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07 May 2024

FEX 2024: Meeting the exporters

The Future of Export Finance initiative recently held its annual exporter meeting in Heidenheim. This year, the technology company Voith played host to FEX's German chapter. As always, the event was aimed at fostering closer ties between export finance professionals and debating the latest industry trends.

On 17 and 18 April 2024, the German chapter of Future of Export Finance (FEX) held its annual exporter meeting, which aims to bring together young professionals in the export finance community. This year’s event, hosted by the global technology company Voith in Heidenheim, Germany, drew a record number of participants with more than 50 representatives from financial institutions, exporters and Euler Hermes in attendance.

In traditional fashion, the event focused on exchanging information on market trends and current challenges facing banks and exporters while also providing a forum for interactive discussions and fostering informal links across the industry.

Hosts Matthias Wiedenmann and Sophia Hirsch (Voith) kicked off the program with an overview of Voith's product offering across the Group Divisions Hydro (hydropower), Turbo (drive technology) and Paper (papermaking), highlighting that "there is no getting around Voith in everyday life.” Notably, one third of the paper produced worldwide comes from a machine made by the Swabian technology company.  A quarter of the energy generated worldwide from hydropower is produced with turbines and generators from Voith Hydro. Voith’s drive components are found in applications all over the world, both in industrial plants and in road and rail vehicles, as well as on the waters.

Staying true to Voith’s DNA of “sustainable technologies for future generations”, the agenda honed in on mega trends such as the impact of digitalisation and decarbonisation. Supported by input from various presenters on specific subjects such as contracting abroad, the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD), Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Duty (CSDDD) and Roadmap Sustainable Finance, discussions centred around the implications of sustainability-related regulation and the importance of ESG in financing and investment decisions. 

Rounding off the program, FEX members had the opportunity to continue the conversation over dinner and were treated to a three-hour tour of Voith’s production facilities the following day. The latter provided insights into the production process as well as important context for the theoretical part of the agenda.

Once again, the FEX exporter meeting proved to be an invaluable opportunity for the younger generation of bankers and exporters to exchange ideas, gain new insights and make new contacts. Many thanks to Voith for organising the program and providing the premises. Another edition of the FEX exporter meeting is set to take place in 2025 with the hosting company to be nominated soon.

The FEX initiative, founded by Dominik Kloiber, Christine Jordan and Oliver Roth, brings together young professionals from exporters and ECAs alike to extend FEX as a network-platform for the new generation in export finance to exchange their experiences and ideas.

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