2. Strategy & Business model
From refineries and power plants to food processing sites, LNG facilities and the chemical industry to ships and offshore platforms, KAEFER provides comprehensive industrial services covering the entire lifecycle of our customers’ critical assets.
years of experience
KAEFER – a global leader in asset integrity services and solutions
At KAEFER, we pursue the path to eliminate GHG emissions exposure, partnering with clients around the world to improve energy efficiency, and extend the life cycles of industrial assets. Our customers trust us because they know we make no compromises on HSEQ (Health, Safety, Environment and Quality), risk management, or compliance controls. Combined with our strict focus on efficiency measures, this contributes to our aim to continuously improve our quality of earnings as well as the resilience of our business.
We offer a comprehensive range of solutions to protect, maintain and ensure the integrity, performance, and function of our clients’ assets under extreme operational and climate conditions:
KAEFER‘s strategic cornerstones
In following our company strategy, we focus on our core services. We strengthen what we do best in order to empower KAEFER to succeed as a company.
Customers & Service:
- Contract portfolio
- Creating sustainable value
Operations & Capabilities:
- Project governance
- Expert network
Organisation & Governance:
- Corporate governance and compliance
- Local entrepreneurship and central steering
“On every project, our mission remains the same: to be the most reliable and efficient provider of technical industrial services“ Dr. Roland Gärber
We comprehensively assess and classify any risk before entering into a contract. Among others, criteria for assessment include:
- Our experience and relationship with the relevant client
- Our experience in the relevant jurisdiction and with local conditions
- Our local capacity and the terms of the contract
KAEFER benefits from steady revenue streams, a diversified service portfolio, and wide geographical reach
In 2022, over 70% of KAEFER’s total operating performance came from recurring contracts, including planned and unplanned maintenance, shutdowns, refurbishments, and decommissioning services. This allows us to generate stable and predictable revenue streams. Our backlog of contracted revenue includes hundreds of maintenance contracts with typical terms ranging from three to five years. In most cases, these contracts are extended or renewed; our on-site knowledge supports the credibility of our renewal offers and enables us to quote competitively.
Diversified industry mix through the cycle
Diversification across multiple countries and industrial segments - including serving clients active at every stage of the value chain, from raw materials to processing and manufacturing - leads to natural hedging by reduces our exposure to economic fluctuations in one industrial segment.
Combining the best of local entrepreneurship and central steering
KAEFER’s decentralised business model promotes entrepreneurial freedom and close client relationships, enabling us to maintain our regional leadership positions while ensuring central governance through our corporate functions and network of global Competence Centers. In total, KAEFER operates 128 offices and branches all around the world.
Note: Numbers indicate the number of offices in the individual countries
Our central functions provide resources and expertise:
- Strategic development
- Portfolio decisions
- Capital allocation
- Implementation of standards and systems
- Promotion of regional activities
>> Business Guidance
Our local business units deliver unrivalled execution in operations:
- Autonomous in country portfolio decisions
- Tender selection and bidding
- Client relationship management
- Project execution and monitoring
- Operative risk management
>> Business Execution
Operational and technical excellence
KAEFER’s success is built on finding the right balance between standardisation (for example in work procedures and equipment) and autonomy (for people on the ground who have the skills and expertise to respond to local conditions). Structurally, we achieve this balance through our shared commitment to LEAN and through making the necessary resources available to our operational units and network of global experts.
LEAN Implemented throughout the whole group, LEAN management leverages synergies and simplifies working processes for employees by creating a common understanding and mindset. It plays a vital role in strengthening our culture of operational excellence through continuous improvement towards waste-free processes.
At KAEFER, we implement LEAN principles at every stage of a project to ensure thorough planning, efficient execution, and post-completion analysis. In 2022, LEAN principles were applied to more than 66% of our total operating performance. As of 31 December 2022, more than 9,100 KAEFER employees in 25 countries had participated in our bespoke LEAN trainings. Training is carried out by 203 qualified LEAN practitioners within the company, who are also available to our clients for consulting and thoughtful leadership. Another 37 local LEAN Leaders support the use of LEAN wherever we operate, improving cost base and execution, reducing inefficiencies, and promoting best practice execution.
LEAN turnover coverage
Share of total turnover on LEAN projects
LEAN certifications: > 225
Number of certified employees in leading functions
Total number of LEAN projects in 2022
LEAN footprint: 25
Number of countries with LEAN projects
Global internal expert network
KAEFER operates a global, decentralised network of experts covering all technical aspects of our service offering, as well as a state-of-the-art technical laboratory
In addition to their research and development work, the team of over 60 experts, from more than 20 countries, frequently meet in dedicated expert groups to exchange knowledge and discuss current market trends and innovations. Our experts also provide support during project tenders and ensure the latest technology is employed during estimation, planning, and execution.
Our expertise gives us a deep understanding of the technical requirements of our clients, enabling us to deliver projects tailored exactly to their needs. We focus our innovation efforts on the creation of sustainable, cost-efficient solutions to increase quality and safety during project execution.
Global expert network members
KAEFER has a global expert network in major services...
- Insulation: 16 experts
- Surface protection: 12 experts
- Passive Fire Protection: 14 experts
- Non-destructive testing: 12 experts
- Access solutions: 22 experts
… and technical laboratories in accordance with highest standards:
KAEFER operates laboratories for material testing, acoustics and small scale fire tests as well as a pipe test stand for insulation system testing and a climate chamber, where tests at different temperature, pressure and humidity levels can be executed.
Procurement & Supplier relations
Creating value often lies in seeking common interests with suppliers and partners who share our environmental, social and governance standards. At KAEFER, we try to extend this to a holistic approach throughout the value chain, from sourcing raw materials to developing innovative production processes, from planning and installation to dismantling and disposal.
Our position in the value chain is relevant to the design of our supply chain sustainability assessments. As a business to business provider with large industrial clients, we operate as a supplier ourselves. Our industrial clients are often many times our size and generally retain exclusive control over their facilities, maintenance cycles, and the technical specifications for materials.
Preferably, we enter into long-term framework agreements with certified and preferred suppliers – a formal commitment designed to ensure quality and risk management along the supply chain. In material purchases, technical specifications are often set by our clients, this frequently obliges us to use certain products, that are only produced by certain suppliers thus leaves us with less flexibility and options. Material life cycles, therefore, depend on producers to innovate and provide schemes for life cycle optimisation of the products.
The largest part of our global spend goes on services. We manage our service suppliers closely and expect them to meet the same standards as we do in our own operations. Evidently, the materials that we purchase depend on the services our clients request us to fulfil, making them subject to year-on-year project based fluctuations.
More information on our approach to supply chain sustainability is available in a later chapter of this report.
Note: Excluding figures for the Business Unit in the UK & Ireland. The category „Others“ includes a variety of smaller categories such as foils as well as uncategorised items.