Haulotte: how to prepare for an economic upturn during a recession

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Alexandre SAUBOT

CEO, Haulotte Group President, UIMM (Union des Industries et Métiers de la Métallurgie​)

Seminar Industrial adventures | Wednesday November 18, 2015 - 17h30 - 19h30

Alexandre Saubot had been an armaments engineer for eight years and had worked in the French Ministry of Defence’s shipbuilding division when he took over the operational management of Haulotte in 2004. This company was founded by Alexandre’s father in 1985 after Creusot-Loire went bankrupt. Haulotte manufactures aerial platforms the market of which is very volatile. The group’s turnover varied between 250 and 650 million Euros from 2004 to 2007. 2009 was a disastrous year: the global market collapsed by 75% and Haulotte’s turnover dropped to 200 million Euros. Because the recession showed no signs of easing, radical measures had to be taken. Production was cut by one-eight and, so as not to affect the company’s ability to recover in the future, Haulotte decided to partially lay off its workforce for two to three weeks every month over a period of eighteen months. In order to preserve social ties and maintain its expertise, a wide-ranging training programme was started in 2009. Following this, the company was able to resume operations as before, and today it has gained a solid position as European leader in its field.

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This session was published in issue n°119 of the Journal de l'École de Paris du management, entitled Le mécanique et le vivant.

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