May 11th 2020

Livetalk with Peter Schöffel

As part of the DISTINGUISHED GUEST ONLINE lecture series, the Entrepreneurial School® was looking forward to the live talk by Rector Andreas Altmann with outdoor entrepreneur Peter Schöffel.

Portrait Peter Schöffel

© Schöffel

His name is program, and his profession is his calling. Peter Schöffel, CEO of the world's oldest family-run outdoor company based in Schwabmünchen, Bavaria, was an online guest at the MCI.

Schöffel is one of the last medium-sized companies in the industry, one of the last family-run businesses, clearly focused on two segments: outdoor and ski clothing. Schöffel stands for quality, sustainability, a different way of doing business. The core market is Austria, Germany, Switzerland and to a lesser extent Asia. Schöffel has learned to see itself from the customer's perspective. "We can only be successful if we find customers who like our product". The products convey quality, reliability, high functionality, durability and sustainability. "Buy something sensible that you can wear for a few years and enjoy it."

In the last eight weeks after the Corona lockdown, that quality has become clear as day. After initial shock-induced paralysis, Schöffel quickly returned to action mode. According to Peter Schöffel's assessment, Corona will place a heavy burden on the industry for at least two years. The entire logistics chain will be affected. If you like, you could speak of multiple organ failure. Consumers are also insecure, they have less money at their disposal, shopping with a mask is no fun. But outdoor is a topic of the future and will always be a positive topic. And it is precisely in times of crisis that the hour of family businesses comes.

"Our profession is our vocation, we think long-term. For us, money is not a motivation, but at best a hygiene factor". However, you also have to get through the crisis. It pays off now to leave profits in the company and to use the crisis period as an opportunity at the strategic level.