Spelsberg – Spelsberg’s Managing Director in an interview – “Duality of further development and core business”
Spelsberg has had a new managing director for a good six months.
The fortunes of the company from Schalksmühle are managed by Thorsten Schwippert – an experienced businessman who most recently worked as managing director of BIW Isolierstoffe GmbH and as CEO of August Bilstein GmbH & Co. KG, later Thyssenkrupp Bilstein. In order to maintain the alignment as a family business that has grown over many years, Spelsberg has drawn up a family constitution and established an advisory board. In an interview, Thorsten Schwippert talks about his goals, challenges in the industry and visions for the future.
Since the end of last year, Spelsberg has had a new managing director in Thorsten Schwippert. In an interview, the experienced entrepreneur talks about his goals, challenges in the industry and visions for the future.
Thorsten Schwippert relies on good contact with the electrical installation companies, constant further development of the products and exchange within the company across national borders.
As a leading manufacturer in the electrical industry, Spelsberg bundles its know-how in electrical installation and housing technology at its headquarters in Schalksmühle.
In addition to the headquarters, the company has had another production site in Buttstädt, Thuringia, since the 1990s.
1. Mr. Schwippert, what were your goals when you took up your new position?
For me, on the one hand, the focus is on further strengthening our core business. On the other hand, it is important to push ahead with our digitized product areas. This is the only way we can continue on Spelsberg’s path to success in the long term. Our foreign companies offer the best conditions for growth.
2. Which topics are you personally particularly looking forward to in the future for Spelsberg?
Contact with electrical installation companies is particularly important to me. That’s why I’m really looking forward to expanding and intensifying this bit by bit. But I’m also looking forward to new paths that we are taking in the further development of our products and the exchange within our company across national borders.
3. Delivery difficulties, scarcity of raw materials, price increases – to what extent is Spelsberg affected by these challenges?
I would say: just like other companies. Challenging phases are inevitable, but I think these can be used to develop as a company.
4. And how do you master them?
Of course, the team has to make many adjustments at the same time in order to deal with the various new situations. It’s not a sure-fire success. We have found that flexibility helps us to react quickly to unexpected circumstances. I still see us very well positioned here with “made in Germany”.
5. The good relationship with customers will continue to be maintained. What ways does Spelsberg find to achieve this?
Especially after Corona, we are all very happy to be able to get in touch again – with each other and with our customers. Even if digital channels have become an integral part of our communication. It’s worth taking a look at our training videos!
6. Looking to the future – what are the main areas of focus for Spelsberg when it comes to products?
It is the duality of the further development of our core business with products such as the Abox and the AK – at this point I can already announce news for the second half of the year – and the so-called smart products. This doesn’t just mean our award-winning wall box range or the BCS bicycle charging stations, our team has other arrows in its quiver.
7. Not only the electrical industry is confronted with changes in trade fair activities. What developments are you observing here and how is Spelsberg positioned in this regard?
We are very satisfied with the start of the 2023 trade fair year. This applies to both the quantity and the quality of the contacts. Of course, we also ask ourselves at one point or another whether the effort and benefit match. However, we still consider trade fairs to be important and will be happy to be present when the industry comes together in the future.
8. Our society is currently facing numerous problems, climate change is just one of many. What solutions does Spelsberg have ready?
In addition to our own homework, the very effective energy saving and sustainability programs in our companies, we will also make our suppliers more responsible in the future. We still see potential in the area of sustainable packaging. However, innovations here must always be coordinated with our customers, the EGH and also the electrical installation companies. We are working on innovative product solutions and are also planning to bundle our sustainability efforts in a newly created “Corporate Social Responsibility” area and make it visible.
More information on Günther Spelsberg GmbH + Co.KG: https://www.spelsberg.com/ + Spelsberg is a market-leading company in the electrical industry with 119 years of experience in the fields of electrical installation and housing technology.
The high innovative power of the family company is reflected in many patents and ensures solutions that are quick and easy to install and impress with their longevity and ease of maintenance. The developers not only keep an eye on the current standards, but also on new markets and trends in energy and building technology.
The result is products and systems that are always ahead of the state of the art and impress with clever details and a fair price. We are constantly setting new standards, especially when it comes to safety. It was new products such as the fire-protected WKE junction boxes with functional integrity or the halogen-free junction boxes of the Red Series with which Spelsberg, as an innovation driver, showed new ways and further developed the installation technology.
According to a survey of craft businesses, 90% of all processors know and use Spelsberg products and are satisfied with them. The company is active worldwide with its own subsidiaries and sales partners, manufactures consistently in Germany and employs a total of around 600 people at its locations and in the subsidiaries.
The product range of the traditional German company currently includes well over 5,000 items that are available nationwide, including junction boxes, small distributors, terminal blocks, meter and industrial housings.
In addition, Spelsberg is valued as a competent advisor when it comes to complex issues relating to the housing. Spelsberg bundles all the necessary know-how under one roof and takes care of all the steps from prototype construction and individual adaptation to electrotechnical development and assembly of customer-specific complete systems.
