AGRAVIS Technik group reinforces market position
The AGRAVIS Technik group reinforced its market position in the first months of 2015. "In light of the difficult conditions, we have made it through the year very well so far," emphasises Christoph Kempkes, Member of the Managing Board at AGRAVIS Raiffeisen AG, at the opening of the Agritechnica in Hanover.
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- Christoph Kempkes, Member of the Managing Board at AGRAVIS Raiffeisen AG
The AGRAVIS Technik group naturally also discerns that the willingness to invest has declined within the agricultural sector as a sign of the low producer prices. What's more, a certain amount of saturation can be observed in the market following the high investments in the previous year overall. "And yet the companies of the Technik group continue to benefit from a solid order backlog. Our workshops are also achieving a pleasing utilisation rate," adds Gerd Schulz, Managing Director of AGRAVIS Technik Holding GmbH.
Kempkes and Schulz hope that by the end of the year, the product turnover will once again have attained roughly the same level as 2014 when a total of € 791 million was generated. "Our business is developing better than the market as a whole," underlines Kempkes. "Although we have experienced some difficulties in recent weeks." This positive overall development certainly did not merely fall into the laps of the 25 companies of the AGRAVIS Technik group.
Consistent forward-looking strategy at AGRAVIS
"The good business performance in 2015 is the result of a consistently forward-looking strategy. We take a proactive approach to the market changes and the structural transformation and also look where opportunities exist to further strengthen the AGRAVIS Technik group through acquisitions," says Kempkes.
AGRAVIS Technik reacts to the market changes with structural optimisation that will take effect in Westphalia and western Lower Saxony at the start of 2016. "We will separate sales for the Agco/Fendt and Claas brands here and present them in separated company structure," Kempkes explains. "We will reinforce brand loyalty in this way and increase the degree of specialisation of our consulting services for the respective full-range suppliers." The workshops of all companies will remain open to all brands.
Investments in the strength of the network of locations
This restructuring will be accompanied by investments in new and existing locations. "In this way, we once again emphasise our willingness to increase our performance and to development service for the farmers in this way," explains the Managing Director of the holding company, Gerd Schulz. The AGRAVIS Technik group once again invested in the strength of its network of locations in 2015, as in Walsrode, Bardowick and Stendal.
Overall, the AGRAVIS Technik group therefore relies on three brands – Agco/Fendt, Claas and New Holland. Kempkes emphasises: "We wish to develop our business further on three strong pillars. For only this will create a sustainable basis for economic success."
It is also with this that Kempkes justifies the latest acquisitions of the Newtec Group, which further reinforced its position as one of the largest New Holland retailers in Europe in the 2015 business year. Franz Schotte GmbH, the agricultural technology segment of the Otema group and Grantz OHG were acquired and integrated into the group. The Newtec Group now employs almost 500 people at more than 20 locations and generates annual turnover totalling around € 150 million.
Stabilise the achievements to date in 2016
"In 2016, the focus will be on stabilising all that we have achieved," says Kempkes, looking to the future. "We assume in this that the market will barely allow any profitable growth. Hence we will further streamline our internal processes, our service level and customer focus to remain sustainable. The new structure in Westphalia and western Lower Saxony are also a step in this direction."
Despite the tall challenges the agricultural sector is facing, for Kempkes the Agritechnica comes at exactly the right time. "The trade fair is a future workshop and a platform for a productive exchange. For in challenging times, it is important to reflect on one's own actions, to look to the future, and to remain open to new things," emphasises Kempkes and refers in this to the example of the smart farming concepts of AGRAVIS NetFarming GmbH that wishes to help businesses successfully produce in a more environmentally friendly, sustainable and profitable manner.