The NKBA Hall of Fame inductee shares memories, insights and lessons learned from his time in the kitchen and bath industry.
by Elisa Fernández-Arias
Francisco “Paco” Martínez-Cosentino, President of Cosentino Group and NKBA Hall of Fame inductee, has been in the kitchen and bath industry for over 30 years. Cosentino was inducted into the NKBA Hall of Fame in 2016.
Cosentino joined his family’s small marble and stone processing business and transformed the company into a global leader in surface materials for architecture and interior design. In 1990, he introduced Silestone Natural Quartz, developing more than 120 colors and with this innovative, high-performance surface. Cosentino led the group’s development of Dekton, the first ultra-compact, ultra-resilient surfacing material suitable for both indoor and outdoor applications.
NKBA sat down with Cosentino recently to ask him about the work and projects he’s undertaken since his induction and what he sees as the future of the kitchen and bath industry.
What is your favorite memory or most memorable NKBA moment?
I remember with great fondness and emotion that day in 2015 when, as part of the KBIS trade show, I delivered my speech on the state of the industry as the first entrepreneur of Latino origin to have that honor.
What is the biggest change you have seen in NKBA since you were inducted into the Hall of Fame?
My perception is that the organization has grown immensely and today has a much greater capacity to gather insight and knowledge from the entire kitchen and bath industry. This makes it, without a doubt, the most important industry reference in the world.
Since being inducted into the NKBA Hall of Fame, what have you been focused on?
I continue to be intensely focused on evolving Cosentino while always staying true to our commitment to bettering our products for the greater good of the industry and the planet. We’ve invested greatly in research and development to achieve innovations such as HybriQ® Technology, which transforms the composition and manufacturing method of Silestone that uses 99 percent reused water, 100 percent renewable electric energy and produces no particle emissions or water discharge. It is one of the most sustainable surface options available, and we are not afraid to be the leaders by pushing the envelope to grow and evolve. I’m also incredibly proud of how the company was able to persevere during the challenges we saw in March 2020 due to the COVID pandemic. We had to make critical decisions for the betterment of the future of the company, which is an important responsibility as the CEO.
Where do you see the kitchen and bath industry going in the future? What are you feeling optimistic or excited about?
I am very optimistic about the future of the kitchen and bath segment, specifically about furniture and all the accessories involved in both spaces. I believe that we are heading towards a direction where more priority will be given to the areas of comfort in the home, and therefore the bath will increase in importance, attracting more space and more investment. On the other hand, the kitchen space, both indoors and outdoors, is recognized as a preferential place for people. We will see how technology is becoming more and more integrated in both spaces, together with materials of a sustainable nature and of great beauty.
Throughout your career, what is the best advice you have received?
That in life the values of honesty, sincerity, tenacity, as well as working and surrounding yourself with people smarter than you, is always the best way to be happy and for those around you to be happy. This generates great possibilities of success.