Interview | Berghof Group

Six questions to Eric Wildeboer

September 30, 2022

As one of three managing directors, he is responsible for sales, marketing and strategy at the Berghof Group and, together with his team, developed all the cornerstones of the “Moving Forward“ campaign: Eric Wildeboer tells us in this interview how the idea for “Moving Forward“ was born – and why Franziska Brauße is the perfect ambassador for the Berghof DNA.

For many years, you have been part of the Berghof Group in a leading position. What is so special about Berghof?

Being broad-based and well positioned, we have established ourselves in several fast-growing markets, such as filtration, automation, (electric) mobility, and photonics.

There is a common mission uniting all of us: we are committed to making our customers leaders in their field by creating crucial benefits for them through our best-in-class innovations.

That’s why team spirit is so essential to us. Because we know from experience: A strong team perfectly combining individual strengths and all the knowledge as a partnership within the company and in close exchange with its customers, will surpass itself.

As a group of companies, we are growing because we have long been focusing on sustainable technologies and have our finger on the pulse of time. To name just a few examples: With our filtration products, we process industrial wastewater worldwide into high-quality process water to save valuable drinking water. Our venting membranes guarantee the reliable functioning of vehicle batteries – their quality being tested with our testing systems by many well-known manufacturers. Our highly precise light measurement technology enables energy-saving LED technology to be used in a variety of ways. So, we have been successful in positioning ourselves as a renowned supplier of sustainable technologies worldwide in our strategic markets.

And there is a great potential to become even stronger and more successful – by intensifying the exchange of knowledge and ideas within the company even more with the aim of learning from each other and perfectly bundling our competencies.

This is our unique structure – our “Innovation Hub“. It is the engine behind our progress.

And how is the “Innovation Hub“ linked to “Moving Forward“, the Berghof DNA?

Every engine needs energy. At Berghof, it’s the people who provide this energy. They are the ones who make Berghof successful. With their talent. With their passion. But above all with their team spirit.

That's why exactly these valuable people, our strong Berghof team, can be seen in our "Moving Forward" video. That's what makes it so authentic.

“Moving Forward“ sums up the hallmarks of our team – we aim at achieving great things together, look ahead full of motivation, and use our great potential in an increasingly focused way. As I said, we have been focusing for a long time on issues that will shape our future – such as sustainability.

“Moving Forward“ also means: each and every one of us is important, we need the full range of talent and passion to achieve our ambitious goals. After all, this can only be accomplished as a strong team.

That’s why, like Franziska Brauße and her companions in the track bike foursome, we have to combine our individual strengths in the best possible way.

If we all give our best, if we connect as one great team and support each other in the most efficient way, if we all put our full power into it, then we will also – just like the German track bike quartet – move from success to success.

Is “Moving Forward“ a new idea – or has this concept been a defining element of the Berghof Group for a long time?

There is this famous quote from our founder Prof. Georg Zundel: “Resting is not my cup of tea. I always need things to be done.“

We deliberately chose this quote as the starting point for our new Berghof film as it illustrates so well that this forward momentum has always been characteristic of Berghof.

By saying “Moving Forward“, we emphasize this passion, which already distinguished our founder: If you strive to stay at the forefront, you must not slack off. So, we all have to keep asking ourselves: How can we get even better?

Because this idea is more important than ever: to be able to respond perfectly to the ever-increasing demands of our customers, we must encourage and demand even more the intensive cooperation we already have within the individual divisions of the Berghof Group, but also between these divisions and with the central functions we have bundled in our Shared Services Center.

Do we get the message right that “Moving Forward“ is also a way of saying THANK YOU to the Berghof team?

Yeah, definitely. With “Moving Forward“ we consciously emphasize how important the people at Berghof are – all of them in their own way.

Berghof is on a very promising path. And this is primarily due to the fact that we have many exceptionally committed and creative minds who inspire others in their teams and carry them away.

It is this special DNA and these special people that we intend to honor with this campaign – while also sending a clear message to our team.

You have chosen Franziska Brauße, one of the most successful German athletes, as an ambassador for “Moving Forward“. What‘s the point?

Franziska’s showpiece discipline, the track bike quartet, is the perfect symbol of our conviction: When a team is in perfect harmony, each individual team member will surpass him- or herself.

It’s not about who bears how much responsibility or who has how much experience - it's about identifying and utilizing individual strengths, connecting as a team, learning from each other and supporting each other. Because each person adds to the success of the entire team with their personal contribution.

It is precisely this philosophy that we intend, with the help of “Moving Forward“, to anchor even more deeply in the company and to live by more than ever before. This DNA is designed to give us positive energy and confidence for the future: As a team, we are growing together more and more, we are moving forward together – with an ambition to become even better every day.

The story of Franziska and her team, this collective progression from being one team among others to being the measure of all things, is an inspiration to all of us on this journey.

She is therefore our perfect ambassador for “Moving Forward“.

As a person, what does Franziska Brauße have in common with Berghof and your team?

(Laughs) There is a very close proximity – in the truest sense of the word. Franziska Brauße comes from Eningen and lives just a few hundred meters from our “Berghof Campus“, the headquarters of our group of companies.

What is much more important though: With her positive, easy-going yet at the same time professional manner she is the perfect match for us. That’s why the Berghof team gave her an enthusiastic welcome at our “Berghof Oktoberfest“ right away. And she also had great fun getting to know the large, increasingly international “Berghof family“ for the first time.

After this terrific start, we are looking forward to cooperating with her more than ever!