December 21, 2012

The New Year of 2013 will be great

Peikko head-office in Lahti, Finland, 21.12.2012, with a lot of snow around.

In a story a stereotypical American is saying that "this year was really good, and next year will be even better". The optimism in North America is such that many people in Europe or elsewhere just cannot understand it. And I think they are wrong, because Americans are just so much better with this respect.

In my home country in Northern Europe I can many times hear that "Pessimists will never be disappointed". Obviously this is true, but how many opportunities we are just losing when being pessimists. Probably a lot of missed opportunities.

I am the first one to admit that in our company Peikko many things are wrong, however, in general we are a very optimistic company. Based on e.g. turnover this year of 2012 we grew from 105 M€ (2011)  to some level of 112-113 M€ of sales. Not bad under the current economic circumstances. Again, we believe that next year we will grow much more. We have reasons to believe that, but we also just believe in that, just a pure belief. And it helps to reach our goals.

Because the next year of 2013 will be great, it is easy for me to wish also to you A HAPPY NEW YEAR OF 2013! Let´s be optimistic and change our world, e.g. the construction business, to be a better place.

December 7, 2012

5-star Hotel Kempinski and 5-star Peikko

Hotel Kempinski construction works, Minsk, November 2012
5-Star hotel chain of Kempinski hotels and Peikko are not having much in common. At least at Peikko we need to have so reasonable prices for our customers that we are not staying in 5-star hotels when we travel, sometimes even 3-stars are too much.  

Nevertheless, in Minsk, Belorussia Hotel Kempinski and Peikko have a lot in common. There is a new Kempinski hotel under construction in the heart of the city, and there are thousands of parts from Peikko there. Peikko BelRus LLC, our Belorussian team has been able to help various jobsites around Belorussia with their technical support. In the case of Kempinki e.g. our PSB Punching Prevention Systems were used.

Last but not least, in which hotel did I stay in Minsk in November? Actually sometimes we are so cost-conscious that we are not staying in our travel in hotels at all - I was staying in a nice and clean rented apartment 1/3 of the price of any Minsk hotel :-)  

Peikko PSB Punching Shear - this special punching prevention system enables thinner in-situ floor slabs
 and thus lighter and more convinient structures

December 1, 2012

Which country? Government debt only 6.7% of GDP in 2011

When evaluating the health of the construction market in a given country, the health of the government in that given country is a big part of the evaluation. The governments of the world are effecting the conditions of residential activity, they are great builders themselves for non-residential construction such as schools, hospitals and elderly homes, and naturally they play the major part of infracture construction (railways, roads, harbors etc.).

And when is the government able to act? When they money issues are in balance. The problem in most Western European and North American countries is the excessive debt burden that is about to sink us all: we spend more than we earn. Quite simple to undertand but still it seems hard for most governments to realize this and also act.

There is however, one nice example of the contrary. The country is Estonia, the northernmost Baltic countries with some tiny 1,3 million population. In Estonia they use what their earn and not overspend. And maybe this the reason why they are just now doing pretty well.

I had the opportunity to meet a larger group of Estonian businessmen in Finland some time ago and I must say I was impressed about their realistic views, optimism and agressive goals. It seems that at the same time when most Europeans are not understanding what to do, the Estonians have their biggest chance of lifetime to make the impact in Europe.

By the way, where is the Estonian government money now going? E.g. Peikko is involved in quoting number of Deltabeams for university expansions. Building up new universities seems at least to me a bright idea to spend money for.

My grandfather came originally from Estonia and a small version of the above flag used to be placed in the house where I grew up in Finland in 70s and 80s. I am happy that the flag can be now also used in Estonia  (in Soviet regime it was not allowed) and I wish all the best for this tiny country in the north ! I wish there would be more countries spending only the portion they earn.