We could simply state that each year is more than a period of change in our holding. However, on closer examination, we find that this is a key ingredient in our corporate culture. And the turn of 2021/2022 was no different in this regard. Two new colleagues have joined the boards of CE Industries and CE Power Industries to help anchor the rapidly growing number of subsidiaries and further develop the holding company, including setting up efficient internal processes. Today, we bring you an interview with the first of them. David Vandrovec brings to the group experience from large multinational corporations as well as medium and smaller sized companies, and he also brings knowledge and skills from the waste industry and risk management.
HELLO DAVID, WELCOME TO THE GROUP. THE FIRST QUESTION KIND OF COMES UP. WHAT BRINGS YOU TO THE HOLDING COMPANY AND WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO JOIN?
First of all, I must thank all my colleagues for the warm welcome. I understand that we are starting with this question, but the answer is relatively simple. My professional career has long been focused on the environmental and waste industry with a focus on innovation and sustainable development including process performance and its support by ICT systems. I have gained my experience in companies in the IT, telecommunications and waste management sectors. I also consider my experience with different types of companies, ranging from small companies to large multinational corporations, as beneficial. All my experiences have always been related to building something new, developing or changing current processes and creating and implementing new strategies. I also have a long term focus on promoting an open and fair market environment. So it was obvious that the decision to work together was not too complicated for me. CE Industries is a very progressive holding company with a clearly communicating owner with a clear vision. The company culture, its values and the management approach are in many ways aligned with my own, so I believe that together we can move the holding forward successfully.
HOW DO YOU PERCEIVE THE CURRENT SITUATION IN THE HOLDING?
I would like to start by saying that during the holding's existence, which is a relatively short period of time, many wonderful things have been achieved. In the first place, the acquisition agility should be highlighted. On the other hand, quite logically, there are areas that are still awaiting final stabilisation and are a bit of a tax on the aforementioned expansion. The entire holding is growing, which puts a lot of pressure on the internal holding structure and processes, both management and control. There are a lot of areas that need to be adjusted. However, the key will be to find the right level of efficiency together so that we do not complicate our own lives with bureaucracy. We will also want to focus on the strategic development of individual divisions and on finding internal synergies across the holding and between other acquisitions.
HOW DO YOU PERCEIVE THE RAW MATERIALS RECYCLING DIVISION THAT YOU MANAGE?
Today, the Raw Materials Recycling Division is directly composed of five powerful companies currently operating in the Czech and Slovak Republics. We deal with solid waste management, where we primarily focus on ferrous metals, and liquid waste management, including cleaning. The individual companies have their own history with which they came into the holding. Our task is to combine their histories into an efficient future entity that will be able to offer a comprehensive service with substantial added value to our current and potential customers in Central Europe. In other words, we want to use our current knowledge, skills and experience to be able to offer all our future customers unique products and services that will bring significant competitive advantages. Today, we see the need to strengthen in several areas. The first is in business processes, where there is some inconsistency and low efficiency. The second area is risk management as such, where it will be crucial to focus on operational and technological risks on the one hand, and on the other hand to appropriately address legislative risks, where we will be particularly concerned with preparedness for legislative developments at both national and European level, as well as final compliance with legislative and other requirements. Last but not least, we will focus on further development. We will be discussing medium and long-term strategies, identifying synergies inside and outside the holding company, and we will quite logically be looking at further acquisitions that fit in with our plans and long-term strategy.
YOU TALK ABOUT THE STRATEGIC OUTLOOK, SO WHERE WILL WE BE HEADING?
There are many opportunities in front of us, it will be up to us which ones we decide to take advantage of. I have already mentioned the synergies within and outside the holding. I have also mentioned comprehensive service and added value. Our current focus on only selected commodities is unsustainable in the long term. Our future lies in comprehensive waste management solutions for our customers, i.e. the ability to offer solutions for all commodities. This entails the technological readiness to reprocess waste, if you like, to recycle waste into secondary raw materials that can be further used in downstream production. At the same time, we will be identifying services that can be linked to the subsequent management of waste or the production of products from the waste we process. I believe that together we will be able to make the most of the opportunities that will take us forward and enable us to capture the market in line with our strategy.
THE ACTIVITIES MENTIONED ABOVE REQUIRE MAXIMUM COOPERATION BETWEEN ALL STAKEHOLDERS, ARE WE AS A HOLDING COMPANY READY?
Cooperation and, in particular, the motivation to change will be an important input for achieving our future strategies. In cooperation with holding company HR, we are already starting to discuss motivations, team composition, and new roles both within the holding company and in individual companies. I am confident that we will be ready on time and in the right way. In cooperation with our colleagues from the Holding Board, we will be introducing new or updated processes in the coming periods, including communication, marketing and a manual for the effective integration of new acquisitions.
Thank you for the conversation and we look forward to working with you.
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