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Christine Metz

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BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding with headquarters in Oberderdingen shapes kitchen living spaces worldwide. The Group owns five subgroups: kitchen supplier E.G.O, sink and fittings manufacturer BLANCO, BLANCO Professional, the Italian gas component manufacturer DEFENDI, and French induction and gas stove manufacturer ARPA. The companies employ a around 8,000 people worldwide in 23 countries and at 52 locations. In 2016, the Group recorded turnover of EUR 1.16 billion worldwide. The holding company is 100% owned by the families Blanc and Fischer.

Image brochure BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding:

"A strong family of companies"


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BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding Management Board:

Dr. Johannes Haupt
Chairman of the Management Board


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Dr. Karlheinz Hörsting
Managing Director Technology and Production


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Benno Rudolf
Managing Director Finance and HR


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Dr. Johannes Haupt (right) took over as Chairman of the Boards of Directors at BLANCO and BLANCO Professional from Frank Staub (left) at the start of 2016.


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BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding takes over strategic leadership and coordination of its subgroups

BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding is continuing to evolve from a financial into a management holding company. The company group will gain in strength in future and its responsibilities will include HR tasks for the entire group.

Oberderdingen – The year 2018 is all about change for BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding: with a new focus, the holding company is assuming responsibility for strategic and administrative tasks for all of the subgroups. In doing so, BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding will strengthen cooperation between the individual companies, seek to make better use of synergy effects and further develop the market position in the kitchen and laundry segments. “We aim to grow dynamically as an overall group, and to facilitate this, we need a redistribution of tasks in some areas. It is now time to take this next step”, explains Dr. Johannes Haupt, Chairman of the Management Board of BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding. The new structure lightens the burden on the subgroups and will enable them to concentrate on their core activities: “We are now setting up functions within the holding company that are important to all subgroups but are not part of their core business. As a result, we are focusing our strengths”, adds Haupt. The holding company will now be responsible for the areas of legal and compliance, tax, finance including risk management and treasury, corporate development, strategic purchasing and HR management.

The intention is that BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding will not only serve as the organizational base for group-wide corporate functions but also strengthen the interaction between the subgroups and identify and exploit new opportunities and market possibilities for the entire group. The management of BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding will be involved in future in tasks such as coordinating and strategically advancing digitization and Industry 4.0 across the entire group. As a result, the subsidiaries will receive effective support without losing their operational autonomy.

Ready for the future together

This step brings ARPA, BLANCO, BLANCO Professional, DEFENDI and E.G.O. closer together. Better exploitation of synergy effects and the wide product spectrum of all the subsidiaries offer the family holding company a stable basis for future growth. Haupt explains: “Together we have a lot of expertise that we can use across the entire group. The new structure will be very helpful in enabling us to use this potential and thus the opportunities of the future more effectively. At the same time, everything to do with customers and the market remains the responsibility of the subgroups. The customers’ points of contact, the established networks and even the employees and managers will remain the same. We are retaining what has proven successful”, says Haupt.

HR management and topics for the future now part of the company group

One of the most important departments that will now be the responsibility of BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding is human resource (HR) management. All HR processes will in future have a common strategy and will be operated from the company head office in Oberderdingen by the new Director of Corporate Human Resources, Markus Blümle. Previously, Blümle was HR Director of the E.G.O.-Group. He will organize the new personnel structure of the management holding company. In parallel to this, he is already working with teams composed of members of the individual subgroups on various projects - including concepts for a long-term, sustainable HR strategy.

A further advantage of the new family holding company is its centrally supported knowledge management system and a centralized training system, stresses Dr. Haupt. In this context, the holding company is also investing in a joint BLANC & FISCHER vocational training academy in Oberderdingen. Here the three subgroups E.G.O., BLANCO and BLANCO Professional will combine their activities related to the training programs. This will result in training for an industrial clerk, for example, being the same for all three groups.

