Interview with PolychromeLAB – December 7, 2017
Who actually is behind PolychromeLAB?
My name is Michele; Although I am of Italian heritage, I was born in Germany and grew up on the Swabian Alps with my parents, who came as immigrant workers from Italy to Germany. I am a trained textile specialist who has been working for 20 years in the sports textile industry as an innovator and creator! In my heart, I am an athlete who thrives on adrenalin, which shapes me in terms of my sports and the way in which I live my life! From this, the idea was born to invent a material that is light and weather-resistant.
I see myself as a creative, freedom-loving, industrious guy who’s without fear about taking action or confronting life’s obstacles… in comparison, any other mountaineer might not have not reached the heights I have in my life by now (he talks about his cat, which is doing some acrobatics)!
So, he is also a joker; Michele, who arrived together with his wife, Lisa, in Serfaus at the B&B, a former mountain inn. He’s created his own manufacturing facility from his love for craftsmanship! Surrounded by many high mountains and space to think…
What led to PolychromeLAB, and when did have first thoughts about it, or respectively, when did you start the project? Why or what was the decisive factor?
PolychromeLAB resulted from a material invention (Polychrome), which is a Polychrome laminate, and it was developed from the need for „less sweating “and „less freezing“. In 2008, the idea came to us for the product invention, and the actual production followed later in 2012! Today, PolychromeLAB is a luxury manufacturer that also caters to mass production.
Why is Lisa always in the background? Such an attractive and business-minded woman – where is there a connection to a freedom-loving person like you? What would you say about that, Lisa?
Michele denies that Lisa has a passive role- his wife has always been by his side, on a professional, private, and sports level.
Lisa agrees, but stands as a pillar of strength in the shadow and encourages me! It works because it keeps me grounded – Lisa is as solid as a rock and is the family, she keeps everything together and brings freedom into our warm home.
Now, you are super-innovative, successful and have been awarded prizes everywhere – in terms of technical processing – who is the main driver, and how does this benefit the team? Do you both have your own role, or does the team decide everything together?
I am the creative slob, and Lisa cleans up, she works in an extremely structured and organized fashion- not the good soul but the iron lady, who also firmly directs us and steers us away from everything inappropriate!
If I look at your operations, Michele is always the front man, but honestly, the strong-willed attitude and clear business execution come from Lisa, though. Michele, is that true, or would you like to explain how the tasks are divided between both of you?
Creativity, design & development details, those are my responsibilities – Lisa handles the procurement, production and suggestions about business execution, finances, logistics and organization, such as efficiency and well thought-out operational procedures! Without her, it would not work, and everything would fall apart. I am a retaining wall – she is, however, the foundation and the roof!
Do you have a common goal, or are you individualists for life? Where do you see PolychromeLAB in 5 years? How do you see the cooperation with zai and the partnerships with global brands, if you, deep down in your hearts, have such a deep dedication to PolychromeLAB?
It is our goal to live a beautiful life with a good income to get by – all created by our own hands and work! Of course, we want happiness, health and freedom – which results, however, in more independence! In 5 years’ time, we would like the brand to be noticed as an innovation-driving manufacturer – not only for alpine farmers but also an elitist, cosmopolitan class! We see partnerships as a productive incubator for product innovation and execution. Such partnerships will provide an advantage to all participants, and with the resources they contribute, this cooperation will increase the scope for our further achievement of greater developments.
Thank you for the interesting dialogue, and what would you have as a Christmas wish for each other if you could make one wish come true?
Me? For Lisa, I would wish for more time to join me with sports activities – so, something rather egotistical, as initially mentioned, I’m someone who is a tad bit selfish! Lisa – for Michele, I would wish for a little more patience and the opportunity for him to envision and also enjoy small successes – by not paying too much attention to the overall big dreams and not losing sight of the most important things!
A last word from Lisa: We are grateful to have arrived in Serfaus, and that this enables us to live our lives! We are very grateful for that, and we live our lives as we desire them to be! The location, the mountains, everything around us gives us strength and energy from nature, and this is what we need to manage everything. Here, we have really arrived – the center of our lives!
Author and interviewer: Heinz Ramseier, 07.12.2017