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Customer portrait: Zosseder

One for everything

Manager Simon Zosseder jr.
Company owner and Managing Director Simon Zosseder jr. (left) with an employee.

The Heuberg mountain welcomes to the south, the company headquarters in Spielberg is surrounded by meadows. This hamlet, a few kilometres south of Wasserburg am Inn, is where Zosseder is based. As is the case for many medium-sized enterprises, it also started out small. "My father originally came from a farm, but he left it when he was still a young man," says his son Simon Zosseder jr. "In 1967 he began as a haulier with two trucks. He transported bulk material, that is gravel, sand, limestone and artificial fertiliser. He made his first big step forward in 1967 when the Inn sluices were built. He served these building sites with one driver in two shifts, day and night. And in 1974 the first skip handler for container tipper bodies came. My father was therefore a pioneer in the container business in the Rosenheim administrative district."

Exactly 268 people work at Zosseder today, the white-red truck fleet alone has 85 vehicles, and the tiny haulier has long since developed into a four to five "division company". Simon Zosseder jr. took time to explain its history on a Saturday morning. It is one of business acumen, courage and farsightedness, and sounds like a chapter from the textbook for successful entrepreneurs. "I started in the company in 1991 when I was nineteen years old. I had previously completed training as a vehicle mechanic at MAN in Rosenheim and attended the courses I needed for my future position. My father was still the boss then. In that year our company consisted of only the private limited company for the haulier. Three others came step by step, and since 2005 I have been the managing director of all the private limited companies and a sole proprietorship".

Zosseder builds up his business fields methodically. "After we expanded the transport business with the first excavator for earth-moving work, we then went in the demolition direction. But we don't simply pull knock things down with the iron ball; we take down a building, wall or bridge piece by piece. Everything, from the garage right up to the industrial building". The terms power, experience and delicacy are used in this connection in the company's promotional film. This is why he prefers to speak of dismantling rather than demolition. "Before it happens", he says, "our specialists make an on-site visit and look for the recyclable materials existing there, and evaluate them. During every dismantling operation different materials are of course found that we then recycle ourselves. Recycled concrete goes into road construction, we deliver old wood to chipboard plants. Gravel is broken and sifted. We sort out plastics and ameliorate them. "Altmetallverwertung Südbayern", also one of our private limited companies, is responsible for metal. The scrap is cut up and processed there. We also sort electrical scrap in all five groups, this means the mixer is stripped down in exactly the same way as the washing machine or electric oven. Of course, we also extract recyclable materials such as cables and coils". Even contaminated rail track ballast is sifted and processed.

Zosseder customer service
The focus is on customer service at Zosseder.

Simon Zosseder jr. admits that demolition, or dismantling if preferred, is a subject very close to his heart. He therefore describes this pillar as being his hobby horse. "After all, we and I have grown up with it". In 2000 it was merged into the company's second private limited company of demolition and waste disposal. And the quality is good. The is confirmed to him by recertification as a waste management company every year. The regional proximity to the Inn also led the lively entrepreneur to hydraulic engineering; he has been a civil engineering specialist for a long time now. "This work", he explains, "is easy for us because we make all the specialist equipment ourselves. After all, we have been operating a machine shop for twenty five years that, for instance, has itself developed and built the screen-cleaning machines at the sluices".

And in what direction will the company in Wasserburg continue even stronger? The answer comes quickly. "We definitely want to develop recycling further. We are now active in reprocessing and destruction of electronic data media, i.e. CDs and mobile phones. And we also want to increasingly recover plastics". The five private limited companies, those for civil engineering and recyclable materials as well as hazardous waste followed in 2004 and 2000, are family owned. "And this is how it should remain", declares Simon Zosseder jr. His son is still small. But if the ideas of his parents and grandfather become reality, he will manage the company one day.

Simon Zosseder jr. has equally clear ideas about the position of his company in the market. "We are regional and will stay regional. This means we try to be the first in the Rosenheim administrative district and a little beyond, and we are also successful in this. Our radius lies approximately 80 to 85 kilometres around Spielberg. The short distances for all divisions make us competitive." Coherent business objectives and confinement to our own capabilities are two conditions for economic success. The other are fair treatment of employees and customers. "We get our people primarily due to word of mouth," he says. "They know they will be treated decently and get a good wage here. Additionally, we train them courses to become specialists. We place advertisements rather for publicity".

Zosseder's quotations are not always the lowest priced. "You know," he explains, "there is always someone who is cheaper. The most important aspect is not the price. We supply good work, reliability and punctuality. When someone phones us at nine o'clock and needs a container at eleven o'clock, we can normally manage that. You can see," he indicates the reception next to the conference room, "an employee sits here even on Saturdays. She takes orders up to midday."

This is possible, because Zosseder directs his trucks with precision by using telematics, and because they have four thousand five hundred containers. From the 240 litre dustbin up to the 40 cubic metre container for old wood. And this is where MEILLER comes into play. "We have been working together with MEILLER for over forty years. Why? MEILLER is a reliable partner, it delivers spare parts quickly, our "philosophies" fit perfectly together. The rule here is also," this statement seems to be important to Simon Zosseder jr., "MEILLER doesn't supply the cheapest superstructures, but the best compared to others. This is why we have fitted MEILLER superstructures on three quarters of our trucks. They don't have the right product range for the rest".

For some years now, Simon Zosseder jr. has even further intensified cooperation with MEILLER when he fulfilled a childhood dream with the "truck centre". Because maintenance and repair of his trucks by third parties became too expensive in the long run, he decided to buy a large hall in Wasserburg four years ago. It now contains a workshop, paintshop and washing bay – for own trucks and trucks from other companies. Half of them now come from outside. "In the truck centre we also fit on the superstructures that we or other hauliers need. MEILLER delivers the superstructures as skeletons, they are unpainted, only the naked superstructure. You must think of it as being like a construction kit. There is the truck from a certain manufacturer, then comes the superstructure ordered from MEILLER, and we build them together in the truck centre. Precisely according to customer specifications. With us, for example, every vehicle in waste disposal has a calibrated weighing machine, and you can't buy that off the shelf. We now install it ourselves." For the sake of completeness only, it should be mentioned that Zosseder has also been maintaining one of the four Bavarian central stores for 40,000 tons of road salt in Wasserburg for two years. In the autumn the company fleet then distributes the salt throughout the region – of course with tipper trailers from MEILLER.

Simon Zosseder jr.'s creativity seems to be inexhaustible. Only the company motto "Der oane für ois" (the one for everything) was not invented by him, but by an employee. And it fits.

(Author: Bernhard Greger)

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