Restructuring leads to changes in the E.G.O. management board

The management boards of BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding and the E.G.O.-Group, as the largest subgroup with the greatest turnover, have had the same members until now. This situation will change in the course of 2019. In future Dr. Johannes Haupt, Dr. Karlheinz Hörsting, and Benno Rudolf will run the family holding company only. On March 1, 2018 Dr. Johannes Haupt handed over leadership of the Sales and Product Management divisions of the E.G.O.-Group to Wolfgang Bauer, as Chief Sales Officer (CSO) and the new, fourth managing director. Before his appointment to the management board, Bauer had served as Director of Sales for the E.G.O.-Group since 2011. “I am delighted that we have brought Wolfgang Bauer onto the management board as a new colleague from within our ranks. I am assuming that during 2019, my colleagues Dr. Hörsting and Mr. Rudolf will also leave the E.G.O. management board as I have. Of course, the E.G.O.-Group will have lost three influential people, but with Mr. Bauer in place we can already expect a high level of continuity”, says Dr. Haupt in connection with the decision. “And I am confident that I will be able to present an experienced and competent person as the future CEO of the E.G.O.- Group to take over from January 1, 2019. Then the changes in the management of the company group will be complete”, adds Dr. Haupt.


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BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding and E.G.O.-Group again achieve best result in the company’s history

BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding has a new focus – The group is strategically positioning itself for the future – The household appliance supplier E.G.O., which is based in Oberderdingen, is growing steadily

Oberderdingen – BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding has continued to grow despite some unfavorable developments on the markets, the internal transition of BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding from a finance to a management holding company and investment in construction of the new company headquarters. This was the conclusion of the management board of both 
BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding and the E.G.O.-Group, its largest subgroup, at the E.G.O. annual meeting on Thursday in Oberderdingen. “With BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding’s new focus and the construction of new company headquarters, we’ve launched two exceptionally large internal projects over the past year”, explains Dr. Johannes Haupt, Chairman of the Management Board of BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding and the E.G.O.-Group. “The stipulation was that our business operations should not suffer as a result of these projects, and we made sure that was the case. BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding continued its steady sales growth of recent years and generated a year-on-year increase of 2.5% to EUR 1.192 billion in 2017. In the four years since 2014, the holding company has boosted its sales by 11.4%”, comments Dr. Haupt. The E.G.O.-Group has also continued on its course of growth, says Wolfgang Bauer, who has been the new Managing Director for the Sales and Product Management divisions since March. “E.G.O. showed a slight increase in sales in 2017 to EUR 609 million. That’s not a bad outcome given the considerable supply bottlenecks in the area of electronic parts at times”, comments Bauer. He goes on to say that the increasing price pressure on large electronic appliances was a challenge for the industry last year. The BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding and E.G.O.-Group Managing Director responsible for Production and Value Creation, Dr. Karlheinz Hörsting, clarifies how E.G.O. is addressing this development by improving productivity in its ten worldwide production plants. “Along with a wealth of individual measures, we are focusing on digitization and, above all, on Industry 4.0 in the continuous optimization of our production”, Dr. Hörsting points out. This year, BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding is aiming to achieve a stronger rate of growth of 5.9% taking it to more than EUR 1.25 billion, according to Dr. Haupt. Growth at E.G.O. should be 5.4% to around EUR 640 million, Bauer says.

More than 8,400 employees worldwide
In addition to the E.G.O.-Group, BLANCO, BLANCO Professional, ARPA and DEFENDI are part of BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding. The E.G.O.-Group accounts for the largest proportion of sales at 49%. The second largest subgroup is BLANCO with a sales share of just under 32%, followed by BLANCO Professional with ten percent, DEFENDI with six and ARPA with three percent. “The distribution within the group has been almost constant for years because the individual subgroups as a whole are very homogeneous in their development in line with the overall strategy of BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding”, states Dr. Haupt. The distribution of sales is also reflected in the number of employees. The subgroup with by far the most employees in BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding is the E.G.O.-Group: at the end of 2017, it employed 5,740 people or almost two-thirds of the 8,415 employees worldwide.

Broken down by region, the largest share of sales by some distance comes from the EMEA region (Europe, the Middle East and Africa) at 
73.8%. As in previous years, BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding also recorded stronger growth in 2017 in North, Central and South America, which now accounts for 18.3% of sales, and in the Pacific region, currently at 7.9% of sales. In the future, Dr. Haupt expects the holding company to experience a further shift in favor of these regions, although Europe will remain the core market in the long term.

