Fiscal year 2013/14: high demand in the first, low demand in the second half
Currently: dampened expectations
In fiscal year 2013/14 (1 October 2013 to 30 September 2014), Wieland Group sales fell 2.3 percent to 2,772 million euros (previous year: 2,837 million euros). At 465,000 tonnes (previous year: 449,000 tonnes), the sales quantity was 3.6 percent up on the prior-year level. The result was 31 million euros (previous year: 46 million euros).
In a scenario of difficult economic conditions around the globe, the Wieland Group recorded an unsatisfactory demand in fiscal year 2013/14. While demand was still high in the first half of the year, the level of incoming orders decreased substantially from the second half of the year onwards.
Metal-related decline in sales
The decline in sales resulted from the metal prices that were lower compared to the previous year. At 5,200 euros per tonne on average, the copper price was 10 percent down on the prior-year level.
The geopolitical situation with flashpoints in the Middle East and Ukraine had an overall negative effect on demand. This was particularly true for the countries of Europe where there were no signs of a sustained economic recovery. Trends in the Asian markets varied. Although less dynamic, China has remained the growth motor in the region. Borne by stable domestic demand, business activity in North America continued on its positive trend. Considerable stimulation of demand for Wieland products came from the automotive and vehicle construction industry as well as the electrical and electronic sector.
The result fell short of expectations. One reason for this was the fierce competitive and price pressure in the semi-finished products industry. In addition, decreased demand and poorer capacity utilisation in the second half of the fiscal year diminished the result.
In fiscal year 2013/14, the Wieland Group invested approx. 72 million euros in tangible assets (prior year 44 million euros). Capital investment focused largely on individual measures at different locations. The main purpose of these investments was to improve infrastructure, modernise production technology, boost productivity and also cut energy consumption.
In fiscal year 2013/14, an average of 6,790 employees (prior year 6,680) were working for the consolidated companies of the Wieland Group, with Wieland-Werke AG accounting for 4,365 of these (prior year 4,300). The increase is largely due to additional staff at Wieland-Werke AG as well as at the subsidiaries in Austria and the USA.
At the Annual General Meeting of Wieland-Werke AG on 6 March 2015, a dividend in the amount of 12.4 million euros was declared which corresponds to the value of the previous year.
In the current fiscal year, which started on 1 October 2014, demand continues to be subdued. This particularly holds true for Europe which is partly in recession. The other two sales regions America and Asia are growing only slowly, with impetus for growth only coming from the USA. Strong demand is mainly recorded for products for the automotive industry and energy-efficient applications in machinery and plant construction.
Against this background we expect the result to be slightly up on the prior-year benchmark.