Innovation has always been part of the history of SHV: from the first use of the mechanical coal transporter in 1904 to today's diverse business portfolio with innovations such as the FOCUS crane, NutriOpt and everything in between. SHV has shown its agility in adapting to changing market circumstances with innovative solutions and business models, so finding new ways to grow.
The world is changing faster than ever, with new technologies on the rise and consumer behaviour altering rapidly. This means that SHV needs to innovate at a faster pace as well. This continuous focus on innovation enables us to stay ahead in the markets in which we operate and to contribute to the sustainable future of our company. However, there might be some time before innovation is reflected in the financial performance.
In 2017, we initiated an SHV-wide movement to accelerate innovation and stimulate further growth. Our objective was and is to embed innovation deep within all our Groups, keeping the customer’s needs centre stage. We developed an approach that enables cross-Group cooperation and the exchange of best practices, while at the same time taking into account the differences in industries and market maturity. Each Group now has a dedicated “Innovation Lead” to focus on delivering innovative products, services and process improvements by managing innovation funnels and ideas.
Stimulating cross-Group collaboration and knowledge exchange enhances the innovative capabilities of all involved. First, we benefit from the experience gained in specific projects. Second, we benefit from inventions already researched and developed elsewhere within SHV. Using Yammer, the cross-Group social platform, we exchange ideas, ask questions and discuss problems. Our digital capabilities are one beneficiary of this approach as this enables us to accelerate project implementation based on experience gained within SHV. Not having to reinvent the wheel accelerates our problem-solving capabilities and means we can quickly adjust and optimise our operational activities and customer propositions.