Top News
Check latest news Read →

Dr. Reinhard Preiss visits Pakistan

Dr. Reinhard Preiss visits Pakistan

                             “Business leaders should not be influenced too much by what the media says”— Dr. Reinhard Preiss


Dr. Reinhard Preiss is the Head of International Business Management & Development for TUV Austria Holding (TUVAT), a Vienna, Austria based Testing, Inspection and Certification company. An inspiring business leader with a rich background in Management, Engineering, Process Safety, Risk Analysis Techniques in Engineering and Pressure Vessel & Plant Design, Dr. Reinard Preiss  is considered an authority in his field of work by many, including prestigious Austrian Universities such as the Vienna University of Applied Sciences and the Vienna University of Technology  where he is a part of the visiting faculty. He is also the  upcoming recipient of the Medal of Honor from the Government of Austria for his immense contribution in the field of Engineering.

Companies such as the one Dr. Preiss represents ensure the safety of millions of people in the workplace. With thousands of employees worldwide, TUV Austria’s services has more than 300 areas of service expertise fields of industrial services, in particular elevator testing, pressure equipment, medical and electrical engineering, plant safety, monitoring, IT security, management consulting, insurance services as well as training & further education, pressure devices (boilers, pressure vessels, cylinders and fittings), automotive, cable ways, communications technology, cranes, electrical engineering, environmental management systems , explosion protection,  fire protection, lightning protection,  machinery , materials & welding, personnel certification , playground, sports & leisure equipment, personal protective equipment, quality management and stage equipment to name a few. During his recent visit to Pakistan, he spoke to Adeel Makhdumi about his experience in Pakistan and TUV Austria’s acquisition of Moodys Pakistan.


Rashid Mehr , General Manager TUV AUSTRIA Bureau of Inspection and Certification (Pvt.) Limited – Pakistan, Dr. Reinhard Preiss, Head of International Business Development, TÜV AUSTRIA

Rashid Mehr , General Manager TUV AUSTRIA Bureau of Inspection and Certification (Pvt.) Limited – Pakistan, Dr. Reinhard Preiss, Head of International Business Development, TÜV AUSTRIA

So, what brings you to Pakistan?

Reinhard Preiss:  “Business! But it’s not my first time. Over the years I have started liking the country and I enjoy good relations with people here.”

How many times have you been to Pakistan? Tell us about your relationship with Pakistan.

RP: “It’s my fifth trip. I always have a good feeling when here. I like the people I work with. The hospitality is great. I plan to visit again many times.”

How would you rate business opportunities in Pakistan for companies such as the one you represent?

RP: “Pakistan is an emerging country. I am convinced that it will become more stable with time, hence leading to even better opportunity. If you have a strong local partnership, like we do, it helps – I think that the opportunities here will become much better once the security issue gets better.”

What were the key factors behind TUV Austria Holding to acquire Moodys International in Pakistan and not in other countries?

RP: “Moodys was acquired by Intertek in general. At the same time, Mr Mehr, a major shareholder of Moody in Pakistan was weighing his options regarding his next move. He was in touch with some companies and luckily he was in touch with someone in Germany who knew about our company. He introduced us and our relationship developed and we came in.”

When you were finalising the deal in Pakistan, what were your major concerns and what were you hoping for? Did you do what is commonly known as a SWOT analysis? If yes, please summarise your initial findings.

 RP: “We are not followers of a conventional SWOT analysis methodology. We use a tool that we developed in house. It is called a ‘Relative Investment Ranking Tool’. With this tool, a lot of factors, including economic stability etc. are calculated. More than 40 to 45 factors give us an outcome in the form of a score in three main sections i.e. Strategy, economics, and operations. In this case, the outcome was a nice high score. However, the tool gives both positive and negative aspects of the input. Positives scores in this case were on strategy, locations (we intended to enter the South Asian market), profits, professionalism of Mr. Mehr, his team and a service portfolio that fitted perfectly with what we already had and were interested to develop. The negatives were the security factor, a bureaucracy that might be a burden, Pakistan’s ranking with the World Bank and a reputation of corruption – however the most important thing was that I was sure the partner here is reliable. I do not ignore my feeling and after I had met Mr. Mehr and his team, I had a strong feeling that this will work out in a proper way.”

So far, has the return on investment been anywhere close to what you envisioned.

RP: “Economically our expectations have exceeded in Pak rupees, however, due to the devaluation of the Rupee, the overall profits in euros are slightly below what we had hoped for. But we are still in good profit.”

You have selected Pakistan as the Head Office for the region that includes Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. What factors influenced this decision the most? Do you intend to facilitate to add more countries to increase the sphere of influence of Lahore?

RP: “We had a very strong entity in Pakistan under the leadership of Mr. Rashid Mehr, and of course operations in other countries will be headed by a strong entity. We intend to expand Lahore’s influence in the future for sure which may include some other regional countries.”

How does the unconstructive image of Pakistan in Europe make it difficult to convince your shareholders to invest in Pakistan?

RP: “Some efforts were required to convince them, but since our CEO was very open minded, he supported the idea. Moreover, in our Supervisory Board there is a very strong presence of OMV (an Austrian based Oil and Gas company) which already has a great deal of presence in Pakistan. This made it relatively easier to convince others.  Additionally, we are not a listed company, therefore do not have public share holding. We invest 100 percent of our profits in our people and services. This is a very stable business approach I believe. All these factors, along with Mr. Mehr and his team’s professional approach made it all possible. By the way, business leaders should not be influenced too much by what the media says. It is much better to judge yourself, talk to people who have done business in that country. That’s a much better approach.”

Did you face any major difficulties when setting up a business in Pakistan due to a corrupt bureaucratic system?

RP: “Not due to corruption, but just slow and complicated, in fact, useless complicated bureaucratic procedures.”

Tell us briefly about TUV Austria Holding, its offices, personnel, vision and mission.

RP: “An international group in the TIC Sector (Testing, Inspection and Certification) with our Head Office in Vienna, Austria.  It is active in almost 40 countries worldwide with thousands of employees, mostly highly qualified engineers, auditors and inspectors. Our mission is to provide inspection, testing and certification services of the highest quality to the satisfaction of our customers. Our vision is to be amongst the 10 largest TIC Sector companies worldwide by 2020.”

Which continent has been the most lucrative for you up till now? 

RP: “Europe.

 What is your vision for TUV Austria in Pakistan?

RP: “To be the largest and the most successful in the region within our sector of business.  We want to develop our services according to local needs. We also want to help and raise standards in the region when it comes to quality and safety. We want to spend in Pakistan’s long-term development.  We would like invest in education, like may be, sponsor a school and cultural activities. We are not here to earn money only. This for me is a social project as well.”

Leave A Reply