Endress+Hauser records growth
Fiscal year 2015: strong Swiss franc leaves its mark on earnings
Endress+Hauser was able to hold its ground during the 2015 fiscal year despite a difficult business environment. Although net sales increased 6.6 percent to 2.1 billion euros, preliminary financial figures show the impact of the strong Swiss franc on earnings.
“2015 was marked by currency rate fluctuations,” says Dr Luc Schultheiss, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of the Group, which specializes in instrumentation and process automation. Last year’s decision by the Swiss Central Bank to revoke the cap on the franc was a major blow to the budget right at the beginning of the year, impacting earnings especially hard.
The CFO anticipates Endress+Hauser’s net income will decline around 25 percent compared to 2014. “We were unable to follow on the heels of good results in previous years.”
The weak euro also had a significant influence on the Group’s consolidated revenues. “In local currencies, the Group’s sales grew less than 1 percent,” highlights Luc Schultheiss. The economic transformation in China as well as the drop in the prices of raw materials – especially declining oil & gas prices – weighed heavily on the business.
500 new jobs worldwide
While dissatisfied with the performance of the business, Luc Schultheiss nevertheless emphasizes several positive developments. “The Endress+Hauser Group continued to show sound profitability and financial stability.” The company increased both its equity capital ratio and the headcount. The Group created more than 500 jobs worldwide, ending the year with a total of 12,952 employees. Endress+Hauser will present the audited annual report in Basel on 3 May 2016.
The CFO anticipates the current year will be even more difficult, with a single-digit growth in net sales and stagnating profits. Assuming the business develops as planned, the company will probably add around 350 jobs.