February 14, 2014
Buhler Group's fiscal 2013 order intake up 1%
For fiscal 2013, Bühler Group's order intake exceeded the level of a year ago by 1% while sales revenue (turnover) was 4% lower than in the previous year and earnings before interests and taxes (EBIT) margin fell 6% due to one-time charges resulting from an acquisition.
As announced, Urs Bühler left the Board of Directors with is Calvin Grieder as his successor, who continues to also act as chief executive officer (CEO).
Order intake amounted to CHF2363 million (US$2.6 billion) and was thus 1% higher than a year ago. Whereas the Food Processing division grew by 7%, Grain Processing received 3% less orders. The Advanced Materials division increased its order intake by more than 4%, despite the disinvestment of the Thermal Processes business unit. Whereas the new-plant business frequently suffered delays due to financing challenges that customers faced, the customer service business grew once again at a rate of 8%.
The picture is also mixed with regard to the development of order intake by regions. In North America, it slipped 17% below the value of the previous year, though this was still the second-best volume ever achieved. Declines were also suffered by the regions of Middle East/Africa (-14%) and India (-11%), especially due to the devaluation of some local currencies. On the other hand, Bühler booked 23% more orders in South America, which is a new record. Following a disappointing previous year, Europe grew by 11% in 2013. Asia achieved outstanding growth of +12%.
Sales revenue (turnover) in 2013 amounted to CHF2322 million (US$2.6 billion) or 3.6% less than in the strong previous year (+13% from 2011); in organic terms, the change was -3%. With CHF139 million (US$155.6 million) or 6% of sales, the EBIT margin fell short of the result of the year before at CHF168 million (US$188 million).
At the General Meeting held on February 10, 2014, Urs Bühler and Hans J. Löliger left the Board of Directors because they have reached the statutory age limit. At the same time, Calvin Grieder was appointed Chairman of the Board in addition to his function as CEO. Peter Quadri, a present Member of the Board, was appointed as the new Vice Chairman. Bühler Group remains 100%-owned by the Bühler family.
At the start of 2014, Bühler had a solid backlog of orders of CHF1.3 billion (US$1.5 billion). It provides the potential for achieving further growth on condition that the pace of capital investment picks up again. This assessment is also backed by the fact that Bühler operates in markets which are likely to continue to benefit from strong global social trends. These trends include in particular growing demand for safe, healthy, and affordable foods (Food Processing and Grain Processing divisions) and people's increasing wish for intelligent mobility (Advanced Materials division).
Bühler is a global leader in the field of process engineering, in particular production technologies and services for making foods and advanced materials. Bühler operates in over 140 countries and has a global payroll of over 10,000. In fiscal 2013, the company generated sales revenue of CHF2,322 million (US$2.6 billion).