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Helping in a crisis –
priority for medium-sized packaging companies

Horna, Wetropa and Schumacher Packaging supply manufacturers of medical equipment

Ebersdorf, Mörfelden and Grafenrheinfeld, 14th April 2020 +++ During this coronavirus period, small and medium-sized businesses in Germany have committed to ensuring that essential goods are supplied quickly and without bureaucracy. Three owner-run packaging specialists are a great example of this: Horna GmbH Verpackungen from Grafenrheinfeld, Wetropa Group from Mörfelden-Waldorf and Schumacher Packaging Group from Ebersdorf. Together, the three partners are working to make sure that the drastically increased packaging needs for medical products can be met as quickly as possible. Horna is a technical wholesaler for packaging products. When a German manufacturer of respiratory equipment asked Managing Director Thomas Horna whether he could quickly deliver packaging for several thousand devices – previously this corresponded to the entire annual production – the wholesaler pulled out all the stops. "Our partner, Schumacher Packaging, responded immediately, produced the required collapsible boxes as a priority and delivered them to the manufacturer within two days", reports Horna.

Growing demand for medical equipment packaging

In view of the coronavirus pandemic, Federal Health Minister Jens Spahn and the Robert Koch Institute are calling for a doubling of intensive care beds in Germany in order to be able to treat the increasing number of seriously ill Covid-19 patients in the best possible way. In the medical technology sector, this makes the supply of certain products particularly important. Being able to quickly ramp up production volumes and supply chains in this area is crucial during the crisis. Of course, the need for product and transport packaging grows alongside production volumes. Together, the three partners Horna (, Schumacher Packaging ( and Wetropa ( currently supply special packaging for the safe transport of lung diagnostic systems or acute dialysis machines, for example. Here too, demand has risen significantly as a result of the pandemic. For orders such as these, Horna as a wholesaler is in direct contact with the medical equipment manufacturers, Schumacher Packaging produces the matching cardboard boxes, and the foam processor Wetropa specialises in the individual inserts that safely enclose the sensitive equipment in transit and protect it from damage.

Owner-run companies are quick to react

"The small to medium business sector in particular includes many owner-run companies with short decision-making processes", explains Björn Schumacher, CEO of the Schumacher Packaging Group. "This is why we can now act very quickly in the crisis to strengthen the essential supply chains. We all support each other, no ifs or buts." Dirk Breitkreuz, CEO of the owner-run Wetropa Group, also underlines the special solution expertise and agility of the medium-sized companies in Germany: "Medical technology has always been a special challenge for us. This is why we focused on this sector at a very early stage, with individual bespoke packaging, rapid development and precision in production. In the current situation, it is not only the medical equipment manufacturers who benefit from this, but above all the patients who depend on these devices."

Medium-sized companies represent cohesion

Like his two partners, Thomas Horna, owner and managing director of Horna GmbH Verpackungen, emphasises the special role played by medium-sized companies in Germany and points out their willingness to assume responsibility: "We want to show people that medium-sized companies in particular are in a position to help quickly in emergency situations, without unnecessary bureaucracy. In our view, successful medium-sized businesses thrive on cooperation. The more companies get involved, the faster we will overcome this crisis." In view of the increased need for packaging and the huge importance of certain supply chains, Horna GmbH Verpackungen has also informed official bodies of its capabilities. "We just want to help overcome this crisis", says Thomas Horna. "This is why we have already offered our expertise in packaging to the state governments in Bavaria, Hesse and North Rhine-Westphalia."