Koenig & Bauer reveals Q3 results

The Koenig & Bauer Group has reported that it remained on track for a recovery in its business in the first nine months of 2021.

Customer orders rose by 37.3% to €978.6m during this period and the performance was particularly underpinned by the increase of around 54.0% in the Special segment. Order intake was also up in the Sheetfed segment again, rising by 35.5%.

The company says some new investments are being postponed due to the uncertainty surrounding the Covid-19 pandemic. In the first nine months of 2021, this mainly relates to order intake in the Digital & Webfed segment, although there were tentative signs of a recovery in incoming orders in the third quarter, as a total of five CorruCUT presses were successfully marketed to beta and new customers as of the end of July 2021.

Customer orders rose by 56.2% year-on-year in the third quarter, thus outpacing the sector average (June – August: 39.8%).

Cumulative revenue for the first nine months was up year-on-year for the first time in 2021, increasing by 3.0% to €787.4m. It maintained this momentum in the third quarter and reached €294.2m, which corresponds to a year-on-year increase of 18.2%. Industry association VDMA reported a 7.9% year-on-year increase in printing press revenue for the period from June to August.

Another strategic milestone reached was theworld premiere of the VariJET digital press following the previousl successful market launch of the CorruCUT and RotaJET.

Dr Andreas Pleßke, chief executive officer of Koenig & Bauer AG, said: “Our customers’ decisions to opt for a VariJET, RotaJET or CorruCut, for example, show that our focus on growth markets such as digital folding-box, beverage-carton and decor printing as well as corrugated printing is paying off. More than ever before, our customers’ purchasing decisions are being guided by efforts to optimise their “total cost of process.” 

This approach not only takes into account the acquisition costs but also includes all aspects of subsequent use, including upstream and downstream value-chain processes. In addition to reducing the consumption of resources, this includes the more efficient production of varying run sizes for test packaging and new campaigns by brand owner.

In addition, the pandemic has proven to be a catalyst for many megatrends: for example, gross e-commerce revenue increased by 14.6% to €83.3bn in 2020. Consumers bought significantly more everyday necessities, such as food, drugstore products and medicines, via online channels. And according to industry association BEVH, this trend will not be reversed and provides clear evidence that the end markets addressed by Koenig & Bauer, including the packaging printing market, are fundamentally intact and offer growth potential even in the face of a pandemic.

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