Industrial supplies and furniture fittings with more than 128 years of experience.
Verdú has become a benchmark company in the furniture fittings and industrial supplies sector, and has been in business for 128 years, making it one of the oldest companies in Spain.
We have with us Mar Verdú, CEO of the company Verdú and Hugo Serrano, responsible for e-commerce and marketing.
BF: Mar, can you tell us what Verdú can offer to the interior designer or architect who is carrying out a hotel refurbishment, or directly to the hotelier?
MV: Verdú, with 128 years of experience, can offer the entire furniture and upholstery sector a wide range of products. We have segmented our 35,000 articles into different catalogues. The ironwork catalogue, the upholstery catalogue, the handles catalogue, the carpentry catalogue and a new and last catalogue of clothing and protection for the work. Our advantage in Verdú is that we can offer a global solution to the customer, we can offer from a handle, a leg, a sliding door ironwork, to tools or corporate clothing used by companies for their own workers. At Verdú we can offer a wide range of products.
BF: And what new products is Verdú presenting this year?
MV: At the beginning of this year, we presented our upholstery catalogue, an update of the old catalogue we have had for the past 5 years. Right now our design department is working on the handles catalogue, we are putting a lot of effort into this catalogue as we are going to give it a more updated and more beautiful design. Moreover, once we finish with this catalogue, we will continue with the handles catalogue and we will update the carpentry catalogue adding, among others, more handles. Finally, the sector is asking us for a new catalogue that we don’t have, which is the kitchen and bathroom catalogue.
BF: Next we will talk to Hugo, what would you say is your star product?
HS: The star product for Verdú has always been hinges and slides for furniture, which are items that practically go unnoticed in the design of furniture but which are very important. In recent years we have been growing and we have strategically strengthened other sectors that directly affect contract furniture, such as furniture handles, legs for sofas or furniture and door handles, which in the end are fundamental items for interior designers or architects.
BF: Could you tell us about the added value or advantages that Verdú brings to the hotel sector?
HS: Verdú has always specialised in furniture fittings, which are the fundamental pillar that sustains the company. The advantage that we can offer is a wide range of products. In the end what we achieve is that the projects are focused only in our company, that is to say, that we focus all the purchases that a project may have and thus speed up the project.
BF: We know that Verdú has been selling online from its website for a few years now. What has this new direct sales channel brought you?
HS: For us it has been a very important event to be present in online sales because it made a big difference in the company. Before, Verdú only had visibility with physical catalogues or at trade fairs, fairs… but the opening of the online shop for us has been a showcase that is constantly open, which has increased the attraction of new customers and has been a very important boost for the company, we are also reaching a type of customer that we did not reach before, which is the customer who wants things at the time regardless of the schedule, that is the total autonomy that Verdú Store offers, where the customer can make the arrangements when he wants without depending on the schedule or anyone.
BF: We think it is a good decision to go for online sales, we have just launched the online shop of Beltá Frajumar, however, which are the distribution channels that Verdú has opened recently?
HS: I would say that the most important channel that we have opened recently is Dropshipping, which is a bit linked to online sales and it is sales without storage, let’s say that we, with the warehouse that we have, serve a client without going through an intermediary, which facilitates the whole process for the person who wants to distribute our articles because they don’t have to store or worry about shipping. Everything we have experienced during this pandemic has boosted digital commerce and customer demand and requests. So Dropshipping has been the most important discovery Verdu has had in the last few years.
BF: Mar, can you tell us which are the markets in which Verdú is most present?
MV: Verdú has been present for several years in the Portuguese and Moroccan markets, and since the opening of the online market in 2015 we have had demand from other countries such as Poland and France. Also, although with less strength, we are picking up markets from Latin America, specifically from Ecuador and Colombia.
For this reason, since 2015 we have had a foreign trade department to analyse these markets.
BF: How do you work with interior designers or architects? We would like to hear about any recent projects you have successfully completed.
HS: Working with interior designers and architects is arguably one of the most difficult parts of the company because they have very specific needs, which means they require more specific treatment than other clients. In order to promote the activity with architects and interior designers, we have created a multidisciplinary group of colleagues who are fully specialised in the field and our aim is to facilitate this work and when a project arises, to work on it in a specific way in order to make it as easy as possible for verdu.
