Eternum stands for tradition and continuity but also innovation and dynamism. Continuity is assured by the presence of the fourth generation of the family at the helm of the business and their application of skills and knowledge they have grown up with.
Sales Director Paul Hardy’s great-grandfather founded Eternum in 1924, and he joined the family company in 1987, following in the footsteps of his father. Nevertheless, it was not a foregone conclusion.
“It was more a question of ‘why not?’ rather than ‘what else is there?’,” says Mr. Hardy, who had considered going into banking until his father suggested joining the family business. “Today, I cannot imagine doing anything else, and my motivation to keep doing what I am doing is to ensure the company continues to provide work for its employees and security for the family.”
Modest but continuous growth over the past 15 years bodes well for the future as the company adapts its ranges to a market that has changed markedly from the early years.
“We are one of the last manufacturers in Europe to focus exclusively on stainless steel cutlery,” says Mr. Hardy. “As a result, there is virtually no one left who can rival us for the breadth of our range and the depth of our expertise. Our strategy for the future is simple: to stick with what we know and what we do best.”
What Eternum does best is create timeless cutlery designs and manufacture these to an extremely high standard. Its range is divided into three separate collections. Eternum is the brand for cutlery aimed at the supermarket and non-premium casual dining markets.
Eternum Signature is aimed at high-end retailers and department stores as well as fine dining restaurants and four or five-star hotels. Finally, the company offers a line of stainless steel tableware under the Gastronum brand.
Each year the company adds new lines to its collections as older lines are discontinued. “There are distinctive trends in the cutlery segment,” says Mr. Hardy. “For example, our new Neva cutlery line in the Eternum collection features a joinless design in which the handle flows smoothly into the head for a contemporary look. The style is available in both mirror-polished stainless steel and brushed steel for a matt finish.”
Early this year, the company will add a new line to the Eternum Signature collection called Anzo as well a new range of steak knives. Although Eternum has been active in the market since 1924, its profile is not as prominent as other names in the sector. Changing this is the company’s key aim going forward.
A primary part of its strategy is to achieve listed supplier status with major hotel chains. “We are already listed with Hilton and have supplied Radisson and Marriott,” says Mr. Hardy. “This is a good foundation upon which to build and a prestigious association for our top-quality cutlery.”