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f+h Intralogistics 2/2015

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f+h Intralogistics 2/2015

INTERNATIONAL MARKETS I

INTERNATIONAL MARKETS I INTERVIEW On a global course with intralogistics Comments by Managing Directors Klaus Tersteegen and Rainer Buchmann, both of the SSI Schaefer Group, regarding international markets Intralogistics in the international arena is becoming increasingly important. The global business world we live in demands perfectly adapted logistics solutions – meaning a functioning supply chain – in nearly all areas of industry, business and logistics services to create efficient processes. Reiner Wesselowski, publisher of journals f+h and f+h Intralogistics, talked to Klaus Tersteegen, Managing Director of SSI Schaefer in Neunkirchen, Germany and Rainer Buchmann, Managing Director of SSI Schaefer in Graz, Austria. Reiner Wesselowski (Image middle), publisher of journals f+h and f+h Intralogistics, conducted the interview with Managing Directors Klaus Tersteegen (Image left) and Rainer Buchmann (Image right), both of SSI Schaefer With 60 foreign subsidiaries and 16 production sites worldwide, SSI Schaefer can justifiably be called an intralogistics company with international operations. But are there still some untapped areas on your world map? Tersteegen: We are represented everywhere on the logistics map of the world where there is an attractive market for us. In terms of the untapped areas you mention, there are some regions in Africa, for example, where we are not represented by any company. But in general you could say that yes, of course we monitor markets trends in the world of intralogistics and then decide in each situation how or where we should act. Which countries offer potential for intralogistics applications in the future from your point of view? Tersteegen: From our company’s perspective, particularly South Africa is a future country for intralogistics. Currently we see a market there that we have not focused on very strongly in the past. In the coming years, we will continue to focus on this strategy of observing countries in fine detail where a demand for intralogistics solutions is likely to grow. 10 f+h Intralogistics 2/2015

INTERVIEW I INTERNATIONAL MARKETS Your company has already implemented numerous projects in various countries around the world. Can you name one main user market for intralogistics from your point of view? Buchmann: As Mister Tersteegen already mentioned, intralogistics is very important worldwide for companies, for example in spare parts, the retail business or in pharmaceuticals. But to respond to your question, certainly distance selling, specifically in reference to constantly increasing e-commerce, is to some extent a main user market for intralogistics. Formerly it was catalog sales. That type of business is very “We want to close the gap between manual and fully automatic intralogistics solutions” Klaus Tersteegen comparable to e-commerce if you look at it in terms of distribution. The overall demands of catalog shippers have changed compared to those of ten or twenty years ago, with the time window for deliveries being greatly reduced in today’s era of e-commerce. Of course that does have an impact on such activities as picking or designing and structuring intralogistics sequences and processes because buyer behavior has changed globally over the years. Thus we consider the distance selling segment as one of our core businesses, both now and in the future. To what extent does the degree of your international business activities play a role here? Buchmann: That is easily answered, as our business spans the globe. At the beginning of the interview, Mister Tersteegen mentioned the fact that we are represented in over 60 countries in our business activities. But of course Germany also plays a leading role. That is because Germany is very important for us in terms of intralogistics as a carrier market where companies operating within Germany and internationally have headquarters or subsidiaries. Automation is at a very high level here, processes in companies are clearly structured and infrastructural conditions are optimal. For these reasons, Germany naturally is and will remain an important market for us. Tersteegen: Let me add some details regarding our international activities. We are currently building one of the largest distribution centers in the world in Brazil, for example. And we are implementing another one in Australia in the retail segment. E-commerce also requires an international focus. That is one reason why we have just signed an agreement for a new online sales distribution center with a Chinese client. In the Chinese market specifically, there are different general financial conditions than in Germany, for example. What kind of conditions are we talking about, and how does that affect your project business? Buchmann: Considering general conditions directly, it is important to understand that in a country as large as China, there will naturally be local differences to watch for, specifically in terms of applicable standards, for example. And of course that does affect technical issues within a project. In terms of economic aspects, which are perhaps more significant in this context, there are also different perceptions in different regions of the world, as you would expect, especially regarding profitability. For example, much significance is Consulting & Engineering Across the Supply Chain The Miebach Consulting Group was founded in 1973 in Frankfurt, Germany by Dr. Ing. Joachim Miebach to provide supply chain consultancy and material flow engineering services for large and medium-sized companies on a global scale. Miebach – The Supply Chain Engineers – deliver their services worldwide across 20 offices from Frankfurt to Shanghai. Our worldwide network in key regions of Europe, North & South America and Asia provides effective international support to our clients. With over 300 employees is the company one of the leading Consultants for logistics, production and supply chain design. Miebach Consulting GmbH Untermainanlage 6 60329 Frankfurt am Main Germany Tel. +49 69 273992-0 Miebach Consulting Group: Bangalore, Barcelona, Berlin, Bogotá, Buenos Aires, Dammam, Frankfurt, Guatemala, Indianapolis, Katowice, Lima, Madrid, Mexico, Milano, Montreal, Santiago de Chile, São Paulo, Shanghai, Zug www.miebach.com

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