Debt-free and innovative – a holding company ready for the future
In 2017, BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding once again achieved the best outcome in the company’s history, Dr. Haupt says. In addition, BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding is completely debt-free and has an equity ratio of around 60%. This will enable the holding company to cope with future challenges and the essential investment this entails under its own steam. As Dr. Haupt puts it, the group owes this fact to the policy of the proprietors, all of whom belong to one of the two founding Blanc and Fischer families: “Our shareholders are and always have been happy to refrain from withdrawing most of the earnings from the company in the form of profit distributions; instead, they keep them in the group. This clear commitment unequivocally shows that the shareholders are focused on the ongoing success and sustainability of BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding.”

According to Dr. Haupt, the ability to innovate is crucial to the success of the holding company. It is measured by an innovation quota – the share of sales for products that have been on the market no longer than three or five years, depending on the subgroup. For ARPA, this figure is 32% over a three-year period; for the E.G.O.-Group, it is 29% over the same period. DEFENDI recorded 17% over this period. For BLANCO and BLANCO PROFESSIONAL, the family holding company looks at a five-year cycle, during which the share of new product sales is currently just over half for BLANCO, at 54%, and just under half for BLANCO PROFESSIONAL.

Evolution from a family holding company to a management holding company
In 2017, BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding developed into a management holding company with additional areas of responsibility. It now handles group-wide tasks that are not part of the individual companies’ core business, bringing them together and thus relieving the burden on the individual companies. The Legal and Compliance, Tax, Risk Management, Treasury, Business Development, Lean Management, Finance, Strategic Purchasing, Corporate Quality Assurance, Process Control and HR Management divisions have therefore been set up in the holding company. “The basic formula for this re-alignment is as follows: everything that is important for brands, customer service and market development stays in the subgroups, which also retain their legal independence. Anything that can be organized better, more efficiently and more professionally across the group will be the responsibility of the holding company in the future”, explains Dr. Haupt in relation to the basic idea behind the reorientation. This alleviates the burden on the subgroups. At the same time, it expands and improves the interaction between the individual companies in the group. Dr. Haupt spoke of a win-win situation for everyone involved: “First and foremost, customers reap the benefits by getting even better support. Employees are also better off by being able to concentrate on their core tasks. That’s why it’s a win-win situation for all the respective companies and for BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding as a whole.”

The family holding company also generates synergies in the area of training. The “BLANC & FISCHER Training Academy” combines the training programs for E.G.O., BLANCO and BLANCO Professional. The companies thus focus the experience of their executives, which further improves the quality of training. In addition, the Academy is a good foundation for strengthening interaction between the companies. The new Academy also makes it easier for trainees to take advantage of opportunities across the group. The BLANC & FISCHER Training Academy is scheduled to open on September 20, 2018 in Oberderdingen.

Changes to the management board
The reorientation entails changes to the management board. The previous overlap of personnel on the management boards of BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding and the E.G.O.-Group is being phased out. Dr. Johannes Haupt, Dr. Karlheinz Hörsting and Benno Rudolf are therefore planning to leave the E.G.O.-Group management board in 2019 to concentrate exclusively on managing BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding. Wolfgang Bauer was appointed as the fourth Managing Director of the E.G.O.-Group in anticipation of this development. He has been in charge of Sales at the E.G.O.-Group for many years and his appointment is instrumental in maintaining the necessary continuity in leadership following the changes. At the same time, interviews are already taking place with potential candidates for the position of Chairman of the Management Board of the E.G.O.-Group – in other words, for its future CEO. “Based on the current state of affairs, we’re operating under the assumption that we will have made a decision about this by the end of the year”, says Dr. Haupt.
Construction of new company headquarters
Back in 2016, the management board of BLANC & FISCHER 
Family Holding and the E.G.O.-Group decided to build new headquarters in Oberderdingen. The first foundation stone was laid on December 13, 2017 and construction has been running according to plan ever since. “We are confident that we will be able to complete the construction in the second half of 2019 as planned”, says Haupt. The new building will initially consist of a core structure with three wings. However, it will be possible to add another wing onto the building at a later date. The transparent glass façade will face Bachstraße and fits in well with the surroundings. The new building will shape the cityscape and is an obvious sign of the corporate group’s sense of belonging within the region. “Our new corporate headquarters clearly demonstrate the company’s commitment to our home base”, adds Haupt. With the new building investment, the corporate group is creating sufficient development opportunities for all companies on site. The central administrative offices of BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding will also be located in the new building.

