The Austrian plastics and foam company Greiner expects to operate in a hugely challenging environment in 2023. “We face a difficult year due to the energy crisis, inflation, and fluctuations in the prices of raw materials,” said Axel Kühner, CEO of Greiner AG. The challenges affect all divisions: Greiner Packaging, Greiner Bio-One, and the foam division NEVEON.
Yet Greiner does not intend to abandon its sustainability strategy. On the contrary: “We can only achieve long-term success if we remain committed to the circular economy and reducing emissions,” Kühner added. With this in mind, Greiner has submitted its sustainability targets to the global Science-Based Targets Initiative. In these, the company voluntarily pledges to meet science-based goals that are needed to keep global warming below 1.5 degrees Celsius. “Even though it won’t be easy, we are keen to fulfill our responsibility as a global player in the plastics industry,” said Kühner.
Promissory note loan tied to sustainability performance
“Inflation, energy prices, and staff costs are putting us under increasing pressure. However, passing on our costs is only possible to a limited extent, as we have concluded long-term price agreements with many customers. Therefore, efficiency enhancements are the order of the day. In addition, we believe that only sustainable companies will have a profitable future. For this reason, sustainability has also arrived in financing at Greiner: For the first time in the company’s history, we have placed a promissory note loan of EUR 172 million, with an interest rate tied to our sustainability performance,” explained Hannes Moser, CFO of Greiner AG.
Synergies set to accelerate the sustainable transformation process
To be better equipped for the challenges ahead, Greiner AG has added Manfred Stanek to its Executive Board in 2023. In the newly created role of Chief Operating Officer (COO), Stanek, previously CEO of the division company Greiner Packaging, is in charge of synergy management for the entire Group and performance management between the three divisions as well as strategic purchasing and IT management. “The current challenges call for comprehensive performance management between the division companies in order to create long-term synergies and successfully continue Greiner’s sustainable transformation process,” said Manfred Stanek, COO of Greiner AG.