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The Egyptian German Porcelain Company's origins are interwoven with the artistic activities of Fathi Mahmoud. For an entire decade (1942 – 1952), the famous Egyptian sculptor oscillated between Art and Industrialization of the Art. Fathi Mahmoud lived precisely in the time when the industrialization of the art became essential for an artist's in order to maintain control over his/her own art.

His need to maintain artistic freedom and his desire to popularize Art gradually turned him to mass production, and industrialization of his art. This signified an interest for Applied Arts, and the major step towards this direction was taken in 1955 with the establishment of a factory in Shubra, Cairo. Despite its limited possibilities, that factory was the rightful pride of its time, and the production was exclusively ceramic earthenware. The early production involved mostly vases, decorative panels, and related artistic work. At the same time, Fathi Mahmoud developed other companies specialized in artistic decoration and furniture.

A second circle of expansion was initiated with the dynamics created by the new investment laws passed in the 70s. In this phase, Fathi Mahmoud developed a business plan that could help generate a new booming phase and thus propel the company to a leading position in the local markets. Following the purchase of land in the then new Alexandria industrial zone (1980), an entirely new factory was built and fully equipped with the latest technological infrastructure.

After Fathi Mahmoud passed away (1982), his youngest son, Sayed Fathy Mahmoud, took over the still small but fast expanding family business. By that moment, the Alexandrian factory project was not completed, the purchased land was still a swamp, and the company was heavily indebted. It took great stamina to go through all the related issues and comprehensively effectuate the transfer and the transformation of the earthenware factory of Cairo to the Alexandria Porcelain plant in 1986.

As a young, determined and resourceful businessman with a vision for the local and regional porcelain markets, Sayed Fathy Mahmoud realized early that the transfer was just a new beginning in a very long journey. He thus managed to turn a small local company to a regional player, which ushered a new era in the company life. Over the past 22 years, the company underwent two further phases of major expansion, namely 1998 – 9 and 2005 – 7. The latter business booming consolidated the company, preparing it for the next stage.
As the company had to become export-oriented, since the early 90s, the management focalized its efforts on positioning the company in the local and regional markets. The early success in Italy, France, Spain and England (1998 - 1999) demonstrated the need for a permanent local distribution in Europe; consequently, a few years later, the company established a sales point in Paris to cover the European market.

Furthermore, since the mid 90s, the company started taking active part in key exhibitions of the porcelain sector, notably in Tendence and Ambiente (both in Germany), the Hotel Show (in Dubai), etc. In addition, the company participated occasionally in exhibitions in Chicago, Tunisia and Egypt.

The rise in the number of the workers reflected the steady and sound expansion of the company. From ca. 50 workers in the late 50s, the factory had a 700-strong workforce in 1994, and reached the level of ca. 1400 workers in the turn of the millennium; by mid-2008, the company human resources amounted to more than 1800 posts.

Improvements in the technological infrastructure and updates have ceaselessly been the concern of the management. On the other hand, a great part of interest has been given to environmental issues; water treatment facilities have been setup, and at the same time, the shift from light gas to natural gas consisted in another key measure.

During the same period, Sayed Fathy Mahmoud took the initiative of implementing new state-of-the-art technologies, notably the robotic systems that enable the production of irregular shape porcelain. In doing so, he was among the very few in the world to invest in these technologies that have by now been adopted worldwide.

This bold entrepreneurial approach contributed greatly in repositioning the company in the local and regional markets, and strengthened its competitive edge in the global markets, which is the present challenge for the Egyptian German Porcelain Company. 


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