Development of the E.G.O.-Group
Wolfgang Bauer explained exactly how business has developed for the E.G.O.-Group. Sales increased again in 2017 to EUR 609 million, with the group generating the largest share of sales in the HOT business sector. This includes products for cooking, baking and grilling and parts for extractor hoods. E.G.O. generates more than two-thirds of its sales – around EUR 398 million – in this sector. Dishwashing and laundry solutions contribute just under EUR 74 million in sales. The group has generated approximately 10% each from products for professional use in industrial and public facilities and from its product range for commercial kitchens.

Sales drivers of the E.G.O.-Group
In the product groups, induction stovetop parts were the main sales drivers last year. They are increasingly becoming standard in new stovetops in industrialized countries. The E.G.O.-Group has increased its growth in this area by 7%, while induction solutions for professional kitchens have gone up by 8%. Trade in traditional products is not suffering as a result of this growth. Bauer: “Older technologies such as radiant heating elements, hotplates, thermostats and energy regulators tend to be losing relevance in developed countries, but this is largely offset by growing demand in developing countries. On the whole, sales of traditional products remain virtually stable.”

Trade in thick-film heating systems, which are used in dishwashers for example, grew by 20.5%. Thick-film heating elements have a high heating capacity, precise and reliable electronic controls and require little space. According to Bauer, the E.G.O.-Group sees great potential in this technology, which is why it formed a partnership in the household appliance sector with the Canadian start-up Datec at the beginning of February. Since then the E.G.O.-Group has had a 33.5% holding in the company, which specializes in coating heating elements. “In this way, we are securing our long-term expertise and have a technology partner by our side who will take us further and strengthen our competitive position”, explains Bauer in connection with this strategic involvement.

Growth opportunities in the Asia-Pacific region
Europe is a largely saturated market when it comes to the household appliance industry. That’s why the E.G.O.-Group has its eye on growth opportunities outside Europe in particular: “We want to remain strong in Europe but also increase the sales share of other regions through disproportionate growth in the medium and long-term. Our long-term goal is to achieve 60% of sales in Europe and 20% each in the Americas and the greater Asia/Pacific region”, explains Bauer. He sees great opportunities especially in the Asia/Pacific region. E.G.O. accordingly strengthened its position in the Asian market and opened two new sales branches in 2017. New offices in Shanghai, China, and Seoul, South Korea are creating a foundation for even better customer service in the region.

E.G.O. has its eye on the future
“As a company, it's enormously important to think outside the box”, says Bauer. In the kitchen, trends such as digitization and the demand for convenience are already apparent today. In particular, the trend towards open kitchens that integrate the living area has a strong influence on products. “Modern kitchens are at the heart of home life. They are not just a place of work, but also a place to live where people feel good”, Bauer emphasizes. For maximum convenience, kitchen appliances have to be perfectly integrated into the living space of the kitchen. In other words: they have to be functional, fit in visually and be really quiet. “So the dishwasher can run without making too much noise in the area around it”, says Bauer. “The kitchen has advanced by leaps and bounds. For E.G.O., it’s the basis for all further innovations and decisions.”

The E.G.O.-Group’s sustainable production network
The E.G.O.-Group invests in the future of its worldwide locations. “Above all, we will be further intensifying, focusing and developing our solutions for activities that we’ve already started in connection with Industry 4.0”, says Dr. Hörsting. Thus the E.G.O. site in Oberderdingen has established a working group that is focusing on a number of activities related to electronics production as a pilot. A new module concept for future generations of induction ensures shorter development times, greater version flexibility and optimized production conditions. The “Robot Colleague” project is focusing on cooperation between humans and robots. Data management is to be improved by a central production control system. In 2017, changes were also made to the innovative thick-film production facility in Oberderdingen: relocation to another hall was a great success. “The group's press conference was held in the new hall last year, just before the move. After the smooth relocation, we were able to increase our capacity quickly. Now we’ve reached the maximum capacity of the plant so we’ll have to expand soon”, reports Dr. Hörsting.

