© ebm-papst

“We are becoming even more international”

Thomas Nürnberger has been Managing Director of Sales and Marketing at the ebm-papst Group since April and has been President of ebm-papst China for five years. In an interview, he talks about international diversity and what customers can expect from him.


Mr. Nürnberger, you have been living in China for 15 years now. What part of this experience will you draw on for your new role?

15 years shape you a lot, make you more open to other perspectives and cultures, and make you adaptable. Of course, that all helps if you want to do business in other regions. China is very fast paced. It only took China 15 years to go through the same development that took Germany 50 years. This is something that really fascinates me, as is the importance the Chinese place on prioritizing the customer’s needs and their willingness to try new things.

You speak Mandarin, and are married to a Chinese woman. What role does diversity play in a global technology leader’s sales?

Women, men, different generations, countries, cultures, areas of responsibility, languages: diversity is important because it brings more input and ideas into the company. I want ebm-papst to become even more international with me.

What, therefore, is your main focus in sales when dealing with your customers?

We want strategic partnerships, in which we interlink our customer’s roadmap with ours. We have done this in the past, but in the future, we will need to make this even stronger, and stronger beyond Europe. We are already serving the Asian market from China with specific products. We want to expand this globally. Our modular solutions will help us to achieve this.

Which challenge is currently occupying you most?

Supply is currently the most difficult issue and that is the same for the whole market. In the coming years, customers will also want to be supplied more flexibly, quickly and economically. To achieve this, we need to remain competitive with our innovations as well as through our global footprint. By relying on local supply chains, we avoid freight costs and are close to our customers.

By relying on local supply chains, we avoid freight costs and are close to our customers.

Innovation can go in two directions: you can have the best and most energy-efficient product, but you can also offer a good-enough product at a good price. We do not make any compromises when it comes to quality, but we tailor products to the specific market requirements. Design-to-market and design-to-cost will guide us there.

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