From innovation to bestseller

Something is underway.

The BPW Group is shifting gears to achieve a strong market position. Globalisation, urbanisation, digitisation, electrification – the logistics industry is on the move. Carlo Lazzarini, the member of the management responsible for trailer equipment & solutions sales, describes today’s requirements in the logistics market and presents a number of clearly future-oriented solutions.

An innovation always has to satisfy a customer need. Even if it’s a need that the customer has not yet recognised.
DID YOU KNOW that, with more than 60,000 telematics units already sold, idem telematics is the market leader for trailer telematics in Europe?
From innovation to bestseller // an interview with Carlo Lazzarini

The logistics market is changing at a tremendous pace. In your opinion, what requirements will have a particular influence on the market of tomorrow?

Carlo Lazzarini: The requirements faced by market participants are increasing steadily, including as a consequence of the digitisation and networking of vehicle components and service processes. Our core challenge is to address customer needs as well as the market situation. This means that we have to reduce cost drivers, such as fuel and maintenance, and provide targeted support to personnel in order to increase overall efficiency. And we have to be faster than the competition. Because it won’t be the big players dominating the market anymore, but the fast ones.

Acceleration is an overarching issue at BPW. To what extent is this factor changing your core business?

Carlo Lazzarini: Change has always been an issue. If we hadn’t been prepared to continuously adapt our core business to the market, we would have long since disappeared from view. What is new is the speed at which this is taking place. In recent years it has become very clear that the pace of change will continue to increase, spanning all areas of logistics – from development cycles to delivery times. For us as an international mobility and system partner, time is not slowing down. Quite the contrary. We have embraced this increasingly dynamic climate as an opportunity and invested a great deal in innovation and systematically building added value for our customers. In doing so, and aided by our innovation management, we have stepped up our core business to a greater extent than would have been demanded by our customers. The end result is innovative technologies, new services and improved availability – achieved with the ambition of being one step ahead of the market.

Can you name a product that exemplifies this?

Carlo Lazzarini: A good example is the cargofleet telematics solution. In the spring of 2017, our subsidiary presented what is already the third generation of the all-in-one platform. It enables the trailer to become an integrated and intelligent component in the flow of goods: as an open and manufacturer-independent platform, cargofleet 3 interconnects mixed fleets, fleet operators, dispatchers and drivers. Data from the truck, trailer, van and swap body are gathered, exported and displayed on a menu interface that is exceptionally easy to use. The outcome is complete transparency in the transport process.

How has cargofleet 3 been received in the market?

Carlo Lazzarini: The market is eager to embrace new solutions of this type. cargofleet is innovative and offers genuine added value, making it the kind of product that works not just in theory but also in practice. This is underlined by the high level of customer acceptance. With more than 60,000 units sold, idem telematics is already the leading provider of trailer telematics in Europe. Our customers expect exactly the sort of added value that is created by cargofleet. Every single service that reduces downtimes, costs and failures is a welcome solution in today’s cut-throat competitive environment. The pressure is high and takes many forms. As a result, our customers are increasingly thinking in the long term and focusing on the total cost of ownership (TCO).

The total cost of ownership is the benchmark. Does this leave enough room for the individual needs of your customers?

Carlo Lazzarini: We work very closely with our customers, we question existing solutions and work intensively on new ones. Moreover, our extensive experience as one of the leading providers in the aftermarket aids our development process. We know just how individual the requirements can be. From environmental aspects to downtimes, energy efficiency or maintenance intervals, there is a broad range of individual factors. We treat the wide variety of wishes voiced by our customers as development imperatives. The new AirSave tyre pressure system is a good example of this multifaceted approach. AirSave covers numerous aspects: optimal tyre pressure reduces operating costs and downtimes while increasing the safety and availability of the vehicle. Our ambition to create innovative products is all-encompassing.

cargofleet or AirSave – what qualities should a product have in order to make it from innovation to bestseller?

Carlo Lazzarini: A defining feature of innovation is the implementation of new solutions. But that alone is not enough to succeed. To become a bestseller, the innovation has to be essential for the customer and have a positive effect on the TCO. A number of products from the BPW range have already become bestsellers. What they have in common is their longevity and positive impact on costs and safety, for example the ECO Air COMPACT air suspension or the ECO Disc brake, which has helped us become the leading producer of trailer disc brakes in Europe. With the new generation of the BPW ECO Disc brake, which will be available from 2018, we are once again setting new standards: it is even lighter, even more maintenance- friendly and more robust overall.

Which new developments will we soon be seeing among the BPW bestsellers?

Carlo Lazzarini: I am confident that the full array of new developments will shortly be bestsellers. It is with this aspiration that we are entering the market. Personally, I’m particularly impressed by precisely those products for which we adopted a broad perspective during development. These include AirSave and cargofleet, the BPW ECO Disc brake, our retrofittable eTransport electric axle drive, as well as the aluminium hub, with which we have considerably raised the benchmark in lightweight construction.

 

“A highly dynamic market plays to our strengths by paving the way for innovative solutions.”

Carlo LazzariniHead of human resources and member of the board of management