“People take the use of their smartphones for granted: they are controlled by tapping symbols or swiping. We’ve applied this philosophy to SmartKii stovetops”, explains Dr. Hörsting. The touch control produced in Oberderdingen is designed for induction stovetops and radiant heating elements. With SmartKii technology, E.G.O. is integrating touch sensors and light symbols in one element. The user operates the appliance by directly touching the light symbols. To make things easier for the user, the SmartKii only lights up the buttons that are required in the specific situation. “This gives you intuitive control of up to five cooking zones”, Dr. Hörsting says.

Development of production in China
The E.G.O.-Group has a production facility in Taicang, China. “The site has been successfully developed and is currently the competence center for induction coils within the entire production group", Dr. Hörsting explains. The opening of a semi-automated production line last year led to a further increase in capacity. “Due to rapid growth, the production area is currently being used to its capacity six years after moving in. An expansion is on the agenda for next year”, adds Hörsting.

Investing in innovative products
The hopes for growth mainly relate to innovative products. The E.G.O.-Group has therefore created an electronics competence center in Łódź, Poland. The factory is located in the immediate vicinity of various home appliance manufacturers. Major launches of electronic products in the professional WET sector and a new location and production layout with investment in expansion of capacity are strengthening the E.G.O. site in Mexico. At the Spanish site in Llica de Vall, E.G.O. has rearranged the material flows and integrated an SMD line into the assembly cell.

Investing in traditional products
With a view to improving the supply of thermostats, E.G.O. has moved production from the Slovenian plant in Cerkno to the Croatian production site in Zagreb. At ETA in Cerkno, the E.G.O.-Group has invested extensively in a hotplate foundry: a new smelting concept reduces energy consumption and maintenance costs while improving occupational safety, the environmental footprint, reliability and performance.


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BLANCO enjoys growth in foreign markets

The Blanco Group is looking back on 2017 as a successful business year which saw it continue along its planned growth track. The consolidated total turnover of the Baden-Württemberg-based company is up around 5.0% on the previous year, at € 379 million. As such, Blanco managed to outperform the market last year. While sales in Germany fell slightly short of the previous year’s level (-0.4%), the company achieved considerable growth in international markets. Here, Blanco grew 7.9% on the previous year, bringing in a total of € 252 million, increasing the foreign share of its overall sales to 66%. “In line with our strategic objectives, we have been able to increase growth significantly in international markets and thereby further consolidate our strong position,” reported CEO Frank Gfrörer at the annual press conference on Tuesday.

The Silgranit sink and kitchen fittings areas played a particularly important role in this growth. Blanco invested € 17.2 million for the purpose of increasing capacity and further strengthening its competitive position abroad. In 2017 it created around 100 new jobs. The company has once again been named one of the best employers in Germany. At present, it employs around 1,500 people worldwide.

Gfrörer said that the plan is for the company to stay on its firm growth track over the current business year. “Our customers perceive the Blanco brand to be top-performing, service-oriented and reliable. At the same time, this requires us to rise to the challenge – both in Germany, as our top-selling market, and at an international level. Going forward, we are looking to showcase even more clearly the value of having a perfectly coordinated system solution of sink, fittings and accessories, all from the same provider, as offered by Blanco.”

Huge international success despite volatile markets
The kitchen and sink markets have developed very differently in the various regions, and in some cases were marked by a high level of volatility. “Despite these generally challenging market conditions, we nevertheless achieved our ambitious goals,” stresses Frank Gfrörer. Outside Germany, sales increased by € 19 million to a consolidated €252 million. “The main growth drivers were North America, Russia and China,” explains Gfrörer. In addition, the Blanco Group saw highly satisfying business growth in many EU countries.

