In 1872, Wilo was formed as a copper and brass goods factory in Germany by Caspar Ludwig Opländer. In the years that followed it was responsible for the invention of the world’s first circulation accelerator, the first high-efficiency pump for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) and the first decentralised pump system. Thanks in part to several acquisitions, Wilo has experienced significant growth throughout its existence and today boasts 15 production sites, 7,500 employees, and more than 60 subsidiaries globally. Oliver Hermes, CEO of Wilo, spoke to The CEO Magazine about Wilo’s success story. In 2013, the business had a turnover of €1.23 billion with an EBIT margin of 10.2 per cent. That is forecast to increase by 2020 to €2 billion with an EBIT margin of over 10 per cent.

The CEO Magazine: What key values are paramount to Wilo?

Oliver: Our success is largely based on shared values and ethical principles that influence the way we act every day. As a result of our global operations, the Wilo Group unites a wide variety of cultures under one roof. Therefore, creating a balanced and shared system of principles and values for all cultural groups is of fundamental importance to the Wilo Group. Our key values are integrity, respect, and fairness. They define how we work with one another as well as how we conduct ourselves outside the company as representatives of Wilo.