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THINK ACT – Growth

2014

Sales growth must be accompanied by profit growth. That’s a truism, but it’s also one of the biggest challenges facing any company. Businesses must grow in order to defend their market niches, achieve economies of scale, get investors onside, and offer good incomes and career prospects to their employees. In short, they must be attractive.

But we also know that few companies achieve long-term profit growth. That’s because size often leads to hubris, people rest on their laurels, today’s competitive advantage becomes tomorrow’s obsolescence, and economies of scale can easily turn into diseconomies of scale. In today’s saturated markets, it’s difficult to keep coming up with new business models that generate growth and maintain people’s enthusiasm with each change of direction.

In this issue, we look at how businesses can face up to these challenges and achieve profitable growth. As always we’ll be featuring exclusive interviews, this time with Nils Smedegaard Andersen, chief executive of A.P. Moller-Maersk, the world’s largest container shipping company, and with Martin Richenhagen, his counterpart at AGCO, the world’s third largest manufacturer of agricultural machinery, whose search for profitable growth has taken him to Africa. For both, growth is the best way of sustaining their long-term profits and reputation.

We’ve achieved both during our thirty-year presence in China, which we celebrate in our supplement. Zhang Ruimin, CEO of the consumer electronics and home appliances giant Haier, shares some fascinating insights into the country’s rise to economic power and the challenges he believes the future holds for Europe. One other ingredient of profitable growth is curiosity, a willingness to make use of new ideas and knowledge and experiment with new ways of doing things.

Related Special

You find the current magazine as THINK ACT eMag with many additional features, video clips, bonus interviews and background information in the Roland Berger Kiosk app - available both on iTunes and google play.

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