Silgranit sinks and kitchen fittings as drivers of growth
Silgranit PuraDur sinks played a major role in the company’s success.This high-quality composite material also helped Blanco to expand its leading global market position in 2017. Silgranit is winning over increasing numbers of customers worldwide for its outstanding properties, such as resistance, low level of maintenance and contemporary colour palette. It offers appropriate solutions in a modern design to cater every kitchen need, all blending in perfectly with the overall interior style. Trendsetting innovations include the Blanco Artago bowl line, which has already won two awards for its striking design, including the ‘Best of the Best’ Red Dot Award: Product Design 2018, and the Blanco Collectis 6 S sink, which, together with its system accessories, offers a seamless organisation solution for preparing fruit and vegetables. “Colour is another strong trend that will continue to be important over the coming years. We have been able to boost sales both in Germany and abroad by carefully tailoring our ranges to the different regions,” says Gfrörer.

Other new products, such as the sophisticated large stainless steel Blanco Cronos sink, give kitchen planners plenty of creative freedom to meet individual customer requirements. At the same time, they showcase the high level of innovation and remarkable workmanship of the SteelArt concepts. Another major strength of the range is its accessories. They work perfectly with sinks made of Silgranit, stainless steel and ceramics, sustainably increasing product utility and comfort. Thanks to their multifunctional features they have become indispensable in many kitchens.

The range of mixer taps enjoyed equal success, allowing Blanco to confirm its leading position in the overall market. Innovations such as the Blanco Notis-S, which comes with an adapter that can be used to regulate the temperature and amount of water as required. Or the exclusive Blanco Solenta-S Senso, with its precise sensor control and innovative, easy-care UltraResist surface. These are just two of the many pioneering new products that offer attractive solutions within every segment. The Blanco philosophy of commitment to high-quality workmanship and sophisticated design has once again resulted in a raft of international awards.

Top-performing and service-oriented
Blanco places great emphasis on continuously improving its customer service. The company also harnesses the opportunities provided by digitisation for this very purpose, most recently in the form of its spare parts shop, created completely from scratch, which went online at the beginning of the year. After all, original parts are still available for most Blanco products even ten years after they have been discontinued. The new platform for retailers, fitters and consumers is clear, up-todate and, most importantly, extremely easy to use, thanks to the intuitive navigation, clear page layout, illustrations and brand new filtering process.

Sustainable investment
Blanco invested € 17.2 million last year, a large part of which went towards the expansion of its Silgranit sink production sites in Sinsheim, Germany and Toronto, Canada. The package conveyor technology at the logistics centre in Bruchsal has been geared towards the growing demand. As an economically strong and forward-looking company, Blanco is very keen to fulfil its social responsibility. “Sustainability in all of its forms is firmly embedded throughout Blanco’s entire value chain. We focus just as much on social concerns and environmental aspects, such as the changeover to modern, energy-efficient LED lighting, as we do on achieving economic sustainability goals, such as digital transformation,” says CTO Wolfgang Schneider, summing up the company's goals in the recently issued latest version of its Sustainability Report.

An employer with massive appeal
The company takes its social responsibility very seriously. With myriad voluntary benefits such as demand-oriented working hours models, holistic healthcare management and comprehensive, above-standard further training options, Blanco supports its employees in all areas. Staff turnover is low as a result, and many members of staff have been with the company for over 25 years. This also has a lot to do with the corporate culture, which is characterised by an appreciative approach, based on mutual trust and dependability, making it clearly sustainable. Following a study by the news magazine Focus, the sinks and fittings specialist was named as one of Germany’s top 100 employers for the fifth time in a row. “Of course, it is important to us that our employees feel good and are highly motivated. The high level of freedom that we offer, combined with significant individual responsibility, proves very attractive for applicants,” explains CFO Rüdiger Böhle. One major incentive for applicants is the exceptional career prospects, such as the Blanco-designed ‘MOVE’ programme. Böhle says that this flexible development programme for university and college graduates marks a deliberate departure from standard trainee programmes thanks to its special framework conditions. In addition, the international ‘STEP’ programme has recently been launched, opening up new prospects for Blanco employees all over the world. The potential-boosting scheme devised by HR Management is aimed at experienced employees who have a particular desire to develop their skills, and is another area in which Blanco has positioned itself as an attractive, top-flight employer not only in Germany, but around the world.


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On Course for Growth

This year, the Blanco Professional Group successfully continued its realignment and looks to the future with optimism. As a system supplier in the B2B sector for commercial kitchens and industry with 698 employees, Blanco Professional achieved a consolidated turnover of 124 million euros in 2017, compared to 119.8 million euros the previous year, with an export share of around 40 percent. This turnover was generated by the four business units Catering, Medical, Industrial and Railway. Turnover increased by 3.5 percent in comparison to the previous year.

