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The Year 2015


Dear friends

First of all, I hope you are doing well - in terms of private life, health as well as professionally !

As you may recall, I joined ABB again in fall 2014, hence the main focus of the year 2015 was obviously in 'getting things moving' in my new role as COO of the gas-insulated switchgear business for 245 kv to 500 kV of ABB.

Overall, I may say the business is developing well - both in terms of operational as well as financial results, but also in building viable relations with the various stakeholders within ABB Switzerland and other ABB units, we are cooperating with. As usual, for such engagements, it also meant a heavy workload with long hours, sometimes even on weekends.

Correspondingly, as probably most of you have noticed, my response time in terms of communication and social activities has again been pretty bad this year, and I would like to apologize for all the unanswered mails and missed birthdays. Still, I hope it will be a little bit better the coming year ...

City Center of Brno

End of May, I had the opportunity to visit Brno in the Czech Republic, where ABB has a new factory for certain GIS components. This factory basically works for 90% for 'me' and the other 10% for the ABB GIS factory in Germany.

End of June, we were able to celebrate a great success for one of the production lines in 'my' production. Thanks to the introduction of a flow production, we were able to increase the output by 50%, with even a few people less. At the same time the throughput time was reduced by approx. 80% compared to the workshop production, which was used before.

In spring, I also spent four days at the 'Neu-Technikum Buchs' again, the college, where I had studied electrical engineering 30 years ago. They offered a program on the current developments of the electrical power systems like Smart Grid, etc. which was a good opportunity to get an update in this respect. And obviously, it was fun to get back to the place, where I had spent three great years of studying, even though such a long time ago. 

The vacations in June were definitely one of the high-lights of this year, driving through the French Alps, Southern France, to Andorra and finally visiting the City of 'Tremp' in Northern Spain. The city itself is more like a large village and there is nothing that fancy about it, except its name ...

Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, Berlin

In August, Susanne and I visited Berlin for a week of vacation and where we also met with some friends.

In September and October I was giving my usual 'annual' presentations again - one as guest lecturer at the University of St. Gallen and the other one at the 'Thought Leader Global' Strategy Conference in London, which is always nice as it is a great opportunity to connect with other people working in the industry and allows to exchange new ideas and experiences.

Looking forward towards 2016, I'm pretty sure it will be again a rather busy year. At work for sure - even as my ambition is to reduce the workload to a more healthy level again - and we already have some ideas for doing bit of travelling. Nothing really wild, because I still havent re-gained the strength, I had before my motorcycle accident in 2010 - and probably will never do again, but I still hope that things will continue to get a little bit better over time.

Whatever the New Year may bring, I would like to wish all of you all the very best for the upcoming holidays, as well as for 2016.

With kind regards 

Toni


... and please don't take it personal, if I'm again not answering mails 'in due time' ...