Birthday Reception Hot runner visionary celebrates his 80th birthday

From MA Alexander Stark

Germany — Courage, diligence and innovative spirit, these are the cornerstones on which Herbert Günther's life's work is built. The company founder of Günther Heisskanaltechnik celebrated his 80th birthday on 1 November 2021 by hosting a large reception.

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Hot runner visionary Herbert Günther was honoured with a special reception on his 80th birthday on 1 November 2021.
Hot runner visionary Herbert Günther was honoured with a special reception on his 80th birthday on 1 November 2021.
(Source: Günther)

From a barn to an internationally active and technology-leading company. True to the motto “Accepting challenges and setting standards”, Herbert Günther was already ahead of his time when he founded his company in 1983. The passionate entrepreneur has remained true to this credo even in a market characterised by economic fluctuations. With success: today, Günther employs more than 230 people at its Frankenberg site and is one of the technology leaders in the plastics processing industry.

What began as a small business with two employees in a barn grew from year to year. “I wanted to realise my own ideas. I wanted to work with people who had the desire to make a difference,” the jubilarian recalls the motives for founding the company. It all started with the development of a hot runner nozzle in the 5-volt segment - today, Günther fulfils all requirements from consulting and planning to manufacturing and commissioning of complex hot and cold runner systems. “The early days in my own company were characterised by 16-hour days - I was a designer, fitter, salesman and service employee at the same time. It was not foreseeable back then that we would be in such a position today, and there was still a certain uncertainty,” Herbert Günther recalls his beginnings. Today, Herbert Günther is regarded as a visionary and maker - and he has lived up to this reputation time and again in recent years.

When it comes to processing technically high-quality, filled or flame-retardant plastics, Günther today sets standards in precision and economy. Known for customised system solutions, the technology leader in the field of hot runner and cold runner technology also serves the market with mature standard systems, which always provide the technological basis for special solutions. The path to this goal has been thorny, but also instructive, as the jubilarian remembers. His company has not only experienced all the development stages of hot runner technology at first hand, but has also played an active role in shaping them, as numerous patents and new applications prove. The most important milestone in the recent past was the idea for the Blue Flow nozzle. Herbert Günther and his team around Siegrid Sommer did not let themselves be discouraged by the ten years of development time and held on to this idea. With success: In 2010, this revolutionary nozzle technology was presented to the public at the international K plastics trade fair. Today, Blue Flow heating technology is used in more than 40 percent of hot runner nozzles. And the technology leader from Frankenberg is constantly looking for further fields of application for this new technology, even away from the classic hot runner business. “If you want to survive on the market in the long term, you always have to be one step ahead. Continuous innovation is the key to success.” In this context, innovation does not mean taking advantage of trends, but actively shaping trends, says Herbert Günther. A credo that also drives today's Günther employees.

Herbert Günther has tackled many new topics over the years. Today, he is the owner and chairman of the advisory board of a global high-tech company that is considered a technology leader in the plastics processing industry. He is recognised not only for his farsightedness, but also for his courage to embrace change, as well as his commitment and assertiveness. “He was never the typical manager looking for quick success. Rather, he is a value-oriented entrepreneur who very successfully brings the virtues of down-to-earthness and tradition to the fore with the indispensable willingness to change and market orientation,” is how Günther Managing Director Siegrid Sommer characterised the jubilarian in her speech on his 80th birthday.

As down-to-earth as he was when he and his wife Kriemhild Günther made the decision to found the company together, so are the wishes the 80-year-old has for the future: “Above all, I wish for good health - for me, my family, our employees and our company.” Herbert Günther has been married to his wife Kriemhild since 1969 and the couple lives in Rennertehausen, where the graduate engineer set up his own production facility in a barn in 1983.

It is also important to the founder of Günther Heisskanaltechnik that the company remains a family-run business and is not controlled by corporations. Thus, his life's work will always remain an “advertisement” for the business location Waldeck-Frankenberg.