MICROMET a family business

Romanian dynamic companies

MICROMET a family business

January 1999 is the birth date of SC MICROMET SA Focșani, a company that selected as its motto: “WE PROVE IT’S POSSIBLE”, since we, Romanians, have an inclination to engineering, despite being less experienced than other highly industrialized European countries.

Today, Micromet is a family business with a turnover that will soon exceed 2 million Euro and 60 employees, has an well-established manufacturing profile while being open to new challenges.

We seek not to do everything, but to do well whatever is that we are doing, and we believe we mostly succeeded in that, as proven by the 20-30% annual average increase of turnover and profit.

Our activity consists in the processing of metals by splintering, the design of high precision processes, usually small sized (that would fit a 500 mm cube and a weight that usually does not exceed 100 kg).

Past vs. Present

In the beginning, we worked a lot for the steel industry (back when work still could be found), we produced, and still are, a very wide range of watering nozzles and cooling plants for continuous casting, and a wide range of dosage plants with heavy grease. The initial equipment did not allow much else anyway. We counted on a few cutters, lathes, universal grinding machines; the working environment was not conducive to quality work either (we worked in a hall prone to rain infiltration).

Today, after 15 years from creation, the situation is much different,
being able to take orders in a great deal of fields thanks to our cutting edge equipments:

  • 15 German and American-made latest generation turning centres for profiling and cutting;
  • a controlled atmosphere laboratory, a 3D measuring machine, projector, column and the entire range of Swiss-made AMCs;
  • more than 30 regular processing machines (lathes, cutters, coordinates processing machines, a 100 tf press, grinding machines);
  • water-jet cutting machines;
  • latest generation CIF plant;
  • quality welding equipment for: steel, aluminium, copper, stainless steels, etc.;
  • grinding on turning centres – small sizes with an accuracy below 0.01 mm;
  • grinding in coordinates with an accuracy under 0.01 mm;
  • test benches for nozzles and hydraulics, up to 320 atm;
  • programmable band saw;
  • own IT system for production monitoring;
  • an approx. 3000 m2 production facility fitted with everything that is required for ensuring a microclimate suited to the manufacturing processes (all turning centres are fitted with advanced air purification units);
  • a customized payroll, depending on the quality and quantity of the work.

What we do is very similar to a former tooling shop, with the difference that now we tackle many other fields. We went from a mainly steel profile to other fields: pharmacy, food, energy, aeronautics, etc.

Today, despite our small size, we are important to our market, a fact proven by the many orders we receive.

The products manufactured by Micromet SA Foc[ani go to the USA, France, Germany (more than 15 companies), Switzerland, Sweden, Holland, Greece and other major industrial companies active in Romania.

The fact that the direct beneficiaries choose the Micromet pro­ducts over those of our competitors, and the fact that we have lots of beneficiaries who order customized and small series products, at prices set exclusively by us, says a lot in our opinion about our seriousness in dealing with our partners.

Even if our prices are above the market level, the customers confirmed they chose us thanks to the high quality of our products and deadlines, which the competition cannot match.

The Micromet company did not emerge following some intricate market or feasibility analysis, etc., but as the need of a group of a people to earn a living without help from the others and by adhering to the motto selected back in 1998, by the leaving of a few shareholders after the break-up of another company – privatized in 1993 by the MEBO method.

Immediately after the breakup, the company had a majority shareholder in the person of the undersigned STAN GHEORGHE – today the owner of the entire share package. You cannot own and run a business without having control and decision making powers. Who was never part of a joint stock company in which the shareholders want dividends rather than make investments will never understand this situation.

After the break up, things were simple: I took a few decisions to keep me out of trouble with the company I had just broken up with. I remind just two of them, which I believe were instrumental in getting where we are today:

1 – full re-investment of the profit, and

2 – no bank loans (the interest in 1993-1997 was really scary).

Now, 15 years from setting up the company, I still have not given up these decisions (and I don’t intend to in the near future). Maybe if 20% of the profit goes into dividends now, it will not affect the financial standing of the company too much.

Glance to the future

In everything we do, whether we do it as simple people or business people, I believe it is very important to be motivated, to really want to do something and do everything to make it happen. Personally, I have these motivations. The job that I chose for myself became a hobby. I saw many countries (visiting my partners), but there’s no place I feel better than in my workshop. It’s the place where I can stay for 24 hours a day without feeling bored.

Now, at 65 years old, I have to prepare my business for what comes next. GOD wanted that thing were good. One of my boys has already been with me for 4 years, Adrian – aged 36, who already can replace me and who took over the entire IT activities of the company (no company can develop without an IT department). He is a software engineer with 10 years experience in companies in the US, Canada, France, Thailand, Singapore and other European countries. He created the software required for the smooth operation of the company, adapted to our profile and accessible by our employees without requiring too much specia­lization, my role being limited to sharing my 40-year experience and finding resources to fill the generation gap, which is a reality in any field. However, he who doesn’t trust the young has little chances to build something on the long term.

I joined the MICROMET team 10 years ago. When all the employers were looking for experienced people, Mr. Stan was looking for graduates to train in the “MICROMET” style: serious and always eager to better themselves. He is applying the same principle now. If others were patient to me, now it’s my turn to implement the continuous training concept among the young employees. The development and rejuvenation of the company goes faster than I expected. I believe that together with Mr. Stan’s son and my young colleagues, we are unstoppable.

I grew up together with the company, and today I have the important role of Quality Manager. For us, quality is not action, it’s a habit. Making quality products is the strongest defence against competition and the only way towards sustainable development and constant revenue.

I am proud to be part of this “family”, but most of all I’m proud to see that the parts that went through my hands go to prestigious companies all over the world. The quality policy we are pursuing means the customers, not the products, are always coming back.

dipl. eng. Adina NEAGU

 

In very little time, our team will be joined by my older son – Ionu], 41 years old – financial expert, cybernetics graduate, with an experience of more than 15 years in multinational companies.

If someone asks today whether we are satisfied with what we achieved, we can say without a shadow of a doubt YES.

We have a family business that is worth being continued.

The answer to the simple questions: “how did we do it?” is equally simple: work, seriousness, perseverance, patience and a little luck, things that our competitors have as well, but not at the same level as us.

What do we want to do next? A LOT. Something we are dreaming about now – in the meantime we are waiting some clarifications about accessing European funds – is to start an investment for a new factory, initially expec­ted to 3 million euro. We have experience in this field from the 2008-2014 period, when we implemented 6 smaller projects that exceeded together more than 1 million Euro in grants, most of them being passed the monitoring period.

We already bought the land (20,000 m2) on which we want to develop the business in the following 20 to 30 years; we are not considering changing our trade, we stick to our first love: METAL PROCESSING.

Conclusion

It’s hard to include the concerns of a lifetime in just one page or two, but we proved that it’s possible to develop a business starting from the market needs and the possibilities at any given time.

Along the years, we managed to:

  • not do business with the State (Micromet doesn’t have and never had orders paid from the State budget).
  • never have bank loans, not even a credit line;
  • never used illegal labour or the minimum wage;
  • always pay the salaries to employees on the payment day, with no exception;
  • pay all our state dues (not a small amount) without the slightest delay;
  • to invest in our safety and that of our families;
  • earn our money from exports.

For some big industry hot shots, the above may not mean much, but for me, a small entrepreneur, it is SOMETHING!

Gheorghe Stan, General Manager,Micromet SA


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