Aimo Kortteen Konepaja from Ylivieska has a long experience in exports and is a familiar face at the industry’s international fairs. The company began exporting already in 1980’s and today its Murska machines are delivered to over forty countries. Since year 1969 the mechanical engineering workshop´s main product has been a milling system for fodder grain crimping. These mills, which are sold under the brand name MURSKA, are available as a roller and a disc models. Besides the machines for crimping, the company also nowadays manufactures, for instance, a biopacker for tube composting. This product in question does not cause any runoffs into waterways and is hence a fine solution when considering the tightening environmental regulations that are set to enhance the green transition and sustainable development.
Aimo Kortteen Konepaja is actively looking for growth to its operations through export. To meet its growth targets, besides current markets also expanding to new markets is focal. To enhance this, international fairs have a key role especially from the perspective of meeting resellers. Sales and service of the company’s machines and spare parts are all done by the resellers in the different countries and markets. Fairs provide an opportunity to meet not only existing, but also potential new resellers, through which they can access those new market areas.
We go to fairs to look for new resellers and meet existing resellers. The AgriTechnica and EuroTier fairs are among the most important yearly events, as you meet most of the existing resellers there, says Terhi Korte, CEO of Aimo Kortteen Konepaja.
At fairs, you also meet existing and potential customers, to whom you can present machines and whose experiences and viewpoints are good to hear. Thereby, fairs give the possibility to meet all the actors in the customer chain. It is also worth remembering that you can familiarize yourself with the competitors’ products during fairs.
The AgriTechnica and EuroTier fairs in Hannover are very important for the company, and they have participated in these with their own stand since 2007 and together with Viexpo since 2009. Joint visit to the SIMA fair in Paris has also been made, and they are now thinking about possibly participating in the AgriTechnica Asia fair. Viexpo keeps the company well updated on suitable fairs and maps their interest in them.
Especially the easiness and carefreeness during the whole fair journey, all the way from the first applications to the last actions after the fair, are reasons why Aimo Kortteen Konepaja year after year goes to fairs together with Viexpo.
The communication is open and easy, and the threshold to take contact is low. The company is well taken care of during the process and information flows. You don’t yourself have to follow everything that is going on at the fair organizer, as the fair expert Elina Ruohonen (Senior Advisor, Viexpo) goes there to hear all the latest information and acts as an information channel. It is also great that we can communicate in Finnish, Terhi Korte states.
Throughout the years, the company has needed and gotten help with different things, such as, finding a good stand builder or in negotiating desires regarding the placement of the stand. During the fair, the person responsible from Viexpo always comes and asks how everything is going. In addition, the company also values that when going to a fair in a group with Viexpo, everything concerning financial support is done by Viexpo.
Although we are talking about an experienced fair visitor, there are always new things coming up that you need help with. For instance, during the previous years many fairs have been held as digital due to COVID, and this has also influenced Aimo Kortteen Konepaja’s fair activities. They participated in the digital EuroTier fair with their own 3D virtual showroom, where the participators could move around and look at the machines themselves. The new ways of acting caused some headache, but also they were managed well thanks to good cooperation.
Viexpo managed, for instance, the things with the digital portal, and it was of great help, as we would probably not have been able to do it ourselves, says Risto Aarnos, Export Sales Manager at Aimo Kortteen Konepaja.
What are then usually the results from fairs? If we think about concrete results, there are usually new reseller candidates found and machines are also sold during meetings and conversations. As a good example of the latter, the machines that are transported to the fair from Finland don’t usually return to Finland. At the same time, it is also important to keep in mind the longer time period during which sales can take place.
There was for example a customer from Turkey who came to our stand in Hannover at least during three four years to discuss, and the person though and thought before the first deal was made, Risto Aarnos tells.
Planning of and agreeing on future activities together with existing resellers is also usually done during fairs. In addition, the continuously growing network has an important role, as one’s worldview and understanding of, for instance, different fairs and markets is all the time expanding thanks to it. Fairs can be seen as an observation point to different markets.
With years of experience, Aimo Kortteen Konepaja’s representatives have good tips to give for those planning to go to fairs or who already are active in that scene. They think that the most important things are planning and preparations before the fair. With regard to this, you need to first consider the location of the stand, since successful fairs require that you are visible and easy to find.
The most important thing with your stand is its location. You have to study the maps closely with regard to, for instance, where people are moving and the places that are available and based on that try to look for the optimal place. If you end up in a side aisle or otherwise in a bad place without, for instance, transit or restaurants, then you won’t be found, Terhi Korte notifies.