COLOMBO ; Macksons Tiles Lanka (Macktiles), Sri Lanka’s largest tile manufacturer, is positive about the Sri Lankan economy and believes this is the time to uplift local industries. “We always believed that there is victory in adversity and this is the time we must show our commitment by doing our part to build the economy,” says Macktiles Lanka Chairman Milfer Makeen.
The company has already invested Rs. 16 billion for its expansion between 2020 and 2022, bringing new best-in-the-world technology to the country that’s on par with Italian and Spanish tile manufacturers and is now ready to launch aggressively into the export market. The Chairman says, “It was our mission to make Sri Lanka self-sufficient in tiles and the restriction of imports certainly allowed us to achieve this objective. Compared to imported tiles, we are very much ahead in terms of quality and have a wider range which is far superior to the low-quality tiles that come into our market”.
The manufacturing capacity of Macktiles which was 6,000 square meters a day in 2013 was increased to 14,000 in 2017, but after the 2020 expansion, the company has the capacity to produce a mammoth 44,000 square meters of tiles per day, making it the largest tile manufacturing facility in the country. The company, which now has 40% share of the local market, is positioning to become an exporter of tiles. “The machinery we now use in our factories is state of the art and equal to what’s used by our international competitors in Italy and Spain. Sri Lanka has the added advantage of having the best quality raw materials such as feldspar, ball clay, dolomite and Silica sand. Our factories manufacture a range of tiles from high-end to general use without compromising quality. For this reason, our products are attracting international buyers as well as Sri Lanka’s construction industry, including architectural and engineering communities.
The company sources 85% of its raw materials locally and has given a significant boost to raw material suppliers, some of whom are dedicated to supplying Macktiles, given the volumes the company demands. “It would be fair to say we have empowered young entrepreneurs to join the raw material industry, and we have suppliers who source the highest quality materials exclusively for us. In that sense, we have definitely revived the raw material industry which is indirectly contributing towards the economy. In terms of direct contribution, with our drive to make Sri Lanka self-sufficient in tiles, we as an industry were able to save approximately $ 150 million in annual foreign exchange outflows from the country,” the Chairman adds.
In line with its mission to make Sri Lanka a leading tile exporting nation, Macktiles is currently on a major marketing drive to promote its high-end tiles in the Middle East, Africa, Europe and Australia. The company is also engaging with the construction industry, interior design, architectural and engineering communities in promoting their high-quality products, manufacturing speed, capacity and ability to tailor-make. The company will be launching an exclusive tile exhibition featuring its latest high-end products and innovation from 23 November to 26 November 2023 at Hotel Mandarina, Colombo 3. Daily Ft
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