Heidelberg Reports Revenue Decline but Orders Stabilize
HEIDELBERG, GERMANY—11/10/2009—Incoming orders in the first six months of the financial year 2009/10 (April 1 to September 30) at Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (Heidelberg) have stabilized at the current low level. In total, however, the figures for the first six months are down significantly on equivalent figures for the previous year. As print shops are still running well below capacity due to low advertising budgets, the company does not expect any marked increase in investments in the print media industry for the financial year as a whole.
Incoming orders of EUR 534 million in the second quarter (July 1 to September 30) were roughly on a par with the previous quarter (EUR 550 million), having stabilized at a low level since October 2008. The significant fall in incoming orders to EUR 1.084 billion in the first half of the year was also influenced by the high order volumes stemming from last year's drupa show (previous year: EUR 1.872 billion).
"Developments within the individual regions differ considerably. Asia is showing signs of recovery, which are not sufficient to fully compensate for the downturns in the other regions," says Heidelberg CEO Bernhard Schreier. "Incoming orders are bottoming out now, but we do not expect to see clear signs of improvement in the subsequent quarters of the current financial year. We can only expect to see an improvement in production values and capacity utilization in the print industry when the economy as a whole shows signs of a lasting recovery, which in turn will encourage a greater readiness to invest."
The order backlog of the Heidelberg Group remained constant in the second quarter of the current financial year at EUR 617 million (previous quarter: EUR 616 million).
The low level of incoming orders led to a slight drop in sales in the second quarter over the first quarter, falling from EUR 514 million to EUR 499 million. In the first six months of the current financial year, sales amounted to a total of EUR 1.013 billion and were thus down around 31 percent on the previous year (EUR 1.461 billion).