SWITZERLAND • 2016 was a good year for the Bobst Group financially as sales increased by 8.7% and operating profits increased to CHF 103.7 million compared with CHF 83.9 million in 2015. But the company warns of uncertainty ahead this year.
Overall Bobst, a supplier of equipment and services to the packaging and label industries, achieved consolidated sales of CHF 1.447 billion in 2016, an increase of CHF 116 million, or +8.7%, compared to 2015. The operating result (EBIT) was CHF 103.7 million (CHF 83.9 million in 2015), while the net result was CHF 84.3 million (CHF 67.1 million in 2015). Cash increased by CHF 46.3 million contributing to a net cash position of CHF 51.3 million compared to net debt of CHF 1.7 million in 2015. The return on capital employed (ROCE) increased to 19.9% compared to 16.0% in 2015 and the shareholders’ equity ratio increased to 33.9% from 31.1% in the previous year. The Board of Directors proposes to the Annual General Meeting of Shareholders the payment of a dividend of CHF 1.70 per share (CHF 1.25 in 2015).
For the full year 2016, consolidated sales increased by CHF 116 million, or 8.7%, to CHF 1.447 billion. Adjusted for currency effects and acquisitions, organic sales were up 6.7% in 2016. Nuova Gidue Srl which was acquired in 2015, and the new subsidiary opened in Turkey at the beginning of 2016 contributed CHF 16.1 million to the sales increase. Exchange rate variances increased sales by CHF 10.8 million.
However, Bobst warns that “change is all around and 2017 will be another ‘unpredictable year’. The way that countries are run under new political leaderships may influence global trade and change its dynamics. Although the markets will remain unpredictable, there will still be plenty of opportunities.”