The staying power of medium-sized companies

Fabian Kapp
10 June 2022

Why tenacity and persistence pay off at Graebener®

I admit Im a fan of the German Mittelstand and there are many reasons for that.

German SMEs are considered the backbone of the economy, are often family-run innovation drivers and often act as hidden champions in their market. In my opinion, what distinguishes the Mittelstand above all is its long-term thinking.

In our more than 100-year history, we have reoriented ourselves several times, expanded and reduced our portfolio and also made entrepreneurial changes of direction. Part of our strategy has always been to invest in promising technologies at an early stage and to help prepare the ground for developing markets or new business fields.

With our strong expertise in hydroforming, we started developing technologies for the production of fuel cell components since 2003.

However, the way there was neither dead straight nor without stumbling blocks. After we had invested extensively in the development of production technologies, the parallel market development to the sales of our systems unfortunately remained below our expectations. Of course, this also brought up the idea of writing off the investments and burying the whole idea.

But when - after the diesel scandal and with Greta Thunberg - the global focus turned to the future of our planet and to the increasing global warming, and, on top of that, the national hydrogen strategy with extensive funding programs gave the topic new relevance, we as "old hands" with a lot of experience were in demand as consulting partners in the still very young, developing market.

Thus, it was worth it for us to demonstrate staying power.

If you would like to know more about the possibilities of economical production of bipolar plates, please request our information brochure here.

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