Marimekko’s President and CEO, Tiina Alahuhta-Kasko, visited the factory of the company’s long-term partner supplier in Thailand, Crown Ceramics Co. Ltd, in September. Crown Ceramics manufactures products for the popular Oiva ceramic tableware series launched in Marimekko’s home collection in autumn 2009. The visit celebrated the upcoming 10th anniversary of the Oiva series, as well as the good cooperation between Marimekko and Crown Ceramics, which started in 2008 and has developed into a partnership that brings together the expertise of each party.
Crown Ceramics manufactures the products all the way from clay raw material to finished items. The process consists of many phases and involves a lot of handwork. Marimekko’s patterns are printed into decals, which are carefully placed on the surface of the products by hand. The quality inspections for the decal placement and final products are also done by human eye. ”It was inspiring to witness how Marimekko’s unique prints are brought to life in Oiva products through Crown Ceramics’ expertise,” says Tiina Alahuhta-Kasko.
Marimekko’s product range is wide and varied, and the manufacture of the products requires a comprehensive and diverse partner supplier network. Expertise in the manufacture of different types of products exists around the world, and for Marimekko it is essential to find capable partners, with whom cooperation can be developed and planned with a long-term perspective. Sustainability is also an important part of the supplier selection. Marimekko personnel regularly visit the factories of our partner suppliers and discuss not only how the cooperation is developing but also sustainability matters, such as working conditions. Crown Ceramics employs about 1,600 people and considers it important to offer its employees a good workplace. For example, the company regularly organises a market outside the factory, where the staff can purchase groceries and other daily essentials.