This company’s success—which started as a sole proprietorship and grew to a global manufacturing and distribution group in the 1990s—is in a large part due to its cautious and deliberate investment and expansion strategy. It enabled them to conquer further markets during the 2008 financial crisis, when other companies that had taken on more orders than they could handle began dropping like flies.
The Group makes products for three market segments:
- MFP FÉG Kft. is both a leading and a middle-ranking manufacturer of cooling and heating equipment—it is the leading manufacturer of certain parts and components (piezo igniters, valves and heating pipes) for cooling and heating products, while it is a middle-ranking manufacturer of other products (e.g. air conditioners).
- MP Widenta Kft. is a major manufacturer of cutting and grinding equipment, MPF is a major manufacturer on the oligopolistic market of sanding tools and grinding products, (holding the third place on the European and USA markets), while MPF Meta Zrt. is a leading supplier of power tool accessories sets.
- One of the company’s marketing strategies is focusing on market segments that are “too big for small players and too small for big players”. Accordingly, MPF strives to get markets in which they can be the dominant player. They focus on oligopolistic markets as well as on developing a range of products that complement and economically supplement one another. This strategy also makes them special: they are at the service of their customers with a strong financial background but also with a lot of flexibility.
The MPF Group will invest HUF 50 billion over the next five years. Of this, HUF 30 billion will go towards expanding their production in Hungary, and HUF 20 billion to do the same in the US and Germany, said Péter Körmöczi-Kovács, the chief finance and legal officer of the Group. The Group wants to further develop this international, Hungarian-owned company in Hungarian that offers high added-value products.“We can only remain successful on the long run on a multinational market if customers see us as a reliable company that pays attention to details, offers outstanding flexibility and a personal touch—something that multinational companies don’t do. This shows up in our product range, delivery times, good reaction times, and the fulfilment of special requests”, explained the manager.
The company started as a classic small-sized enterprise, but had become a group with an annual turnover over HUF 150 billion by 2018. Nowadays, the MPF Group is definitely a big company in Hungary, but its management would describe it as a strong medium-sized company by European and international standards, something which they regard as one of their biggest strengths. They explain this with their financial background and expertise required for implementing their ideas, although they have remained flexible enough in adapting to customers’ needs. If, for example, DIY shops and wholesalers—their most important customers—want to introduce a new brand or announce special offers, MPF delivers the requested products within the shortest time possible.
The Group has stepped onto the international market, a move which has brought its challenges. MPF’s customer relations policy is to build up a competitive advantage in all segments to ensure success on international markets. Another principle is that if a company cannot offer more than the other suppliers or service providers, then this lack of competitive advantage will also prevent them from doing business.
An international market presence and continuous growth requires that all companies have their own special adaptation strategy. Things that make MPF special are that it handles sales order quantities that are continuously skyrocketing, it always meets customers’ needs, its has an optimal plant size, and its organisational system is transparent and recognised at all levels, even internationally. Other important factors are international recognition, transparent accounting reports, and the harmony between management and company culture.
Péter Körmöczi-Kovács thinks that the key ingredients of their recipe for success are their carefully planned financing policy as well as the avoidance, or at least minimisation, of credit-based developments. This prudent approach allowed them to not only avoid turbulence caused by the 2008 financial crisis, but also acquire FÉG, a well-established company in Hungary as well as internationally, in 2010. This was their second acquisition after the similarly well-established Widenta in 2003. Both acquisitions meant purchasing Hungarian companies under or near liquidation. Many companies became insolvent in the crisis-hit international business sector, and MPF could more or less take their places on the respective markets.
The Group is proud that the implementation of the aforementioned acquisitions made it possible for them to offer employees careers with continual opportunities for advancement, in exchange for their long-term commitment. This is reflected in their extremely low workforce turnover rate and the direct expression of employee satisfaction. The MPF Group offers stable and continually developing jobs as well as lifelong careers for experienced employees who want to evolve.
The MPF ars potetica is that successful companies should not only focus on themselves, but also on helping others. The company supports its employees and the protection of its environment. It also makes regular charitable donations, primarily to sports, healthcare and local organisations. They cooperate with the municipalities where their plants are located, and support community gatherings, the organisation and implementation of village or town festival days, and also participate in the development of several public parks and playgrounds. They cooperate with vocational schools and create internship programmes to offer attractive opportunities to young people. The group also cares about the elderly, and MPF FÉG installed heating systems free of charge as part of the Otthon Melege Program (Warm Homes Programme).