Qualität „Made in Iran“
Tools are Mohammad Ramezani’s world. His family has manufactured them in the family-run firm, the Iran Potk Tools Company, for over thirty years. Now the entrepreneur would like to sell his products in Germany and Europe as well. Despite the current political and economic tensions in Iran, the Manager Training Programme (MP) opened up a path to success: Ramezani founded a company in Germany and is active in the market. He also took a lot of new ideas home from Germany about how to make sure his business is ready to face the future.
During the MP, Ramezani founded the Daniel GmbH. Like a traditional family company, he used his son’s name as a good omen. The fact that it is also a common German first name has worked to his advantage as well. In cooperation with a Gelsenkirchen logistics enterprise the new company markets raw materials, spare parts and equipment. Ramezani has also signed agreements with two leading German tool manufacturers: “We will be up and running as soon as the political climate allows. Everything is ready to go”, he says optimistically. Until then, he is focusing on implementing some new ideas in his family firm, which employs around 360 people.
New Approaches to Customer Retention
The marketing specialist visited eighteen enterprises in Germany – and found plenty of inspiration to take home to his own firm. Such as an idea for restructuring on-site tours. “First we show a presentation, then there is a bit of entertainment, followed by the tour and a feedback round. It is now a standardised process, which makes showing roughly 20 potential customers a month around the firm much easier and more professional”, Ramezani says.
He has also improved customer relationship management and adapted after-sales service. “We are now very interested in customer feedback”, Ramezani says. He conducts telephone interviews that provide impulses for fine-tuning products and improving marketing. “This is the best way to satisfy our customers”, he reports. He has also implemented customer segmentation that allows the firm to respond more individually to customers’ needs.
“Research and development is very important in Germany”, Ramezani notes. So he expanded his R&D division from two engineers working on improving production lines to a total of six. He has also kicked off new projects to boost sustainability, replacing plastic parts with wooden parts in the IPKA line of children’s tools, and using paints that do not dissolve, ensuring they are not absorbed through children’s mouths or skin during play.
While international business is still partly on hold, thanks to the MP, the 38-year-old has enjoyed fruitful cooperation with other programme alumni within Iran. These include Mahdi Alijani, Managing Director of the Anit Industrial Group that manufactures air conditioning and heating systems, who Ramezani supplied with engraving tools and cooling ducts and fluids. And Behzad Kohani, the Managing Director of the Sabalan Company that produces mains adaptors, is now providing the energy supply for the electronic educational tools from the Iran Potk Tools Company’s range. Mohammad Reza Jafari, Managing Director of Ekbatan Gas Control Co. and an expert in the aluminium industry also helped Ramezani solve problems in an aluminium die casting plant.