Our Cooperative

report of the executive board

The board members from left to right: 
Birger T. Aasland (Executive Board Member Market | Distribution) and Dr. Stefan Touchard (Executive Board Member Finance | Controlling)

Dear Members,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

the overall economic situation in Germany in 2022 was marked by the consequences of the war in Ukraine and the associated extreme increases in energy prices. Added to this were exacerbated material and supply bottlenecks, massively rising prices, for example for electronic components, as well as the shortage of skilled workers and the ongoing Corona pandemic, although it eased over the course of the year. Despite these still difficult conditions, the German economy nevertheless held up well overall in 2022; according to initial calculations by the Federal Statistical Office, price-adjusted gross domestic product (GDP) was 1.8% higher in 2022 than in the previous year at around 3.86 trillion euros (Destatis).

A strong group of companies. Impulses and solutions for tomorrow.

The digital industry also proved very stable in an environment marked by war, disrupted supply chains and inflation, and continued to focus on growth. This also had a positive effect on GFT's revenue development in its anniversary year: For the first time, a new important revenue threshold was exceeded with centrally invoiced revenue of € 145.2m (previous year: € 129.7m). The growth continues across all quarters and business areas. The total distribution for 2022 is €4.3 million. The main focus of the total distribution is the suppliers' merchandise bonus with a share of 72 %, followed by the cooperative merchandise reimbursement (21 %) and the DFÜ bonus (7 %). Through the acquisition of new member companies in and outside Germany and the merger of members into larger units, the membership base increased to a total of 192 members in the past financial year. Through the cooperation agreement concluded in November 2022 with expert Technik SE & Co. KG, Langenhagen, concluded in November 2022, GFT will admit further shareholders of expert Technik as members in the course of 2023.

Economic development is one thing, but much more important in today's networked economy is belonging to a strong GFT group that consistently represents the interests and economic requirements of its members vis-à-vis its supplier partners, while at the same time providing impetus and solutions for tomorrow. This has been the mission of the cooperative GFT group for 50 years now. With our Cloud/Pbx platform, we will set new trends in our industry and offer our members the opportunity to position themselves vis-à-vis their customers as telecommunications service providers in their region. And the most important thing is: our members always remain "masters of their customer relationship".

One of the highlights of the past year was certainly the 50th anniversary of GFT eG, which we celebrated extensively at the joint GFT/VAF autumn conference at the end of September with around 200 participants at the "Museum für Kommunikation" in Berlin. We communicated and "networked" until the early hours of the morning. The event was again accompanied by a trade fair of our suppliers as well as an interesting technical programme from the fields of ITC and security technology.

After 21 years of service, long-time Board member Rudolf H. Saken retired. Birger Thoralf Aasland was appointed as the new Board Member for Market + Distribution and has since led the cooperative together with Dr. Stefan Touchard.

With 23.5 million members and more than 900,000 employees, the 7,000 cooperatives are a driving force for the economy and society in Germany today. Traders, craftsmen and other medium-sized entrepreneurs work together in cooperatives to achieve economies of scale. This enables them to compete with market-powerful corporations. The cooperative lends itself when economic actors want to join forces and benefit from the advantages of cooperation without giving up their independence. This is increasingly happening among freelancers, in the areas of care and new forms of housing, in local supply, in the area of education and precisely in the production and distribution of renewable energy.

Cooperatives from a wide range of sectors are a model of success - and have been for over 170 years. As in the 70s of the last century, GFT will also increasingly grow into new business fields in which our members are active. In the last quarter, for example, we added the area of "photovoltaics" as a further business field, as demand is steadily increasing, particularly due to political developments. This is exactly what we see as the task of a strong association of companies: To give impulses and provide solutions for tomorrow for our members. This is precisely the cooperative mission of GFT!

In the area of promoting young talent, GFT has taken on the sponsorship of the "Freie Aktive Schule (FASW)" in Wülfrath to found the first student cooperative. As a sponsor cooperative, GFT supports the students in setting up and operating their student cooperative.

We would like to express our appreciation and heartfelt thanks for the trust you have placed in us during the 2022 financial year and hope to see you again in person at our spring conference in Travemünde from 27th up to 28th of April 2023.


Hilden, 8th of March 2023

+1,8 %

GDP will grow in 2022.

+12 %

GFT increases revenue by 12% to € 145.2m.

4,3 Mio. €

will be distributed by GFT to its members for the financial year 2022.