“I feel at home here”: Nazer’s Akbar Affandi about his time at Mayer & Cie.

Dear Akbar, thank you for talking to us today. Can you please introduce yourself, your job and the company you work for?

I am a textile professor of knitwear technology and I teach at a textile university in Karachi, Pakistan. Before that, I had already taught at other universities. However, I am only a part-time professor: In my “everyday job” I am a technical sales manager at Nazer. I have been working there for about 15 years. The technical aspects are, in addition to the customer negotiations, my specialty: technical requirements, technical advice and pre-sales consulting.

Nazer in Karachi employs 46 people. In addition to Mayer & Cie., we also represent other companies: Brückner, Stoll, Karl Mayer and Osthoff. This gives us a considerable market share in the premium segment.

How long have you been working in the textiles industry?  

For more than 30 years, for my entire life it feels. I got an M. Sc. In Textile Technology.

When was the first time you got in touch with Mayer & Cie.? Do you remember the occasion?

That was in 1995 when I did my first training course at Mayer & Cie. Back then, it was about creating patterns on the computer. That was completely new to me. Until that time, we had worked with sample drums. These were the first steps towards digitization.

I also remember a party that I celebrated with Rainer Mayer. The occasion was selling the first MCPE 2.4 in Southeast Asia. We also sold many of the OVJA 48 E. That was during the jacquard boom, when everyone wanted a Mayer machine because the technology was a unique selling point.

Today, Mayer machines are again, still, in demand. The majority of circular knitting machines in Pakistan today comes from Asia. The remaining market share is small, but the premium segment remains European, as customers realize that the cost-benefit ratio is right. Looking at the application side, interlock and fleece fabrics are popular. In addition, the casual sportswear sector is developing in a high-quality direction.

You’ve been at Mayer & Cie. for a week for training. What did you learn?

Funnily enough, my training was again about patterning, as it was back in the 90s. Today, everything has long been running digitally. I learned to work with MDS1 design software to make mattress cover fabrics, spacers and shoe uppers. This is important because shoe uppers are an important field of application for circular knitting in Pakistan.

Digitalization is also an important topic overall. Mayer has done a lot here. The development department works very precisely and customer-oriented anyway, implementing customer wishes in the best possible way and further develop products with regard to market requirements. If something doesn’t work, a solution is worked on.

That’s something that makes me proud anyway: the fact of representing a company that is constantly evolving, that never stands still. I was speechless about how much has changed since my last visit – okay, that was in 2001 – but still. There are worlds in between!

What I like best is the personal side: I feel at home here, a member of the team, a family member.

Akbar Affandi and Hardy Bühler in Mayer & Cie.'s show room in Albstadt.
Akbar Affandi and Hardy Bühler inspecting a piece of fabric.


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