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Spectacular step: Big Dutchman takes over HOWEMA

by 5m Editor
3 October 2005, at 12:00am

GERMANY - HOWEMA GmbH & Co. KG from Visbek-Wöstendöllen will within short be taken over by Big Dutchman Pig Equipment GmbH located in Vechta-Calveslage. These two renowned and internationally successful companies from the German district of Vechta will then be the world’s largest supplier for modern pig equipment.

Spectacular step: Big Dutchman takes over HOWEMA - GERMANY - HOWEMA GmbH & Co. KG from Visbek-Wöstendöllen will within short be taken over by Big Dutchman Pig Equipment GmbH located in Vechta-Calveslage. These two renowned and internationally successful companies from the German district of Vechta will then be the world’s largest supplier for modern pig equipment.
Big Dutchman


Signing the contracts: Heinrich Fraas, Bernd Meerpohl, Magnus Westerkamp and Martin Honkomp (from left to right)

The new managing directors of Big Dutchman Pig Equipment GmbH: Magnus Westerkamp (left) and Heinrich Fraas.

Howema

On the occasion of a joint staff meeting, both companies introduced the procedure for the take-over of management and know-how: “Big Dutchman Pig Equipment”, a subsidiary of Big Dutchman International GmbH, that has been market leader for poultry equipment and technology for many years now, will take over HOWEMA shares as of 1st October 2005 – the real property remaining in possession of the previous owners. At the same time, Magnus Westerkamp, one of the managing partners of HOWEMA, will be appointed managing director of Big Dutchman Pig Equipment GmbH. He will take over this task together with Heinrich Fraas of Big Dutchman, who has been in charge of administration, IT and accounting at the company headquarters for many years.

“On the world market, only those companies will prevail in future which offer a comprehensive product range, the required presence in the market, financial power and the necessary innovative ability”, this is how Magnus Westerkamp and Big Dutchman AG board member Uwe Heider explained the spectacular joint step. Especially projects in foreign countries are becoming larger, more complicated and hold high risks. “Against this background we have had fruitful conversations on a very friendly basis and at the right point of time. For Big Dutchman and HOWEMA are two sound businesses with an outstanding order situation, especially right now!”

Regarding the joint strategy both managers said: “It is our aim to keep up both strong brands, to join our know-how and to purchase together in an optimum way. Moreover, we want to coordinate our organisation structures and thus further increase our competitive ability”.

In the future, HOWEMA will enlarge its product range „by some top products from Big Dutchman that can nowhere else be bought on the market“, said Magnus Westerkamp. “This means that our customers have access to an extended product range, as for example on the sectors of exhaust air cleaning and environment control and at the same time they can count on proven HOWEMA systems including service.”

Big Dutchman Pig Equipment will also benefit from the additional know-how and new products. “HOWEMA’s own construction of control cabinets and special-purpose machines offers new opportunities for us and our customers”, said Uwe Heider, who recently acted as provisional head of the Pig Division in the Big Dutchman group.

The joint Pig Management Division will have a total turnover of 65 million euro with approx. 145 staff members in the coming business year. “This means that we are the No. 1 world-wide, and this is among others due to the fact that we face up to the challenges of the future and tackle them more rapidly than many of our competitors in this business segment”, said Uwe Heider.

Magnus Westerkamp and Uwe Heider made positive statements towards their staff members: “We have enormous manpower requirements. Already due to the present order situation, we need each and every one of you and even many more!”

In the line of the take-over all decisions would be made with care, precaution and much respect for the individual people. “We do it as it has always been in our medium-sized family enterprises.”

Bernd Meerpohl, chairman of the Big Dutchman AG board of management especially stressed these words. “We see the largest potential of synergies particularly in the people and their outstanding qualification“. The Big Dutchman group is looking forward to the cooperation with the HOWEMA employees. He explicitly asked them to address him personally, whenever business or private problems come up. “For you as well, my door is always open!”

Mr. Meerpohl thanked Magnus Westerkamp, Martin Honkomp and Uwe Heider for their commitment during the long and intensive negotiations. “The talks certainly have not always been easy, but they have always taken place in a friendly and agreeable atmosphere.” This was a great starting situation for the large tasks ahead, said the manager.

5m Editor