Company

27.10.2016
Dirk Röse

Gees­te: Klasmann-Deilmann to build its own Aca­de­my

Mil­li­ons to be invested in pro­ject at Groß Hese­pe
By Her­mann-Josef Mam­mes of the Mep­pe­ner Tages­post news­pa­per, 20 Octo­ber 2016

Klasmann-Deilmann GmbH aims to con­ti­nue on its suc­cess­ful tra­jec­to­ry under the ban­ner ‘Born in Ems­land, now a glo­bal play­er’. A new head office is being con­struc­ted at the Groß Hese­pe site, with an Aca­de­my and an expe­ri­men­tal green­house.

On Wed­nes­day, Mana­ging Direc­tor Moritz Böcking – joi­ned by the district’s CEO Rein­hard Win­ter and Geeste’s Mayor Hel­mut Höke – held a ground-brea­king cere­mo­ny (albeit a bela­ted one, as work at the buil­ding site was alrea­dy well under­way). Asked by the Mep­pe­ner Tages­post how the work was pro­gres­sing, Böcking replied: “It’s very much on sche­du­le, on cour­se for com­ple­ti­on by the autumn of 2017”. He revea­led that, in terms of costs, a “sub­stan­ti­al sum well into the mil­li­ons” was invol­ved.

Klasmann-Deilmann is the lea­ding play­er in the inter­na­tio­nal sub­stra­te indus­try, with sub­si­dia­ries and tra­de part­ners in more than 70 coun­tries. In the 2015 finan­ci­al year, the com­pa­ny gene­ra­ted sales of around EUR 180 mil­li­on. The busi­ness was foun­ded 103 years ago in the Ems­land regi­on. Now that peat extrac­tion in the area is being increa­singly sca­led back, only 150 employees still remain in Groß Hese­pe. “But our work­force else­whe­re is around 1,000, about half of whom are in Lit­hua­nia and Lat­via,” said Böcking, adding that the­re is also a desi­re for growth in Chi­na.

2,400 squa­re metres of space

The new main buil­ding will be whe­re the manage­ment is based – spe­ci­fi­cal­ly, accord­ing to Pro­ject Lea­der Cars­ten Klemp, “50 stra­te­gic posi­ti­ons”. Around 70 employees of the ser­vice com­pa­ny will remain in the older buil­ding. As well as being the admi­nis­tra­ti­ve head­quar­ters, the two-storey buil­ding with a usable floor space of 2,400 m2 will house a new Aca­de­my. “This is whe­re we aim to deve­lop the pro­duc­ts of the future,” Böcking com­men­ted. The buil­ding, with its many mee­ting rooms and ‘inno­va­ti­on rooms’, will be avail­ab­le to all of the Group’s employees. In the Aca­de­my, Böcking went on, an ide­al envi­ron­ment would be crea­ted for lear­ning “not only from each other at Klasmann Deilmann, but also joint­ly with our sup­pliers, custo­mers and part­ners”. An exhi­bi­ti­on con­cept is also plan­ned that looks back over the company’s 103-year histo­ry and ahead to the future. “And, for the first time, Klasmann-Deilmann will have its own can­te­en,” he added. The buil­ding will be hea­ted using a wood­chip-fired sys­tem.

The firm is also plan­ning an ultra­mo­dern green­house, part­ly for tri­als of new pro­duc­ts.” Böcking announ­ced that Klasmann-Deilmann, as a spe­ci­fic poli­cy, wants to be open to the public – with plans inclu­ding a new visi­tors’ car­park.

A com­mend­a­ble plan

Rein­hard Win­ter descri­bed this under­ta­king as “a com­mend­a­ble plan”. When Ems­land-based com­pa­nies flou­rish, the local aut­ho­ri­ties also bene­fit from tax reve­nues. With its new Tech­no­lo­gy Cent­re, Klasmann-Deilmann is in good com­pa­ny, along­si­de Ems­land-based firms such as Rosen, Kro­ne and the Mey­er shi­py­ard. In his address, Mayor Höke prai­sed this “for­ward-loo­king decisi­on”. Höke was also plea­sed that many skil­led-tra­des busi­nes­ses from Gees­te, such as buil­ding con­trac­tor Kewe, will be exe­cu­ting this major pro­ject.

 

Mayor Hel­mut Höke, Buil­ding Con­trac­tor Hubert Kewe, Mana­ging Direc­tor Moritz Böcking, District’s CEO Rein­hard Win­ter, Pro­ject Lea­der Cars­ten Klemp