10 October 2008: Bank crisis holds chances

Companies in Borken follow the developments in the financial markets with mixed feelings

Borken. Bankrupt banks. Equity securities which desperately fall despite enormous rescue efforts. Stopped production belts at Opel and BMW… How and to what extent do the turbulences in the international financial markets affect global players in Borken?

“We are not directly affected at the moment”, Heinz Nelissen, the managing director of Foseco GmbH, says. Foseco produces cast parts for the automotive industry. After the summer break, business “started quite satisfactorily”. As soon as the consumers decide not to buy cars any more due to the prevailing development in the financial markets and the automotive industry reduces the output, however, there will be a considerably lower demand for cast parts. Clearly speaking: There will be less orders. Nevertheless, the employees at Foseco do not have to worry about their jobs. The company enjoys “two-digit growth rates” in the field of wind energy. According to Nelissen, this increase certainly does not balance decreasing order volumes, but it “compensates”. In general, the Foseco managing director hopes that the politicians soon will succeed in “reestablishing the consumers’ trust”.

“Basically, I am an optimist” says Christoph Hadder, managing director and partner of the steel company Nießing. At the moment, however, he follows the daily news “with stomach pains”. The company with its seat in Marbeck specialized in the production of chimney installations with mufflers. Huge consumers from all over the world buy Nießing’s products. “We are shipping an installation to Moscow” Hadder informs. His customers primarily are manufacturers of large engines, such as MAN or Daimler. “Due to the economic situation these very likely will postpone envisaged investments”, Hadder thinks. And since “we are at the end of the supply chain”, Nießing will be given a taste of the whip “a bit later”, maybe in about half a year, Hadder assumes.

Christoph Schwemmlein, managing director of the textile machinery manufacturer Klöcker has foreseen this development long ago. Apparently, nobody wanted to see the signs though. “Since about six months, international major banks only very reluctantly credit large-scale projects”, Schwemmlein observed and adds: “We got prepared!”

More than that: Schwemmlein considers the crisis to be an opportunity. Smaller suppliers who would irritate the business with their dumping prices, ultimately will disappear from the market. The chances for take-overs and reasonable investments are good. On a national level, Klöcker “has no problems at all” and will enlarge the main site in Weseke. “We will operate anticyclically” Schwemmlein underlines. There is no need for their employees to worry about their jobs. “This crisis will strengthen us in the end.”

Several weeks ago, Aloys Börger recognized: “The pressure on commodity prices decreased.” The manufacturer of pumps in Weseke however did not realize a drop in his order books until the financial crisis reached Germany – “when business started well right after the summer break”. The situation is not dramatic for the company in Weseke though. On the one hand, there have always been such cycles. On the other hand, business in the agricultural field is “extraordinarily pleasant” – and: “pumps are an article of daily use, there is always demand.” Therefore, no jobs are at risk.

Source: daily newspaper “Borkener Zeitung”, October 10th, 2008