10/16/2009, Düsseldorf / Germany


Award for Excellent Production in New EU Countries


Henkel Körösladány is the “Best Factory in Eastern Europe”

A high-caliber jury composed of experts from academia, business, and trade associations has honored the Körösladány production site in Hungary with the “Factory of the Year/GEO” award in the category “Excellent Production in New EU Countries.” Every year, the business magazine Produktion and management consultants A.T. Kearney recognize companies in this way for their outstanding performance in manufacturing.

The objective of the annual benchmarking competition “Factory of the Year/GEO – Global Excellence in Operations” is to pinpoint and reward best-in-class performance of manufacturing companies in Germany and Europe. Initiated in 1992, this prestigious competition is run each year by the business magazine Produktion and management consultants A.T. Kearney. Prizes are awarded in eight categories, such as Excellent Location Development, Excellent Process Manufacturing, and Excellent Production in New EU Countries. This year’s winner of the award for Excellent Production in New EU Countries is Henkel’s Körösladány production site in Hungary. “We have achieved a great deal at the Körösladány site over the past years. The factory has become a competence center for specialty and household cleaners within the European supply chain network. The entire team is very proud to have gained this distinction,” says Dr. Johann Seif, Vice President Supply Chain Central Eastern Europe.

Awards ceremony at conference in Ludwigsburg
The trophies for the “Factory of the Year/GEO” awards will be presented during the annual GEO conference at the “Forum am Schlosspark” in Ludwigsburg, Germany, on March 15 and 16, 2010. The winners of the competition will present their success strategies to Produktion and A.T. Kearney and discuss concepts for the future with them. As Dr. Bernd Schmidt, Principal at A.T. Kearney sees it, companies currently face two main challenges: “Stringent cost management remains paramount, in order to be able to operate profitably even when sales volumes are down. At the same time, it is vital to grasp opportunities to emerge from the crisis stronger than before. This involves taking a close look at one’s own strategic positioning and designing all short-term measures with the ultimate aim of restructuring successfully for the longer term.”

Europe-wide benchmarking
The competition is open to European manufacturing companies from all industries, who may participate with either a factory or a business unit. The evaluation model of the benchmarking competition covers areas such as strategy, process quality, resource management and business success of the factory or business unit. Each of the participating companies is assessed in detail and receives benchmarking feedback showing how it compares to similar operations in other companies.

Staying competitive – especially in challenging times
“At our Factory of the Year/GEO conference we bring together leading representatives of the manufacturing industries, providing a cross-industry platform where they can share ideas and experiences," says Eduard Altmann, Chief Editor of the Produktion magazine. “The aim of our Factory of the Year/GEO competition is to support the manufacturing industries and identify strategies that can help companies to maintain their competitiveness in difficult times. The winners of this year’s competition have mastered this challenge and demonstrate how operational excellence can become a success factor in a globally competitive environment.”

Henkel AG & Co. KGaA