What is the core activity of your company? Does your company focus on particular geographic markets?

Our company, together with subsidiaries in the Czech Republic and Turkey, trades raw materials for the metallurgical and steel industry. In particular, we deal with non-ferrous metals (aluminium, copper, nickel, tin, zinc, lead and minor metals) and noble ferroalloys (based on molybdenum, vanadium, titanium, niobium, tungsten and others). We mainly operate as principals, buying, storing and reselling to consumers; we also have territorial representation as agents and distributors on behalf of some foreign producers.

In your view, what is the actual trend of your sector?

Our sector is perhaps the most globalised one, and therefore subject to the great influence of international geopolitical events. Phenomena such as the imposition of duties and tariffs, or events such as pandemics have an immediate (and often negative) impact on international trade and the economic growth prospects of nations. Over a longer period, however, there is no doubt that the increased urbanization of the world population and technological development are phenomena that support the use and trade of metals.

How do you judge the perspectives of your activity’s market?

Partially negative in the immediate term, precisely because of the limiting factors mentioned earlier; certainly improving in the long term. Precisely for this reason, for us traders, it is necessary to equip ourselves with more and more financial facilities able to sustain for prolonged periods of time a stagnant or even shrinking market, so as to be ready to seize the reversals of the trend and take advantage of the peaks of rise. All this requires long dedication to customer needs and loyalty based on quality of service and trust in confidentiality and responsiveness.

For your company, what are the benefits of working in Lugano (Switzerland)?

Lugano is in a magnificent position from a geographical point of view: north enough to be in the heart of Europe, and also south enough to guarantee an incomparable meteorological quality. At the same time it is at 2-3 hours maximum by plane from the extreme west (Lisbon) and the extreme east (Moscow, Istanbul) of Europe. This puts it in direct contact with the whole EU and neighbouring countries. In addition, Lugano has the advantage of being in Switzerland, the nation in Europe most “friendly” to trading sector.

Your opinion in one sentence to describe LCTA’s activity

The activity of LCTA allows members to have an excellent relationship with their peers in the Ticino economic environment and, by extension, in the Swiss one, as well as allowing a coordinated action to defend the interests of the category. Equally important is the educational and updating activity, addressed both to seniors with conferences and updates, and to juniors with preparatory courses for business activities.

April 2020

Antonio Gerli, Commercial Director