The applied agricultural informatics he learnt at TUM were also indispensable for later founding a company: “In later years, I was introduced to IT by Anton Mangstl and Prof. Ludwig Reiner,” says Wimmer. “This had a big influence on my later professional life.” More important than the teaching content, however, was the extraordinary sense of community that the professors fostered: “I like to remember the close cohesion that existed between the students.”
Market leader among middle-sized companies
Starting up a company was not a typical thing for students to do in the 1980s, Wimmer recalls: “The university did not support my independent business endeavor at the time.” This made it all the more important to create a sense of cohesion within the team as well as a “corporate culture that is actually lived”. These important factors have made the laboratory the market leader in Europe and have secured Wimmer numerous awards. AGROLAB is now one of Germany’s so-called hidden champions: small and medium-sized companies that are quiet winners in their field or industry.
Work with enthusiasm
Wimmer set up his first laboratory for agricultural research with his first three employees in a former village school in Oberhummel in Upper Bavaria. The company expanded rapidly and in 2006 he moved the company headquarters to Bruckberg. Today, the AGROLAB GROUP has over 1,400 employees and 20 branches throughout Europe. Wimmer has the following advice for today’s generation: “Live your convictions and do not be afraid of risk. Even apparent obstacles can be overcome if you really want to and you work with enthusiasm.” And that’s how Wimmer finally made it.
Diploma Agricultural sciences 1985, Doctorate 1992
Almost immediately after graduating in 1986, Paul Wimmer founded his company AGROLAB Labor für landwirtschaftliche Untersuchungen GmbH. The private laboratory group, which started out with three employees, now has 1,400 employees in 20 offices all over Europe.
In 2009, AGROLAB received the “Bayern Best 50” prize for the first time and has won it multiple times since then. In 2014, the company was included in the top 100 of the SME sector for the fifth time in a row. In his spare time, Paul Wimmer breeds horses on his small stud farm.