“We were able to meet our forecasts from last year and continued the positive business development of previous years despite the difficult global economic situation. For this reason, we are satisfied with the past fiscal year,” said Dr. Frank Heinricht, chairman of the Board of Management, at the Annual Results Press Conference.
The international technology group managed to increase its sales by 5.1% to nearly €2.2 billion. The operating result (EBIT), which now stands at €275 million, also improved slightly. Consolidated net profit for the year amounted to €206 million. All three segments – Precision Materials, Optical Industries and Home Appliances – contributed to the successful fiscal year.
On the other hand, the difficult situation in the automotive industry also had an impact on SCHOTT. The Electronic Packaging division that supplies components to the automotive industry, in particular, suffered from this development. At the same time, future topics such as autonomous driving and electromobility offer new opportunities for special-purpose glasses.
Sales of more than €506 million were reported out of the North America region. In terms of overall sales, 87% were achieved outside of Germany. In total, 23% of global sales were attributable to North America.
“SCHOTT grew strongly in the North American market led by our Pharmaceutical Packaging business unit,” said Jim Gareau, president SCHOTT North America Inc. “Our investments in the North American region enable innovations to be brought to market particular-ly in the pharma industry where investments allowed for the production of the expanded adaptiQ portfolio.”
Investments in property, plant and equipment amounted to €257 million in the fiscal year, an increase of 38% over the previous year. The expansion of the production capacity of an existing plant in India and the construction of a new plant in China were the largest foreign investments.
After getting off to a good start in the first three months of its new fiscal year, SCHOTT expects sales to increase by between 3% and 6% for the year as a whole. The technology group expects impetus to come, among other areas, from a demand for specialty glass for pharmaceutical packaging and ultra-thin glass for the foldable mobile devices of the future.
In fiscal year 2019/2020, SCHOTT plans to invest €320 million, the highest amount in the company’s history. One main focus here will be on capacity expansions in the pharmaceutical packaging business in China and India. In Germany, SCHOTT plans to invest in its pharmaceutical packaging business in Müllheim, among other sites, as well as in its manufacturing capacities for specialty glass in Mainz and Jena.