Economia S/A: MZF4 comes out ahead

MZF4, from Mazzaferro Group, comes out ahead and is the first Brazilian and Latin American company to win ISO INNOVATION certification!
(Joelma Marino)

The ISO 56,002 standard, which establishes practices for managing innovative and creative processes, recently launched in Europe, was announced in Brazil last July 15. The first Brazilian and Latin American company to receive this important certification was MZF4 Fios Técnicos e Utilidades Ltda. The certification took place last Wednesday, July 17th. The management system was evaluated by auditors from QMS Certification Services, which approved the international standard for insight management activities for the design and commercialization of new products and services linked to yarns, utilities, color charts and adjacencies.

Launched in April this year in Europe, ISO 56.002 presents a series of international standards that help companies promote an innovative culture, maximize management processes and achieve the best results from ideas. MZF4, a company of the Mazzaferro Group, met the requirements to win the certification, because almost 1/3 of the company’s annual revenue comes from ideas generated from the new. In recent years, the company has invested in innovative and different management practices for creative processes. Now, with the conquest of the new ISO 56.002 certification, it tends to evolve more and more. “Innovation is one of the company’s main drivers, and this new certification seems like a natural process to us, given our commitment to create products with high added value,” explains Claudio Mazzaferro, CEO of the company, in a press release.

MZF4 is a company of the Mazzaferro Group and is Latin America’s largest reference in creative solutions and high value-added products made from yarn. Focused on creativity, innovation and customization, the company operates in the medical, beauty, housewares, industrial sewing threads, dental bristles, musical instruments – with the recently launched Hyper.PRO – among others. It has dozens of products that positively impact and transform about 50 business chains, and is present in the daily lives of thousands of people in Brazil and worldwide, with exports to over 60 countries. The company already holds ISO 9001 and ISO 13,485, specific for the medical line, extremely valued by the company’s main global partners of the brands L’Oréal, Wella, J&J and Covidien.

In July 2018, began, in MZF4, the implementation of the innovation management system, based on the new ISO standard and counted with the support of the Palas consulting firm, specialized in innovation and management, which led the efforts on three fronts, considered the pillars of innovation:

• Organization of the execution processes, measurement and management of the ideas generated.
• Encouragement of an innovative culture.
• Accompaniment of ideation processes.

“For each of these fronts, we have created different releases, programs, actions, and we hope, by measuring the return to the business of our ideas, to reduce costs, increase sales volume and improve customer satisfaction,” is proud Fabricio Saad, CMO of Mazzaferro, who accepted the challenge of leading the company to certification, bringing his experience as head of post-graduation at ESPM to the subject.

MZF4 has about 200 employees and is part of the Mazzaferro Group, which has 500 employees. Asked by Economia S/A about other companies that have achieved this certification worldwide, Fabricio Saad reveals: “Before Latin America, we know that we had companies certified in the UK and China, where the standard was recently published”. About what the achievement of this certification symbolizes, the specialist emphasizes: “Without a doubt, this achievement for us, while crowning a trajectory of more than 6 decades innovating and creating dozens of products, increases our responsibility to our customers and to the entire ecosystem. We are perfectly aware of that.


The complexity of innovation management requires specific practices that ensure positive results and transformation. The following are the actions created by MZF4 to conduct this strategy and exceed the requirements demanded by the standard itself:

Fostering an innovative culture
The work of internal communication, Inovateca, helped build a creative culture. With the preparation of content on innovation and the creation of a space to foster the free exchange of ideas.

Construction of ideation processes
The MZF4 team developed two different programs for the company’s various audiences: operational and tactical/strategic. eureka! focused on the factory team, involves awarding prizes to the best ideas for cost reduction, quality improvement, and industrial process review. At the tactical/strategic level, rounds of design thinking invite employees to reflect on specific problems of the company. All ideas are evaluated according to clear criteria that involve ease of implementation, necessary investment, financial impact to the company, risks involved, and impacts of this innovation on the market.

Organization of execution and measurement processes
The challenge of measuring the impact of an idea requires new KPIs. Some indicators were created and involve, for example, the percentage of revenue and margin derived from innovative ideas; number of disruptive ideas launched and implemented per business unit; average amount of innovation training per semester, among others. An innovation management committee monitors the progress of these ideas, prioritizes investments and evaluates strategies, in addition to recognizing and rewarding the teams involved in the process. The company has also invested in the creation of an innovation management committee (CGI) with market specialists and in the review of the processes and flows that underpin the management of end-to-end innovation.

Alexandre Pierro, management systems consultant at Palas, a consulting firm specializing in innovation and management, reinforces via advisory: “There are other companies that are also in the certification process in Brazil, especially in the service sector, but Mazzaferro was ahead of schedule. As the standard here was only launched in the second half of the year, we based ourselves on the draft of the original version to implement the process at MZF4”.

When asked by the reporter about the meaning of this certification for MZF4 clients, Fabricio Saad highlights: “Without a doubt, it generates added value! Our customers in each of the more than 60 countries around the world where we sell know they can count on innovation and state-of-the-art Italian technology”.

Published in Economia S/A in July 26th, 2019: