800 participants meet at the Technoparc

CLAAS Suppliers' Day 2017

Suppliers from all over the world met in Harsewinkel to attend the Suppliers' Day of the CLAAS Group. Hans Lampert, responsible for Finance and Controlling in the CLAAS Group Executive Board, and VP Corporate Purchasing Rüdiger Mohr welcomed the attendees.

Hans Lampert provided a review of the past financial year. He stated that CLAAS had performed well despite the extremely challenging market environment – also thanks to the engagement of the suppliers.

Hans Lampert announced that the market situation in Europe is expected to remain weak for 2017. For this reason, the Suppliers' Day focussed on the issue of costs once again.

A panel discussion, moderated by Rüdiger Mohr, took place with experts from the sectors of purchasing, pricing, production and product cost calculation. The current market situation was described as a "scissor situation", with increasing prices in the buying markets on one hand and weak selling markets on the other. The key question of the discussion was therefore: "How can suppliers contribute towards achieving target manufacturing costs in this difficult scissor situation?". Staying away from passing on price increases was discussed first, as even CLAAS cannot pass its increasing costs on to the market. Participants in the discussion identified further potential in the optimisation of suppliers' production and purchasing processes. The discussion was concluded by using products as a starting point to elaborate on product (cost) optimisation and innovations for increasing customer value.

Rüdiger Mohr provided news about innovation management. The magazine "Teamwork" for CLAAS Technology partners was presented which highlights success stories resulting from joint development work. In addition, a new innovation management portal was presented, which incorporates suppliers more closely into the CLAAS innovation process. Innovative ideas can be submitted to the portal and pursued systematically. Another announcement was made relating to the IT landscape. CLAAS has purchased new software for supplier management and will start with the rollout in 2017.

Gerardo Aulinger was welcomed as the "special guest". The kata coach and management consultant introduced attendees to the topic of improvement kata. These are special training exercises, which enable to leave the well-known and to create innovations.

Finish: After the award ceremony, all the winners assembled on the stage.

The presentation of the "Supplier of the Year Awards" proved to be a highlight again. Agrikon KAM Kft. won the title of Total Winner this year. Another four companies received CLAAS Supplier Awards for 2016 in the following categories:

Quality: Hangzhou Donghua Chain Group Co., Ltd., Hangzhou, China   

Logistics: Grieshaber Logistik GmbH, Weingarten, Germany

Innovation: Linde Hydraulics GmbH & Co. KG, Aschaffenburg, Germany

Service: F. REYHER Nchfg. GmbH & Co. KG, Hamburg, Germany