Preserve the tried and tested, rise to new challenges

In a rapidly changing world, companies need to evolve without losing their identity. Christoph Müller and Simone Findeis explain how Alfred Müller AG approaches this issue.

How important is it for a company to have the will for change and a readiness to embark on new adventures?

Christoph Müller: If nothing changes, we stagnate. Constant change is often not immediately apparent. We are constantly evolving, looking ahead and moving forward as a strong, continuously improving team.

Simone Findeis: Any large-scale project at a new location will always be a challenge. We also continue to give thought to our portfolio, for example. At present, we have 80 percent office and commercial buildings, while the other 20 percent are residential properties. In the future, we aim to increase the proportion of residential buildings; this will entail changes at various levels.

Alfred Müller AG is a family business that is firmly rooted in the region. Will these firm roots make new departures easier?

CM: We are perceived as down-to-earth and build properties with a long lifespan. What's more, we don't follow every fashion trend. Our aim is to ensure that our customers enjoy our products and services in the long term. We are open to new things, but the tried and tested is just as important. It's the foundation of our corporate success, and also creates opportunities for us to evolve.

SF: Our slogan, "Preserve the tried and tested, rise to new challenges," reflects this basic idea. Alfred Müller AG is traditional, stable and solid, but has always risen to new challenges throughout its history and will continue to dare to strike new paths in the future.

How important are consistency and reliability – which are also Alfred Müller AG trademarks?

SF: In my opinion, they are becoming increasingly important. Not only in terms of our products, but also with regard to our customers and partners. With us, you know what you're getting. That's one of our strengths.

CM: It isn't just about consistency and reliability, it's also about values in general. Especially in times of great change and crisis, they provide support, both internally and externally. We live our values – and seek out partners who also share them. People and personal aspects are important to us. We enjoy working with tried-and-tested individuals and companies.

In the course of its history, Alfred Müller AG has repeatedly embarked on new adventures and set milestones. What are the company's current milestones?

CM: For some years now, we have offered large new-build commercial properties, production facilities or indoor tennis centres for long-term rent. Our Quadrolith office building, which features highly innovative architectural characteristics, has become a special landmark in Baar. In 1979, we built the Herti, the tallest high-rise building in Zug at a time when such edifices were still unusual in Central Switzerland. We're currently planning an unusual high-rise building in Zurich.Another milestone was certainly when external people joined the management team for the first time about ten years ago.

SF: In my opinion, the Allmig building is one of the milestones. Every year, we recycle 25,000 tonnes of biogenic waste from the municipalities of the canton of Zug and use it to produce renewable energy, compost and soil substrates. The photovoltaic system on the roof of the Allmig is one of the largest in the canton of Zug. We produce enough electricity at the Allmig to supply a total of 1,400 households.

«Our goal is to be the partner of choice for high-quality real estate solutions in Switzerland.»

Christoph Müller, Chairman of the Board of Directors

In which areas is Alfred Müller AG at a point of departure?

CM: We are pursuing various projects as part of progressive digitalisation. We have set up a client portal for residential properties, for example. One goal is to increase sustainability in energy consumption by monitoring our buildings. We are also tackling new construction projects, such as creating a façade with integrated photovoltaics at our high-rise project in Zurich.

SF: The further development of our branches in French-speaking Switzerland and the Ticino is an important step for us. We have reinforced our local teams, recently acquired very attractive land reserves in those parts of the country, and have also been able to implement some interesting projects.

«Every major project at a new location always means a challenge.»

Simone Findeis, CEO

Do the current situation and the changes in society and the market call for a fresh start?

SF: In our corporate strategy, developments in society and the market are important influencing factors. The shortage of skilled workers, for example, is also affecting us. We also intend to ensure that we remain an attractive employer in the future. This is one of seven success factors in our corporate strategy, which we pursue with vigour.

CM: As a real estate company with a long-term time horizon for our products, we do not want to react immediately to every change in society and the market. It is more about a fundamental attitude. Our values are important to us; they are the compass of our actions. We must also work to stay fit at all times. You should be happy when you're successful and appreciate your achievement. But the next day you go on again, optimise and move forward.

As a rule, new beginnings pursue an objective. Where is Alfred Müller AG heading?

CM: Our goal is to be the partner of choice for high-quality real estate solutions in Switzerland. We are the real estate professionals and develop, build, rent, sell. manage and renovate high-quality living and working spaces. We are guided by our values: We are humane, solid and committed. Honesty, passion and competence are what set us apart. We take a long-term view, make careful use of resources and are committed to society.