For the first time since the breakout of the downturn the building industry expects to show positive figures in the forthcoming years. While 2014 was still considered to be a transition year, both CBS (Statistics Netherlands) and the EIB (Economic Institute for the Building industry) forecast a cautious growth in new housing and nonresidential construction, and in infrastructural projects for 2015 and the years thereafter. That implies a growing demand for Cugla's admixtures and cement-based mortars. Cugla is better than ever prepared to comply with the expected rising demand for its products. President Toine Leijten explains.
‘During the downturn period Cugla didn't withdraw. Better still, in the declining market we've been able to expand our share and continued to show profits’, Leijten looks back with satisfaction. It's a question of focus. Leijten: ‘We continued to believe in what we're good at and that's what we're fully committed to do. Providing tailored solutions, offering supportive supervision on technological aspects of concrete, realising product innovations and continually investing in good people and excellent laboratory facilities. We've reached our current position by structurally investing in all that. Now, more than ever, we're ready to meet the oncoming growth.’
Leijten: ‘In the forthcoming years Cugla also wants to differentiate itself with its service and advice, its know-how of technological aspects of concrete, its capacity for resolving issues as well as its product supply. That's what we've concentrated on these last few years. And successfully too. The fact that our differentiating capacity is also appreciated by the market, is evident from the fact that we're involved in almost all major projects in the infrastructure or construction sectors. Whether it is the tunnel for the A2 in Maastricht, the new Botlek Tunnel for the A15, the 'Galecopperbrug' [bridge] over the A12 or the construction of The First in Rotterdam… Our strength lies in the fact that we are personally involved in those projects and act as a sparring partner for the engineers and builders. And yes, of course we supply those products too. In accordance with the proper conditions.’
Leijten expects that supervision of the technological aspects of concrete and tailored solutions will increasingly play a prominent role in the project world. ‘Simply take a look at form-free design (see article about Geelen Beton, ed.), the rising demand for (ultra)high-strength concrete and the ever more specialist requirements set down for projects (see Galecopperbrug article, ed). Because of the expensive plots, buildings are built higher more often and the building surfaces must be used as effectively as possible. That automatically means that one has to work with more slender shapes which has consequences for the type of concrete, admixtures and special mortars which can be used for this purpose. That's what we keep focusing on and continue to anticipate: at Cugla we're continually focusing on innovation in relation to the needs of the market.’
President Toine Leijten