07. December 2010

HARTING beats 2008 record with sales at EUR 413 million

Die Unternehmerfamilie Harting

The HARTING Technology Group, headquartered in Espelkamp, Eastern Westphalia, has concluded a decidedly successful business year, marking a milestone in the history of the company.

In the business year elapsed, the family owned and managed company HARTING, generated total revenue of € 413 million, which is 27 % ahead of the previous year. The fact that worldwide sales were up by more than 7 % over the previous record year of 2008 is particularly gratifying.

“These decidedly positive developments are the result of the joint efforts of all employees of the HARTING Technology Group worldwide,“ emphasized Dietmar Harting, President and partner, at the balance sheet press conference on December 7, 2010 in Espelkamp: “We are very impressed with the solidarity and close cooperation of our staff, as well as their steadfast identification with the aims and objectives of company management. It is only by drawing on these strengths that we were able to able to genuinely make the most of the opportunities that always present themselves in such particularly challenging times.“

Worldwide sales gains – especially strong growth in Asia and the Americas

The HARTING solutions that are subdivided into three segments within the largest segment of “Connectivity & Networks“, are utilized across the globe. In the “Installation Technology“ area HARTING, under the “Han“ brand, is developing and marketing industrial connectors and installation concepts supplying machines, facilities and systems with data, signals and power. In the “Device Connectivity“ segment HARTING’s “har“ brand is fielding innovative connectors for the connection and internal construction of industrial devices. In the “Automation IT“ segment, HARTING is providing a consistent program for Ethernet network components and cabling across all company areas, as well as RFID systems under the “Ha-VIS“ brand.
The application areas in which HARTING solutions are at work extend from machine and plant construction to automation technology, and on to transportation engineering, power generation and distribution, industrial electronics, device connection technology and telecommunications and all the way through to medical technology and applications in broadcasting and entertainment.

HARTING succeeded in boosting sales considerably in all regions. The positive developments in machinery and automation, as well as transportation and energy played a key role in this context. Sales in Germany amounted to € 146 million, which is almost 24 % above the previous year (2009: € 118 million). Throughout Europe (excluding Germany) sales were up by around 20 % to € 140 million (2009: € 116 million). Considerably outpacing all other regions, HARTING was recorded gains in the Asian markets, where the company was also able to grow in the prior year: coming in at € 89 million, sales were up by more than 39 % over the past year’s level (2009: 64 Mio. €). The developments in the Americas presented a very gratifying picture: posting total sales of € 37 million, HARTING achieved sales gains of almost 49 %.

Innovations driving market success – HARTING unveils new products at all trade fairs

“Innovations are the key factor for our market success – innovations that provide our customers with decisive support in their business. In order to generate genuine added value for our customers we deliberately take new perspectives and create novel products and approaches,“ as Philip Harting, Vice President Connectivity & Networks of the HARTING Technology Group emphasized.

The decision of the members of the Harting family to explicitly invest in the development of new products and solutions, in spite of difficult general conditions, has been extremely well received by the markets. Thanks to these decisions HARTING has been able to present a series of innovations at the key trade fairs in the course of the year that have met with exceptionally strong customer interest.

At this year’s light & building in April 2010, the world’s leading trade fair for architecture and technology, the family owned and managed company from Espelkamp started to specifically address customers from the new business area of building systems: Ha-VIS preLink® the convenient and rapidly deployable technology by HARTING enables the cost efficient installation of consistent, uniform networks, in connection with outstanding future reliability, as preLink® is designed for high speed networks up to 10 Gigabit.

HARTING also unveiled the Han-Yellock® at the Hannover Messe in April as a genuine world first. The product impresses with a number of strengths: secure transmission of data, signals and power, individual configuration options, as well as superior functionality in connection with elegant design. “Drawing on the worldwide successful Han®-connector platform, we have created a new dimension of connection technology,“ as Philip Harting enthused. “To achieve this, we have entirely re-thought connector technology.“ Acknowledging these strengths, the technical press has already bestowed a number of awards on the Han-Yellock®. Moreover, HARTING also won the coveted iF design award 2011 for the new Han-Yellock® connector.

