The Voith Group continued to show solid results in the first six months (October 2019 through end of March 2020) of the current fiscal year 2019/20, despite a very challenging market environment. Voith’s figures were negatively affected beginning late March by the COVID-19 pandemic, which first appeared in China – one of Voith’s important markets – before spreading around the world towards the end of the reporting period. The pandemic went hand in hand with contact restrictions in many places, initial production stoppages and a noticeable reluctance on the part of customers to invest.
Despite this, Group sales of EUR 2.08 billion were slightly higher than in the same period in the previous year (EUR 2.07 billion). Orders received were worth EUR 2.17 billion, almost as high as in the previous year (EUR 2.29 billion). The value of orders received was EUR 5.58 billion on the reporting date of March 31 and was slightly higher than the high-level in the previous year (EUR 5.54 billion). Voith was able to increase its operating results slightly in the first half of the fiscal year. EBIT increased by 3 per-cent to EUR 79 million. All three lines of Voith core business were clearly in the black while future investments in Digital Ventures continued to impact results, as planned. The Voith Group’s EBIT margin rose slightly to 3.8 per cent. The net result rose significantly to EUR 23 million (previous year EUR 18 million).
For the first time, the figures for the first half of the fiscal year also include BTG, which was integrated on December 1, 2019. The new Voith subsidiary, a provider of integrated, highly specialized process solutions for the global pulp and paper industry, contributed EUR 51 million of incoming orders, sales of EUR 48 million and operating results of EUR 7 million.
“The Voith Group was in a highly robust operative and financial condition when the COVID-19 crisis broke out. It is at times like these that our broad sectoral and geographical positioning pays off. We are confident that Voith will come through the crisis well and that it is optimally placed to continue on its present course of sustainable and profitable growth,” stated Dr. Toralf Haag, Voith President and CEO.
Acquisitions further strengthen core business
In addition to the crisis management which is necessary during the COVID-19 pandemic, Voith is continuing to focus on its targeted strategy of strengthening its core business. Voith had already achieved important milestones in its M&A strategy in the previous months. After completing the integration of BTG, two other important acquisitions were agreed upon in December 2019, and have now closed. The acquisition of a 90 percent holding in the Italian company Toscotec has further strengthened Voith’s position in the paper industry. Toscotec’s product and service portfolio will extend Voith Paper’s offering and further strengthens the position of the company as a full-line supplier in key sectors of the paper industry.
In the first half of the 2019/20 fiscal year, the Group’s growth was again primarily driven by the Group Division Voith Paper. Despite the normalization of investments in the paper industry, Voith Paper was able to boost the value of orders received significantly up to EUR 901 million (previous year: EUR 747 million). Sales increased to EUR 895 million (previous year: EUR 821 million) thanks to excellent capacity utilization and the acquisition of BTG. Operating results of EUR 46 million were again higher than the previ-ous year (EUR 42 million).