2018 is the 10th anniversary of Maikii. This is an important milestone, which, for us, is just one stop along a route that we hope will continue to be smooth and successful.
In 2008 Maikii entered the promotional market with its customisable USB sticks. For several years, the catalogue expanded but remained focused on one product – until the introduction, in 2015, of the first Power Bank models. Today, just three years later, we have a catalogue featuring more than 15 categories of Tech Products – and we don’t intend to stop there.
To tell a little of our story we have entrusted our tale to the perspective of someone who has contributed significantly to the development of the company, Riccardo Giazzon, commercial director at Maikii. What follows is his interview.
This year you are celebrating 10 years at Maikii which coincide with the first 10 years of the company. How are you experiencing this important milestone? What aims do you have for the next 10 years?
10 years in this sector is truly an important milestone. This is an environment characterised by freneticism and an incredible rate of development. The fact that we are still “young” – strictly speaking – allows me to think very optimistically about the next 10 years: I see a bright future ahead for Maikii and for me, thanks to our ability to quickly adapt to market contexts – for example with the introduction of non USB products in our catalogue.
How did you start your professional career and what kind of education did you have?
I graduated in marketing and communication at the university of Ca’ Foscari in Venice. My professional training, on the other hand, was mainly on the commercial side. I love to be in contact with people and live for the conclusion of every single order. The fact that I have a “measurable” job is a fundamental point for me, allowing me to enjoy new challenges every day, and to overcome them. I understood my preference after gaining experience as a Buyer in a company within the group, a job that wasn’t quite right for me. After a brief time in PF Concept, my professional career joined with that of Maikii, with Matteo and Francesco.
How did you join Maikii?
I joined Maikii in an organic way. I started in October 2008, returning from my professional experience in Milan, and after 2 weeks I found myself alone in the office, following orders – despite my minimal training. Having already known the structure of the company, and above all the working methods of Matteo and Francesco, allowed me to fit right in straight away.
Today, Maikii is a reference point on the promotional market. How have the needs of your clients changed over the years?
After a beginning that required a significant commitment in terms of time and resources to make Maikii known, we are truly happy about where have now – 10 years later – arrived: not just in terms of our place on the market, but also in terms of our relationships and ties with clients. We are satisfied that we have been able to help our clients gain a detailed knowledge of the product, to appreciate aspects such as its reliability and security – which are essential in electronic products, and to overcome the problem of the mere comparison of prices. Clients have become much more prepared and demanding regarding products, and this marries perfectly with our company philosophy. A knowledgeable and demanding client is precisely what we have always sought, to build a durable relationship of trust, and we are sure that this dynamic will continue to grow and succeed going forwards.
A few days ago, you announced that you will be collaborating with CellularLine for the promotional channel. How did this meeting take place and why did you select them?
Matteo Fabbrini has known CellularLine for several years, having met them at various trade fairs within the sector, both in Europe as well as in Asia. In this case, too, the choice was organic: Maikii was looking for a reliable and well-known market in Europe to offer to its clients, and CellularLine needed a solid operator to enter the promotional market, which, until that point, had been marginal for them. We immediately found ourselves in harmony: the direction was clear for both of us right away, and we only needed one meeting before we decided to embark upon a partnership that is sure to bring great satisfaction to both sides.
Staying competitive on the market today is not easy. What do you have in common, in terms of doing business, with your competitions? And how do you differ from other distributors?
As I see it, there are two kinds of player on the promotional market: cataloguers and specialists. Maikii clearly and unambiguously falls into the second category. There are few companies in Europe that have shared our courage in specialising in a limited range of products, which, at the start, consisted exclusively of USB sticks. Our strength is that, because of this, we know every single aspect of our product: we are true specialists, and those who rely on us can be confident in the products that they purchase and gift from us. Today, USB sticks alone are not enough to remain competitive, and the service that we offer our clients also includes the selection of new products and technologies. Our strengths include our flexibility, our speed of response, and – above all – our ability to deal with any requests that our clients make. After 10 years, Maikii is truly able to find any kind of technological product, any model, any variant: for every question we receive, we have a concrete response – and this is the main feature that distinguishes us from our competitors.
2018 is already coming to an end, and the sector’s trade fairs at the start of 2019 are just around the corner. What developments and innovations will you be presenting?
We have just returned from our usual visits to the sector’s trade fairs in China with plenty of ideas, and many new developments will soon be arriving!Not just new kinds of products, but also new customisation techniques.No spoilers, however: we have recognised that Maikii is increasingly coming under the scrutiny of its competitors…as soon as we launch a product, all of our competitors follow suit! So you will have to be patient and wait until January, when we will present our new products together with an internet site and a completely new catalogue!