Hydrema celebrates 25th anniversary for factory in Weimar
The night between the 16th and 17th of December will be historic for Hydrema, as it then will be exactly 25 years since the company signed the contract to acquire the factory in Germany.
Aerial photo of Weimar-Werk Baumaschinen, Weimar, Germany.
This year sees the 25th anniversary of Hydrema’s acquisition of Weimar-Werk Baumaschinen GmbH in Germany. To be absolutely precise, the acquisition took place on the night between 16th and 17th December, 1996, when Hydrema’s owners, Jan and Keld Werner Jensen, signed the contract with Weimar-Werk Baumaschinen’s CEO at the time, Roland Frank.
To mark the passing of 25 years since this acquisition, a small get-together was held at the beginning of December for those employees who not only were employed at Weimar-Werk prior to Hydrema taking over the factory, but are still there today. Due to strict Corona restrictions, it wasn’t possible to hold a big party for all the employees at Weimar, as a result of which the celebration became a small gathering hosted by Hydrema’s CEO and owner, Jan Werner Jensen, for the 27 employees that have been employed since 1996 – and are thus able to celebrate a quarter of a century along with Hydrema.
A Hydrema excavator in front of the Weimar-Werk Baumaschinen factory in Germany.
Acquisition and challenges
When looking back over the years that have gone by since the acquisition, there have been both good and bad times, as well as a number of major challenges that have each in their own way contributed to shaping and developing Hydrema into the worldwide enterprise it is today.
One of these challenges was the introduction of a new IT system in 2000, which caused major issues in both Støvring and Weimar, while in 2008 the global financial crisis hit the group very hard, sadly resulting in a large number of trusted employees being made redundant. During the last 10 years or so, however, Hydrema has enjoyed more or less uninterrupted growth. Although there was great concern when the pandemic struck, it has fortunately proved not to have triggered a crisis in the building and construction industry, with the high demand for Hydrema plant machinery and equipment from just about every corner of the globe strengthening us in our belief that Hydrema can once again achieve record sales this year.
Picture from the production hall in Weimar, more specifically the assembly line of 912 dumpers - the model is today the best-selling Hydrema machine.
In connection with the acquisition of Weimar-Werk Baumaschinen GmbH in 1996, one of the biggest challenges was to merge two different organisations from two very different cultures and find areas of mutual understanding in order to achieve a common goal.
Today we can look back in the knowledge that such potential obstacles were overcome with great success. In spite of the fact that Weimar and Støvring are separated by a great distance in geographical terms, we’re a very close-knit unit today and we’re dependent on the efforts of everyone on a daily basis. For example, cabs for the machines in Støvring are built in Weimar, whilst Støvring is responsible for manufacturing the hydraulic cylinders used in the machines in Weimar.
Photo of a T170 crane produced at the former Weimar-Werk.
Great significance for the Hydrema group
With regard to what the acquisition in 1996 has meant for Weimar-Werk Baumaschinen GmbH and Hydrema, the factory has gone from manufacturing Weimar wheeled loaders and excavators running on wheels and caterpillar tracks, primarily to the German market, to producing Hydrema dump trucks that are sold all over the world today. At the same time, the acquisition meant that Hydrema gained a strong local foothold on the German market, which has now turned into a key market for the group.
The acquisition of Weimar-Werk Baumaschinen in 1996 has had enormous importance for the entire group, whilst the excellent relationship that has developed during the past 25 years has helped strengthen the Hydrema group in several areas.
In connection with the anniversary ceremony, it was a deeply honoured and grateful CEO who found it difficult to contain his pride when thanking the 27 employees and awarding them a 25th anniversary gift in recognition of many years of faithful service.
“I’m proud and grateful that so many employees have remained with us for such a long time, and I hope that together we can continue our journey and reach new heights in the future. You are role models for all new employees”, said Jan Werner Jensen in his speech to the employees in Weimar.