R/€ = 17.06
R/$ = 14.96
Au 1272.27 $/oz
Pt 1058.50 $/oz
Dec 03, 2004
Full name: Helmuth Hermann Fischer
Position: MD of CBI since 1989
Main activity of the company: Manufacturing of low-voltage switchgear
Date and place of birth: September 13, 1947 in Eiterfeld, Germany
Education: Wigbertschule Huenfeld, Abitur 1966; Technical University Darmstadt, masters degree mechanical engineering 1972; Technical University Munich, masters degree industrial engineering 1974
First job: BASF, staff position in logistics consulting, 1974 to 1980
Size of first pay packet: DM36 000 a year
First job with present group: Manager manufacturing coordination, 1984 to 1989
Value of assets under your control: R250-million
Number of people under your leadership: 1 740
Management style: “Enlightened authoritarian”
Personal best achievements: World speed record in soaring over a distance of 1 000 km, winning the Barron Hilton Cup (for soaring) for South Africa against Australia
Professional best achievement: Having grown CBI substantially
Person who has had the biggest influence on your life: A friend of mine from student times
Person who has had the biggest influence on your career: Mr WE Wilckens, previous MD of CBI (then still known as Heinemann Electric)
Person you would most like to meet: Nelson Mandela
Businessperson who has impressed you most: Mr WE Wilckens
Philosophy of life: If you do something, apply yourself and do it right, or don’t do it at all
Biggest ever opportunity: Leading a South African company out of isolation to becoming a global player
Biggest ever disappointment: Having missed out on a large international acquisition opportunity
Hope for the future: That South Africa maintains political stability and that the government understands one day that there is a tremendous goodwill among whites to assist in building up the country to its full potential
Favourite reading: Everything concerning wildlife and aviation
Favourite TV programme: National Geographic and Discovery channels on DStv
Favourite food/drink: Sushi and sashimi, Lagavulin single malt whisky
Favourite music: Classics in general, Beethoven in particular
Favourite sport: Soaring, hunting, wildlife photography and filming
Car: Toyota Land Cruiser stationwagon and Land Cruiser Prado, Mitsubishi Colt bakkie
Pets: Koi fish, hundreds of antelope on a game ranch in the Kalahari which is currently developed as a retirement place and a hunting enterprise to keep an active mind busy after retirement
Miscellaneous dislikes: Skin on hot milk
Favourite other South African company: SA Breweries
Favourite foreign company: Schneider Electric
Married: Isoline Deborah Hough, October 25, 1986
Clubs: Country Club Johannesburg, Magalies Gliding Club, Lowveld Hunters Association, Endangered Wildlife Trust
Edited by: Zonika Botha
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