Innovative by Tradition: Magirus Celebrates 150 Years and Unveils New Magirus Experience Center
Three-day event to mark company’s 150th anniversary / Fiat Chrysler CEO and chairman of CNH Supervisory Board Sergio Marchionne visits new production facility and distribution center
“Discover the Excellence”: this was the motto for the three-day celebrations held by Magirus to mark its 150th anniversary, which were attended by some 7,000 invited guests from the world of firefighting, leading representatives of the global capital goods enterprise CNH Industrial (which Magirus has been a part of since 2013), and also customers and employees. “We want to celebrate this anniversary together with firefighters, as we see ourselves as their partner,” said Antonio Benedetti, CEO of Magirus, at the inauguration of the three-day celebrations on Thursday evening, which was attended by some 600 invited guests, including eminent figures from the world of politics and from the German and international firefighting sectors.
Magirus turned its new customer center, the Magirus Experience Center, into an event venue especially for the gala affair and brought the history and the future of firefighting to life there. Magirus impressively demonstrated how it aspires to set standards in the world of firefighting with a singer who was brought to the stage on a turntable ladder, with Magirus employees in firefighting gear who unveiled new products, and with a brilliant show act which uniquely visualized the Magirus story and captivated the audience.
One of a kind in Europe
Magirus has focused its activities and pooled its expertise in Ulm, creating a center of excellence for fire safety there, which is currently unparalleled within the industry. It brings all the company’s areas of expertise together under one roof. Its various departments – R&D, production, the test benches for calibration, software programming, and the inspection and auditing areas – work hand in hand over an area of 321,000 square meters, of which 103,000 are covered. Magirus invested some 35 million euros in converting the plant in Ulm, with the result that the Donautal district of Ulm now boasts a production plant for firefighting vehicles which is unparalleled throughout Europe.
Both during the anniversary celebrations and after, firefighting teams from all over the world will be able to come here and experience the spirit of innovation which the company inherited from Conrad Dietrich Magirus. This was something that the top executives at CNH Industrial wanted to see for themselves: Sergio Marchionne, CEO of Fiat Chrysler and Chairman of the Supervisory Board of CNH Industrial, and Group CEO Rich Tobin traveled to the anniversary event specifically to visit the production facilities and the new Experience Center, the centerpiece of the excellence center. “The idea is for firefighters, customers, and visitors from around the world to wholly immerse themselves in the world of Magirus here and to sense the passion that we invest in our work for firefighting teams around the world every single day,” said CEO Antonio Benedetti.
Praise for innovations
The multifunctional hall of more than 7,000 square meters was fittingly inaugurated with the presentation of the company’s new products during the gala evening: Magirus showcased its Magirus AirCore extinguisher, the RL 500 rescue loader for rescuing obese individuals, the new Magirus
TEAM Cab and the new Magirus turntable ladder design featuring the newly developed ‘Magirus Edge Profile’ and an innovative LED lighting concept. Both the turntable ladder and the TEAM Cab, which is a firefighter’s ‘home,’ proved to be an immediate hit among the expert audience after being presented, and were tried out again and again by those in attendance.
“Progress generally thrives on innovation, and this applies to the firefighting sector too. We are grateful that there are companies like Magirus that develop technologies of this kind for us,” said Dr. Frank Knödler, President of the Baden-Württemberg Firefighters’ Association (LFV-BW) and head of Stuttgart’s fire department. Austria’s top firefighting official Albert Kern, President of the Austrian Firefighters’ Association (ÖBFV), chimed in with the congratulations: “We are delighted that Ulm has become so well established as a location and that the location at Kainbach near Graz – which is obviously just as important for us Austrians – continues to exist. Today, we were presented with technical innovations that demonstrate the degree of expertise that goes into such developments. We can only congratulate Magirus on these achievements.” Michel Bour, General Secretary of CTIF, was equally delighted with what he experienced at the gala evening: “Firefighting crews around the world deliver an outstanding service, but all have different equipment. I can envisage establishing a task force together with Magirus to develop a European firefighting vehicle.”
Customers’ and family day
Approximately 3,000 customers likewise had the opportunity to experience Magirus’s passion for the world of firefighting and also its new products on Friday. Those in attendance were taken on a journey through the ages, from the beginnings of the company Feuerwehr-Requisiten-Fabrik C.D. Magirus up to the present day, with numerous displays, an exhibition featuring historical firefighting vehicles, and a diverse program. The anniversary celebrations were rounded off with a family day for Magirus employees and their families on Saturday, when around 4,000 visitors flocked to the site to experience the multifaceted program.
Ulm, June 16, 2014
Michael KretzschmarMagirus Communications Manager EuropeGermanyMichael.Kretzschmar@cnhind.com+49 (0) 731 408 2447