The key is “togetherness”: Metro and Siempelkamp celebrate 20 years of cooperation

Contract signing at Metro. From left: Daniel Bacic, Branch Manager Siempelkamp Kuala Lumpur; Henning Gloede, Managing Director Siempelkamp Singapore; Chatchai Piyasombatkul, President of Metro Ply Group; Vipas Piyasombatkul, Managing Director Metro MDF; and Kanatuch Piyasombatkul, Managing Director Metro Particle

The wood-based panel industry has witnessed a 20-year partnership between Metro Ply Group and Siempelkamp. Most recently, Metro, one of the largest wood-based panel producers in South East Asia, ordered a new particleboard plant made by Siempelkamp. In April, Metro celebrated the first board produced on their Siempelkamp medium-density fibreboard (MDF) plant. Vipas Piyasombatkul, Managing Director of Metro MDF, and Kanatuch Piyasombatkul, Managing Director of Metro Particle, tell us about their projects, visions and values.

Q: Metro and Siempelkamp are both committed to the strong values of a family-owned company. What constitutes the value of a family business in today’s globalised world?

Vipas Piyasombatkul: In our family, the key is a flexible and adaptable structure; without structure, we would have just stayed a small family business. We wouldn’t have grown into an international and competitive company. Decisive decision-making and the ability to adapt to change very quickly gives us competitive edge over old-fashioned large corporations.

Kanatuch Piyasombatkul: We are transitioning from the second generation to the third, and there will be a fourth generation pretty soon. We are now prioritising finding that perfect balance between a larger cooperation and all the levels of a decentralised system of decision making, and also having a sense of family. Sharing the values of a family business is why our father would always have a place in his heart for Dieter Siempelkamp. They have quite a relationship and my father has always admired him as a person that sticks to the family values and is still healthy and involved.

Q: Metro is the leader in MDF manufacturing in South East Asia – this core message is anchored on the Metro website. What exactly is the strength of this business area?

Vipas Piyasombatkul: We have been the leading wood-based panels manufacturer in South East Asia for 70 years. That is where our strength lies – we know all types of wood, we talk wood and we love wood. My father’s passion was knowing every type, log and detail of the tree and he passed his passion on to us. I pass this passion on to my son named Alder – the name of a tree.

The full article is published in September/October 2021 edition of Panels & Furniture Asia. To continue reading, press here.