Engineered Components: Challenges well mastered
The improvement in SFS Group’s operating performance in the second half was driven in particular by the Engineered Components segment, which accounts for more than half of SFS Group's total sales. This segment’s sales rose by 10.7% in the second half compared to the first half. Its significant growth was broadly based and supported by the seasonal ramp-up of several projects as well as a recovery in the Electronics sector.
Full-year 2019 sales for the Engineered Components segment amounted to CHF 957.1 million. Taking the negative currency translation effect of –1.2% into consideration, organic sales growth was slightly positive at 0.2%. The overall flat sales growth is attributed to weak market demand. SFS nevertheless defended or even strengthened its position with its customers in all of its business areas. Its sustained strong competitive position is also reflected in the acquisition of substantial new projects and the healthy project pipeline.
Fastening Systems: Market position further expanded
Sales at the Fastening Systems segment amounted to CHF 498.3 million, an increase of 14.0% from the previous financial year. The aforementioned first-time consolidation effects contributed 18.5% to sales growth. In organic terms, sales growth was slightly negative at –2.1%. The Construction division profited from a stable market environment and generated slightly positive organic growth. Sales in the Riveting division, by contrast, were pressured by the very challenging situation in the German and British automotive markets. Currency effects reduced reported sales by –2.4%.
Thanks to innovative products and the successful acquisition of TFC (in April 2019), the segment strengthened its competitive position in the construction business.
Distribution & Logistics: Solid course of business achieved
Organic sales in the D&L segment declined slightly by –0.8% from the previous year. Reported sales amounted to CHF 326.0 million.
The reason for the slightly negative growth is a general downturn in demand over the course of the year, especially from customers in industrial sectors. D&L is focused on the Swiss market and its market position was strengthened through the acquisition of new customers and intensified multi-channel activities. Changes in the scope of consolidation led to a –1.3% decline in sales while the stronger Swiss franc reduced sales by –0.4%.
Sales by region: Share of sales from Americas region significantly increased
SFS had a broad geographic sales exposure. Some regions showed slightly lower sales due on the one hand to negative currency effects and on the other hand to a weakening of global economic momentum. The disproportionate increase in sales from the Americas region is attributable to the acquisition of TFC and to the organic growth in the construction and, in particular, the medical device industries. Total sales in the Americas rose a sharp 25.0% (organic 5.0%) and accounted for 21.6% of consolidated sales.