Demand for the products and services of Bucher Industries declined notably in the first half of 2020 as a consequence of the spread of COVID-19. A recovery set in at mid-year and gained momentum towards the end of the reporting period, but order intake and sales were nevertheless lower overall. The Group expects the operating profit margin for 2020 to be slightly higher than at mid-year and profit for the period to be correspondingly lower versus 2019.
In the first half of 2015, Bucher Industries was unable to maintain the high level attained in the same period of last year. Sales and order intake decreased. The appreciation of the Swiss franc contributed around 7% to the decline in sales. Before adjustment for currency effects, the operating profit margin decreased slightly, edging down 0.3 percentage points. As a result, Group profit for the period was lower than the high level reached in the same period of 2014.
The 2014 sustainability report that is published online comprises key figures from the 32 most important production sites of Bucher Industries worldwide. Compared with 2013, energy consumption at Group level fell by about 6%, despite a 4% increase in sales. This positive trend was due to the energy-saving measures implemented and the mild winter in Europe.
At the 31st annual general meeting of shareholders of Bucher Industries AG, 66.32% of the votes were represented and 238 shareholders attended in person. They approved all the proposals of the board of directors and a dividend at the same level as the previous year: CHF 6.50 per registered share.
For the 2014 business year, Bucher Industries increased sales by 4% to CHF 2.8 billion and order intake by 1% to CHF 2.7 billion. The operating profit margin fell to 9.2%, while profit for the year reached CHF 190 million, almost as high as the previous year's record level. The board of directors will propose an unchanged dividend of CHF 6.50 per share to the annual general meeting on 14 April 2015.
In the 2014 business year, Bucher Industries recorded a 4% increase in sales to CHF 2.8 billion. Order intake amounted to CHF 2.7 billion, 1% above the previous year's level. For 2014, the Group anticipates a profit for the year just short of the record mark set in 2013.
At its meeting on Friday, the board of directors named Dr. Jacques Sanche as the new CEO of Bucher Industries AG as of the annual general meeting in April 2016. The annual general meeting will also be asked to elect Philip Mosimann, who has been CEO for many years, as the new chairman of the board. The current chairman, Rolf Broglie, will leave the board of directors in April 2016.
In a business environment influenced by diverse trends, Bucher Industries increased its sales in the first nine months of 2014 by 5.7% to CHF 2.1 billion compared with the same period a year ago. The order intake rose by 2.1% to CHF 2 billion. The outlook for the year as a whole remains unchanged. The Group anticipates sales growth and a moderate fall in profitability from the record high in 2013.
As previously announced on 15 January 2014, Thierry Krier took over today as division president of Kuhn Group and at the same time was appointed by the board of directors as a member of group management. He succeeds Michel Siebert, who retired with effect from the end of September 2014.