Over in a flash

From 9 to 13 October of this year, the BMA sales representatives met in Hanover for their annual conference. Delegates from over 36 countries had come, very much looking forward to the event, with plenty of questions and many good memories of the last meeting. After the conference, everybody felt the benefits – and came away with ambitious plans.

The 3-day conference was over in a flash, it seemed. It had started on the previous Sunday evening, with a large welcome dinner. Many of the participants seemed to have known each other for years; and that impression was certainly accurate. But there were also many new faces, both among the sales representatives and from BMA. The change of generations has started on both sides. And change is the basis for innovation.

On Monday morning at 9 a.m., the conference programme proper started. It had evolved into a balanced sequence of interesting topics over the past months. And although these BMA conferences have become quite a tradition since their introduction shortly after the start of the new millennium, they are no boring routine. This year was no exception.

First on the agenda were BMA's general strategic focus and the future. The plant engineering experts from Braunschweig have ambitious plans in this area. That became especially clear in the technical papers presented next. In addition to a number of topics for the medium term, many ideas are already taking shape. One change, for instance, is the fact that BMA has decided to act once more as a general contractor. The company has recently brought several EPC projects of varying scopes to successful completion, so this step makes perfect sense. That was the end of the first session – swiftly on to the next!

Session 2 revolved around products, sometimes in the form of lectures, sometimes in an interactive format inviting audience participation. Some topics were demanding, both for the audience and the speakers; that is to be expected. And lively discussions throughout. After all, both sides wanted to benefit. Outside the conference room, during the breaks, there was also plenty of opportunity for personal exchanges.

Day 3 started before you knew it. Time was running. After the lunch break, a marketplace of process stations invited conference participants for a stroll. Those who visited each station gained an excellent idea of what BMA machinery and equipment are needed to produce sugar from beet or cane.

Last on the agenda was the final conference dinner. Participants moved between tables more than once, like in World Café. It was international collaboration in action. The last three days had been hard work but rewarding. Now let's recharge our batteries – then into the future with new energy and fresh ideas. One thing is sure: we will meet again in two years' time. Until then, let's focus on our ambitious plans for the future!