Fellbach -- Fellbach - For the twenty-third time, the TOP 100 - Germany’s most innovative small and medium-sized companies - are acclaimed. This year, G. Lufft Mess- und Regeltechnik GmbH belongs to this innovation elite. The Fellbach company previously took part in a demanding, scientific selection process. Innovation management and innovation success were examined. The mentor of the innovation competition, Ranga Yogeshwar, honors the top innovator Lufft at the German SME Summit on 24 June 2016 in Essen.
The TOP 100 seal of approval award winner G. Lufft Mess- und Regeltechnik GmbH impressed the decision-makers with its success in innovation. The company, which was established in 1881, develops and manufactures components and systems for climate and environmental measurement technology. Product innovations such as the mobile road sensor MARWIS for winter service vehicles or the ultrasonic wind sensor VENTUS-UMB, which is used for example on research ships of the German Weather Service, make the traditional Fellbach company a leader in innovation. Through process innovations, such as the principle of lean production, the experts in intelligent meteorological sensors increased productivity in manufacturing by 20 percent in the last three years.
'The true secret of success is passion - and we at Lufft innovate with this passion,' says CEO Klaus Hirzel. Innovation, including the development of ideas that is necessary to achieve this, is firmly enshrined in top management as well as in the majority of employees, as an integral part of the company’s internal processes. Innovation management meetings are held on a regular basis. Internal events are communicated quickly and openly: all employees can actively familiarize themselves with new developments via the organizational system. In addition, all news from the various departments, new projects and customers as well as product developments are presented and updated daily on staff television. This flow of information strengthens the corporate feeling among a total of 105 employees.
More than 4,000 companies showed an interest in taking part in the TOP 100 this year. 366 of these applied for the qualification round. Of these, 284 went through to the final round. 238 finally made it into the TOP 100 (maximum of 100 in each of the three size categories). The companies were reassessed by Prof. Dr. Nikolaus Franke and his team from the Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at the Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration. They sampled more than 100 parameters in five assessment categories: 'Innovation-friendly Senior Management', 'Climate of Innovation', 'Innovative Processes and Organization', 'Innovation Marketing / External Orientation' and 'Innovation Success'.
The TOP 100 are among the pacesetters in their industry sectors. The figures from the assessment are evidence of this: 97 of the companies are national market leaders and 32 are global market leaders. On average, these firms most recently achieved 40 percent of their sales through market innovations and product improvements, which they brought to the market prior to the competition. In doing so, their sales growth was 28 percentage points above the industry average. Together, the SMEs registered 2,292 national and international patents in the past three years. This capacity for innovation pays off in jobs too: the TOP 100 plan to take on around 9,500 new employees in the next three years.
The mentor of TOP 100, the science journalist and TV presenter Ranga Yogeshwar, is impressed by the quality of the companies and hopes to send out a message: 'The way in which the TOP 100 generate new ideas and develop them into pioneering products and services is remarkable in every sense of the word. I am therefore pleased that the award makes these qualities visible. Hopefully their success will encourage other companies to follow suit. Because this culture of innovation will be increasingly important for all businesses in the future.'