Cost-cutting program launched successfully
Following a good first quarter (April 1 to June 30) for
fiscal 2001/02 (sales up 8 percent and operating result up just
under 22 percent), the events in the USA had a clear impact on
Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG's (Heidelberg) second quarter
results. Sales by the Heidelberg Group were 2.3 billion
Euro in the first half year (April 1 - September 30, 2001),
around 5 percent up on the same period last year (just under 2.2
billion Euro). The operating result fell during the period by 43
million Euro to 110 million Euro. The profit after tax was 62
million Euro, down 20 million Euro on the first half of the
previous fiscal year.
"Sales in September in particular were poor, being around 100
million Euro below expectations", stated Bernhard Schreier,
Heidelberg's CEO. Web Systems sales were especially weak, being
29 percent down on last year's figures. The Heidelberg Group
received orders during the first half year of 2.54 billion Euro
(17.4 percent below the figure recorded in drupa year 2000).
Incoming orders were up around 25 percent, however, compared to
pre-drupa year 1999/2000 (around 2 billion Euro).
As at September 30, 2001, the Heidelberg Group employed
around 26,000 staff worldwide.
Developments in the divisions
Sales for the half year in the Sheetfed Division climbed more
than 16 percent to 1.57 billion Euro (previous year: 1.35 billion
Euro). The operating result was 263 million Euro (previous year:
212 million Euro) and thereby exceeded last year's figure by a
satisfying 24 percent.
The Finishing Division recorded sales of 176 million Euro
(previous year: 173 million Euro). The profit of 7 million Euro
(previous year: 11 million Euro) just failed to match the high
level achieved for the 2000/01 half year.
Sales and operating results for the Digital and Web Systems
Divisions fell below last year's levels. Sales for the Web
Systems Division were 218 million Euro, down from 307 million Euro
the previous year. The operating loss grew to around 91 million
Euro (previous year: loss of 24 million Euro).
The Digital Division recorded sales of 333 million Euro
(previous year: 364 million Euro). The operating loss was 69
million Euro (previous year: loss of 46 million Euro). The
sales launch of the NexPress digital color press in September went
particularly well. "With over 80 machines already sold, we
will easily exceed our target of 100 systems for the year as a
whole", stated Bernhard Schreier. This boded well, he
explained, for the company's future development.
Progress in the regions quite positive
A comparison of the regions shows just how severely the
current situation is being impacted by the economic developments in
the USA. Sales in all regions showed positive development, with the
exception of the NAFTA region, where they fell by 137 million Euro
or 18.9 percent over the previous year. Sales in the Asia/Pacific
Region, Eastern Europe and Latin America, however, recorded double
digit growth rates. The important Central Europe region grew by
just under 9 percent.
Cost-cutting program introduced
"We are looking to a comprehensive cost-cutting program
to drive the company towards growth and safeguard our earnings
potential", stated Dr. Herbert Meyer, CFO at Heidelberg. To
ensure Heidelberg achieves its target of 100 million
Euro savings in the current fiscal year, fixed-term employment
contracts will not be extended, no new employees will be appointed,
overtime will be cut back, and lasting reductions will be made in
Prospects for fiscal 2001/2002
In its sales and results forecasts for the year as a whole,
the company had previously assumed that the economic recovery in
the USA would begin in the second half of the current fiscal year.
Developments now suggest there will be a further economic downturn
in the USA with consequences for business in Europe and Asia.
"Despite the cost-cutting measures that have been introduced, we
now believe that last year's results can no longer be matched
if customers become increasingly uneasy about making investments",
explained Dr. Herbert Meyer. He nevertheless anticipated that sales
for the second half of fiscal 2001/02 would be just above the
figure for the first half. "The profit after taxes for the
fiscal year as a whole will lie between 200 and 220 million Euro
(283 million Euro in 2000/01)."
For further information:
Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG
Tel.: +49 (0)6221 92 47 47
Fax: +49 (0)6221 92 50 69