Leistungen // Laterales Management

german online heavyweight on growth course

On the Bertelsmann-Stiftung’s website it says under Topics that the foundation focuses on shaping democracy, improving education, strengthening the economy, advancing society, promoting health and vitalising culture. This pool of studies is not only used by many social scientists. We at the Denkwerkstatt have also been using this research in the area of demographics for years because it is amongst the best in the German-speaking world.

The studies published by the Bertelsmann-Stiftung on digitalisation are far less well-known. One example is Six Scenarios for Germany's labour market, which appeared in March 2016, where the importance of digitalisation is described as follows: “Digitalisation is already turning the labour market upside down. What might the general conditions for people, companies and politicians be like if this trend continues to gain momentum in Germany? Labour market experts and experts from the digital industry have mapped out six possible scenarios for this.“

Worldwide Amazon has the edge

Bertelsmann is not only concerned with digitalisation from the point of view of socio-scientific research. Its subsidiary Arvato Supply Change Management (Arvato SCM) develops platforms for e-commerce. Everyone is familiar with the online platforms Amazon, eBay or Zalando, which mainly focus on controlling two processes, namely analysing the behaviour of online customers and how they use the platform and controlling a merchandise management system so that the goods reach the customer.

Amazon is best at controlling the worldwide digital supply chain, but only for its own companies. Arvato develops the supply chains for a whole raft of online companies and, for example, offers its services creating complete digital supply chains to new customers from the fashion and cosmetics industries. Currently it is building a new logistics centre for this purpose at the industrial estate in Dorsten/Marl.

The company now has a global workforce of around 14,000 people, approximately sixty percent of which are based in Germany and the rest mainly in France and the US. Sales amount to a good 1.5 billion euros and are set to increase. Arvato is anticipating double digit growth rates in the coming years. Even large digital players such as Deutsche Telekom and the German digital book trade now use Arvato. It just goes to show how things can change – once upon a time bookselling was Bertelsmann's core business.