TOP Innovation Award for Freudenberg

Weinheim, October 15, 2014. Innovation culture starts in people's minds. It is a corporate culture of continuous change, permanent learning and constant renewal. Companies that practice an innovation culture are more successful. Continuous further training lays the foundation for innovative thinking and new ideas. For the successful implementation of this culture, Freudenberg Sealing Technologies has received the TOP Innovation Award of the F.A.Z. Institute for 2014. "TOP" stands for technology-oriented (visiting and innovation) program. The expert jury assessed the content of events, benefits, market resonance, innovative power and corporate development. In Berlin, Dr. Arman Barimani, Chief Technology Officer of the Freudenberg Sealing Technologies Business Group, received the award yesterday from Brigitte Zypries, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs.

"This award for the best company shows that our continual improvement process and our innovation culture have found recognition,” Dr. Barimani stated at the ceremony where the award for innovative performance was presented. “Innovation, continuous change and progress are the key factors in long-term entrepreneurial and financial success for our customers and us,” Barimani added.

Innovations are an essential component of business processes for Freudenberg Sealing Technologies and are systematically pursued by the Business Group. Twice each year, Freudenberg Sealing Technologies hosts workshops organized by the F.A.Z. Institute. Employees from a variety of industrial sectors come to the headquarters of the Freudenberg Group in Weinheim to learn about the Freudenberg innovation culture and to experience how the Group develops new ideas and brings them to market maturity. In the structured innovation process, product, material and process competence and creativity are decisive factors. This is the only way an internationally oriented industrial group can continue to focus on essentials, make an appropriate assessment of future trends and launch the right products on the market at the right time. The problem-solving techniques applied at the workshops focus on specific case studies. Some new Freudenberg projects in cooperation with the companies participating have already been initiated as a result of the workshops.

The central product pre-development system is also an essential nucleus for innovations. Through this work, it is possible to identify and solve customers' present and future challenges and to meet their needs. The objective is to contribute to the growth of the Group in strategically important areas. For this purpose, innovation management tools and methods including trend reports, market analyses, portfolio analyses and a variety of different creativity techniques are applied.

The jury for the TOP Innovation Award includes the TOP Advisory Council and the previous year's award-winner. All the nominated companies have convincingly demonstrated their commitment and their innovative power within the TOP program over the past years. To be nominated for the award, a company must have been among the best for the past four years.