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Executive review 1/2009

Client magazine for the capital goods industry

The engineered products industry has always been a cyclical one. Many companies have thus been expecting slower growth since as far back as late 2007. The events we have witnessed in recent months nevertheless go far beyond any normal cyclical fluctuations. For many businesses in the industry, new orders have collapsed by 45% and more. Nor is there any sign of improvement, at least not in the short term.

We have therefore devoted this edition of executive review to ways to help your company emerge from the current turbulence in better shape than before. And we are not just talking about short-term effects. The fact is, there is a positive side to the massive upheavals that are shaking our industry right now. For those who act swiftly and intelligently, precisely these upheavals now present tremendous opportunities.

In this issue, CEO Professor Burkhard Schwenker refers to three scenarios to explain where he believes the market is heading.

Drawing on our own experience, we then present an array of tools that are essential in helping companies not only master current challenges, but also to get them in shape for the time after the crisis. These tools include methods to boost efficiency, ways to optimize the structure of capital, bold approaches to human resources development even in the midst of crisis, and the potential afforded by purchasing activities.

Despite all the turbulence that is understandably capturing our attention right now, we must not forget one thing: Global challenges such as population growth and climate change have not gone away – and they are still crying out for solutions. This is precisely where the future holds attractive growth opportunities, especially for German engineered products firms.

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