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Second round for the German-Indian Business Forum: The Tiger meets the Lion

It's September and once again the time has come: the German-Indian Business Forum set up last year was held in Munich. Decision-makers from politics and business discussed the business potential of the two major economies. Entrepreneurs corroborated this with examples of successful and promising collaborations.

About 250 participants gathered this year at BMW Welt and the Bavarian Ministry of Economic Affairs for the conference and evening reception. A few highlights: top managers such as Günter Butschek (Tata Motors), Vikram Pawah (BMW India), Wilfried Aulbur (Roland Berger India) and Ravneet Gill (Deutsche Bank India), all who had travelled from India, gave insights into their strategic thoughts on innovation and disruptions in digitalisation & mobility, the opportunities and growth sectors in India during the “Leader’s Talk” in the morning. It was talked about mobility solutions, a drive now offer for India, innovative digital payment methods and the potential of this promising and special consumer market.

The stage belonged to three Mittelstand companies in the afternoon when the focus was on information and the sharing of best practice experiences on expanding into India or Germany.

  • Mr Mittal, Board Member at the PCM Group India, and Mr Riepl, CEO of PCM RAIL.ONE AG Germany reported with obvious great personal commitment on the takeover of the Rail.One, a railway technology company based at Nuremberg, in 2011. According to them, an important success factor for the merger and integration of these two family-run companies is also intercultural awareness and respect for the corporate structures and cultures.
  • The duo Mr Prabhu, CEO of Quest Global Engineering Services India, and Mr Hauk, CEO of Quest Germany then presented the Indian engineering service provider which on the domestic market  is mainly active in the aerospace sector. Quest had opened an  in Bavaria more then 10 years back. In the meantime, the company has continued to grow in Bavaria mainly due to various expansions, for example by the takeover of EDF GmbH in Munich in 2015. In Bavaria, the focus of the company with now roughly 600 employees is engineering services for the automobile industry.
  • Despite the late hour, Mr Pompe, Management Board Member of EMUGE Franken , a manufacturer of precision technology for among others the automotive and aviation sector from Middle Franconia, held the participants attention high. In a once again very personal report, he described the stages of his market entry in India: starting with the search for a joint venture partner in the 1990s to the development of production, training of apprentices and the struggle for a reliable power supply. His conclusion, not an easy undertaking but the opportunities have prevailed; today the Indian location produces for the Indian market.


The festive conclusion to this year’s forum was the evening reception at the Ministry of Economic Affairs. The Indian Ambassador Mukta Dutta Tomar to Berlin, Bavaria’s Minister of Science Dr. Ludwig Spaenle, the Chairman of the Bavarian Parliament’s Committee for Economic Affairs, Erwin Huber and BMW Board Member Markus Duesmann addressed the gathering and reiterated the opportunities of enhanced cooperation.
The German-Indian Business Forum is an initiative by the German Indian Association in collaboration with the Indian Embassy & Consulate General of India in Munich, the Bavarian Ministry of Economic Affairs with Invest in Bavaria, the City of Munich and numerous industry partners. 

You can find more pictures from this year's German-Indian Business Forum with conference and evening reception in the picture gallery and more impressions on Twitter and Facebook under #tigersmeetslion.

Are you an Indian company, interested in an expansion to Bavaria and would you like to attend next year’s forum? Then you’re welcome to get in touch with me!