Business / Companies

Zwilling stays at cutting edge of the kitchenware industry

By LIU XIANGRUI (China Daily) Updated: 2015-03-30 08:27

Schiffers joined Zwilling as the head of business development in 1996, after working for several years at the consulting firm A.T. Kearney.

According to Schiffers, his personal management style is very team-centered.

"To become and stay successful, you need dedicated and passionate colleagues at each level of the organization, especially at the interface with the consumers," he said.

China has become the biggest single market for the company globally.

While 88 percent of Zwilling's group sales are generated outside of Germany, China accounts for more than 25 percent of its total group sales. This share is expected to increase, Schiffers said.

Meanwhile, Zwilling is the biggest player in the country's premium stainless steel cookware market, whose estimated market value was 1 billion yuan ($161 million) in 2014.

After more than 20 years of development, China's cookware industry is gradually maturing.

With more than 1,300 relevant companies, the industry has maintained an overall average growth rate of 8 percent annually in the past years, according to a report in 2014 by, a website specializing in market analysis.

Products by Chinese manufacturers account for more than 90 percent of the total domestic market. Imported brands are mainly limited to the high-end market.

In the premium-level cookware market in China, Zwilling's main competitors include German brands Fissler and WMF.

Zwilling is launching more of its innovation projects in China, which, Schiffers believes, is important not only as a domestic market.

"Many Zwilling products were first developed there. This is a new approach. Once the product is successful in China, it can be also promoted to other regions," said Schiffers.

Catering to the specific needs of local consumers has contributed a lot to the company's success in China and globally, according to Schiffers.

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