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LANXESS at WEF in Davos: "The only constant is change"

Editorial of Axel C. Heitmann published in the "Handelsblatt" on the occasion of WEF in Davos.

Our image motiv for Davos presenting our study on Green Tires for trucks. Go to for more information.

“The Reshaping of the World: Consequences for Society, Politics and Business” is the thematic focus of the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2014. The aim is to develop the insights, initiatives and actions necessary to respond to current and emerging challenges.

LANXESS CEO Axel C. Heitmann is participating at the WEF in Davos from January 22 to 25. Read below the editorial of Heitmann that was published in today's "Handelsblatt".

"By 2050, the world’s population is expected to grow to around 9.3 billion people. At the same time, global income will quadruple. By 2020, an additional 800 million people will have joined the middle class. And city populations are growing by two people every second. These few figures alone show that our world is constantly changing.

“When the wind of change blows, some build walls for protection while others build windmills.” This Chinese proverb illustrates how we can react to the change that characterizes our modern world. Some people perceive change as a threat to be resisted. Others exploit change to their own advantage and for the common good. If we actively shape change rather than just watching from the sidelines, then it can even serve to guide our actions.

Here I’m thinking particularly of the megatrends. A term that is no longer restricted to trend analysis, megatrends are global and have a broad impact on society, politics and business. They can be our framework in a world characterized by change, providing a certain stability that is paradoxically the result of this change.

As entrepreneurs, we need to recognize change and megatrends at an early stage and actively develop strategies for the future. This will enable us to successfully master the increasing complexity of our world.

We need to positively define megatrends to fit our respective business models and use these to develop intelligent solutions for the challenges we face today and tomorrow.

The mobility, urbanization, agriculture and water megatrends are of major significance to LANXESS. They will sustainably change our world in the long term. We aim to use our products, technologies and innovations in enabling people to meet this change.

A simple principle applies: We must lose our fear of change if we want to be prepared for the future. Let’s build those proverbial windmills and actively shape society, politics and business."

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