With a wide range of comprehensive services, SIQ supports organisations in their endeavours to realise their goals relating to the quality of their products and services, and to increase the productivity and efficiency of their operations
For more than 50 years, SIQ has cooperated with organisations in their endeavours to enter markets, increase productivity, improve quality and reach excellence. For this issue, we spoke with the company’s managing director, Igor Likar.
What are the main advantages of SIQ?
– SIQ is quite exceptional in the global market, as we are an institute that offers the widest range of testing and certification services among all competitors. The reputation of our brand, which we have been building for decades through high-quality work and the integrity of our service, literally translates to positive business results and enables stability. Our revenue growth has been steady since 1992, with an average annual growth rate of 12 per cent during this period.
How did you end the 2019 business year and how are you managing this year’s global health crisis?
– In 2019, SIQ increased its sales revenue on the global market by 7.7%, to 19.1 million euros. We generated 55 per cent of revenue on foreign markets, the most in Germany. Our greatest achievement regarding exports last year was the fact that we performed at least one service for clients from 63 different countries. We achieved a turnover of over 100,000 euros in 17 countries.
We signed a multi-year contract with one of the world’s largest manufacturers of gaming devices, Aristocrat, the potential of which in the next five years is revenue estimated in the amount of at least two million euros. SIQ is thus further strengthening its position as one of the three largest gaming laboratories in the world.
Reputation of our brand translates to positive business results and enables stability
In the field of gaming device verification, for example, we are practically the only provider in the world in terms of the complete solutions we offer, while we are the third largest global provider in terms of how many different jurisdictions around the world recognise the results of our verifications. This year has been marked by adapting to emergencies. With the outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic in Europe, problems with medical equipment supplies demonstrated the importance of local knowledge and production.
Quite a few companies are planning to launch the production of medical ventilators and will entrust us with the certification process. We already generate more than a tenth of our revenue by testing medical devices. This was our fastest growing area of business in 2019. We last year generated more than 1.7 million euros in revenue from the testing and certification of medical devices, which equates to a 30 per cent increase compared to 2018.
The medical equipment sector is growing due, on the one hand, to the ageing of the population and, on the other, technological advances in medicine. Certification procedures in this field are particularly demanding and time-consuming, lasting from six months to more than three years, depending on the type of product. That is why companies are not stopping procedures even now, during the Coronavirus crisis. We believe that we have an additional market opportunity in this area, and we intend to seize it.
How competitive is the EU market in the field of medical devices?
– European competition is decreasing in the field of medical devices but is becoming tougher. The EU has in recent years tightened conditions for notified bodies for medical devices. There were 90 such organisations in Europe in 2015, while now there are 55.
The EU is tightening conditions in terms of staff, knowledge and experience, and the new rules prescribed by European Medical Device Regulation 2017/745 (MDR) will enter into force in May next year. To date, 44 bodies have applied for appointments under this Regulation. We are among them and are sure that our application will be resolved positively by the time the new rules come into force.