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One on one with BMW's Hans Kroeppelt

Updated: 2008-08-11

One on one with BMW's Hans Kroeppelt

During the past three years, BMW achieved robust development and sales expansion in China. It sold 30,325 cars under its BMW and Mini brands in China between January and June: a growth of 28.1 percent compared to the same period last year. BMW has become the leading luxury automobile brand and even the icon of success.

Hans Kroeppelt, senior vice president of manufacturing for BMW Brilliance Automotive Ltd. (BBA) is in charge of the plant in Shenyang. He is an auto industry veteran who has worked for the company for 27 years.

He is also the 2008 Liaoning Friendship Award winner and honorable torch bearer in Shenyang for the Olympic Games.

Recently, he spoke with China Daily reporter Wu Yong about the manufacturing, environmental protection efforts and social contributions of BBA.

Q: I know you’ve worked for BMW for more than 20 years, and you came to Shenyang last year, so how do you like the city?

A: I first went to Shenyang in 2005 when we had a workshop with our colleagues at BMW Brilliance. At that time, I was the head of BMW Manufacturing in Thailand. Now, the city is much more modern, much greener and much more international.

Q: You were selected to be a torch bearer this year. Do you have any impressive stories about that experience or others?

A: I’ve been here for 14 months, and there are lots of impressive stories to talk about. The most exciting one for me personally certainly was to be the torch bearer on behalf of BMW Brilliance for the Olympic Games 2008. It is a once-in-lifetime experience for me. I was touched by the excitement of the people there. The distance for the torch relay was a bit short, but the Olympic spirit will last forever.

Beside that one of course, the Friendship Award makes me feel very much honored, and it is also an honor for our company. We are always impressed by how BMW Brilliance is perceived here with its leading position. We feel like a family member in Shenyang and Liaoning.

Q: I heard that the Environmental Protection Association announced that some international companies had a different standard for emission in China from that in their own country. What’s your opinion? And does BMW have the same standard in China?

A: There’s no difference in standard between BMW in Germany and BMW in China.

Q: Does BMW Brilliance have plans to push for localization?

A: As a premium auto maker, BMW Brilliance has deeply integrated itself into the Chinese society. It has a long-term commitment to the market and the customers.

By the end of 2007, the number of BBA’s local supplier exceeded 100. And the local purchasing volume increased 80 percent from the previous year, reaching 3.6 billion. Our target for 2008 is to have 150 local suppliers and 4.4 billion in local purchasing volume.

In the long run, we are committed to increasing the local content, which will not only support the development of local suppliers but also enhance the competitiveness of our products.

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