Innovation and tradition are our pacemakers
A future-oriented interview with General Manager Bernfried Fleiner
update: Mr. Fleiner how do you see the last 40 years of exeron company development?
Bernfried Fleiner: I like to compare the development of the company with the one of a stock market. Investing should always be oriented on long-term perspectives and not on a quick profit. Same goes for exeron. We started small and after 40 years we can look back and state: investing in technology and staff paid off . It was not always going up, but today we are situated pretty in an international competitive market and we have further possibilities of expansion.
update: What where the main points for this positive development?
Bernfried Fleiner: We, like many other companies with a positive history, gained a lot of experience and know how in technology and service in the last 40 years. We could build our development on that. In addition to that we have our customer orientation which resulted in long and intensive customer relations. In this respect, we have to also say thank you to our national and international sales partners, who helped us to build the good name of exeron. But they always had a good product portfolio to work with. And here comes the second pillar of our success. We never sat back and relaxed on our achievements, we always kept going to develop innovations for the ongoing performance of our customers. Tradition and innovation therefore are both the key to success of a company working strategically for the demands of their customers.
update: Innovation has to be in line with the market to work properly. What are the important points to meet the customers’ needs?
Bernfried Fleiner: Innovation at any cost would be as bad for exeron as to stop the development because so much has already been achieved. For this reason we listen carefully to what our customers tell us and work hard to meet their demands. We also do profound market research. We want to know what becomes a global trend? And what is the direction technology and service are going to? All this and some other points make it possible for us to look into the development of our business branch and to work on the products and services which are necessary for smooth manufacturing solutions. Innovating therefore does not mean for us to be the first to realize such developments. It is about being reasonable to get on the market at the right time for a new, ready-for-series production and a fully developed product. This is the only way to also support our customers. If we are among the fastest but have nothing but complaints, this might just lead to image loss and this is for sure not what we are up to. This is not exeron and will never be.
update: Does innovation with common sense mean that there is not growth at all cost for exeron?
Bernfried Fleiner: That is totally correct. Since our start the company grew organically and consciously. We will go on like that. So does our mother company Mafell. All our acquisitions have been looked into carefully before we realized them. Good examples are the takeover of Multiform Erodiertechnik GmbH in 1998 and also the integration of DIGMA milling technology of Chiron-Werke in Tuttlingen in 2005. Both of them were no acquisitions done superficially to make more money. They were based on strategy and future orientation to combine technologies useful for our customers to increase their growth. Our company slogan explains this very good: “Better both. Both better.” This brought us success, as our figures show. This means for us: We grow on long-terms positively and are not behind a fast success.
update: In addition to tradition and innovation, client orientation and organic growth – what else is important for the success of a company like exeron?
Bernfried Fleiner: Well, at first, the staff is an important factor. Without them, their teamwork and their ideas, exeron would not work properly, I would say, not even exist. Many of our employees are with the company since many years and are loyal to exeron. To be able to count on them makes us both proud and happy, as the actual situation on the job market is very tense. But we also see our social responsibility as an employer in the region, and our staff knows that. We do regular apprenticeships since many years and try to keep the qualified staff after their apprenticeship is finished. We are also involved in social issues like donations. Well, all that is good for our image. But we do this on first hand because we really want it and we do it for the needs of our staff. exeron will stay in the Oberndorf region. This gives a good feeling of security for those who are interested in our company. And this is how it is going to be for a foreseeable future. We have no reason to change
this win-win situation.