On 28 June 2019, the TOP 100 most innovative companies in Germany were honored at the Deutscher Mittelstands Summit (German SME Summit) in the Jahrhunderthalle Frankfurt – and we were there! German TV-Moderator Linda Zervakis led through the entertaining evening. Alongside her, German science journalist and author Ranga Yogeshwar, Hesse’s Minister of Economic Affairs Tarek Al-Wazir, and former Federal President Christian Wulff, the scientific director of the award, Prof. Dr. Nikolaus Franke, spoke at the event.
In his welcome speech, Tarek Al-Wazir said that German SMEs stand for innovation and contribute to the good reputation of Germany as a business location worldwide. What he and the other speakers repeatedly emphasized: German SMEs should be even more proud of what they have achieved.
As an anecdote, the difference between Americans and Germans was taken up. Americans would be way more enthusiastic, even about small things: “Awesome! That’s great!”, while Germans have more of a “Well, that’s okay”-mentality. As an international company opesus is well aware of this difference and nevertheless (or precisely because of it) we can say from the bottom of our hearts: We are proud of this award!
In his laudation, Ranga Yogeshwar, mentor of the competition, also emphasized that we have a great innovative power in Germany, but that this is rarely noticed. However, the World Economic Forum cited Germany as the most innovative country – judged by the development of new ideas through to their successful marketing. The SME sector is a driving force for innovation and the companies in the Top 100 are a great benchmark. As an example, he mentioned the total expenditure on investments in new innovations of the companies in the room, which amounted to around one billion euros, or 11% turnover. These companies have their finger on the pulse of times. They tend to improve what already exists and reassemble existing elements to create new innovations.
opesus as TOP 100 innovator
As one of the smaller companies receiving the award, opesus does not have to hide. With 22 employees, we already support 7 of the top 10 chemical companies in Germany as well as top companies in the US in making their processes more effective and complying with legal requirements. Together, these companies employ more than 1.5 million people and generate annual sales of more than €400 billion.
Our culture is the heart of our company
However, TOP 100 does not focus on individual innovative products. It focuses on the overall innovation success and above all on the innovation management of a company. Our corporate culture plays an important role for opesus: It is characterized by a passion for our mission to promote more sustainability in manufacturing companies. Thanks to the right to have a say in the company, regular further training, the renunciation of hierarchies and a great deal of freedom in the distribution of tasks and working methods, we created the ideal breeding ground for innovations. Our regular exchange with institutions and customers also gives us new impulses again and again.
Every employee can contribute ideas for new products and services. Either in our ideas database, the monthly Innovation Meetings or our half-yearly Office Weeks.
The Office Week concept is at the heart of our innovative strength: We take a week long break from everyday business – at least as much as possible – and concentrate fully on working on opesus and our products. Once in summer and once in winter, all employees from Germany and the USA come together. To learn and work in a creative atmosphere and give new ideas a place to grow.
This is how we cultivate not only our innovative strength. It also creates the special atmosphere and team spirit in our company.
The TOP 100 award therefore means a lot to us – because it acknowledges what we do.
What is the TOP 100?
For 26 years, the market research company compamedia from Überlingen on Lake Constance in Germany has been awarding prizes to particularly innovative companies. After their application, companies complete a scientifically developed questionnaire. Then, the TOP 100 most innovative companies are selected based on a scientific system under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Nikolaus Franke and evaluated by a top-class jury. Ranga Yogeshwar, German science journalist and author, is the prominent mentor of the competition and presented the prize to opesus. Go to their website to learn more.