Historic festivities: ten years of fascinating automobile assembly
“Die Gläserne Manufaktur” began their ten year anniversary in a record year.
Dresden, 10 December 2011 | An opening ceremony with 250 guests from business, politics and the arts on 10 December marked the start of a year of festivities to celebrate the 10 year anniversary of “Die Gläserne Manufaktur”. Among the guests were Professor Kurt Biedenkopf, who was also present at the opening of “Die Gläserne Manufaktur” on 11 December 2001, and the former Mayor of Dresden, Herbert Wagner.
Musical accompaniment was provided by the Staatskapelle Dresden, under the direction of Christian Thielemann. In his address, Chief Executive of Volkswagen AG Professor Martin Winterkorn described “Die Gläserne Manufaktur” as a “figurehead for the Volkswagen brand and for Germany’s reputation as a leading automotive manufacturer” and celebrated the Phaeton success story: “the Phaeton adds to the Volkswagen brand’s prestigious image”. Saxony’s Minister-President Stanislaw Tillich also praised “Die Gläserne Manufaktur”, declaring it unique worldwide and describing it as a “particularly precious jewel” in Saxony’s “jewellery box”. He also thanked Professor Martin Winterkorn for the automotive manufacturer’s extensive contribution to the state of Saxony. The company plans to invest a further €2.5 million in Saxony’s Volkswagen production plants by 2016.
Over the last few years, around 60,000 Phaeton have rolled off the production line at “Die Gläserne Manufaktur”, with more than 10,000 in 2011 alone. This success is partly due to increasing demand in Asian markets and, in particular, China. China’s most successful Phaeton importer Cheng Gang was a guest of honour at the evening’s proceedings. He has already sold 1,000 Phaetons to Chinese customers and he revealed his secret to success to moderator Markus Lanz during a panel discussion at the end of the festivities. In short, Gang owes much of his success to a special service concept. Lanz also spoke to the architect responsible for “Die Gläserne Manufaktur”, Professor Gunter Henn, who reminisced about the various challenges that were successfully overcome to integrate the production plant into its sensitive surroundings. For example, conservation concerns about the endangered hermit beetle nearly halted construction, but the beetles have thrived since the completion of the project.
In an ode to the Phaeton, the Graf von Unheilig paid tribute to the car’s exceptional comfort with two songs, which he performed unplugged.
Dresden, 17 December 2011 | A week later “Die Gläserne Manufaktur” invited Phaeton customers and successful Phaeton distributers to a grand-scale anniversary gala. Guests came from all over Germany, as well as England, France, Italy, Russia and China. They were greeted by hosts Werner Eichhorn, the Head of Sales and Marking in Germany, and Hans-Joachim Rothenpieler, Managing Director of “Die Gläserne Manufaktur”.
The gala kicked off with a performance by opera singer Tichina Vaughn and DJ Guido La Vespa, who created an exciting blend of classical opera and modern DJ styles that was true to the evening’s motto: Tradition - Innovation - Passion.
The evening was presented by Barbara Schöneberger, who pulled surprise guest Roger Cicero up on stage after the anniversary cake had been cut, and drew the winners of the raffle shortly before midnight. Thanks to enthusiastic participation in the raffle, the hosts were able to present a €15,000 cheque to both Dresdner Tafel e. V. and Sonnenstrahl e. V. Dresden.
Images of both events are available in the gallery above.
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