Having already posted an outstanding year in 2017, 2018 proved to be even more successful with several interesting and innovative projects completed for and with our clients. In addition to our long-standing client, we were able to add several very interesting new ones, in particular in the automotive, industrial, and mechanical engineering segments.
Not only did we exceed the growth figures we posted in the previous year, but we also significantly exceeded our targets for 2018. I would like to thank our clients at this time for their trust in opting to work with us. I would like to thank our entire team at our growing number of international locations for their outstanding commitment and work this year. Personally, 2018 was a special year and, most importantly, it was really fun despite the very high workload!
At IMIG Germany (IMIG IC), Thoralf Enström and Christian Pfingstl have met the high expectations placed on them when they were appointed managing directors in January 2018. They have introduced many new initiatives, including digitalisation, Industry 4.0, and business process management with an IT focus. The business also continues to grow. Encouraged by the successes in 2018, we anticipate a further increase in projects and implementation/improvement work for our clients in 2019. This will lead to a significant expansion of our team in Germany. If you’d like to see if you’d be a good fit with our team or if you need support, please contact our managing directors. We look forward to hearing from you.
Newly founded IMIG Austria GmbH commenced operations in January 2018 and is now wrapping up an eventful first year in a business year with good results. From its Villach location, the new Austrian company is handling several projects not only in Austria but also across the Alps and Adriatic regions in cooperation with other IMIG locations in Europe. We expect a very positive growth in 2019. With Marcel Mild and Christian Pfingstl heading the team at IMIG Austria, we are in very good hands. Two more experienced consultants will be joining the team at the start of the new year.
We are also pleased to report the founding of our latest offspring, IMIG Czech s.r.o., based in Prague. We will be able to expand the kinds of projects we have been doing in Eastern Europe with a local team. We welcome Dr Massimiliano Coco back to IMIG. He brings a lot of spirits and great experience to this new and exciting task. There are still some great jobs on the Prague team available for people with the experience and motivation. For 2019, a major goal is to get IMIG Czech, our youngest IMIG family member, off to a good, secure launch. The team has already signed some initial projects and things are beginning to roll!
We will also continue to step up our activities in Spain and in Italy so that we can also increase support clients with local teams.
From Europe to Asia: after 16 successful years, our previous joint venture in Japan switched from being a Patchwork family member to a 100% IMIG subsidiary in the first half of 2018. This transformation has taken place with the friendly agreement of our previous JV partner and represents a major success in our journey towards further expansion of our Asian activities. With Kazuo Ooiwa and Jin Suzuki, the founding Managing Director of FMIC in Tokyo with his partner continues to be at the helm. Issues such as future mobility, artificial intelligence, and future management will now be jointly handled by IMIG in Japan and China. The management of IMIG China was taken over by Salvatore Giammaria in the first quarter of 2018. He has given some very important impetus for the further expansion of our activities in China. Our activities in South Korea will also be further strengthened in 2019. In May 2019, our 2019 Global Strategy Meeting will take place adjacent to an Industry 4.0/Smart Factory/Digitalisation conference in Tokyo. Our motto for 2019: "Shaping the future".
Our sites and teams in Charlotte, NC, with expansion plans for Canada and Mexico, as well as our cooperation partners in Brazil (São Paulo) and India (Delhi) are developing well. We see good prospects for 2019 in all regions.
In terms of content, agile project management with SCRUM and multi-project management as well as digitalisation/smart manufacturing continue to gain in importance. We were able to significantly expand our success in mechanical and plant engineering and in the automotive/supply industries.
In addition, 2018 saw consulting projects on such topics as global manufacturing footprint, supplier development/supply base development, organisational development, strategy/sales concepts, factory and logistics planning.
The impact of Industry/Business 4.0 and e-mobility trends were considered holistically in 2018 as part of two internal best practice projects. This will allow us to support our clients with interesting and well-founded solutions to these two key topics in 2019. We are already successfully applying our findings with regard to digitalisation in-house and thus further demonstrate how we continue to be an innovative consulting partner for industry.
As we come to the end of 2018, I wish to highlight the quality, flexibility, motivation, and hard work of all our employees. Without this tireless performance, outstanding commitment, and very good and trusting teamwork, such successes would not be possible, especially in the consulting business. Likewise, my thanks again to our long-standing and our new clients for placing their trust in us. It really is fun to be active in such a creative and successful environment.
Dr. Matthias Hartmann
Founder and CEO, IMIG AG