Koenig & Bauer sees “improved profitability” in 2022

Koenig & Bauer has announced that, based on its preliminary and as yet unaudited figures, its preliminary group earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) for 2022 have exceeded its forecast.

Despite a challenging environment characterised by supply-chain constraints and an associated increase in material and energy costs, which it was not possible to pass on to customers in full, the company said its EBIT of €22 million exceeded its forecast of €15 million to €20 million.

It said it was additionally spurred by the accelerated implementation of the P24x efficiency improvement programme (restructuring program).

At €1.18 billion, its group revenue reached the upper end of the projected range. In the previous year, revenue amounted to €1.1158 billion, while EBIT reached €28.5 million.

Koenig & Bauer CEO Dr Andreas Pleßke said, “it became clear from the third quarter in particular that we were able to make the right strategy adjustments very quickly in response to the changed market environment. In addition, we intensified our already successful P24x efficiency enhancement programme”.

The massive rise in some raw material and energy prices also led to higher material costs in 2022, which the company said it was only possible to pass on in part and with a delayed effect by increasing prices.

In the fourth quarter of 2022 in particular, Koenig & Bauer achieved a significant increase over the same period in the previous year, with revenue coming to €380 million (previous year: €328.4 million) and EBIT to €25 million (previous year: €11.8 million).

Within its business segments, the company said digital and webfed reduced its negative earnings contribution substantially in 2022, posting an EBIT loss of €19 million on revenue of €140 million.

By comparison, its EBIT loss was €38.5 million in 2021.

On the other hand, with its business in industrial digital printing, the versatile corrugated board sector and the growing market for flexible packaging, the segment achieved a significant improvement in earnings.

Revenue in the sheetfed segment climbed from €642.4 million to €672 million, with segment EBIT coming to €19 million (previous year: €24 million).

Koenig & Bauer said this means that it is still on a profitable growth trajectory.

Koenig & Bauer CFO Dr Stephen M. Kimmich said, “The successes, particularly in the last two quarters of 2022, confirm our strategic approach. Accordingly, we consider ourselves to be well and efficiently positioned for 2023 and beyond and are thus taking a major step forward in achieving our medium-term goals”.

For the current year 2023, the management board of Koenig & Bauer said it expects revenue of around €1.3 billion, accompanied by an EBIT margin of roughly three per cent.

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