Gardner Denver’s new Energy & Infrastructure President Saeid Rahimian wants to double the size of the company in less than five years. With Gardner Denver’s technical capabilities, its people and brand name, Rahimian knows it’s a very achievable goal.
“If you look at our business in terms of what we can bring to the table, what we can do for customers, what we’re capable of doing and how much we have underachieved in my opinion, we could double the size of this business,” says Rahimian. “When you look at the markets that are out there that we have barely scratched the surface, it’s doable.”
The company’s strategy will focus on the international market.While Gardner Denver is growing strongly in the U.S., the company’s international growth has been slower. With technologies expanding globally, Rahimian believes now is the time to get out of the company’s “comfort zone.” He plans to focus on China, the Middle East and specific areas in Latin America.
Concentrating on international expansion is just part of the new changes Gardner Denver is experiencing since the company was bought by Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co, L.P. (“KKR”) earlier this year. Changes in leadership left many wondering what would happen with the company. Rahimian understands the uneasiness but thinks the company is changing for the better.
“I think if folks were honest with themselves and put their fear aside and ask themselves is Gardner Denver a better company today than it was a year ago or two years ago, I think in all honesty they would say yes,” says Rahimian. “We’re not going to run the business with a fear factor. We’re not going to run the business with command and control style. This is about getting everybody on the bus, in the right seats and moving down the road in a direction that will pay big dividends for our customers.”
Rahimian believes Gardner Denver’s biggest strength is its people. They have strong capabilities, aptitudes and competencies. This leads to Gardner Denver designing and manufacturing the best products in the market. “It’s not an accident that Gardner Denver’s brand name is universally known as the flagship,” states Rahimian. “It’s because our folks have worked hard to get the company to this position.”
In order to reach his goal, Rahimian also knows he’ll need to focus on the company’s weakness. In his opinion, Gardner Denver hasn’t focused enough on its marketing. “We have great technologies, great products but we really lack a good method in getting the message out to the market and our customers.” Rahimian says a company’s weakness can become its strength with the right strategy in place, and he plans to help turn the tables.
Under Rahimian’s leadership, Gardner Denver will remain committed to its employees and customers. The company will continue to focus on being #1 in customer service, #1 in innovation and #1 in teamwork.