© Christa Henke

“We have to stay active and keep reinventing ourselves”

Stefan Brandl (48) became Chairman of the Board of Directors of the ebm-papst Group in January 2017. An interview with the sales pro and innovator makes clear the path to be taken by ebm-papst.


Mr. Brandl, what will change with you in the top position?

Everything will change that a company needs to change in order to react nimbly to market trends, and of course my board colleagues and I have been working on our Strategy 2020 since mid-2016. Its cornerstones include growing the Group together, establishing speedy units close to the customer, and expanding our market and technology leadership. In addition, we want to position ourselves more strongly in the growth regions of Asia and North America — not just for sales but also with R&D and production facilities.

What will it take to expand the company’s technology leadership?

Short CV

Stefan Brandl studied electrical engineering with focus on energy technology at the University of Applied Sciences in Schweinfurt. He began his professional career at ebm-papst in 1991. He has been Managing Director of ebm-papst Landshut since February 2007.

Along with efficiency improvements, digitalization will be the decisive factor. Our products are already prepared for Industry 4.0 now and play an important role in the smart home. Today we already generate 40 percent of our revenue with products that are less than three years old. With our above-average R&D investments of about ten percent of revenue, we’ll continue to improve our rate of innovation. The focus will be on the transition from component supplier to systems provider. With fans, we’ll concentrate on further efficiency increases through better aerodynamics.

What qualities are important to you for contacts with customers?

We need to be first-class listeners, we have to understand what the needs of our customers are and then implement them precisely with an efficient solution. A solution with which our customer can significantly reduce its operating costs or increase its performance. In the ideal case, it can do both. I will make every effort to help ebm-papst further expand its leading position as number one in the international market for fans and motors. We can do that if we continue to be an active company that keeps reinventing itself.

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