Schwertberg, Austria—Twice in the last 11 years Engel has endured catastrophes and both times it has emerged stronger. Three years ago, company revenues plummeted by nearly 40%, as the global economy imploded, while back in 2002, it was Mother Nature, not the marketplace, that laid the Austrian firm low when its Schwertberg, Austria headquarters flooded, forcing the company to gut the plant.
After the flood, the company rebuilt, investing in new, more efficient technologies to ultimately boost capacity, and now, just three fiscal years after it watched sales collapse, Engel has completed a record year, growing its turnover from that low in 2009 by 165% to Euro 950 million ($1.26 billion).
"Coming back to the flooding of 2002 and our strong financial stability, [Engel] can overcome problems and crisis without any intervention," Engel CEO Peter Neumann said during a pre-K press conference in Schwertberg. "This gives a certain freedom in your decisions, which are long-term decisions."