Based on a consistent “customer first” approach, Blanco Professional offers flexible, modular product systems and services on an international scale. Efficient, digitally supported workflow management and effective customer relationship management, which above all focuses on close collaboration with trade, form the backbone of the company's successful development across all business units.

With its turnkey solutions for the Blanco Cook front cooking system, the Catering business unit made a crucial contribution to offering tailored answers to individual customer demands in 2017. The Blanco Cook solutions are representative of the customer relationship management concept established by Blanco Professional. The market is reacting positively to the realignment. This is reflected by the many prizes presented to the group, including two first-place awards as “Best Partner 2018/2019” in the categories of “Front Cooking” and “Logistics” in the commercial kitchen specialist trade, among others.

The Industrial business unit witnessed further growth in 2017. Several large projects were initiated, CCPM project management developed steadily and demand from a diverse range of customer segments continued to grow. The Industrial business unit is planning to further expand its business during the current year.

The Railway business unit significantly amplified its customer base. Several series launches for large projects took place in 2017, with more planned for 2018. Collaborative partnerships were also established. A particular highlight of 2017 was participating in the “Ideenzug” (“Idea Train”) project with Deutsche Bahn. The Railway business unit is represented by two modules in the “Ideenzug”.

Blanco Professional's significantly enhanced brand image has also played a crucial role in this positive business development. The strategic expansion of the corporate brand includes the introduction of brand ambassadors, entertaining moving-image formats and presentation videos. Further amplification of the brand profile is planned and will include the intensification of activities already started on social media.

Chief Executive Officer Roland Spleiss gives an extremely positive summary of the 2017 fiscal year and the completed process of realignment. “With these profound changes, we have created a solid basis for sustainable growth in the future. For our customers, we are a tangible solutions provider and are positioning ourselves with a clear corporate culture that unites tradition and practised values to develop a communal, agile mindset.”

The location of Oberderdingen is also set to play a key role in the future and has been further bolstered through an investment offensive. In the next three years, Blanco Professional will invest 30 million euros in the production network, with 20 million euros exclusively allocated to the headquarters in Oberderdingen, most of which will be used for the value stream-oriented realignment of production


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Frank Straub hands over board chairmanships at BLANCO and BLANCO Professional to Dr. Johannes Haupt

Dr. Johannes Haupt (right) took over as Chairman of the Boards of Directors at BLANCO and BLANCO Professional from Frank Staub (left) at the start of 2016.

Oberderdingen - On January 1, 2016, Dr. Johannes Haupt took over chairmanship of the Boards of Directors at BLANCO and BLANCO Professional. Haupt is Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding as a whole, which includes the E.G.O.-Group, BLANCO and BLANCO Professional. “With this step, the Family Holding will be taking over full corporate management of all subgroups,” says Haupt. “This will make it possible to better coordinate the different strategies and put the Family Holding in a position to achieve long-term overall success.” Haupt most recently served as Deputy Chairman of the Boards of Directors at BLANCO and BLANCO Professional. He is also Chairman of the Management Board at the E.G.O.-Group.

Frank Straub will pass on his chairmanship of the Boards of Directors at BLANCO and BLANCO Professional to Dr. Johannes Haupt. This concludes 40 years of active service for the 70-year-old grandson of company founder Heinrich Blanc. “The departure of Frank Straub marks the end of an era. He has played a pivotal role in shaping the company, especially in terms of its corporate culture. I am pleased that he will continue to support us as a representative of the Blanc family on the holding's Board of Directors, which he has been a member of since 1976,” Haupt stressed. “BLANCO will remain near and dear to me, and I'm confident that Johannes Haupt will carry on my work with a long-term vision and responsibly lead the company in the interests of the shareholding families,” says Straub.

Effective January 1, Armin Sohler, Chair of the Board of Directors for the Family Holding and the E.G.O.-Group, has also stepped down from his board positions at BLANCO and BLANCO Professional. Dr. Karlheinz Hörsting (Technology) and Benno Rudolf (Finance) will both make contributions to advancing the position of the BLANC & FISCHER Family Holding.


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