Enabling the circular economy through collaborative partnerships

CIEX 2020 Pre-Conference Interview with Hanno Bruemmer, SVP Polyurethane Global Production & Technology at Covestro

In the run-up to the CIEX 2020 conference, we caught up with Hanno Bruemmer, Senior Vice President Polyurethane Global Production & Technology at COVESTRO who will reveal his secrets of driving efficiency and innovation in the chemical industry on October 8th in Frankfurt. We had a few questions for him related to his session, to warm up a bit for the event.

#1: Without giving too much away what is the core message of your talk and what would you like delegates to remember?

Hanno: We need to move away from linear consumption and production patterns and on to a circular economy. However, we can only successfully drive circular economy concepts and their practical implementation forward through close collaboration between different players across the entire value chain. By setting up the right kind of networks, i.e. for sharing information and data, etc., we can enable collaborative partnerships and unlock the value with which to transform our industry.

#2: Why did you choose the topic of your talk?

Hanno: At Covestro we want to establish circularity in all parts of the company and our business. To this end, it will be crucial to follow a broadly based approach. Partnerships are one of four core pillars of Covestro’s circular economy strategy building on a history of successful collaborations with third parties to deliver innovations.

#3: What motivates you to attend CIEX 2020, and what are your expectations?

Hanno: I am very much looking forward to all the conversations, the opportunities to share experience, and the lively discussions with other experts from our industry. This conference has a great reputation as a good platform for in-depth discussions and exchanges with a lot of high-quality talks and content.

#4: The need for innovation has been an ongoing topic for the chemical industry. How would you sum up the current state of the industry, specifically with regard to its innovation efforts?

Hanno: The chemical industry is at an important turning point. Even though sustainability has been a major focus for numerous companies over many years and a lot has certainly been achieved, the need for transformation is increasing all the time and the tempo of transformation will further accelerate. Given this context, we need to take a broader stance and look at forming alliances to drive collaboration, while also taking advantage of new digital opportunities. Innovations in chemicals, and the business in general, will be key capabilities in solving the global challenges regarding climate change, pollution and other aspects.

#5: What must chemical industry leaders do to remain competitive and get fit for the future?

Hanno: First, we need to innovate and collaborate, while at the same time learning from players outside our industry. Second, we need to promote exchanges and collaborations with start-ups, universities and other industry sectors. Third, we need to keep talent development high on our agenda.

#6: Looking back on the past three months, please share your thoughts on the impact of COVID-19 on the industry as well as on society in general

Hanno: The pandemic has obviously had a major impact on our end-user industries and the chemical industry in general. However, in these highly challenging times, it is interesting to see how COVID19 has also unleashed a lot of creative potential. Our ways of working are changing fast. For white-collar workers, working from home has become the norm, no longer something exotic. And we are taking greater advantage of existing digital tools. I believe these things are here to stay. When things get back to “normal”, it will not be the world we knew, but rather a new normal.

Hanno, thank you very much for your time. We look forward to hearing more during your session at CIEX 2020!

[adrotate group=”1″]