For the CHT Group the business year 2015 was a year of superlatives. With historically high sales amounting to 409 million EUR the very strong business year 2014 was even topped. Sales were higher by 23 million EUR respectively 6.1 % than those of the previous year.
The unexpectedly strong demand in the textile industry mainly led to this positive development. All regions worldwide benefited from this stronger demand, so that not only the big companies of the Group such as Turkey, Germany and Switzerland but particularly the local organizations in Colombia, Mexico and Peru were very successful.
In 2015, the biggest investment volume ever was additionally implemented – an investment total of 23.7 million EUR (+40 % compared to 2014). 14 million EUR (approx. 60 %) were invested into new technologies and new buildings at German production sites. The investment focus was a new production plant for pasty products in Dußlingen, the oldest and biggest production site of the CHT Group. With this new, top modern production line being probably completely taken into operation by March 2017 the COO of the CHT Group, Dr. Bernhard Hettich, feels well prepared. “With our state-of-the-art production site we are able to serve the globally increasing demand for pasty products amounting to an annual volume of 1,300 ton in a much better way. Currently 10 large production aggregates are being installed in the new building. Moreover, this project is a first important milestone for a step-by-step modernization of our site in Dußlingen“.
In 2015 also investments in a highly innovative production technology at our silicone site Oyten were completed, accompanied by a totally new logistics concept including a new site for the warehouse.
”We still focus on the organic growth of our business fields all over the world and support this process with investments into innovation, new production capacities and technical support for our customers. In 2015, this strategy paid off for the company“, says Dr. Frank Naumann, CEO of the CHT Group. “In addition, we consider our modern production sites and high innovation performance as well as our well trained, committed team to be a competitive advantage, thus a distinct investment into our future.“
The R&D quota of the Group shows that CHT still focuses on innovations. In 2015 this quota was 3.8 % for the complete Group; at the headquarters in Germany it was even more with roughly 6 %.
The Management additionally succeeded in completing three acquisition projects and taking the right steps for the future strategic market approach with the acquisition of the Brazilian specialist for paper chemicals, Quimipel Indústria Química Ltda. CHT was able to supplement the promising business field of Pulp & Paper with new know-how and new products. In addition the South American market entry became possible. In the Turkish and Chinese markets being very important for the CHT Group the shares of our former joint venture partners could be taken over in 2015.
2015 was also a successful year in terms of finances. The EBIT of the Group amounted to 32 million EUR, thus once more an excellent value despite the extremely high investment volume and the impact by the appreciation of the Swiss franc at the beginning of 2015. This very good result was mainly due to positive sales development, positive situations on the raw material markets and above all due to the weak Euro mobilising many markets quite strongly in its tailwind.
“For 2016 we expect a rather moderate increase in sales and a slightly declining yet very good EBIT“, says Mr. Jan Siebert, CFO of the CHT Group. “We have to adjust to a more critical market climate after this strong year and expect consolidation effects in growth.
We assume the situation on the raw material markets will slowly change again with price increases to be expected. The result will additionally be affected by our continuously high investment volumes and staff expansion in Germany which we need to grow worldwide.“
At the end of 2015 1,847 people were employed within the Group, among them about 1/3 in Germany at the sites in Tübingen (322), Dußlingen (199), Oyten (62) and Geretsried (28). By the end of 2016 we strive at employing 1,900 people worldwide. Therefore, the CHT Group is growing as employer, too.
In 2016, sustainability continues to be of crucial importance within the CHT Group. “We consider sustainability to be the groundwork of our company because it complies with our culture and our self-comprehension as global commercial company“, states CEO Dr. Frank Naumann. “Whatever we have achieved so far in terms of sustainability and whatever we strive for in the years to come is compiled in the 2015 sustainability report being published by the end of June 2016.“