BMW boss Norbert Reithofer is absolutely electrified. He is serious when he predicts the future of electric driving. In his remarkable speech to the shareholders, he made this clear again. “Courage and pioneering spirit have brought mankind forward. They have changed history, initiated developments and
enriched our lives. In the end, what we call progress arises. It is the source of growth, employment and prosperity. ”These are sentences for eternity. And it goes on like this and I find myself getting goose bumps. Nobody else puts it that philosophically. And the best thing is: Reithofer is right.
Once again, BMW is betting on premium. Reithofer very originally defines what premium means to him: “Premium is the opposite of mainstream. Premium is a pioneer. ”You can see it that way.
That he praises himself a little in his speech does not sound like being in love. He can rightly point out that he kept his promise from 2007 to keep BMW on the road to success. You have to put it on your tongue: Fortune Magazine has compared the 500 best companies in the world. Prize question: Which German companies are listed in the top 15? We can forget the plural, we can also delete the German adverb, because BMW is the only European company listed in the top 15.
Reithofer proudly takes stock: BMW sold 2012 vehicles in 1,54, Mini 301.000 and Rolls-Royce 3.575. The last number in particular makes it clear that BMW has never overextended, because when the luxury brand came onto the market, it was expected to be able to sell around 2000 cars a year.
What is really impressive is the stock price. “The price of BMW ordinary shares has risen by more than 70 percent. The German stock index DAX lost 5,6 percent in value in the same period. Anyone who bought BMW shares for around 2007 euros at the end of 10.000 had over 2012 euros in their portfolio at the end of 17.200. This corresponds to an annual return of almost 11,5 percent. Those who reinvested the dividends also achieved an annual return of almost 14 percent. ”
Another remarkable figure: BMW has invested just as much in training and further education of its employees with 1,2 billion euros as in the development of more economical vehicles under the Efficient Dynamics label. Unlike other company leaders, Reithofer does not have to report a profit warning or withdraw any goals. With one exception: the hydrogen combustion engine, developed by BMW up to series production and planned for the seven, will never come. In the long term, BMW too will probably get the power for the drive from a fuel cell, which will also be operated with hydrogen.
BMW no longer likes to talk about the hydrogen engine project. Initiated by Wolfgang Reitzle, who was responsible for development at the time, it ultimately failed due to the lack of infrastructure. However, this is also used by the fuel cell. Without hydrogen filling stations, individual mobility will not be possible in 100 years. No development engineer doubts that there will be many such filling stations in 30 years.
Back to BMW and Reithofer's speech, which defines itself: “We believe in electric mobility. And we put them on the street. ”Another sentence carved in stone:“ The need to break new ground cannot be waived - especially when the environment changes. Whoever is late
the market punishes them. Shaping change also means overcoming resistance. ”And he quotes Machiavelli:“ Anyone who wants to create something new has enemies who benefit from the old. And he
has only lax defenders of all those who would benefit from the new order. "Reithofer sums it up perfectly:" In other words, you stand alone in the hallway. "
For Reithofer it is clear that the electric car will soon come and be successful. Also because legal requirements will not be possible without the electric drive. Reithofer criticizes the guidelines from Brussels quite harshly. “We need reliable framework conditions from politics. So far, the target was 2020. Now the European Parliament is coming back with new demands: 68 to 78 grams of CO2 per kilometer for the year 2025. That is the political concert of choice. This has nothing to do with technical analysis or feasibility - but also nothing at all. Again, companies need reliable framework conditions and planning security. We demand that from politics. That is also political responsibility. “At some point, politics will turn the screw.”