Panagiotis Tounis, Director of Matrex Aluminum Dies: “Our vision reflects the high quality and quantity of dies”

The Plant Director of Matrex Aluminum Dies, Panagiotis Tounis in an interview with “Aluminum Magazine” spoke about the successful presence of the company in Greek and not only events, describing in detail its evolution from its inception until today.

The full interview follows below.

  • Mr. Tounis, first tell us a few words about the object of the company.

Matrex is active in the field of aluminum extrusion and more specifically in the design-manufacture of aluminum extrusion dies and press tools. We undertake the design of the mold from the design to its final construction. Our scope is considered very specialized in terms of technology and know-how, and that’s why we are few companies that are active in this field.

  • Ηow was the idea of founding the company created?

Our company belongs as a subsidiary to the Italian group of Alumat-Almax Group, which has at least 40 years of experience and presence in the field with a total of 4 plants in Italy, Greece and Poland. Matrex, being the 3rd in a series of group companies, was established in December 2013 in Industrial Area of Thessaloniki within an area of 1,100 m2. Our initial goal was to cover mainly the needs of the Greek market, in which the Group had already been present for over 25 years, having developed strong ties of cooperation with the most companies in the industry. In total, the Group can produce dies with diameter from 250 mm until 1200 mm with an annual production of 15000 pieces.

…the quality of our dies ensures our customers the lowest possible extrusion costs…

  • What is the capacity of the company and which are your target markets?

 The company currently employs 35 people with a total production capacity of 2,5 thousand dies per year, while the average delivery time is between 8-12 working days depending on the complexity of the project. Our goal is to reduce this time up to 10 working days during the next two years with the completion of the 2nd business plan.

In terms of our geographical area, apart from the Greek market, we have a commercial presence in Bulgaria, Serbia, Albania, Bosnia, Romania, Turkey, with the percentage of our exports against total sales exceeding 50%.

  •  Mr Tounis, we know that Matrex has won the trust of large extrusion companies. Which do you believe are the key features did lead you to this expansion?

Our main concern is to adapt to the needs of each customer, and to achieve short delivery times. Our goal is our customers to see us as partners and not as an impersonal supplier. We could say as a part of their own company. Considering the uniqueness of our scope, a two-way cooperation and communication are the “means” that can lead to the absolute satisfaction of our clients. At the same time, the quality of our dies ensures them the lowest possible extrusion costs. To achieve this, even in very complex or with special requirements molds we use simulation in order to give the maximum possible result to the mold based on the technical specifications and requirements of the customers.

It is worth mentioning that the Italian companies of the group were the first to introduce the simulation of aluminum dies, and now all the Group is deeply experienced on that. In addition, the short delivery time combined with the technical support we provide before and after the sale of the product, we could say that have been ranked us as one of the best suppliers of aluminum extrusion dies.

Furthermore, the production process faithfully follows the rules of ISO as from 2019 we have been certified with ISO 9001: 2015, while soon we will have certification of ISO 14001 which concerns the continuous improvement of environmental performance. At the same time, we apply the 5S model, increasing productivity and improving safety and health in the workplace.

  • We are here because we know that you have just installed a very remarkable technology. Can you explain us something about?

Our company, guided by the manufacture of products of high technical specifications, could not make any discount on the part of the mold heat treatment, one of the main features for its correct and increased service life. For this reason, as in the Greek market there is no possibility of providing this technology, we decided as a group to invest in the installation of a new heat treatment oven with vacuum technology and incomparable technical advantages.

The use of this technology offers the maximum possible homogeneity of paint in the material, giving it a high level of wear resistance during operation and generally increased mechanical characteristics. Also, the material does not oxidize, as it does not come in contact with other materials or oxygen during the treatment, since it takes place in a vacuum chamber at -2bar.

It offers a faster final result as the duration of the specific treatment is significantly reduced, resulting in a further reduction of the total production time of the die. Finally, it is an environmentally friendly technology as it does not use or produce chemical waste, compared to other techniques.

  • Let’s conclude this interesting interview with Matrex, young production unit of a consolidated group all over the world, understanding which are the next investments and expansions of the company.

At the moment we are talking about, our company is exactly in the middle of its 2nd investment program, which concerns the period 2018-2023. Our goal is not only to to increase the existing production capacity from 2,500 dies to 3,600 dies per year, but also to expand die diameter to 550 mm for extrusion presses up to 9″, compared to the current 400 mm up to 8″ presses. This goal was and continues to be feasible seeing the market response to the company, which is continued unabated all these years. Our vision reflects the high quality and quantity of dies, which will constantly meet the specialized needs of our customers.

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