Gerhard Haas, Chief Officer for Human Resources, Purchasing, Quality Management, Research and Development, and Technical Service, Jowat
Jowat produces industrial adhesives for a range of applications. With approximately 1,250 employees worldwide, the company has 23 global sales organizations and operates three manufacturing facilities in Europe, one in the U.S., and one in Malaysia. Jowat is ranked number 17 on the 2022 ASI Top 20.
Gerhard Haas, chief officer in charge of Human Resources, Purchasing, Quality Management, Research and Development, and Technical Service, recently chatted with Susan Sutton, editor-in-chief. Watch the ASI Insider video or read the partial transcript* to learn more.
To what do you attribute Jowat’s success, particularly with the coronavirus? Everything has been so challenging over the past couple of years.
Yes, it has been. But I think we have been very good with our products and technical expertise. We were able to use technology to reach out to our customers and still provide the technical service we provided before the pandemic began.
And also, we were able to engage our workforce and continue manufacturing our quality products and, despite the difficult supply situation, keep our customers supplied. I think that overall contributes to our success during the pandemic.
Looking to the rest of 2022 and into perhaps the first half of 2023, what are some of the challenges and opportunities you’re envisioning for the adhesive and sealant industry?
The challenges definitely are raw material supply and logistics, increasing prices, and basically the general inflation. Keeping up with wage increases. There’s a very large pressure on increasing costs, and of course, we have to pass that on to customers. And I think it gets to a point where probably the economy will have to slow down somewhat to get back to a somewhat sustainable level, because this is not sustainable.
I think that’s the biggest challenge for the current situation and probably for the mid-term future. I would think that as we go on in 2022, the economy will somewhat slow down and then hopefully things will get back to a more normal, sustainable level.
Opportunities are there to look maybe at raw materials that are better available, some of them new technologies, to introduce them into the market and grow with those technologies.
How is Jowat going to address some of these issues moving forward?
We have a global strategy when it comes to sourcing of raw materials. We also have multiple supplier strategies. We also increased, of course, our inventories. But a lot of the challenges, to be quite honest, are not necessarily in our control, so we can just manage as best as possible.
To give you an example, an imported raw material from us was on the Evergreen ship that grounded in Chesapeake Bay, and we didn’t get to the container for over four weeks. Those are all challenges that we just can’t control.
To learn more about Jowat, visit www.jowat.com.
*edited for length and other factors
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