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NEWS fischer set for growth

The fischer group of companies announced 2010 sales rose 11.7% to 582 million euros. The group saw growth in all four of its business divisions and expects further good growth figures in 2011.

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n 2009 fischer responded quickly to the global financial crisis by adjusting its cost structures and optimising its processes. fischer intensified its efforts to

continuously improve all corporate processes. In spite of the resulting increase in productivity and sales falling at the same time, fischer did not cut its workforce – one reason, it says, it could handle the unexpectedly rapid upswing in 2010 with a virtually unchanged workforce. Growth came from the breadth of the entire

company, with fixing systems – the most important division accounting for around 80% of group sales – reporting two-figure growth. Every region reported increases, with countries abroad playing an increasingly important role. At home, fischer also significantly increased its sales. Sales in fischer’s automotive systems

division, specialising in kinematic components and high-grade plastic surfaces for car interiors, also showed a positive upward trend. The division was particularly badly hit by the global crisis in the automobile industry in 2009 but has since benefited from the strong growth in the automobile premium segment. The division also succeeded in gaining new customers – some by taking over jobs and contracts from competitors in distress or in insolvency. The fischertechnik division (construction

toys) showed a plus in sales for the sixth year in succession, with a two-figure growth in 2010. fischer Consulting, established in 2004 to draw

together fischer’s experience in the continuous process improvement, also reported growth. fischer maintains its efforts in in-house

and advanced training and staff qualification. fischer’s promotion pool, a two-year qualifying scheme for potential young executives from the company’s own ranks, has been a resounding success. Some of its twelve members have taken on additional responsibilities and a second twelve-member pool has just started. Since June 2010, fischer has also greatly

intensified its free training offer to employees. The Klaus Fischer BildungsZentrum offers seminars and courses in 16 different areas and has received an overwhelming response with more than 1,500 people attending courses. fischer also aims to promote the general and political education of its young people. As well as internal seminars, trainees are given the opportunity to see political and business institutions at close range, resulting in 50 fischer trainees travelling to the EU Parliament in Strasbourg. fischer’s plan for the current financial year

is to develop new markets and new groups of customers. The continuing internationalisation of the business will play a major role in these plans. Today, fischer sells its products in over 100 countries and operates in 31 countries with 35 of its own national companies – the last national companies were set up in Turkey and in the USA.

Böllhoff reports 30% growth for 2010

The Böllhoff Group, headquartered at Bielefeld, Germany, reported that 2010 sales grew 30% to around 400 million euros.

segment only came back in the second half of 2010. Böllhoff currently employs 2,000 people in 21 countries and has production facilities in

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Germany, Brazil, USA, China, France, Italy and India. Fifty percent of sales is now generated outside of Germany. Growth came not only from the improvement in market conditions. Managing director

Dr. Gerson Meschut told Westfalen-Blatt investment in research and development was not curtailed even in the difficult 2009 year and strategic projects continued to be driven. Böllhoff is currently bringing a new technology into full operation with a car maker. Böllhoff plans to invest 24 million euros in plant and equipment, slightly over half the figure

being committed to Germany, primarily at its Bielefeld headquarters. The Böllhoff management also emphasised the importance of its employees, who received a profit share in the 2010 results, in its growth plans. It expects the employment level to increase to 2,200 worldwide during 2011.

Fastener + Fixing Magazine • Issue 68 March 2011

n an interview with Zeitung Westfalen-Blatt (westfalen-blatt.de) Böllhoff senior management said the main increase came from the automotive sector, and outside of Germany the Asian region contributed most strongly. Eastern Europe was slower to recover but is expected to contribute moderate growth during 2011. Demand from the wider mechanical engineering

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