Message from the CEO
Strong order intake in the second half of the year
The Group EBITA margin amounted to 4.2 (6.1) per cent. Sales increased by 6.9 per cent to SEK 743 (695) million. Zander & Ingeström had another strong year and G.F Swedenborg, which we acquired during the year, achieved “all time high” earnings, which was extra enjoyable after taking possession on 1 May.
Development of the markets
In Sweden, the EBITA margin was 8.5 (9.5) per cent. The order intake during the year was good and we see stable demand in the market. Zander & Ingeström and G.F Swedenborg had, as mentioned, a very strong year. Christian Berner AB also improved profitability towards last year, but there is room here for further improvement.
Pleasing with acquisitions that deliver directly.
In Norway, we achieved an EBITA margin of 6.4 (6.7) per cent. The order intake during the year was weaker in Process & Environment, but had continued good development for vibration-damping materials for the construction industry and infrastructure projects.
Denmark made a weak profit with an EBITA margin of 4.3 (5.7) per cent. This is explained by the fact that the order intake has been weak for a long time, as the process industry, in particular, is holding off on its investments.
Finland had a weak year with an EBITA margin of 1.7 (6.3) per cent. Sales of vibration-damping materials to the construction industry in the Helsinki area remained good, but we lacked major machinery investments in the process industry.
Focus on high value creation
We will continue to focus on growth and on making more acquisitions that contribute to the Group’s development. Our strategic "High Value" focus with the cornerstones of customer value, sustainability and profitability will help us navigate forward, choose and opt out.
Some concrete examples from the year are that we closed down the Gas & Energy product area in Sweden, restructured Technical Plastics in the Group, and made a stake and invested in more employees in Vibration Technology and Heating Technology, which are two areas where we see great potential for growth and profitability. We also acquired G.F Swedenborg, which developed very positively.
Our vision is to create innovative technical solutions for a sustainable society. We already do this today, among other things in quiet environments, clean water and sustainable energy systems. And we will do more and develop more solutions and products for the society of the future.
We assess the underlying demand as stable and have hopes for a continued positive development even if we see continued extended delivery times for larger projects mainly due to a shortage of raw materials and components.
We have a good risk diversification with many different technical areas and customer segments, and we have demonstrated an ability to add strong operations to the Group through acquisitions.
Thank you as I bid farewell
This is my last “Message from the CEO” in an annual report from Christian Berner. I would therefore like to thank all the fantastic employees, customers, suppliers and shareholders for your rewarding collaboration as I now move on to new challenges.
I would also like to wish my successor Caroline Reuterskiöld and all our employees the best of luck in the continued development of the Group. It has been enjoyable and challenging to have made the journey from a family-owned company to a listed company with all that this entails. That journey is now continuing without me.