Batinfo: Can you tell us about Rairies Montrieux and its history?
Remy Montrieux: Rairies-Montrieux is a company that has existed for 110 years. I have been at the helm since the 70s and am the 5th generation of the family to run the business. On the Montrieux side, I am the 3rd generation because the company was created in 1910 by my grandfather. In 1985 we bought the neighboring brickyard belonging to the maternal side of my family and on this side I was the 5th generation. Rairies Montrieux is therefore a family business, multi-generational carrying a know-how rooted in French tradition.
Originally, the company focused on the manufacture of rustic terracotta tomettes and floor tiles. In the 70s, the terracotta tile market was a very buoyant sector because there were a lot of farmhouse renovation projects. In the early 2000s, the arrival of the minimalist movement led to a sudden stop in the sector. In search of new outlets, we reoriented our strategy towards facade products. This choice turned out to be a winner because today these products represent the vast majority of our activity.
Batinfo: What is your positioning on the market today?
Today we produce bricks, tiles and bricks in natural or enamelled terracotta for floors, interior walls, exterior facades and landscaping of gardens. We continue to enrich our facade ranges, the success of which has never wavered, with continuous growth since their launches, until they have supplanted our historical products and become our main activity. This year again we have added new references to our color chart in order to allow our professional customers, including many architects, to carry out increasingly personalized projects.
Batinfo: What is the next step for Rairies Montrieux?
Remy Montrieux: We obviously have a lot of plans for the future. For example, we want to continue to modernize our production tools. We had made the choice from the start to use biomass boilers in our factories. The use of wood for cooking, for floor tiles and natural drying, allows us today to control our energy costs while being more respectful of the environment by reducing the consumption of fossil energy as much as possible.
We are also committed to working on hardship at work in order to preserve the health of our employees.
We are also going to continue our projects on the reduction and recovery of our waste and unsold items. We are currently working with the architect Gaëtan Engasser of Agence Engasser & Associés, who specializes in the use of recycled materials to carry out unique and eco-responsible projects.
We will of course continue to develop our ranges of shaped bricks and we can already announce that we will participate in the construction of several buildings for a major sporting event in 2024.
Our objective is to go from a turnover of 12 million euros today to 20 million in 4 years.