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Executive review 1/2008

Thomas Ring and Axel Schmidt

Ecological and infrastructure problems are now evident all over the world – affecting industrialized countries just as much as developing countries, Asia as much as Europe or America. The pressure to act is increasing all the time – yet this is simultaneously opening up enormous business opportunities. It is spawning a completely new industry – one that is largely independent of trends in the rest of the economy. Environmental technology, also known as greentech, will be a leading industry in the coming decades – worldwide.

The German environmental industry is in great technological shape and perfectly positioned for this situation. Now the challenge will be to hold on to this lead and to make the most of it – for the environment and for our country – in a business that is becoming increasingly international. We mustn’t lose our advantages, we must continue developing and internationalizing cutting-edge technology. There are opportunities here both for established players and for small, innovative start-ups.

We have chosen a new format for this edition of executive review to shed some light on the many opportunities in the environmental sector. This time we at Roland Berger Strategy Consultants have limited ourselves to providing an overview of the greentech market’s opportunities and risks and, as usual, present our studies and project experience.

We have given plenty of space to the people who are driving this development: entrepreneurs and politicians. Matthias Machnig, Secretary of State at the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, explains the overall legal framework that the German government has created in the past and will further develop in the future.

In addition, several leading personalities will offer their take on this significant market – people from the industrial giant Siemens, the classic energy utility E.ON, and two companies specializing in renewable energy: REpower Systems (wind power) and ersol (solar plants).

What is interesting here are the differences in the ways they assess the situation – and at the same time how much they have in common, despite their companies’ differences in size and business model.

Judge for yourself what opportunities the green technology value chain might hold for you and your company – and don’t delay before getting in on the act, because the race has already begun…


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