness in both domestic and foreign markets and increase its market share by constantly focusing on growth.
Could you please tell about your R&D efforts?
Kumtel and Luxell heavily emphasize R&D efforts that include product and process development, prototype production, project design and pilot manufacturing.
In general, we are conducting R&D projects to minimize human errors.
Do you benefit from government incentives in your activities?
We benefit from such incentives for a portion of our activities.
What are the needs and shortcomings in Kayseri concerning Human Resources? Do you encounter problems in this regard?
We are faced with the problem of finding qualified workers.
What is Kumtel’s most significant expectation from / criterion of supply industries in its purchasing processes? How do you manage purchasing?
The most important expectations are quality, price and the timely delivery of the requested parts… If the purchasing process is beginning from the first step, offers are collected at the beginning. Afterwards, samples are received and tested. For the parts which are approved through testing we initiate purchasing meetings with their suppliers and ultimately, the purchasing takes place. We purchase no products not approved by the quality department.
At which step do you encounter the most significant problem with your suppliers? Could you please share your evaluation particularly in terms of quality, logistics and price?
The problems we experience are the same with what others encounter in business life. We sometimes have to face situations where the prices do not meet our expectations. However, we are usually able to overcome such hurdles as we have a large number of suppliers.
Could you please compare your domestic and foreign suppliers in terms of their positive and negative aspects? If it is possible to speak of “superiority” country-wise, in what aspects the superior one is better?
We procure tested and quality-approved materials from our suppliers.
Do you carry out joint activities with your suppliers? If you do; at which levels?
Yes, we do. There are times when we work jointly with our suppliers for parts that technically complement our products. We also exchange opinions with our suppliers for the processes after production such as parcels and styropor applications. Additionally, we share opinions when we want to add extra functionalities to our products.
How do you make your supply industries know about your expectations? Do you provide guarantees for their investments? How do you support your supply industries, particularly Turkish supply industry?
We make our expectations known by announcing our annual purchasing amounts to our suppliers. They decide by themselves whether to make investments after the announcing of our annual purchases. However, I should underline that most supply industrialists in Turkey do not want to grow.
What are your policies on your suppliers? Do you have any messages for them?
We care about the number of alternative companies. The message we can give to our suppliers is that, they should improve their prices through an increase in quality and efficiency.