Interview with Ladislaus Reiter, Area Sales Manager Eastern Europe at Rutronik

Electronics InterviewSouth-East European INDUSTRIAL Мarket - issue 2/2012

Development of long term partnership relations is a key part of our strategy

Dear. Mr. Reiter, Rutronik Bulgaria celebrates its 10th anniversary. What market positions the company managed to win here and in which sectors you overwhelm the competition most successfully?
In Bulgaria, we act most successfully in the industrial market. This is traditionally a very strong market for Rutronik in nearly all of the countries where we are present. It includes the production of fire-alarm and security systems, cash registers and fiscal devices, intelligent home systems, motor control units, energy meters, power electronics and electronic safety-related control systems for the on-board railway industry, among other applications. Besides, we are doing a lot of business with assembling companies, especially in the automotive and in the consumer industry. Other important markets for Rutronik are medical electronics and telecommunications, especially the production of set-top-boxes. Above those ones, we concentrate on the new, strongly growing markets in Bulgaria renewable energy and street lighting. We invested a lot in this fields, so we can offer our customers professional, comprehensive support and components and solutions designed especially for applications in these markets. We work closely together with our subsidiary Rusol, a system distributor for PV and LED lamps.

In what direction the Bulgarian electronics market has evolved during this years according to you?
The economic situation in Bulgaria depends strongly on the export to the Euro Zone (61% of the total export of the country) which is slowing down - the expected drop for 2012 amounts to - 0.3%. Economists estimate an increase of the GDP of 1.8% in 2011 and forecast an increase of 0.4% in 2012, ahead of the annual average increase of 3.6% in 2013-16.

The average inflation is estimated 4.2% in 2011 and at around 3.1% in 2012-16.
During the last decade we have seen a continuous growth of the electronics market. There are lots of new applications which are driving the electronics market, some of them I mentioned already like medical electronics, telecommunications or renewable energy.

What are the priorities in your current occupation in Bulgaria?
Focus on the customers’ expectations is our highest priority. We are developing long term relations with the customers in order to achieve "win-win" situations.

In which Eastern European country Rutronik business has the highest growth rate??
In Turkey, Slovenia and Bulgaria we have a very strong growth rate, which is higher than the average market growth - wherefore we thank to our customers!

Which of your products are in great demand in these markets?
Optoelectronics, storage devices and products for industrial & automotive applications have the highest demand in this area.

Could you make a comparison between Bulgarian, Romanian and Slovenian electronics markets?
While the market in Romania is still dominated by the large CM/EMS companies, we have a lot of local R&D activities in Bulgaria. Both countries attract R&D and production companies due to the competitive cost levels, and the well educated local engineers and specialists.

The Slovenian market is slightly different. Many large projects are developed locally, the production stays in most of the cases in the country. Local CM companies are playing an important role. Slovenia is also very competitive due to highly skilled engineers as well as due to the geographical location - short distance to the large Western European markets.

What is your long-term development strategy for Bulgarian and Eastern Europe markets as a whole?
As already mentioned, development of long term partnership relations is a key part of our strategy. We support our local customers with local sales teams as well as field application engineers.  The support of international customers is co-ordinated from our HQ. We have assigned key account managers for the major global customers in order to follow their expectations. Increasing of our customer base, as well as widening of the product portfolio supplied to our customers are also firm parts of our strategy.

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