Business - 04/July/2019

How a sustainable vision led an old company to a new future

If you go into a transition you need a vision

Belgian company Umicore is a case study in how an old fashioned firm that for two centuries made its living from resource extraction transformed into a future-fit enterprise with sustainability at its heart, producing products essential to the energy transition


Changing vision: Umicore started out in the nineteenth century as a leader in the world of zinc refining. Today its focus is high-tech materials for sustainable mobility

Key to success: Sticking to a long-term vision even when the going gets tough

Wise words: You can be both a low-carbon economy leader and profitable at the same time


Egbert Lox loves chemistry. A chemical engineer, he has been senior vice president for government affairs at Belgian firm Umicore for the past six years and with the company for more than twice that time while it reinvented itself for the energy transition. A publicly traded enterprise with 10,000 staff, Umicore describes itself today as a global materials technology and recycling group.

Thanks to a series of visionary CEOs, the company has gone from miner and smelter to high-tech materials supplier for sustainable mobility. It makes exhaust cleaning systems for cars, materials for lithium-ion batteries and fuel cells and recycles them all. ...

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