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The Interview
Porsche CEO Oliver Blume
“Flexibly Into the Future”
How the sports-car maker will be fulfilling customer wishes in the future. And how it benefits from its own consultancy subsidiary.
Let’s start with a matter close to our heart, namely, Porsche Consulting. Was it the right decision in 1994 for the sports-car maker to launch a manage-
ment consultancy that would support clients from a wide range of industries?
Oliver Blume: Absolutely. Porsche Consulting is one of the special success stories in our corpo- rate group. Thanks to high demand, the manage- ment consultancy has grown from four employ- ees to more than 600 in twenty-five years. It has expanded from one small office in Zuffenhausen to ten locations worldwide. Porsche Consulting has taken first place in several categories in the industry rankings for years now, and is mentioned in the same breath as the top three consultan- cies in the business—which are much larger.
This subsidiary is therefore a real
economic success.
It’s much more than that. It shows that Porsche thinks beyond the proverbial box. We’ve always been happy to share our expertise and abilities. Porsche Consulting and its outstanding achieve- ments enhance the reputation of our brand.
I don’t know of any other management consul- tancy that is grounded in practical experience in one branch of industry and enables so many other industries to benefit from that. This unique feature often comes up in talks with business partners.
You are the chairman of the Board of Directors of Porsche Consulting. What will the next twenty-five years look like for the consultancy subsidiary?
We’ll definitely keep doing what works. Among other things, Porsche Consulting places a premium on consultants with experience and
28 Porsche Consulting The Magazine
the ability to put ideas into practice. The primary focus today is no longer on lean management like it was in the early years, but on the big trans- formation that business and industry are going through. I see major opportunities for our consul- tants here in guiding organizations and business- es into this new world, putting strategies into place, and delivering measurable results while always focusing on the people involved.
Let’s look at the future of the parent company, Porsche AG. The first fully electric sports car, which will be rolling from the assembly line in Zuffenhausen in the fall of 2019, is already being produced on a CO2-neutral basis. What exactly does that look like—will Porsche be planting ten trees for every Taycan it sells?
No, compensation can only be a last resort. Our priority is on preventing emissions in the first place. For example, by building electric cars
and using renewable sources of energy. Any emissions we can’t prevent we want to reduce as much as possible—by environmentally friend-
ly drivetrains, energy-efficient buildings, and general resource efficiency, just to name three of the countless possible ways. And then, after we’ve exhausted all the means of preventing and reducing CO2 emissions, we’ll compensate for whatever is left. But like I said, that’s the last resort. As far as we’re concerned, it’s obvious that a car that drives without emissions should be produced on a CO2-neutral basis, and we’ll do everything to ensure that.
Your goal is to have zero-impact factories.
How realistic is that?
Producing cars without having an impact on the environment—which is our vision—is possible. It’s not something you can achieve overnight,
but you can approach it step by step. And I think here at Porsche we’re already on a very good track, one we also want our suppliers to take over the medium term ...
Their emissions are probably
not inconsiderable ...
We’re aware of that. And we see it as our respon- sibility to reduce our impact on the environment here too. We place very high demands on our suppliers’ environmental, social, and compliance standards. They will all have to go through a sus- tainability rating in the future. As far as I know, no other car maker is as strict in this regard as we are in the Volkswagen Group.
And you’re doing all this just for the Taycan?
No, it applies to our production in general—also with respect to CO2 neutrality. We’ve been laying solid groundwork for this over recent years. Since 2014 we’ve succeeded in reducing the CO2 emis- sions at our sites in Zuffenhausen and Leipzig
by more than 75 percent per car produced, and energy consumption by more than 30 percent. For the past two years we’ve been using only green power for both production and rail logistics within Germany. As of 2020 we’re going to run the entire Zuffenhausen site on biogas, which means we’re making it completely CO2 neutral.
Why would a sports-car maker place such an emphasis on sustainability?
Sustainability has played a key role for us right from the start. Ferry Porsche, the company founder, was already looking intensively at the problem of limited raw materials and energy reserves, and the need to preserve them.
In the early 1970s he presented the Porsche “long-term car” study. And he introduced

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