Grow East Congress 2013

5th Grow East Congress 2013

“How to manage complexity in Central and Eastern Europe“

May 16, 2013

Congress Website

Program & Registration:

Congress Venue
Rainers Hotel Vienna, Gudrunstraße 184, 1100 Vienna

Congress Theme
Doing business in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) has become increasingly complex in the last years. On the one hand, this complexity results from structural factors such as the fragmentation of the region and cultural variety - aspects that already existed before. But there is also a change in the managerial perception of the region. Before the global financial and economic crisis foreign investors were convinced that given the high growth rates there is steady progress in the economic catching-up to West European standards. Although some economies were more advanced in this process than others they were all heading in the same direction and foreign multinationals could repeat their successful entry strategies and product roll-outs country by country. In the not too distant future this would mean the full absorption of CEE into the integrated European market with similar consumption, trade and competitive structures.

Since the economic downturn shattered the growth image of the region and laid bare the macroeconomic and institutional weaknesses we can observe a growing divergence in economic developments between Central and South-Eastern Europe and even within sub-regions. Management has to say goodbye to the notion that one standardized strategy and organizational model will fit all those emerging markets. What is needed is a more differentiated approach that considers those differences in the countries' economies, in their political and business environments, in market and competitive developments as well as in local businesses' market positions and performances. To stay competitive companies have to respond with strategies, organizational arrangements and leadership styles that take into account these new constellations.

At this congress we will look at the heterogeneity in the region and discuss how companies operating in the region deal with this complexity in managing the region. Speakers from Amrop-Jenewein, GfK Market Research, Henkel CEE, Kotanyi, Mediacom, ÖBB-Austrian Railways and Salesianer Miettex will shed light on the issue from different industry backgrounds. Martin Ehl, Chief-Editor of the leading Czech business paper "Hospodarske Noviny" and winner of the Bank Austria "Writing for CEE 2012"-Award will talk about "Political Complexity versus Economic Development in CEE".

Target Group
Business managers, marketing and sales executives of national and international companies and consultants with focus on Central, South-Eastern and Eastern Europe. Furthermore academics and business students with interest in the economic region of CEE.

Congress Organizers
The GROW EAST CONGRESS is a joint project of Dr. Manfred Berger, former CEO of Draftfcb Partners and founder of NEUSICHT Think Tank, and Dr. Arnold Schuh, Director of the Competence Center for CEE at WU Vienna. This is already the fifth congress since 2007. The main goal of this congress series is to provide insights into the current developments in the emerging Europe and to highlight the challenges international and local companies face when expanding into and penetrating CEE markets. GROW EAST offers a platform for the exchange of ideas and experiences between representatives of companies operating in CEE, academics and business students with a strong interest in the emerging markets of this region.