Room for Synergies
What is the Plan Behind Lakesight Technologies?
In May 2017 Chromasens became part of the Lakesight group joining Mikrotron and Tattile. InVISION spoke with Corrado Franchi, CEO of Tattile and Board Member of Lakesight Technologies about the strategic objectives and backgrounds of Lakesight Technologies, the company that entered the machine vision industry by bringing Tattile back to life in 2012 and since then is active in the machine vision industry.
The companies Tattile, Mikrotron and Chromasens are now members of Lakesight, a name that not long ago was still rather unknown in the machine vision industry. Could you introduce us to Lakesight Technologies?
C. Franchi: For this it is at first important to take a look at the structure of the machine vision industry in Europe. While machine vision technology itself has matured in the last decades, the structure of the companies providing machine vision technology more or less stayed the same. We have hundreds of players on the European market, and out of these only a handful exceeds a turnover of 100 million Euros. The vast majority of companies are much smaller. Our estimate is that 90percent of the market players still are below an annual sales volume of 10 million Euros; and practically all of them have the same growth pattern in their history: A technology dedicated founder who managed to grow the company to the existing level due to continuous R&D on a limited choice of products and demand from a rather unchanged customer base. However, for several reasons many of these small players now reach the limit of growth that is possible under these corporate structures. Their product offering often is too narrow, the sales team is too small and geographically limited, and many times the company simply doesn’t have the financial means to enter the next evolution step by conquering new markets. In addition, since growth always ‚happened‘ in the past there often is a lack of strategic focus and no notable and structured investment in marketing or business development. The company is too small to overcome export hurdles and enter new geographic markets. These are the market conditions under which Lakesight Technologies was formed to give an answer. Lakesight is finally a proposal or rather a solution for companies in such a situation to overcome these constraints. The idea behind Lakesight is to form a platform of smaller machine vision players that creates synergies in order to enable higher growth for all parties.
New investments have to be financed. So where does the money come from, who is the investor behind Lakesight Technologies and what are his objectives?
Franchi: Lakesight as a holding company is a 100percent daughter of Ambienta, a leading European private equity fund operating out of Milan, Düsseldorf and London, focused on industrial growth and investing in companies driven by environmental trends. Ambienta invests with a long-term focus in businesses that offer products or services well suited to control pollution or increase resource efficiency.