Sepiciler Caybasi Deri San Tic AS are planning a new research and development laboratory at their tannery near Izmir. Sepiciler are a shoe leather and sole maker and shrewd corporate tactics have made them a market leader.

The tannery processes 12 million sq m of ovine and bovine skins per month and exports go to more than 15 countries. They have sales offices in Germany, Greece and the UK.

They were the first (and about the only) Turkish tannery to implement reed-bed technology to eliminate tannery waste. The firm are also in the minority in their skilful and productive use of the internet.

With such a plethora of leathers and colours in vogue, a Sepiciler spokesman said that increased R&D is the most important way forward. The new laboratory will be located within the factory complex and will be accredited to European standards.

A principle facet of research will be to concentrate on increased use of vegetable tanned leathers and the elimination of solvents, formaldehyde and azo dyes from tanning.