Executive Circle of the casting industry: Successful initial ignition

Sharing a common vision of the future - Special event Executive Circle

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Creating space for joint reflection on the future of the die casting industry and for networking at the highest level. That was the declared aim of the Executive Circle to which NürnbergMesse, as organizer of the EUROGUSS trade show, invited top decision-makers from the entire value chain to Königstein in the Taunus region on October 4 and 5. Almost 60 leading minds from business and science had accepted the invitation and passionately discussed ways to a better future. At the end of the event, something was palpable: A spirit of optimism.

"We have not experienced such a phase of stagnation in our industry for practically 50 years," Johannes Messer summed up the initial situation. Since the end of 2018, the industry has not recorded any growth. "We have to fight for our share. But we have the strongest network in Europe, we have to use that for transformation," explained the proven industry expert and consultant.

Platform for personal exchange

The Executive Circle was created to organize an exchange on a common vision for the future and possible cooperation between companies. Christopher Boss, Executive Director of EUROGUSS, had been thinking about a corresponding format for some time: "Trade fair companies are also in a phase of transformation. Digital tools are one thing. But especially in times of crisis, there is a need for even more personal exchange and partnerships. As a service provider for our customers in the casting industry, we wanted to offer the right platform for this," he explained at the start of the event.

Harry Gatterer, Managing Director of Zukunftsinstitut Wien/Frankfurt, which NürnbergMesse had commissioned to provide scientific support for the format, outlined in his keynote important megatrends that are moving the world and laid the basis for the following discussions between the participants. Raphael Shklarek, Methods & Analytics Lead of the Zukunftsinstitut, concretized the task that the entrepreneurs and business leaders should set themselves on this day: "Today we think together, try to recognize patterns and create a group picture." It should form the framework for the future scenarios that will be developed in the weeks following the event.

Expectations were met

In several thinkspaces, the participants discussed which influences are particularly relevant for their industry. Various focal points clearly emerged. These included the existing problems in recruiting suitable junior staff as well as the insufficient speed of change in many companies, which is in marked contrast to the "China speed" at which the often significantly larger competitors in the Far East appear to be developing. Last but not least, there was a call for more innovation in the industry. Instead of being merely the "extended workbench of the OEMs," as one of the company bosses put it, the die casting foundries should once again be more involved in the development of components. Increased marketing efforts were also identified as an important field of action, which should lead to an improved perception in politics and society and inspire the younger generation to pursue a career in die casting. Overriding everything was the discernible desire to get back on the road to success together through increased cooperation and synergies.

"We are open for continuation"

There was a great deal of agreement on continuing to drive forward the process that has already been started. That's why the widely expressed praise for the organizers for a "great event with potential" was also linked with the urgent wish to continue on this path and to use the momentum.

Actively doing so, Christopher Boss promised, "Today was the start of something new. We are open for a continuation." As a next step already firmly planned is the presentation of the topics discussed in the Think Spaces in the form of a scenario analysis by the Zukunftsinstitut. This is to take place as part of the upcoming EUROGUSS, which will be held in Nuremberg from January 16 to 18, 2024.

Johannes Messer also expressed his satisfaction with what was achieved on this day: "If we see ourselves not as competitors but as market companions, we can shape the future much better. I think we all understood that today," he said and concluded with the foundrymen's greeting: "Glückauf!"


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