BARTEC – the 'Hidden Champion'
No other country has as many global market leaders as Germany. Hermann Simon, inventor of the concept of 'hidden champions', has determined that of the estimated 2,800 companies leading their segment worldwide, approximately half are from Germany. Small and medium-sized companies are described as unknown global market leaders, in that they play a leading role in the global market, often with inconspicuous products. These companies provide an important contribution to their nations' current trade balance, have a high export share, and demonstrate an above average capacity to survive. The competitive advantages of the hidden champions are mostly based on innovation, product quality, cost, delivery, consulting, and customer proximity.
Like many other 'hidden champions', BARTEC is active in a niche market, and thus does not have the size of a 'big champion'. However, the company is able to demonstrate an excellent, long-term growth rate. Starting in 1975, the company's revenue rose to more than 320 million euros in 2012/2013. The company grew due to innovative products that also have long life cycles, and on the basis of steady internationalization. A crucial success factor was the strategy to provide innovative solutions at the highest level. The main features of the claim to leadership of hidden champions, and thus of BARTEC, consist of technology, quality, reputation, and prestige, only then followed by sales and unit numbers. There are also virtues such as team spirit, passion, ambition, discipline, dedication – which create a strong bond. The result: a high degree of identification of employees at all levels with the company.