The first airworthy and aviation approved UHF-RFID transponder that HARTING developed in cooperation with Lufthansa Technik Logistik, Lufthansa Systems and the Center for intelligent Objects at the Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits IIS, represents a genuine innovation highlight. The transponder is manufactured by HARTING AG Mitronics, the Switzerland based HARTING subsidiary specialized in 3D-MID technology, and will be deployed for the permanent designation of aircraft parts. Thanks to the new tag, parts and components outside of the aircraft cabin can be designated for the first time. The technology enables the remote identification of unambiguous device data at a distance of several meters.

HARTING presented an additional innovation at this year’s electronica: har-flex is a device connector that has been consistently developed from the perspective of printed circuit boards. The result is a flexible, compact and robust solution in SMT technology serving a wide range of different board-to-board and board-to-cable applications and catering to the ongoing miniaturization trends.

At the SPS/IPC/DRIVES trade fair the innovations HARTING showcased also cut a convincing profile. The company’s unique Fast Track Switching technology, nominated for the Hermes Award in 2009, can now be integrated into PROFINET automation software. In combination with the PROFINET I/O stack, Fast Track switches now become genuine PROFINET devices.

HARTING is placing a very strong emphasis on developing future technologies. In the electro mobility area HARTING is cooperating with the energy company RWE that is playing a key role in advancing research and developments in this area, and is now establishing an area-wide infrastructure with charging stations for electro cars. In setting up the network of the “petrol pumps of the future“ RWE has opted for HARTING as preferential partner for reliable connector technology. The recharging cables by HARTING for electrical vehicles and the respective interface for the charging stations impress with their simple handling in connection with progressive industrial design, long service life and reliability.

Considerable increase in staff – more trainees – technology competence extended

The positive developments at the HARTING Technology Group are also reflected by the marked increase in staffing levels at the company in the course of last year. As of September 30, 2010 the company’s workforce amounted to 3,174 employees worldwide, representing an additional 235 members of staff or an 8 % rise in employees by comparison with the prior year (2009: 2,939 employees).

In view of the sound order situation HARTING had once created new positions in the first month of the new business year. By the end of October 2010 the company’s workforce numbered 3,240 members of staff, representing a record figure in the history of the company. These figures break down as follows: a total of 1,789 employees at the domestic Espelkamp and Minden locations, while a further 1,451 members of staff are currently active outside of Germany. Additional hiring is on the agenda for the ongoing business year, both in the Mühlenkreis district in Germany, as well as at the company’s locations abroad.

In the opinion of Margrit Harting, Senior Vice President and Partner, the sound development of the company is based on the committed work of all members of staff: “We have an excellent team in place, both at our headquarters in Germany, but also with a look to our staff at our meanwhile 32 subsidiaries worldwide. Every one of our employees supported the necessary measures we had to take in 2009, and contributed their utmost in creativity, motivation and willingness to perform towards putting the company back on the course to renewed growth.“ As acknowledgement and a token of gratitude for this commitment and solidarity the company disbursed a special bonus of € 1,000 to all members of staff and put the upcoming wage rises into effect ahead of schedule in October 2010.

Sound vocational training laying the foundation for successful careers ranks especially high on the agenda at HARTING, as a family owned and managed company. Consequently, in the course of more than 60 years the company has been firmly committed to taking trainees on board, their number rising steadily over the decades. In the business year elapsed, HARTING prepared 81 trainees for their subsequent professions, and this figure stands to rise markedly in the 2010/2011 business year. With 37 trainees in trade occupations, 27 trainees in the commercial area and 27 trainees in technical occupations, a total of 91 first-time employees will launch their careers at HARTING. The quality of training at HARTING enjoys an excellent reputation – and justifiably, as documented by the fact that HARTING trainees are repeatedly awarded for their far above average performance. This year Hendrik Oestreich, now an IT specialist with a focus on system integration, was honored as one of the 229 best of the entire Federal state of North-Rhine Westphalia – in this context, the Chamber of Industry and Commerce (IHK) examined a total of 80,000 trainees from 131 occupations.

