Andreas Fischer has been named Evonik's new chief innovation officer, effective July 1st. He takes over from Ulrich Küsthardt, who has held this position since 2015 and is now taking early retirement. Fischer plans to further strengthen the link between innovative capability and customer focus, and make it an unmistakable hallmark of Evonik: “We want to be leading in innovation. To achieve that, we are bundling our competencies, and bringing together our scientific expertise and our proximity to our markets and customers so we can come up with solutions and applications faster.”
Fischer holds a degree in industrial engineering and began his career with a world-leading producer of industrial cleaning agents and hygiene products. From 1997 he held a number of positions at Evonik's predecessor companies, initially in sales and subsequently as head of various business entities. From 2012 he was head of the Silica business line. Since 2019 he has been a member of the board of management of Evonik Resource Efficiency GmbH.
Fischer wants to manage the innovation activities in a focused manner, without centralizing them. Innovation growth fields with focused leadership remain the core of this approach. Here, he is building on the successful strategy of his predecessor, Ulrich Küsthardt. As well as reinforcing Evonik's open innovation culture, Küsthardt concentrated in particular on six innovation growth fields. By 2025, Evonik plans to generate additional sales of over €1 billion with products and solutions in the fields of Sustainable Nutrition, Healthcare Solutions, Advanced Food Ingredients, Membranes, Cosmetic Solutions, and Additive Manufacturing.
“I want to make the benefits of research and development visible in Evonik's business performance,” says Fischer. To achieve that, he also wants to drive forward and strengthen Creavis as Evonik's strategic innovation unit: “Creavis should become Evonik’s business incubator. Working in close cooperation with our operating units, through Creavis, we want to gain access to new markets.”
Evonik is one of the world leaders in specialty chemicals. The company is active in more than 100 countries around the world and generated sales of €13.1 billion and an operating profit (adjusted EBITDA) of €2.15 billion in 2019. Evonik goes far beyond chemistry to create innovative, profitable and sustainable solutions for customers. More than 32,000 employees work together for a common purpose: We want to improve life, today and tomorrow.
In so far as forecasts or expectations are expressed in this press release or where our statements concern the future, these forecasts, expectations or statements may involve known or unknown risks and uncertainties. Actual results or developments may vary, depending on changes in the operating environment. Neither Evonik Industries AG nor its group companies assume an obligation to update the forecasts, expectations or statements contained in this release.