Shape tomorrow

For the first time, SIBUR has taken part in SHAPE TOMORROW, the European Innovation Summit in Frankfurt, Germany.

The summit focused on innovations and strategy took place on 17–18 October and was attended by some 180 of Dow’s customers and partners. Top executives, heads of R&D, as well as procurement representatives from such major players as Unilever, P&G, Bosch, L'Oréal, 3M, Evonik, Akzo, Clarian, took part in the event.

Shifting the focus towards customers and searching for tailored solutions are a noticeable trend of the past few years.

The two-day conference was opened by Jim Fitterling, Chief Executive Officer at Dow. In his speech, he accentuated Dow’s passion for innovation and sustainable development concept, emphasising that partnership and cooperation along the value creation chain are crucial for the company. Discussions, presentations and speeches by company representatives and leading experts addressed the key topics of the summit.

Dow regards such events as an opportunity to listen to its customers and partners. Many participants from various companies shared that vision focused on customer and tailored solutions in their speeches. It is no longer just about listening to customers, it is about deeply understanding their business, the needs of their own clients etc., down to end users. Another burning issue on many corporate agendas is combining innovations with environmental awareness. Both topics are vital for SIBUR. The Company pays close attention to sustainable development (please see previous issues of our journal for more information).

The two-day summit gathered some 180 of Dow’s customers and partners.

What matters now is no longer just listening to the customers, but rather deeply understanding their business, the needs of their own clients etc., down to end users.

SIBUR has been cooperating with Dow on monomers since 2012, but it is the first time the Company has taken part in the summit. The invitation served as another stage of the partnership. This year, the companies have already exchanged asset visits to production sites: SIBUR representatives visited Dow’s site in Ramenskoye, while Dow employees visited SIBUR-Neftekhim.

“Putting focus on customer is a noticeable trend. For example, during a panel discussion a representative from Henkel spoke about developing a shampoo tailored to individual needs of any customer. That level of customisation is hard to adopt at SIBUR, as we are farther away from the end consumer than FMCG companies, yet it very well illustrates the general direction where everyone, including us, is headed for. It is about in-depth market research and analysis, and search for solutions to address each customer’s needs. Learning about major players’ experience and efforts was both interesting and helpful,” said Natalia Koshelenko, Senior Expert from SIBUR’s Plastics, Elastomers and Organic Synthesis Division.

“At the stage of product development, Dow focuses on marketing, and it really does its job. Today, this is an important line of work for any company, including SIBUR. We are actively developing cross-industry cooperation and are focused on customer needs: first, we find out what they are and only then we develop products in demand on the market, not vice versa,” says Andrey Grachev, Head at SIBUR’s Corporate R&D.

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