Gala evening celebrating 175th anniversary attended by Kretschmann, Minister President of Baden-Württemberg
Göppingen/Stuttgart, November 3, 2014 – What is the future for lightweight vehicle construction and how will energy-conserving production change the face of industry? These and other future trends were discussed by 300 top executives from the automotive sector and industry at the first International Schuler Management Congress held at Stuttgart’s “Haus der Wirtschaft” (House of Economy) on November 3, 2014.
Schuler’s Board of Management had convened this summit meeting for forming specialists to mark the press manufacturer’s 175th anniversary. “Schuler’s 175-year history is also the history of metalforming technology,” noted Schuler’s CEO Stefan Klebert in his opening address.
The assembled experts – including Fraunhofer President Prof. Reimund Neugebauer – agreed that the future belonged to a more function-oriented use of materials. The spectrum of available materials is multiplying, while they are also becoming lighter and bearing information.
The US auto guru Ron Harbour, who knows almost every car manufacturing plant in the world, believes that production is today’s key competitive factor. He sees a trend toward higher factory utilization around the world with mostly three-shift production and an increase in the number of vehicle variants at each factory. He recommended that the participants ask themselves a simple question: “Are we doing anything better than the competition?” The attending auto industry representatives confirmed during the discussion rounds that press shops for the construction of car bodies were now a clear core competence for them – which was not always the case.
The sports psychologist Prof. Hans-Dieter Hermann, who helped prepare the German soccer team mentally for their World Cup victory, offered a different perspective. “Success starts in the head,” he claimed and gave managers a number of psychological tips and strategies.
The Mercedes-Benz Museum provided a fascinating backdrop for the Gala Evening “175 Years of Schuler. Moments, which moved and inspired us”. Baden-Württemberg’s Minister President Winfried Kretschmann acknowledged Schuler and its employees on the company’s growth into a global market leader over the past 175 years. “I would like to congratulate Schuler on its impressive anniversary and am also delighted by the motto of today’s celebrations: ‘175 Years of Future’. Companies in our state can rest assured that the government is doing everything in its powers to support them on their path into the future – for example, with investments in research and development, the promotion of business-friendly research institutes and innovation vouchers”. The company also received praise from Dr. Dieter Zetsche, CEO of Daimler AG, on whose premises Schuler’s celebrations were held.