Turning ideas into markets

Creativity is the essence of our business success, the driving force behind our innovative solutions and the source of our future profitable growth.

When batteries power cars, solar cells use the power of the sun more efficiently and a power station gets its coal from the world’s biggest floating loading platform, you can bet Evonik has a hand in it somewhere. Because Evonik has ideas. With great imagination, we develop products and solutions that break the mold and wow our customers. Sometimes it’s enough to take on an old challenge from a new angle. We actively nurture this sort of creative approach by having people work autonomously in small units, keeping hierarchies flat and actively encouraging entrepreneurial thinking across the board. At the same time, we always keep a close eye on customer and market needs. We systematically analyze social trends and developments and appraise their potential for value creation to be sure we have helicopter vision of coming challenges.

Interconnected knowledge creates added value

Being able to come up with good ideas for new and existing businesses requires a large store of interconnected knowledge. Making our knowledge accessible throughout the company is one of our guiding principles, and we systematically promote knowledge transfer. So ideas, technologies and processes developed in one unit are also put to use in another.

Powered by R&D

Research and development (R&D) is a key driver of innovation and success at Evonik. In 2009 we spend €300 million on it. Some 2,300 highly qualified staff at more than 35 locations around the world are on the hunt day in, day out for new substances, products, ideas and models, in some cases jointly with customer and supplier R&D departments. To stay at the leading edge of scientific research as well, we also have some 250 partnerships with universities the world over. Successful examples of our innovative power include electrodes and separators enabling high-performance energy storage in the form of lithium-ion batteries, printable electronics for radio frequency identification (RFID) applications, and flexible thin-film solar cells for harvesting solar energy more economically.

Floating coal loading platform

The environment posed some major challenges for the engineers in our Energy Business Area when they were designing the US$1.5 billion Iskenderun coal power plant. The power station, which meets nearly six percent of Turkey’s entire electricity demand, stands on a shallow bay unnavigable to bulk carriers. We got around this by developing and building the world’s biggest floating loading platform. The Transshipper is nearly 100 meters long, over 50 meters tall and about 50 meters across. The facility can handle up to 30,000 tonnes of coal a day.

Eco-friendly residential concepts

Picking up on social trends in their early days so we can respond with new solutions is a defining feature of Evonik also in its Real Estate Business Area. Take the waste disposal systems we set up, where people only pay for the garbage they actually produce. This rewards environmentally responsible occupants while keeping their utility costs down. We also upgrade our apartments by making them more energy-efficient. Windows, doors, thermal insulation, and modern, efficient heating systems are systematically selected on energy saving criteria.