Istanbul-native Taskin Kose – the CEO of the Turkish Façade contracting firm, Senyuva Aluminium Co – arrived in Malta in 2019, having been commissioned – in a first for Malta – to produce and install the façade on the Fortina Tower projects, which included the Barcelo Fortina Hotel, the Fortina Residence and the Bet365 Head Office. Five years later, an he has established FacadArt Trading Ltd, as well as two other firms with his civil engineer partner, Hakan Bal, both driven by the goal of making an artistic mark on Malta’s façades.

“I love the atmosphere on this island, I love its people and I love their family-centred approach,” says Taskin Kose, the CEO and Co-Founder of FacadArt Trading Ltd, explaining how, over the past few years, he has moved his professional façade team to Malta – the talent behind his Turkish firm, Senyuva Aluminium Co, operating out of Istanbul and boasting a highly-sophisticated Computer Numerical Control (CNC) automated factory.

As testament to these sentiments, he also plans to further grow his façade contracting firm in Malta. “I am investing time to learn and understand Maltese culture, since I think it is key to our progress. I’d like to solidify the company’s success here and become a global partner in the façade design and installation business, yet keeping this island as a base,” he explains. Here in Malta, and beyond, FacadArt will continue the work started in Istanbul, importing expertise in glass, stone, ceramic, and aluminium systems and insulations, while also specialising in heavy steel construction, office glass partition systems, automatic and revolving entrance doors, as well as shopfront transparent façades and industrial doors, among other offerings.

Taskin “started his adventure” in Malta in 2019, when he was approached, as the owner of Senyuva, to work on Bet365’s head office, which is part of Fortina Complex. However, when one of the main contractors defaulted on his contractual obligations, Taskin stepped in to fill the gaps. “This opportunity came at a very difficult time, since the outbreak of COVID-19 had resulted in a number of logistical issues which we had to contend with,” he says, recalling the struggles they encountered in setting up the financial structure and in shipping materials to Malta. “What would usually take 15 days or, at a stretch, one month, was then taking up to three months to get to the island,” he explains.

To offset some of the challenges, Taskin and his engineering partner, Hakan Bal, decided to establish FacadArt Trading Ltd, launching the brand with its distinctive orange logo. Taskin describes it as “our corporate face here in Malta,” and emphasises that the firm “is fast becoming the go-to company for innovative façade solutions and projects in the country,” pointing to the increased popularity of tower block developments.

“Our 35-year expertise in this field is being successfully transposed to Malta. We analysed and scrutinised all our competitors’ previous works in Malta and we realised that we could present a strong challenge. This is because we offer lifetime guarantees on our products, including, for instance, on our galvanised steel subframes; our anchor plates which contain a proper surrounding membrane; as well as our stone wool flashing insulation which protects against the effects of storms, bad weather and dust ingress.” Since these promising beginnings, and besides the Fortina commission, FacadArt has also been contracted for other façade projects, including the St George’s Business Centre and the Londoner Hotel, as well as the Bathroom Centre in Żejtun, and private residences owned by some of Malta’s most prominent businesspeople.

Moreover, despite being only a recent ‘Malta native’, preserving the country’s business heritage is also close to Taskin’s heart, and he points to the diverse ways in which the firm positions itself as a leader in the renovation of existing buildings. “Many commercial façades have not been upgraded to complement the businesses’ corporate brand evolution, and, so, they present an outdated, tired image to their clientele. We can help here, particularly by offering a façade design which works well with any new branding; this can substantially increase the real estate value of these premises,” Taskin explains.

The quality of the work is also a priority for the CEO. “We have a sterling reputation in Istanbul as a trustworthy family business since 1986. My goal is to foster the goodwill we have in our home country here in Malta, so we’re learning the ethos of doing business on the island and adapting to local ways. We have started to engage Maltese talent within our management structure, and we’re partnering with local corporate service providers. We feel that engaging with the local community is very important for our full integration and to help us become a part of the Maltese business community,” he says. Networking is also “a very critical aspect of our successful presence in this market,” he continues, adding that this is the case particularly due to the small size of the market – “word travels,” he attests.

This deep sense of commitment in investing in the local economy is also at the heart of FacadArt’s business strategy this year, with the firm hoping to develop a state-of-the-art factory on the island that would incorporate computerised robotic technologies to reduce human errors both in the production and assembly of components, and would allow the firm to consolidate its operations locally. “This will continue to give us a competitive edge and a high-quality finished product, which will be delivered to our customers,” Taskin says.

“Over the last two years, we’ve secured contracts for work here amounting to just over €12 million, and we’re planning to deepen our presence in the market by shifting more capacity to Malta from our base in Istanbul. We want to cement our presence locally with further investment in our production capabilities and marketing initiatives. Collaborating with Maltese partners and continuous development of our human resources are the driving forces behind our business growth strategy. Our vision is long-term, and we want to make the FacadArt brand – with its distinctive orange colour – the industry benchmark in façade solutions,” he continues, smiling.

As a result, Taskin also hopes to position its Malta-based operations as a base for further expansion in North Africa and Southern Europe. “Our plan is to vertically integrate our processes locally in a way that we can respond faster and more economically to the opportunities both here and in surrounding markets,” he explains. In so doing, the firm will build on existing expertise, with Senyuva, in the past, having also developed business relations in several other countries, including Romania, Albania, Holland, Algeria, and Erbil in North Iraq, “some of which are also very difficult territories,” he asserts.

Taskin’s passion, perseverance and sense of professionalism form the core of his work ethos. In his leadership role, he deems it essential to convey these values to the entire team. “I dedicate a lot of my energy to ensuring our people stay motivated,” he says. “My goal is for them to sense my passion not only for the business but also for their well-being and satisfaction.”

This vigour extends beyond the workplace into his personal life. Nonetheless, working in such an intense environment is not always easy “when you’re managing a cross-border organisation, due to the numerous demands it imposes,” he admits, adding that there were “periods in my professional career when work pressures took their toll.”

However, today, he prioritises time for himself. “I make it a point to follow a healthier lifestyle, with daily exercise and healthier eating habits. When I am in Malta, you can find me on my very early daily stroll along your beautiful Sliema promenade – although, unfortunately, I have had to give up on your tasty pastizzi,” he laughs, concluding.

This article is part of the serialisation of 50 interviews featured in MaltaCEOs 2024 – the sister brand to and an annual high-end publication bringing together some of the country’s most influential business leaders

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