Double-digit growth in the anniversary year – on the way to the billion mark

14.10.2022 In the past financial year, Lenze SE (Aerzen, Germany) has successfully positioned itself in the market with new developments and collaborations, and is publishing record results in the year of its 75th anniversary: The group turnover increased in the past business year by 21 percent to €832.6M.

Christian Wendler, CEO at Lenze.
© Photo: Lenze
Christian Wendler, CEO at Lenze.

The order volume of the automation specialist grew by 50 percent to more than €1.1 billion. The operating result of €91.8M was also significantly higher than in the previous year (e47.1M). The EBIT margin also improved from 6.8 percent last year to 11 percent. The sale of the Mobile Drives division by Lenze Swiss AG contributed to the positive operating result.

Automation remains a winning industry

"Even in a turbulent market environment, automation will continue to be one of the winning industries in the coming years," promises Lenze CEO Christian Wendler. Despite ongoing challenges from Covid-19 and downstream supply chain difficulties, he therefore sees the sector and the company continuing to grow. "The industry needs to rapidly increase its contribution to reducing CO2 emissions. We help our customers develop sustainable, energy-efficient production processes – with automation and digitalisation. In particular, in view of increasing cost pressure and ever stricter environmental regulations, we offer our partners in the SME sector value-creating solutions with the help of so-called smart data: with our many years of expertise and domain knowledge, we analyse and interpret their machine data and gain relevant insights for our customers. In this way, we can precisely map the energy requirements of a machine and reduce energy consumption by up to 30 percent on average. Automation is the key to sustainable success."

The markets in the USA and China are also developing in a similar direction. "In addition to the growing global pressure on industry with regard to emissions obligations, the shortage of skilled workers in particular poses challenges for Lenze's customers," adds Wendler. "The lack of trained personnel is forcing automation projects, for example in intralogistics. Companies around the world are therefore automating their warehouse and material flow processes – and not just in retail. This is why the intralogistics sector is a dynamic and strategically important field for Lenze."

Digitisation can only succeed with collaboration

Lenze also supports machine and plant builders in their search for new, digital business models, relying on a triad of electrical engineering, software and platform strategy. "Today, it is no longer enough just to sell hardware. Together with our customers, we must also work more closely with the users in order to understand processes and needs even better and, based on this, to be able to develop digital business models. Many smaller machine builders cannot develop digital services themselves. Lenze helps them with development and implementation," Wendler explains.

Strategic investments in new forms of cooperation

Lenze is intensifying its collaboration with start-ups, suppliers, scientific institutes and customers for this goal of jointly developed business models and solutions. "We need to work together more closely and more agilely," Wendler demands. The company has created forward-looking venues for collaborations in the 2021/2022 financial year. One example is the Mechatronic Competence Campus (MCC) at the Extertal site. "The MCC will become the heart of Lenze mechatronics when it officially opens on 15 October 2022. The aim is to bring our concentrated know-how together in one place and thus develop the drive solutions comprising mechanics, electronics and software that our customers need to win the competition even faster," clarifies Wendler.

Innovative forms of collaboration have also been made possible by the Digital Hub Industry in Bremen since summer 2022. Closely linked to the University of Bremen, Lenze offers medium-sized mechanical engineering companies an ecosystem for the open exchange of experiences and ideas as well as for experiments and collaborations. It is only through collaboration that beneficial digital services and business models emerge. "In our opinion, this requires courage and the willingness to change. 'The Courage of Change' is therefore not by chance Lenze's anniversary motto in 2022," Wendler summarises.