Hermann Simon

World economy
Negative prices

In a context where profit is the ultimate goal, it would seem counterintuitive for businesses to pay someone to take their goods. But more and more the new phenomenon of negative pricing is starting to make sense.

Rethink your pricing strategy, now.

Sometimes increasing volume or cutting prices is a losing solution. Often the wisest things for a company is to simply increase prices. But it has to know how to do it.

Inside business
Germany's winning secret

Only about 1% of the world population is German. However, 48% of the mid-sized world market leaders come from Germany – as well as the term “hidden champions.”

Inside business
Leadership and innovation

Creating a friction-free culture of sharing that encourages collaboration with customers and ensures team continuity is the cornerstone of a new type of leadership, one which fosters innovation. 

Inside business
The delayed revolution

So much of our lives are consumed by activities that can now be done more conveniently online. From shopping for gifts to buying books, our daily routines are experiencing a major upheaval.

Inside business
Germany does not export

Manufacturing has long been one of Germany’s strong suits. A little semantic shift is enough to get a fresh perspective on what separates it from other economies.

Inside business
Why Germany needs the TTIP

When it comes to German exports, America is the week spot. Even though it’s a huge market, the Germans could be selling much more. The new TTIP trade agreement would facilitate Germany’s entry and establishment into the US market.

Inside business
Some clarifications about 2025

Everyone is gearing up for Asia to take over as leader of the world, both economically and politically. But a closer look at reality indicates that Transatlantica will still be going strong a decade from now.

Inside business
Putting the Global 500 into perspective

The growth of colossal companies, each producing as much as entire countries, has fascinated economic observers. But a closer look at the statistical dynamics tends to ignore the significant impact of smaller firms.

Inside business
More, more, but not too much

Increasing production would seem to be a good thing for businesses. But one of the most persistent problems, especially in mature economies, is overcapacity, which has the potential to disrupt many industries.

Inside business
Two train giants are better than one

China is about to create a monopoly out of two huge railroad companies. Despite economies of scale, this could, in the long run, hinder its competitiveness in the sector.

The sliding euro
Pricing euro-dollar parity

With a sharp drop in the euro’s value against the dollar exporters on both sides of the Atlantic are scrambling to find an optimum pricing formula for their products.

Germany’s bucolic expertise

Unlike most high-tech manufacturing countries, where know-how is concentrated in the major cities, Germany has a long tradition of decentralized rural nodes where specific engineering skills are applied and developed.

The new power center

Will Germany become an international power on par with countries many times its size? If certain economic indicators are valid, then it seems Berlin’s future will be bright and busy.

Germany does it different, and better

Does doing things differently mean doing them better? Not always, but in Germany’s case, what sets them apart is an important factor in keeping ahead of the competition.

Avoiding the dark
Poor Russia

Russia has exhibited a newfound political strength in the past year, and it has been more than willing to use it. But that strength does not seem to jibe with Russia’s many glaring economic problems.

De-globalized manufacturing
At your service

As products become more and more homogenous, service is what will give manufacturing companies a competitive edge. But to improve how a company behaves with its customers, it must instill a service approach in its personnel.

Too innovative, too productive


Is Germany to blame for Southern Europe’s misery? Not at all. A number of factors are the cause, and Germany, if anything, has served as an example of how an economy should adapt to changes.

Business culture
Making brain capital work

The inner workings of brain capital enterprises differ greatly from manufacturing companies or financial institutions, and they are rarely revealed. Here is an inside look at one of Europe’s most successful consulting firms.

Transatlantic relations
Asia can wait

While the world joins together in shifting its center of gravity toward Asia, a closer look at the indicators suggests that the transatlantic relationship between the United States and Europe will continue to hold sway well into the second quarter of the 21st century.

The secrets of Germany’s success

In recent decades industrial manufacturing has been shifting to Asia. Yet Germany remains an exporting powerhouse. A number of factors contribute to its preeminence in various industries, and as these factors are not easy to duplicate Germany should continue to prosper.

The dangerous innovation gulf

The number of patents issued to a given country is a good indication of that country’s innovativeness. A quick look at the discrepancies spells danger for the future of the European economy.

Wealth protection
The eclipse of trust

In a society where the atmosphere slides from civic harmony to cynical distrust, the first casualty is the smooth operation of institutions that assume people are not out to rip each other off.

Eurafrica vs. Chimerica

The Chinese and American economies have evolved a symbiotic relationship that has made each indispensible to the other. Now Europe and Africa need to develop a similar relationship.