More information on the Abox XT SL by Günther Spelsberg GmbH + Co.KG: https://www.spelsberg.com/junction-boxes/watertight-ip68-to-102/49280201/ + Junction Box, with protection class IP68, Nominal cross-section 2.5 mm², Ui=450V AC, certified according to VDE (DIN EN 60670-1/-22 (VDE 0606-1/-22) & DIN VDE V 0606-22-100), Push-out membranes, M20, (1 Rear, 7 Side), Internal fastening points, with screwless terminals for encapsulation, for assembly in flooded areas and in the ground without traffic loads,
grey, with 5 high-set, screwless 3-wire terminals, Wago 221-413 type, max. nominal cross-section according to DIN EN 60998: 2.5 mm², cross-sections able to be clamped per pin: 3 x 0.2 to 2.5 mm² rigid and 3 x 0.14 to 2.5 mm² flexible
More information on the AK by Günther Spelsberg GmbH + Co.KG: https://www.spelsberg.de/ak-einfach-mehr-verteiler/ + simply more distributors. Maximum user-friendliness combined with additional connection space.
AK small distributors from Spelsberg have proven themselves over decades as suitable product solutions for high installation requirements, especially in commercial and industrial environments. Today they are characterized above all by their flexibility, easy handling and more distribution space per housing – and with a maximum of reliability.
New and further developments of product lines are a central part of Spelsberg’s corporate philosophy. Since its market launch in 1983, the AK small distributor has proven that challenging areas of application for electrical installations require special solutions .
At Spelsberg, customers simply get more distributors and with them first-class product solutions for professional distributors in demanding environments.
More information on the BCS Bicycle Charging Stations by Günther Spelsberg GmbH + Co.KG: https://www.spelsberg.com/e-bike-charging-stations/with-integrated-connectors/58012201/ + E-bike charging station, monitored and controlled charging for the e-biker and operator of the charging station, cloud connection via LAN, WLAN or mobile radio, grey, similar to RAL 7035, with printed lid, with permanently mounted cable system (2.5 m), incl. status display of the individual charging points, connectable to the 230/400V mains, product is delivered ready for connection for quick and easy wall mounting.
More information on BIW Isolierstoffe GmbH: https://www.biw.de/en/ + BIW provides individual consultation for in excess of 2,500 current customers. They are recognised problem solvers, producing more than 175,000 environmentally-friendly, customer-specific, quality products at a high level in conjunction with a team of trained and motivated specialists operating in Germany on the basis of certified, slim line processes. They offer market-tailored prices with great flexibility, excellent service and attractive delivery times worldwide. When it comes to competence.
- 1 silicone & glassfibre innovation center
- 600 employees
- 5.000 to/a silicone rubber
- 5.000 customers
- 5.000 compounds
- 16.000 profile shapes
- 46.000 m² production floor
- 175.000 products
- 91.500.000 € turnover 2022
- 125.250.000 m/a cable protection sleevings and extrudates (hoses and profiles
More information on Ralf Stoffels (Managing Partner, BIW): https://www.biw.de/en/imprint/ + https://www.linkedin.com/in/ralf-stoffels-1ba12b27/
More information on August Bilstein GmbH & Co. KG (Thyssenkrupp Bilstein): https://bilstein.com/en/ + Driving dynamics is our passion: Realizing the perfect driving behavior, building the perfect shock absorber – that is the motivation that drives us. Every day. And we have been doing so for around 70 years. BILSTEIN operates at nine locations worldwide, with over 4,000 employees. Our home is in the Ruhr region with our headquarters in Ennepetal. But as a global player, we develop and produce our products in six different countries – from Great Britain to the United States and China.
More information on Dr.–Ing. Karsten Kroos (Chairman of the Supervisory Board, Thyssenkrupp Bilstein): https://bilstein.com/en/imprint/ + https://www.thyssenkrupp-automotive-technology.com/en/company/executive-board
EMR Additional Notes:
- EGH (in German):
- Elektrogroßhändler: Electrical Wholesalers
- ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance):
- Refers to the three key factors when measuring the sustainability and ethical impact of an investment in a business or company. Most socially responsible investors check companies out using ESG criteria to screen investments.
- ESG metrics are not commonly part of mandatory financial reporting, though companies are increasingly making disclosures in their annual report or in a standalone sustainability report.
- There is not a standardized approach to the calculation or presentation of different ESG metrics.
- Environmental: Conservation of the natural world
- Climate change and carbon emissions
- Air and water pollution
- Energy efficiency
- Waste management
- Water scarcity
- Social: Consideration of people & relationships
- Customer satisfaction
- Data protection and privacy
- Gender and diversity
- Employee engagement
- Community relations
- Human rights
- Labor standards
- Governance: Standards for running a company
- Board composition
- Audit committee structure
- Bribery and corruption
- Executive compensation
- Political contributions
- Whistleblower schemes
- Environmental: Conservation of the natural world
- Criteria are of increasing interest to companies, their investors and other stakeholders. With growing concern about he ethical status of quoted companies, these standards are the central factors that measure the ethical impact and sustainability of investment in a company.
- Consequently, ESG analysis considers how companies serve society and how this impacts their current and future performance.
- CSR (Corporate Social Responsability):
- Framework or business model that helps a company be socially accountable to itself, its stakeholders, and the public.
- The purpose of CSR is to give back to the community, take part in philanthropic causes, and provide positive social value. Businesses are increasingly turning to CSR to make a difference and build a positive brand around their company.
- CSR tends to target opinion formers – politicians, pressure groups, media. Sustainability targets the whole value chain – from suppliers to operations to partners to end-consumers.
- CSR vs. ESG:
- CSR is a company’s framework of sustainability plans and responsible cultural influence, whereas ESG is the assessable outcome concerning a company’s overall sustainability performance.
- The major difference between them is that CSR is a business model used by individual companies, but ESG is a criteria that investors use to assess a company and determine if they are worth investing in.