KBA Sees Successful drupa Boosts Its Business in the Second Half-Year

WÜRZBURG, GERMANY—June 14, 2012—At its well-attended 87th annual general meeting, Koenig & Bauer AG (KBA) President and CEO Claus Bolza-Schünemann reported a strong group performance at drupa 2012. Contracts worth well €100 million were signed at the fair in Düsseldorf, most of them for batch-produced sheetfed offset presses. Post-drupa business remains brisk.

While the positive impact of Drupa on order intake and sales will not work through to the bottom line for some weeks or even months, preliminary figures for KBA’s sheetfed offset division show that the volume of new orders booked to the end of May approached €300 million, up roughly 12 percent on 2011. However, orders for web and special presses totaled approximately €190 million, a big drop on the prior-year figure of more than €335 million, which had been boosted by some major contracts.

The group order intake of just over €486 million for the first five months was thus lower than 12 months earlier, but higher than group sales for the same period, which stood at around €458 million or around 8 percent up on the prior-year figure. The order backlog as of May 31, 2012, exceeded €854 million and was a good €236 million above the prior-year figure. This will contribute to the higher sales targeted in the second six months.

Payroll falls below 6,000, excluding apprentices
While Bolza-Schünemann anticipates higher earnings for the first six months compared to 2011, he was unwilling to disclose any concrete figures before the half-year report is published on August 14, 2012. Notwithstanding the increased risks relating to the global economy, management is targeting sales of more than €1.2 billion for 2012 and a higher pre-tax group profit compared to 2011 (€3.3 million).

This projection is based on an anticipated high level of plant utilization in the second half-year and a positive impact on earnings from ongoing cost-cutting activities. At the end of May the KBA group payroll totaled 6,256, or 121 fewer than in the previous year. Excluding 328 apprentices the group payroll has already fallen below 6,000 and will be reduced by several hundred more over the next few years as a number of measures such as phased retirement reach completion.

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