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Honorary Doctorate for Professor Thomas J.C. Matzen24.10.2014 - (idw) NIT Northern Institute of Technology Management gGmbH
At an official ceremony the Hamburg University of Technology (TUHH) has awarded Professor Thomas J.C. Matzen an honorary doctorate in economics and social science (Dr. rer. pol. h.c.). The award was made in recognition of his pioneering work on management buyouts and his outstanding services to students and young scientists at TUHH and the Northern Institute of Technology Management (NIT). A proven economic expert, he has passed on his knowledge for years as a professor to students at TUHH and the affiliated NIT. In his lectures on business planning and career management Professor Matzen shares his experience and knowledge gained as an entrepreneur.
TUHH President Professor Garabed Antranikian himself presented the full-blooded entrepreneur Matzen with his degree certificate. It was the seventh time in TUHHs history that it has awarded an honorary doctorate. The laudatory speech was given by Dr. Hartmut Dietrich of the Hamburg legal practice Huth Dietrich Hahn, who focused as a friend and legal adviser on the award-winners lifetime achievements. Prof. Matzen, he said, is a pioneer in the truest sense of the word in the field of management buyouts. In the mid-1980s he entered uncharted territory. He set out with a plentiful supply of equity (that is: a fund) and a great deal of bank financing (that is: leverage) to buy small and mid-range enterprises in collaboration with the management, to increase their enterprise value by means of intensive support, and then to sell them on successfully, wherever possible on the stock exchange. Within a few years the management buyout came into its own in Germany as an instrument. Today, Dr. Dietrich said, it is the established tool of the entire private equity trade.
In addition to his success as an entrepreneur his first-rate teaching competence is renowned. In his well-attended lectures Professor Matzen, himself a business management graduate, has passed on his knowledge and experience to what have already been more than 1,000 students. Three years ago he won the Best Teacher Award at NIT. It was thanks to his generous support that the Entrepreneurial Management specialization was set up at NIT. He has also supported NIT from the outset by delivering pro-bono lectures. On NITs behalf NIT President Professor Otto von Estorff paid tribute to the work of Thomas J.C. Matzen and insisted on presenting his fellow-professor with an original mortarboard.
Prof. Matzen himself took the opportunity of acquainting guests and scientists with ideas and suggestions that he felt to be important. His talk was entitled Entrepreneurs Shape the Future And What Do We Do? In it he took, inter alia, a critical look at Germanys status as a so-called world champion innovator, its small and midrange enterprises, and the German startup scene. The economic experts conclusion sounded a sobering note. Germany, he said, has fallen short of what it could accomplish, especially in the area of digitization. What is wrong is the entitlement mentality. We must want to shape the digital leap in technology as one of the leading nations to do so and not merely to manage the achievements of the past. Where we fall short is in the desire to make as much progress as possible. Professor Matzen praised TUHH, which had grown by leaps and bounds as a founder university in recent years. Yet his critical look as an entrepreneur made him ask at the same time: But is that enough? Do we have the right attitude toward TUHH? Ought our aim not to be to become one of the international founder universities?
At this point at the latest it was clear what a farsighted advisor TUHH can count among its supporters.
The successful entrepreneur Dipl.-Kfm. Thomas J.C. Matzen, born in 1949, worked after studying business management at the University of Hamburg for the auditing company Arthur Andersen, then moved to EFFEM, a member of the U.S. Mars, Inc. Group, and to Corporate Services in Brussels. In 1986 he joined the management of J. Henry Schroder Unternehmensberatung GmbH in Hamburg, acquiring its equity in 1989 and converting it into his own company, Thomas J.C. Matzen GmbH, in 1990. Many transactions have been completed since the mid-1990s, such as converting firms into stock corporations. Ex-Cell-O AG, Richard Schoeps AG, Eurobike, and Kleindienst Datentechnik AG are examples of these successful transactions. Thomas J.C. Matzen is seen in Germany as the father of the management buyout. He is also one of the most successful founders of new and successful enterprises in Germany.
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