For the interview with our dear partner Mr Plamen Kabadzov, we had more than one motive: his company Plana Engineering celebrates 20 years of since foundation, which is at the same time the 20th anniversary of great cooperation of his company and Tarkett at the Bulgarian market. Additionally, these days Mr Kabadzov celebrates his 60th birthday…
TSEE: Dear Mr Kabadzov, the anniversaries such as yours are times when one stops and looks over their shoulder. What do you consider to be your greatest achievement, among other things?
"My greatest achievement is that I believe I have grown as a person, earned the respect of a lot of people, that I have a family with children and grandchildren, of which I am proud of. I have succeeded in creating a successful and competitive company, in fulfilling my dreams and travelling all over the world."
TSEE: There is no universal recipe for the success of a company, but obviously, you have found a way. After 20 years of doing business in the Bulgarian market, what do you see as the key factor of such success?
"To be honest, quality and responsibility in relationships with all partners, as well as building a good team."
TSEE: During all these years you have had a good relationship with Tarkett and Plana Engineering was the first distributor of Tarkett's commercial programme in Bulgaria. Due to your dedicated work, Tarkett is a synonym for project sales of homogenous floors in the Bulgarian market. Is there a special story or situation you remember vividly and which you would like to share with our readers?
"A long time ago, in 1995, we organised a so-called "Road Show" in Bulgaria together with Tarkett – Varna, Plovdiv and Sofia. Tarkett's team arrived with a big truck, equipped with everything that was necessary for the presentations. On the second day the truck was stolen in the centre of Varna and we had to ask for help from the minister of internal affairs. Panic ensued, but the truck was found and the show went on."
TSEE: Besides delivering goods to customers, you have also specialised in flooring installation. Over the years, you have completed more than 300 different projects, mainly in the field of health care, education, sport, hospitality… and Ludogorets Arena, First Language School Varna, Biovet, Orange Fitness Centre are just some of the projects you have recently completed successfully. A lot of our partners from other markets would like to be at least as successful as you are, but that is not so easy. Do you have any advice for them? What does it take to be in a place you are today?
"It is difficult to give any advice, but I will share with you what I have done. First of all, in the very beginning of our cooperation with Tarkett (1994), I sent a team of four employees to Sweden to be trained as installers. Then I provided all the equipment needed for work. During the first bigger project, I used the help of a supervisor from Sweden who provided a guarantee that proper equipment was used and that the team was trained. From then on, everything else is a matter of control and responsibility."
TSEE: What is your solution for the times of crises such as these?
"Optimisation of company structure, raising the level of competencies, precision in meeting the conditions agreed with the customers."
TSEE: Nowadays it is difficult to create balance between the professional and private life. How do you cope with that and in your opinion, what is the best way to relax after a long day at work?
"As I have said, I use every opportunity to visit different countries and regions. That makes me a better person. I get to know different nations, their culture and customs, the way they treat other people. Of course, I feel wonderful at home with my children and grandchildren. I love doing sports with friends – I play tennis and go swimming, I like music – I have seen almost all rock bands and stars live."
TSEE: And to finish off, if you could start all over again, what would you be?
"Based on what I have shared with you, you will all understand that I do not want anything better than my destiny!"
TSEE: Mr Kabadzov, thank you very much for taking the time to do this interview, we wish you a happy 60th birthday and many more anniversaries to come!