ERSA, Europe's largest supplier of soldering systems, held its annual sales meeting with their international sales representatives and agents last week. The meeting culminated in a ceremony held in the Bronnbach monastery marking the 90th anniversary of ERSA.
Chief Executive Officer Rainer Kurtz cordially welcomed not only the company's international representatives and agents, but also the mayor of the city of Wertheim, Mr. Wolfgang Stein, and Minister Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Reinhart.
In his speech, Kurtz emphasized how important he personally deemed the presence of the minister. "We have not forgotten that, in your function as minister, you have always stood by our company in good and in bad times. We want to express our greatest gratitude that, despite your heavy workload, you always had an open ear for our worries and problems, and I want to stress the fact that you, as a minister coming for this region, stood up for the industry in this region not only with words but also and very noticeably with deeds."
"I think that the cooperation both with the state of Baden-Württemberg as well as with the city of Wertheim, is not only congenial on a human level, but also objective and goal oriented," Kurtz continued.
Prior to these words, Kurtz had addressed himself to the occasion of the ceremony: 90 years of ERSA may not be an anniversary as significant as the 225th anniversary celebrated by the Kurtz Group in 2004, but it would still warrant an official celebration together with all representatives and agents of ERSA which he referred to as "the voice of ERSA in the world market".
The CEO expressed his gratitude that so many of the representatives and agents from around the world had come to attend, demonstrating their support for ERSA and their interest in selling ERSA products in 87 countries. During the day, they participated in the sales meeting at the ERSA training center in Wertheim. The event, during which the representatives and agents were familiarized with new developments, trends and technologies of the company and the markets, continued until Thursday.
Kurtz thanked all the partners for their loyalty to ERSA. Representative for all and as an example, he mentioned Messrs. Grothusen from Austria, with whom ERSA has the longest business relationship. It has now been existing for 55 years!
Following this, he undertook a short excursion into the corporate history of ERSA, which started in Berlin when Ernst Sachs patented an electrical soldering iron with a replaceable heating element. A short time later he formed a small company and registered the trademark "ERSA", derived from the initials of his own name. From now on, ERSA found itself on a growth path. Its product range increased continuously. More refined, smaller and lighter soldering irons for the electronic industry were added, and ERSA grew commensurate with the development of the general electronic industrial environment.
In the late 70x ERSA decided to extend its product range and to build soldering systems in addition to soldering irons This decision was instrumental in determining the further successful development of the ERSA.
In 1993, the company changed owners. Sold by the Sachs family, it was integrated into the Kurtz Group.
The strategy of the Kurtz Group to further internationalize and to restructure the product portfolio towards high tech with high flexibility proved extremely successful for ERSA, and it enabled the company to add virtually all the large multinationals in the electronic industry to their customer base.
Kurtz also cautioned: "We will continue to experience ups and downs in the very volatile business in the electronic production industry. To cope with this, we will need flexibility in our own organization as well as at our sales partners".
Laying out a strategy, Kurtz pointed out that continuing to provide a technological edge to its customers, optimizing their quality, their cost structure and their delivery services in the manufacturing processes - this is the vision which will carry ERSA into a bright and successful future. The success experienced so far by ERSA which is a company steeped in tradition corroborates this strategy.
Concluding his address, Kurtz affirmed his vow to maintain the manufacturing location Wertheim, while at the same time noting that the international portion of the business continues to grow. Therefore, all efforts deemed necessary will be taken to assure that ERSA's success on the world market will continue to grow, thereby safeguarding the jobs here in Wertheim.
With the hope and expectation for a continued fruitful and successful cooperation between the business partners, employees, proprietors and the city of Wertheim, the CEO raised his glass in honor of his guests.
Mayor Stein delivered the greetings on behalf of the city of Wertheim.
Greetings and congratulations in the name of the government of Baden-Württemberg and from Prime Minister Stefan Mappus were delivered by the Minister of Federal-, European- and International Affairs as well as the Representative of the State of Baden-Württemberg at the Federal State, Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Reinhart.