Heidelberg closes unprofitable businesses, up to 2,000 jobs affected worldwide

Photo courtesy of Heidelberg
18 Mar 2020 − 

Production of "Primefire" and "very large format printing" to be discontinued

In order to reduce structural costs and sustainably optimize profitability, the Management Board of German printing press producer Heidelberger Druckmaschinen (Heidelberg) has approved a comprehensive package of measures announced last year. Focus on profitable core businesses and consistently streamlining of the cost base are geared to deliver €100m improvement in Ebitda excluding restructuring costs, the company says. Net financial debt is to be reduced almost completely by transferring back liquidity reserves from trust funds.

Against this backdrop, the printing press group will divest individual products that are clearly not generating enough profitability and, with an annual loss of around € 50 million, are having a considerable impact on profitability. In the digital printing sector, for example, the market for the Primefire 106 product has developed much more slowly than expected due to the difficult industry and market environment. In the sheet-fed offset printing sector, the "very large format" product range is also lagging well behind the targeted sales, as the market structure for this sub-segment has fundamentally changed. Therefore, production in both areas will be discontinued by the end of 2020 at the latest, Heidelberg says.

As already announced, the realignment of Heidelberger Druckmaschinen will be accompanied by a sustained adjustment of production and structural costs. A total of up to 2,000 jobs worldwide will be affected by the planned measures, which could also include the closure of operations, one third of the jobs are to be cut in a socially acceptable manner, Heidelberger explains. At this early stage, it is not yet possible to determine which locations will be affected, a company spokesman told EUWID.

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