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MBA Company Excursion Week

During a one week trip the MBA Class of 2017 visited six companies in the South of Germany. The Eastern region of Baden-Württemberg is home to many successful family-owned SME’s as well as global stock-listed companies.

Our first stop in Böblingen, about half an hour from Hochschule Pforzheim, was at Hewlett-Packard Enterprise’s German headquarters. Jeannette Weisschuh (Director of Education Initiatives at HPE) and Anton Knolmar (Vice President of Worldwide Marketing) presented the company’s corporate social responsibility and marketing strategies. Afterwards, the students traveled to Albstadt where Groz-Beckert KG, the world’s leading provider of industrial needles and products and services for the textile industry welcomed us with a company presentation. Our business schools’ Alumna Alexandra Bartsch (HR) offered a deeper look into strategies regarding international assignments. To round off the visit, Nicolai Wiedmann (Head of HR Training) took our MBA students on a tour through Groz-Beckert’s workshops and production facilities.

On Day Two, Vetter-Pharma Fertigungs GmbH & Co. KG, an international specialist in the aseptic filling of syringes, cartridges and vials, welcomed us in Ravensburg. Business and innovation strategies for continued growth were some of the topics discussed by Tim Bauer (Head of HR) and Dr. Michael Schmitz (Vice President Innovation Management) and the students. During a facility visit, the students had the chance to see the newly-build logistics center and the cooling storage areas, which are essential for the pharmaceutical sector. Before leaving Vetter-Pharma, the students learned more about the career opportunities from Nicole Baumeister (HR, Trainee Program). The day ended with a guided city tour through beautiful Ravensburg with its many historical buildings from the Middle Ages.

Two companies awaited our students on our third excursion day. The morning started with presentations of Erwin Hymer Group, one of the largest manufacturers of motorhomes and caravans in Europe. A highlight was the vehicle inspection of one of the campers. Afterwards, our students prepared market entry strategies for their home countries and presented their findings to Tobias Welp (Head of Marketing) Andrea Lulic (Assistant to Management) and to Karoline Streibich (HR Business Partner). Before traveling on, the students exchanged their findings and thoughts with Erwin Hymer Group. During the second part of the day, we traveled to Ulm to visit Uzin Utz AG, a full-range provider for flooring systems. Achim Nestle - Assistant to the Board, gave some information regarding the company’s foundation, organization and main focus. Afterwards, his colleague took us on a facility tour where we spotted a self-driving truck.

On the fourth and last day, Teva Ratiopharm, one of the ten largest pharmaceutical groups in the world, awaited our students in Ulm. During this visit, the students went to the company’s production facilities and warehouse and listened to Mathias Werndl (Head of Global SCM Third Party Operations) who explained Teva Ratiopharm’s Supply Chain Management strategy and afterwards discussed it with the students. Christina Schneider (HR Manager) outlined different career opportunities at Teva Ratiopharm before the students met MBA Alumnus Emmanuel Omar Rodríguez Retana (IT Process Integration Europe - Manager), who now works for Teva Ratiopharm.

Thanks to all these companies, the MBA students experienced firsthand application of theory learned in classroom. The whole week was filled with great opportunities for our students to engage in interesting conversations and to get in touch with prospective future employers. We are looking forward to future cooperation!