Press release -
The power of the network: German SMEs to become innovation drivers of electric transport
- First "Electric Networking Night" at the transport logistic trade fair in Munich: BPW brings together top decision-makers in electric transport
- Keynotes by Kurt Sigl, Rolf Meyer, Dr. Dustin Schöder and Clemens Baumgärtner - top-class audience sparked exciting discussion
- Markus Schell: "Networking and cooperation are today's drivers of innovation".
Munich, 7 June 2019 --- Who will lead the breakthrough for noiseless and emission-free logistics in cities? What contribution can politics make? Is Germany in danger of losing the technological and economic edge – or will all the players now be able to make electrical transport a success story together? Top decision-makers from industry, research, politics and associations discussed these questions at BPW's first "Electric Networking Night" at the "transport logistic" trade fair in Munich.
BPW enabled a lively discussion on the subject of e-mobility at eye level, because the 50 or so guests in the audience of the "Electric Networking Night" were no less top-class than the speakers: Kurt Sigl (Bundesverband eMobilität), Rolf Meyer (Meyer & Meyer), Dr. Dustin Schöder (Deutsche Bahn, Strategic Group Projects)and Clemens Baumgärtner (City of Munich)highlighted the opportunities and challenges of emission-free transport from different perspectives. Under the direction of Gerhard Grünig (VerkehrsRundschau; media partner of the Electric Networking Night),a lively discussion emerged, in which Markus Schell (BPW) was just as involved as Marten Bosselmann (German Parcel & Express Logistics Association), Hermann Stegmaier (Stegmaier Nutzfahrzeuge)and Robert Orten (Orten Fahrzeugbau), who spoke from the audience.
The speakers talked in straightforward terms: Kurt Sigl appealed to politicians to create planning and legal certainty for the economy through clear framework conditions: "Especially for low-emission transport on the last mile, politicians can set accents – but for that not only money, but also brains are needed. In Germany, we have a lively network of SMEs, start-ups and universities, which is more creative and efficient in developing and implementing new ideas". Sigl also called on politicians to simplify access to existing funding. At the same time, he advised the evening's participants to join forces: "I can only encourage everyone to be open, to participate and to have the confidence to help shape the paradigm shift."
Rolf Meyer joined this call – with a clear warning: "German transport companies should participate more and more intensively in the electrical transformation of economic transport. Only in this way can we remain a technological leader in the world – instead of being left behind by the rapid developments in other countries". As shareholder and vice-chairman of the supervisory board of the leading German fashion logistics company Meyer & Meyer, he is familiar with the problems associated with the supply of inner cities, for which there is increasing competition for space from individual and delivery traffic.
Clemens Baumgärtner, head of the Department of Labour and Economic Affairs in the City of Munich, has to implement political guidelines. He reported on how this competition for traffic space is heating up the political discussion in the municipalities. The call for radical approaches is becoming louder. Baumgärtner: "Politicians are right to ask the question: Who owns the city? Who has access to which areas? I am also convinced that we need to rethink – but it can't be a solution to demonize everything that has four wheels. I don't want dead inner cities. No delivery traffic at all cannot be a solution." Baumgärtner emphasized the City of Munich's commitment to electromobility: "Between 2018 and 2020, 30 million euros will be invested, 11 million of which in the charging infrastructure alone. He called on the participants of the Electric Networking Night to seek dialogue with the municipalities: "Politicians must know what technology can do.“
Dr. Dustin Schöder, a Deutsche Bahn strategist and e-mobility expert who has intensively investigated the supply of electrical general cargo, gave a concrete assessment: The vehicle technology is now functioning perfectly, but it is not enough for logistics experts just to exchange vehicles and procure charging stations. The electrical distribution of general cargo in inner cities and the surrounding urban areas must be rethought and processes redesigned. All stakeholders must be involved and time must be given to gather experience.
Markus Schell, personally liable managing partner of BPW, believes in the power of German SMEs - more precisely in their ability to cooperate pragmatically and agilely at all technical levels, to exchange experiences and to drive innovations forward together. "The diverse networks in the fields of electromobility, the vehicle industry, transport and logistics are like a learning organism," he explains. "They have always made German industry strong and will now also drive electric transport forward. As a result, some visitors accepted BPW's offer to pre-book a fully electric 7.5-tonne vehicle.
All in all, the participants agreed that politicians must be more courageous in setting clear framework conditions for modern mobility concepts, otherwise Germany will lose the international edge.
As befits a networking event, the fun of networking was not neglected either: cocktails, finger food and the glamorous Munich DJ Monica Babilon formed the framework for lively discussions between the invited guests. BPW, however, also used the power of networking for all those who were unable to attend in person in Munich: The social media teams from BPW and VerkehrsRundschau published the highlights from the stand live via Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Xing and Facebook.
The VerkehrsRundschau also published a photo gallery with impressions of the Electric Networking Night.
About BPW Bergische Achsen Kommanditgesellschaft
BPW Bergische Achsen Kommanditgesellschaft is the parent company of the BPW Group. With over 1,600 employees, including around 120 trainees, the family-owned company has been developing and producing complete running gear systems for truck trailers and semi-trailers at its headquarters in Wiehl since 1898. BPW’s technologies include axle systems, brake technology, suspension and bearings. BPW’s trailer axles and running gear systems are in use in millions of vehicles around the world. An extensive range of services also offers vehicle manufacturers and operators the ability to increase the efficiency of their production and transport processes. www.bpw.de/en
About the BPW Group
The BPW Group researches, develops and manufactures everything needed to ensure that transport keeps moving and is safe, illuminated, intelligent and digitally connected. With its brands BPW, Ermax, HBN, HESTAL and idem telematics, the company group is a preferred system partner of the commercial vehicle industry around the globe for running gear, brakes, lighting, fasteners and superstructure technology, telematics and other key components for trucks, trailers and buses. The BPW Group offers comprehensive mobility services for transport businesses, ranging from a global service network to spare parts supply and intelligent networking of vehicles, drivers and freight. The owner-operated company group currently employs 7,200 staff in more than 50 countries and achieved consolidated sales of 1.48 billion euros in 2017. www.bpw.de/en