The chemical industry’s future prospects rely on productivity, consolidation, responsibility, innovation and digitalization, CEO of Clariant, Hariolf Kottmann, said on Tuesday at the Annual Forum.
In the future, a company will only be successful if “we win the productivity game,” while consolidation is the next key challenge for companies to overcome.
Stressing that “size also matters” in the industry, Kottmann added that mergers and acquisitions were the way of the future and were needed for companies to survive in the new competitive business environment.
He noted that the chemical industry has to act with responsibility and that smart and more sustainable chemistry “has to be part of our agenda”.
“The last challenge is innovation and digitalization,” he said. “Digitalization will significantly change the way we innovate, the way we execute our production… [and do] smart manufacturing.”
Kottmann said that in the future the sheer availability of data would change the way business processes are executed but that this will be an evolutionary rather than a revolutionary process.
Advanced analytics will help the drive towards operational excellence on a number of fronts, from production and in the supply chain to research and development (R&D), he concluded.