Minister-President Winfried Kretschmann (2nd from the left) thanked Thomas Handtmann (3rd from the left), company director of many years and now President of the Advisory Board. The Minister-President wished the fifth generation of the family and the new management with Markus Handtmann (on the left) and Valentin Ulrich (on the right) much success and always the right touch in all their undertakings (photo: Handtmann)
This past weekend, the Handtmann Group of Companies’ owner family invited representatives from politics and business, banks and schools, managers and associates to the gala evening and its staff to the festivities on Biberach’s local mountain Gigelberg.
The Minister-President of the State of Baden-Wuerttemberg Winfried Kretschmann, one of the distinguished guests of honour of the evening, was speaking of an extraordinary entrepreneurial achievement: “The world market leader, with its approximately 4,300 employees and an annual turnover of one billion euros, is an engine of prosperity and an economic factor for both state and country. The noise of the machines in the workshops of Handtmann is the sound of successful transformation.” In recognition of Thomas Handtmann’s lifetime achievements and his immense merits for the Town of Biberach, the Lord Mayor of Biberach Norbert Zeidler conferring on him the title and right of honorary citizen. The symbolic handing over of the keys to the family-run group of companies to Markus Handtmann and Valentin Ulrich was also part of the celebrations. “We want to take this unique opportunity to shape and develop not only our group of companies and the technologies in the industry sectors, but also communal life in the region and in society.” Markus Handtmann added: “We intent to tackle the next 150 years together with you.”
Harald Suchanka, CEO of the Handtmann division of Filling and Portioning Systems, and Wolfgang Schmidt of the Light Metal Casting division jointly gave the eulogy at the gala evening on behalf of the entire management team. “Together we can celebrate 150 years of Handtmann today. We are celebrating 150 years of family business, 150 years of innovation, yet also challenges mastered. Above all, however, we are celebrating one thing: 150 years of growth and success.” He continued that the financial year 2022, for example, had been one of the most successful years in company history, in which “the record sound barrier of one billion euros was broken” and at the same time posed the question: “How is such a success story possible after all?” First and foremost because of Thomas Handtmann. “For us as a young management team, it is above all your way of giving us and the responsible committees ample space to actually shape things, which we appreciate very much. You put your trust in us – and in your impeccable gut feeling to also take decisions instinctively from time to time.” On behalf of all Handtmann employees, he thanked Thomas Handtmann for 25 years of value-based company management and wished him continued success in his new role as President of the Advisory Board and good health. At the same time, he emphasised that the foundation of every successful company were its employees and thanked them sincerely, also on behalf of his colleagues on the executive board: “Without you, business development on such a grand scale would not have been possible.”
Looking ahead into the future, he continued that entrepreneurial success required good instincts, a lot of skill, a certain willingness to take risks, and always a pinch of luck. A family business, however, would need above all one thing that is by no means a matter of course nowadays: succession. “It is a great stroke of luck that the Handtmann family’s strong sense of family ensures that the company management can remain securely in family hands and that Markus Handtmann and Valentin Ulrich take on this immense responsibility in fifth generation.” He closed with the words: “We all wish to thank you, dear Valentin and Markus, for leading the family business, and with it the large international Handtmann family, into the future. We are convinced that we will continue the success story together. The international Handtmann family is proud to be part of your family and we look forward to a successful future together.”