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Nordkalk Corporation, provider of limestone-based solutions, is seeking growth with new product applications and by expanding its home market. The updated strategy was launched together with the publishing of the company’s January-June 2016 result, which showed a decrease in turnover by just over 4 per cent in comparison with last year.
The decreased turnover results from the demand in the big industrial customer segments Pulp & Paper, Metals & Mining and Chemical Industry. Meanwhile sales to the customer segments Construction, Agriculture and Environment were better than the year before. The sales were picking up especially in Finland whereas sales in Scandinavia slowed down. In Poland, the sales stayed slightly behind the previous year, mainly due to exchange rates.
- The versatile use of limestone-based products shows its meaning in the continuous challenging market conditions. Our focus is though on increasing sales in all customer segments, says CEO Jarkko Kaplin.
During the second quarter, supplies from two brand new production plants were started. A completely new kind of granulated soil improvement product Nordkalk AtriGranTMwas launched in the beginning of the summer. This product made of fine ground limestone is manufactured in Slawno in Poland, where Nordkalk has a quarry and a grinding plant from before. Nordkalk Filtra G granule production started in Landskrona in Sweden. This product made of slaked lime is used for flue gas cleaning on land and at sea as well as for water treatment.
- The significance of environmental applications is growing besides those of the traditional industries. We have invested in products and solutions, which are used to clean air and water and to secure the productivity of the agricultural land, says Kaplin.
Marketing the environmental applications, such as Nordkalk Fostop® for minimising phosphorus leakage, in Nordkalk’s entire operations area in North, East and West Europe is a part of the strategical expansion of the home market. The entire unified product range, the new as well as the traditional products will be available on all markets.
Our sales organisation will increasingly focus on finding solutions together with the customers in the spirit of Circular Economy. Our new group level team will concentrate on the technical solutions, where the customers need the limestone business know-how, says Jarkko Kaplin.
Nordkalk implemented a new operations model in April 2015 when the company changed from geographical divisions to functions through the whole company. The unification of the different processes, tools and methods is still ongoing. An important step in this work is a project starting in September to unify the business processes, enterprise resource planning and process platforms in the company.
- This is the next step in the unifying work of the functions and the continuous improvement work towards operational excellence. The unification is proceeding well, and we can already see results: for example, the occupational accident rate reflecting safety at work was in the end of June 5.8 whereas a year before it was 11.4. There is still some way to go to our zero accidents goal, which is our clear goal for the next few years, says Jarkko Kaplin.
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Nordkalk is the leading limestone company in Northern Europe. We deliver essential raw materials to numerous industries, and our solutions contribute to clean air and water as well as productivity of agricultural land.