Graziani at AECM annual conference
The 2018 AECM (Association European Candle Makers) annual conference has been held in London.
For this occasion, Mario Graziani released an interview that has been published in the quarterly magazine of the Association, available below.
When did you start being involved in the candle business?
When I was a child our factory was in a building in the garden of the family villa, for this reason the factory was my playground, probably it was the seed of my love for candle business. After university I joined my father in managing the company.
How do you see the future of the candle market, especially regarding consumer trends?
The speed of change of our world is clear for everybody, but it is not related only to hi-tech products. We have been selling for decades the same items and now in two years the market for those kind of candles has disappeared. Trends are volatile and unpredictable.
What do you think are the main challenges for candle makers in the coming years?
Flexibility will be the guideline for every business in the next years. Trends are volatile and to follow them is a challenge; customers are getting bigger and bigger and it is not easy to produce huge quantities of new products in short times as requested.
On the other hand a trend is customization. Internet makes it possible to reach directly millions of single customers that are asking for their product. It will be possible to produce them in a large scale?
To what do you think candles owe their popularity?
In your life, whenever there is an emotional event, you’ll find a burning candle.
For centuries in absence of sun the light was provided by the warm and flickering light of a candle, it is a memory encrypted in our culture and we can’t avoid to love it.
What would your advice be to a young candle manufacturer who is new in the business?
Do not follows old companies, do something new! Probably those who don’t come from the candle business can imagine new products and new business models better than us.
A short company description
Graziani is a family company founded in 1805 in Livorno Italy. The main focus of the company is still in candles, but includes as well air fresheners, decoration items, sundry liturgical products and technical wax-based chemicals . The turnover of 15 million € comes mostly from European market. Ten years ago production moved to the countryside, in a new bulding built on purpose to be a candle factory, where different technologies are used to produce candles: moulding, filling, extrusion and pressing.