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The international dealership network of 15 national associations and their member companies in the Agricultural Machinery and Equipement sector

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Erik HogervorstFrom the President

Looking back on 2015..... 

The year 2015 is almost behind us. Sometimes it seems that it goes by in a flash. It is because of this I like to take the time and think about what went on over the last year. We are always running during the year. We talk about the market and the work that has to be done. We are programmed to look forward and not back. That is why people are more happy in spring time. Nature is starting and we are happy to feel this in our blood. New year is the turning point in my believe. Then we leave the last year behind and start building on a new year. Christmas is the perfect time in between to remember, relax, enjoy and recharge for all the things to come.
Our members faced a difficult year in most cases. The number of customers are decreasing in most countries. The sanctions against Russia cause pressure on prices of agricultural products. In sectors like milk and pork the production was significantly increased which causes serious crises that will not be over in a short time. Then there are the manufacturers that told there stockholders the agricultural market is booming because of the growing world population and now have to explain lower results. This shortly describes the playing field our members are facing. It is our task/ responsibility to help them to put all these factors in the right perspective. They need us to project a helicopter view over their company/situation. Manufacturers are profiling their brand in the market. They do this so well that we sometimes believe it is more important to concentrate on what the manufacturer wants instead on what the customer wants. This is an area we have to focus on. The ones that are able to follow the evolution of their region are the ones that will survive. So focus on evolution instead of decline!!

The work that we are doing within Climmar is becoming more and more important in this perspective. The new branch reports can give your members the insights of evolution. An important condition for this is that you set up these branch reports on a national level. This takes time and effort but the power of a professional overview of the branch is essential.
The DSI is an important example. Because more than 1250 brand dealers in the EU join in this index, we get a reliable insight in the relations between the dealers and there brand. It is important that we show these results to improve these relations. Climmar will take action towards CEMA and on a national level we have to let our members know what the power of this index is. In the countries where there is no national index members should be encouraged to join the EU results.
To ensure the future of our profession we have joined forces in Euro Skills. A lot of work has to be done on National level to make it possible that more countries can join. I hope in the coming years more Climmar members acknowledge the importance of this promotional platform. Climmar made it possible and now it is up to you.
A big step has been taken to be active as Climmar in the EU lobby. RMI is a subject where we have taken the unanimous step to play an active role in the normalisation of the way that Repair and Maintenance Information comes available. The effect of this work is difficult to predict. But I am convinced that in this way we can act instead of react. The EU is determent to make the position of the customer stronger against the position of global manufacturers. Our position is in between. For me this is the essential point why Climmar must play its role.
The strategic plan of Climmar is making it more clear for everyone what Climmar stands for and what direction we are going. Use this plan also in the work you are doing nationally. From my own experience I know that is difficult to give a clear direction. The national board is formed by hard working entrepreneurs who put in a lot of effort to make time to come to the board meetings. They discuss about the subjects at hand. And ask for attention to all urgent subjects. A strategic plan is essential and can help to achieve the goals that are set out.
The meetings that we had in 2015 were very good attended and “perhaps even more important”, were of a high quality because of all your input. The spring meeting made the work that was done in the 4 groups more clear. The extraordinary general assembly in Essen asked a lot of your flexibility. With more than 10 members attending we were able to determine a way to go for Climmar that resulted in the unanimous decision about the RMI subject. I can only hope for the same kind of involvement in the coming year. As a result of this good progress was shown on the congress in Sweden. On the Saturday of the congress the presentations gave a good insight on the importance of the agreement that was made at the climate conference in Paris. As branch organisations we have the obligation to inform our members about the opportunities this creates for our sector. Because members will sometimes instinctively look at the threads. Fact is that today more people in the world die from obesity, than starve from hunger. So we do not need higher production, but smarter and more sustainable production. This is a “new” but rapidly growing market.
I want to wish you a Merry Christmas with enough time for reflections and family. And a happy New Year in good health with an open mind to see the opportunities!!

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