Excellence initiative at HARTING – “Excellent series manufacturing“ – Margrit and Dietmar Harting awarded

HARTING places strong emphasis on excellence. Commitment to continuous further development not only takes high priority in the areas in which HARTING offers solutions and products. Far more, internal processes are subject to improvement initiatives in an ongoing manner. Consequently, a continuous improvement program dubbed HARLis has been in place since a number of years, and stands for the “HARTING Learning and Improvement System“. The success of these in-house activities and their appraisal by objective evaluations are reflected by the award recently bestowed on HARTING in the toughest benchmark competition in the manufacturing industry in Germany. In the “Factory of the Year / GEO 2010“ competition, the manufacturing operations at HARTING Electronics emerged as the winner in the “Excellent High Volume Manufacturing“ category. The competition acknowledges manufacturing companies that meet the high evaluation benchmarks in the areas of economic efficiency, agility, quality, innovation, value creation and customer satisfaction in an exemplary manner, and exhibit excellent developments over a three year period. Following the award bestowed on the sales company HARTING Deutschland GmbH & Co. KG in connection with the Ludwig Erhardt Prize 2010 excelllence initiative, this is a further confirmation of the quality of the company’s processes, and the strong commitment of all employees at HARTING.

The exceptional commitment of the entrepreneurs Margrit and Dietmar Harting is particularly notable. In acknowledgement of their exemplary commitment over many years to the municipality of Espelkamp and the region of East Westphalia they were named honorary citizens of the city of Espelkamp in December 2009. Heinrich Vieker, the mayor of Espelkamp, emphasized in particular that the Harting’s activities extend far beyond their roles as entrepreneurs and employers. As patrons, sponsors but also as critical partners of the city of Espelkamp, they have played a decisive role in shaping and designing the development of the region.

HARTING earned an additional award for outstanding achievements in promoting women active throughout the company, advancing the compatibility of family and vocational life, and honoring the special efforts made to interest young people, and especially women, for technical professions. In February 2010, the University of Applied Sciences Osnabrück and the city of Osnabrück bestowed the “Professionelle 2010“ business award on HARTING.

In November, Dietmar Harting was honored with one of Germany’s highest academic awards. Acknowledging his exceptional achievements and service to national and international engineering standards, his successful entrepreneurial activities and his multifaceted commitment to both state and society, the faculty of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology at the Leibniz University of Hannover awarded an honorary doctorate to Dietmar Harting. In his honorific speech, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Ernst Gockenbach of the Institute for Energy Supply and High-voltage Engineering said that Dietmar Harting had single-mindedly employed his considerable abilities in expanding the company, as well as making unparalleled contributions to standardization. “He is a peerless and visionary role model of tremendous importance to both society and the economy.“

In December 2010 Dietmar Harting was also awarded the gold pin by the DKE German Commission for Electrical, Electronic & Information Technologies of DIN and VDE. The entrepreneur, who will step down at the end of the year as Chairman of the DKE after having held the position for twelve years, will now become Honorary Chairman – a distinction that has been awarded for the first time in the DKE’s history. "With this award, we would like to thank Dietmar Harting for his many years of commitment as DKE Chairman, and honor his outstanding contributions to the visionary restructuring of the German standardization system," commented Dr.-Ing. Bernhard Thies, spokesman of the DKE management.

Additional growth targeted – think tank inaugurated – focus on customer benefits

The company’s positive developments are also set to continue in the ongoing business year. As Dietmar Harting stated, the key preconditions are customer orientation, competitive strength and flexibility combined with the ability for self-criticism. “Competitive products that are geared to customer requirements and are meeting tomorrow’s demands today, represent our potential for a continued successful future. With the inauguration of our think tank in Rahden this year we have visible form and substance to our high aspirations. Our other development areas, however, are pushing ahead at full speed and working on ever new and innovative solutions.“
In order to maintain the company’s position as innovation leader on the markets, HARTING will also be committing considerable resources to research and development in the upcoming year and move ahead with the respective investments. Current planning envisages an expenditure in excess of € 70 million on research and development activities. “We will place a key emphasis on expanding technologies. In this context we are especially strongly concerned with meeting our responsibility for society and setting an example for the entire industrial sector. We have drawn up an ambitious agenda,“ as Dietmar Harting summarized at the financial statement sheet press conference of the HARTING Technology Group on December 7, 2010 in Espelkamp.

Development 2010