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Interview with Kevin Socha

Kevin Socha
Kevin Socha
Karl Mayer HK Ltd
Karl Mayer HK Ltd

Warp knitting machines most needed in China, SE Asia and India
Karl Mayer is a global leader in the production of warp knitting machines. Kevin Socha, Managing Director of Karl Mayer HK Ltd shares the current market for his warp knitting machines, the latest innovations that the machines offer and the company financials in an interview with Fibre2Fashion.com

What is the size of the global machinery market in your niche - warp knits and specials?

I am only considering warp knitting in this interview - not technical textiles and weaving preparation. The average in the last five years has been around EUR 400 million per year.

From which geographies is the demand the most for these machines? Which new markets are you exploring?

China, Southeast Asia and of late India. Our machines require quite well-established, stable infrastructure (especially power supply); this limits the potential for 'new' markets like Myanmar, etc. We always monitor growing economies.

What are the latest innovations that these machines offer?

We will show the latest innovations at ITMA in Milan in November. During the recent Shanghaitex, we showed our latest HKS4-M 210" 4 bar Tricot machine, the new TM4-T machine for producing cotton terry towel, and the MJ59/1 S E28 Lace Jacquard machine in 134" working width with stitch forming Jacquard.

Where are Karl Mayer manufacturing units located? How strong is the market for your machinery ancillaries? Do you manufacture them yourself?

Karl Mayer has production facilities in – 1. Germany: Obertshausen, Hessen Naila, Bavaria Chemnitz, Saxony 2. Italy: Mezzolombardo, Trentino-Alto Adige 3. China: Changzhou, Jiangsu Province 4. Japan: Fukui, Fukui Prefecture 5. India: Ahmedabad, Gujarat In addition, we have sales and service companies in - 1. Hong Kong 2. USA 3. Switzerland 4. UK Our machines do require direct warpers, which we also manufacture. Other equipment required for the operation of our machines are available in the open market.

Any plans to set up units in other parts of the world?

No plans at the moment.

What was your turnover in the last fiscal? What is the targeted turnover for the current and next fiscal?

Around EUR 500 million last year; and should be similar this year.

How big is the market for used machinery?

There is a very active market for Karl Mayer's used machineries, but the scale of the market is not known to us at present. Only anecdotal information is available.

Which are the countries that sell the most, and which buy second hand machinery mostly?

For many years, the bulk of used machines came from the US and Europe, as these countries lost a lot of their textile industries. These machines were mainly sold to China, India and other Southeast Asian countries. Today, the supply of machines from these countries is less. Nowadays, the sources tend to be China, South America, Europe and Turkey.
Published on: 16/11/2015

DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this column are solely of the interviewee, and they do not reflect in any way the opinion of Fibre2Fashion.com.

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