Prime Minister and Minister of Economics pay a visit to Nauen

Visit by Prime Minister Dr. Dietmar Woidke and Minister of Economics Prof. Dr. Jörg Steinbach to the Nauen plant. The two high-ranking representatives of the State Chancellery of the Federal State of Brandenburg were given a tour of the plant by Executive Board member Marcus Wirthwein and Plant Manager Garri Genrich (from left), accompanied by Executive Board member Holm Riepenhausen and Plant Manager Klaus Kinnemann.

Wirthwein welcomes Prime Minister President Woidke and Minister of Economics Steinbach. Plastics expert employs around 215 people at two production plants in the German state of Brandenburg.

Nauen. A special honor was bestowed on the plastics processor Wirthwein these days: Prime Minister Dr. Dietmar Woidke as well as Minister of Economics Prof. Dr. Jörg Steinbach made a tour of the Nauen plant followed by a business talk. A joint appointment of two such high-ranking representatives of the State Chancellery of the Federal State of Brandenburg is truly a rarity. Accordingly, there was great enthusiasm on the part of Wirthwein, because both ministers took enough time for an intensive exchange.

Plant manager Garri Genrich presented the key data of Wirthwein Nauen GmbH & Co. KG: The company has been producing plastic components for the home appliance manufacturer BSH Hausgeräte GmbH since 1996, where Wirthwein has settled "fence-to-fence" with the customer. "For about ten years, we have also been producing plastic components for the automotive industry, including well-known brand-name manufacturers in the luxury class as well as major, internationally active automotive suppliers," Genrich explained. In the 25 years since the plant was founded, Wirthwein has been able to create around 150 jobs in Nauen. The company has also been a training company since its beginnings, with 3-4 apprentices per year.


The first subsidiary of the Wirthwein Group was founded in Brandenburg

Board member and grandson of the company's founder Marcus Wirthwein explained to the two politicians that his father Udo Wirthwein was one of the first entrepreneurs to become involved in the then "New Federal States" immediately after the fall of the Wall by founding a production plant - and that the subsidiary has successfully maintained its position on the market to this day. This concerns the first operation of the family business in the federal state of Brandenburg, Wirthwein Brandenburg GmbH & Co. KG, based in the town of Brandenburg-Kirchmöser. Plant manager Klaus Kinnemann has been with the company from the beginning and explained that the company has been producing plastic components in Brandenburg since 1991, mainly for the railroad business segment, and supplying them to customers all over the world. "We employ a further 65 people in the town of Brandenburg and are, of course, also a training company," emphasized Kinnemann, who as Brandenburg plant manager, represented the second company in the state during the visit to Nauen.


Current issues of the Group and the two plants in Brandenburg

During the plant tour and the subsequent business talk, the two board members of Wirthwein AG, Marcus Wirthwein and Holm Riepenhausen, pointed out that the international production plants are affected in different ways by the current megatopics of the global economy. At both Brandenburg companies, the chip crisis and the explosion in raw material prices are reflected in the day-to-day business. "Currently, the shortage of electrical semiconductors among customers is causing unplanned reductions in the number of units also at our plant in Nauen, so that we have had to announce short-time work for several months," says Genrich. Meanwhile, his Brandenburg colleague Klaus Kinnemann is struggling in particular with the sharp rise in raw material prices for certain plastics. "We manufacture fasteners for heavy-duty and, above all, high-speed rail lines. For our products, the safety and thus quality of the processed raw materials has top priority - state rail projects are awarded in advance at fixed prices, so price increases can only be passed on to customers to a limited extent," Kinnemann explained the current challenges facing the Brandenburg-Kirchmöser plant.

Board member Marcus Wirthwein informed Prime Minister Woidke and Minister of Economics Steinbach that the family-owned Wirthwein company also sees opportunities in the crisis: "During Corona, our customers have experienced us as a fair partner and reliable supplier at all times. We are also striving to diversify even further and to expand our customer base in the future." This was also the purpose of the exchange with the Prime Minister and the Minister of Economics. Woidke and Steinbach were enthusiastic in view of the investments made in the federal state of Brandenburg and the innovative strength of the plastics expert Wirthwein. They pointed out the instruments of economic policy in Brandenburg and they agreed to stay in contact so that the Wirthwein Group will continue to give top priority to the advantages of the federal state of Brandenburg as a business location for growth and investment as well as the creation and safeguarding of jobs.