BF: What kind of projects can your products be adapted to?
HS: The products that verdu sells can be adapted to all kinds of projects. It is true that we come from the living room sector, but in recent years we have been promoting the contract sector more and the results have not been long in coming and we are managing to work with interior designers and architects here in Spain and beyond our borders.
BF: Regarding the products you have mentioned, have you adapted any of these new products to the new needs that have arisen?
HS: Let’s say that in the face of this health crisis, we have not adapted products, but rather we have reinforced the ones we already had. For example, we have expanded our range of masks, hydroalcoholic gels, screens… Businesses have also had to adapt to this new situation and to this new standard, so we have also introduced protective screens for restaurants. In addition, in the strictest confinement, our establishment had to be open because we could serve both hospitals and hotels that adapted to this situation to offer them fittings so that they could make beds.
BF: We would like you to tell us a little about the trends and changes that you are seeing in the hotel sector in recent years.
HS: From Verdu we have noticed that the hotel sector is importing some habits that were acquired for the reform of housing which arose because of the crisis that we have suffered in Spain. The sale of second hand houses, smaller houses which needed to take advantage of much more space, which required fittings to create multifunctional spaces, skyrocketed. We have noticed that this trend is spreading to hotels and therefore from verdú all these fittings, which are being used in housing, we are now making them available for several important projects that have arisen, so the aim for the next few years is to create a collection of fittings focused on this issue, space saving, which we believe will be very present in the hotel sector in the coming years.
BF: We know that Verdú’s motto is, “In continuous evolution”. After so many years, what would you say is the greatest success the company has had in order to continue to be present in the sector?
MV: Well, as you have said, our motto is “In continuous evolution”, so Verdú has always adapted to the times. When Verdú started 128 years ago, Yecla was an agricultural town, little by little we have been adapting to the needs of our clients, right now the need has been the pandemic, so we have adapted to this situation, Verdú has been growing at the same pace as the industry.
BF: The truth is that it is impressive that you have reached 128 years working. And we are looking forward to the 150th anniversary. What are you looking forward to?
MV: We hope to celebrate it, as my brother Joaquin says, with joy and excitement. The truth is that the celebration of 100 years was a very special celebration, because it was attended by our parents, my brother Jose Luis, and although it was not as spectacular as the one we did recently for the 125th anniversary, the 100 years is more important because of what it means to the heart. These 125 years, the truth is that it was a very big effort, but we are very satisfied with how the whole celebration went, so we hope that by the time the 150th anniversary arrives, everything will be evolving for the better.
BF: In your experience, can you tell us how the client has changed in recent years?
HS: Well, in recent years the customer has become totally autonomous, they don’t want to be subject to any timetable or for anyone to answer an email or wait for them to pick up the phone, they want to do it when it suits them and according to their work availability, which is why the development of the online shop is very important, which has been a boost to attract all these types of customers and to strengthen all the customers we already had and who were focused on working in this way. Although it is true that during this year, with everything we have experienced with the pandemic where digitalisation has been boosted a lot, the client of this profile has been reinforced in their way of working and we are having a lot more demand from clients who are looking to work in this way, and thanks to the system we have in the verdú store, this need can be satisfied.
BF: We know that verdú is a family business, just like belta frajumar, what does this give you as a company?
MV: Verdú are values. Our parents, both of them, brought us up with a series of values. My mother was not present in the company but she was present in, as if we were to say, the ‘back room’. So we like to pass on these values to our team, the values that our parents passed on.
BF: Finally, can you tell us what you think of the InterCIDEC initiative as a platform for connecting interior designers, manufacturers and hoteliers?
HS: If the InterCIDEC platform, before the situation we have had to live through, already seemed to us to be a useful platform, now during this situation we believe it is much more beneficial because we have all lived through many moments of uncertainty and I think that putting various parts of the furniture sector in contact with each other, what it does is generate expectation, analyse how the coming years will look and let’s say, it allows that uncertainty to disappear and allows us to make more stable forecasts and be able to set objectives at a business level.